Founded in 1948 for the Homecoming Celebration at Baker Field, the Kingsmen have been performing around the United States for almost 70 years. From day one, the group was a national sensation. The Kingsmen achieved nationwide fame on such shows as Two for the Money, The Steve Allen Program, and The Ed Sullivan Show. Appearing in venues like Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, the Kingsmen entertained the likes of Jayne Mansfield and then-President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Eisenhower showered the group with high praise, claiming at a football game in 1951: “If you men can get 2,000 others singing with that spirit, I’ll personally pin a medal on each one of you.” Before long, the group produced its own celebrities; in 1962, (before his legendary career with Paul Simon) Arthur Garfunkel joined the ranks of the ‘Smen. Then, in 1969, the group split away from the University to debut at Woodstock as the 1950’s doo-wop revival band, Sha Na Na, and subsequently starred in the popular 70’s program of the same name. After a thirteen-year hiatus, the group resurfaced at Columbia in 1982. More recent notable alumni include Tom Kitt, Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer of the Broadway hit musical “Next To Normal.”
Today, the Kingsmen are considered to be Columbia’s premier all-male a cappella group. Consisting of thirteen highly-motivated young men, our repertoire encompasses barbershop, gospel, traditional school songs, Christmas tunes, contemporary selections, and some witty originals. The Kingsmen regularly perform at alumni functions, corporate affairs, holiday parties, athletic events, department stores, and colleges across the Eastern Seaboard.
The ‘Smen have performed at Macy’s, Tiffany’s, Bergdorf Goodman, the 2003 and 2004 US Opens in Queens, NY, for Gregory Hines and Rod Stewart on a Transatlantic crossing of the Queen Elizabeth 2, and in Robert de Niro’s “The Good Shepherd.” Recently, the group has performed at the Fashion Institute of Technology’s “Ivy Style” exhibit opening, the Alzheimer’s Association, the National Psoriasis Foundation, the Rockaway Hunting Club, and on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”