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The Late Movies: PS22 Kids Sing the Hits

The Public School 22 Chorus is a delight -- a choir of fifth graders who sing their hearts out. With a new group every school year, you get to see tons of talent coming from one school in Staten Island, New York. Below, I've rounded up some of my favorite songs performed by the group. Listen up, folks: this is what public school arts education can do.

"Somebody That I Used to Know" (Gotye)

Featuring Kahlil on lead vocals. Apparently Gotye posted about this cover, calling PS22 "the coolest kids on the block." Totally!

"Eye of the Tiger" (Survivor)

Stay tuned for soloist Jared around the one-minute mark. This kid can really hit the high notes!

"Bridge Over Troubled Water" (Simon & Garfunkel)

When was the last time you saw fifth graders so engaged and so in-tune? Totally lovely.

"Rolling in the Deep" (Adele)

Featuring Denise on lead vocals, belting it out!

"True Colors" (Cyndi Lauper)

With some bonus enthusiasm at the end.

"Man in the Mirror" (Michael Jackson)

Recorded at the kids' graduation.

"I Want You Back" (Jackson 5)

My favorite Jackson 5 tune, done beautifully by Marquis and the chorus.

"Kids" (MGMT)

Featuring Marquis on drums! A little off key in spots, but still fun.

"Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want" (The Smiths)

These kids have got that mid-80's Rough Trade vibe down pat.

"Don't Stop Believin'" (Journey)

This was posted about a month after Glee premiered. See also: "Faithfully" featuring Judy Torres.

"Viva La Vida" (Coldplay)

These kids can even make me like Coldplay! Miraculous. Featuring April.

"Imagine" (John Lennon)

Apparently taken from the second rehearsal by this particular group.

More

There's way more where these came from. You can also read up on the group at Wikipedia, including an impressive list of appearances on TV and radio. Great job, kids and teachers!

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Pop Culture
How to Perform the Star Wars Theme—On Calculators
Star Wars © & TM 2015 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Star Wars © & TM 2015 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

The iconic Star Wars theme has been recreated with glass harps, theremins, and even cat meows. Now, Laughing Squid reports that the team over at YouTube channel It’s a small world have created a version that can be played on calculators.

The channel’s math-related music videos feature covers of popular songs like Luis Fonsi’s "Despacito," Ed Sheeran’s "Shape of You," and the Pirates of the Caribbean theme, all of which are performed on two or more calculators. The Star Wars theme, though, is played across five devices, positioned together into a makeshift keyboard of sorts.

The video begins with a math-musician who transcribes number combinations into notes. Then, they break into an elaborate practice chord sequence on two, and then four, calculators. Once they’re all warmed up, they begin playing the epic opening song we all know and love, which you can hear for yourself in all its electronic glory below.

[h/t Laughing Squid]

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holidays
Bleat Along to Classic Holiday Tunes With This Goat Christmas Album
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Feeling a little Grinchy this month? The Sweden branch of ActionAid, an international charity dedicated to fighting global poverty, wants to goat—errr ... goad—you into the Christmas spirit with their animal-focused holiday album: All I Want for Christmas is a Goat.

Fittingly, it features the shriek-filled vocal stylings of a group of festive farm animals bleating out classics like “Jingle Bells,” “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” and “O Come All Ye Faithful.” The recording may sound like a silly novelty release, but there's a serious cause behind it: It’s intended to remind listeners how the animals benefit impoverished communities. Goats can live in arid nations that are too dry for farming, and they provide their owners with milk and wool. In fact, the only thing they can't seem to do is, well, sing. 

You can purchase All I Want for Christmas is a Goat on iTunes and Spotify, or listen to a few songs from its eight-track selection below.

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