Billing themselves as “the world’s first country vocal band,” Minneapolis-based a cappella quartet Home Free soared past their competition and finished in first place on NBC’s The Sing-Off, scoring a recording contract with Sony and a $100,000 grand prize.
Home Free first formed 13 years ago in Mankato, Minnesota, where the group’s director and baritone, Chris Rupp, was studying music performance at Mankato State. They’ve since gone on to tour successfully around the world, performing for everyone from the Minnesota Vikings to Norwegian Cruise Lines. As with many other a cappella vocal groups, Home Free have enjoyed an extra boost in visibility in recent years thanks to the popularity of The Sing-Off, which pits a cappella groups against one another on prime-time television and have pushed acts like last year’s champions Pentatonix into the mainstream.
The fourth season of The Sing-Off was hosted by Nick Lachey of 98 Degrees and was judged by vocalists Ben Folds, Shawn Stockman of Boyz II Men, and Jewel, who joined Home Free on stage for a performance on Monday night’s season finale.
Here are Home Free singing “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” with Jewel:
And here they are singing Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire,” one of their best performances from the season:
The group also wisely released a brand-new music video within minutes of winning the show. Watch that right here: