Sweet with a raw edge. That’s how Mark Pastor described the singing voice of his late friend, John Jones, who passed away in March after battling cancer.
Pastor, the only remaining original member of the acapella doo wop group, The NorrisTones, said Jones’ tenor voice “added a dimension to our sound that helped bring us to the forefront of the a cappella groups that perform today. He was the epitome of cool.”
In the wake of Jones’ death, The NorrisTones were faced with the task of re-working their sound, a sad undertaking they were all too familiar with.
In April 2009, Pastor, along with baritone Ron Selix, a member since 2003, and tenor Andy Petruzelli, who joined the group in 2006, lost The NorrisTones’ founder, Anthony “AC” Clementi.
Before Clementi’s death, the five recorded a CD that was later dedicated to their founder and titled “Legacy.” Pastor, of Pottstown, called the CD the group’s “biggest accomplishment” to date. “Another feather in (their) caps,” he said, was a performance in Atlantic City, N.J. that fulfilled one of Clementi’s dreams. The group also appeared in Harvey Holiday’s Super Bowl of A Cappella Doo Wop Show at the Theatre of the Living Arts in Philadelphia for three consecutive year, even headlining the show in 2008.
“It just seems like every time we get our sound exactly where we want it, an obstacle presents itself right in front of us,” Pastor said. “But we overcome that and we go on. We’re trying to keep (AC’s) dream alive.”