It took a cappella group Straight No Chaser, with Allentown native Jerome Collins and Fork Township native Walter Chase, 3 1/2 years to finally play the Lehigh Valley after its viral YouTube video of “The 12 Days of Christmas” mashed up with Toto’s “Africa” got it signed to a record contract.
But what a triumphant return: headlining Musikfest’s Steel Stage with a show lasting nearly two hours, covering 22 full songs (or mash-ups of songs) and three medleys that included parts of 26 others, running a broad variety of styles and ranging from good to stunning.
Even better, two-thirds of the songs featured Collins or Chase, and they included some of the night’s best. And the hometown crowd of 5,507 – members said from stage it was its largest audience ever -- seemed delighted with it.
It was an unusual show for Musikfest: As much a stage show as a concert, with constantly billowing stage fog and plenty of colored lights – and humor. But it mostly worked – only occasionally seeming to lose some of the intimacy and quicker pace it would have had in a theater.