Music, Pop Culture

5 incredible South Asian acapella groups that you absolutely have to listen to

Eastern + Western Music = AWESOME.

Your favorite Eastern and Western music has been synthesized into a perfect package, thanks to these college acapella groups.

These talents aren’t just a couple of college kids in a dorm room trying to do karaoke. These award winning groups can make you love a song you wouldn’t have in its original form. One of these groups was even featured in “Pitch Perfect 2.”

1. Raagapella

If you’re intimidated by Stanford students because they’re, well, Stanford students, prepare to feel even more challenged.

This all-male South Asian acapella group doesn’t just consist of the-smart-guy-in-my-class individuals. Nope, these gentlemen are incredibly talented artists with boy band lead-singer voices.


You can pick a cover from their album Raag Time, but I can promise a treat from their Raags to Riches album where they even feature a Japanese to English translated cover. These artists really spread their wings with their English, Hindi, and even Tamil covers and fusions. Make sure to check out their music videos as well!

2. Penn Masala

It’s still not enough that Ivy League students can perform like pros in their extracurricular groups, but I’ve come to realize that Penn Masala has actually written some of its own songs. I know because the songs were so good that I looked for the originals, only to realize that some were Penn Masala’s own!

Penn Masala was featured in “Pitch Perfect 2,” because the group is that good. I’ll say it: their covers and fusions are better than the originals. I would list off the awards that they have won as well, but I don’t want to make this too long.

Their Youtube channel is also very entertaining to tune into.

3. Maize Mirchi

U of M (University of Michigan) has a huge acapella community, and Maize Mirchi is its award-winning South Asian addition.

As a South Asian-inspired group, their members are multi-racial, and the co-ed touch offers their work even more talent.

4. Dhamakapella

Case Western Reserve’s South Asian acapella group wins at covering your favorite Bollywood and western hits.

Dhamakapella’s co-ed talents have stunning voices that bring a new life to your favorite hits.


5. MIT Ohms

Their compilations give away their genius.

Just listen to them cover Shakira and you will realize the ability of this group to take on any number of acapella challenges.

I leave this list open because there are so many talents that have to be explored. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign’s Chai Town, MSU’s Spartan Sur, and Rutgers RAAG are some of the amazing groups that were featured on “South Asian A Capella 2016.” Check the album out on Spotify!

One thing to note from this list is that some of the most historically challenging schools to get into and attend are on here. We can see this as a testament to “book smart” students also being artistically talented (which was never actually a secret, nor do I think it is a coincidence). Or, we can take this as the opportunity to see that exploring artistic talents, whenever you get a chance to, can be a rewarding experience for college students.

Whether your extracurricular talent is singing, writing, or extending your school studies into the real world, don’t be afraid to supplement your college experience with something more.