About Us

Overview

March 21, 2014

The Vocal Group Hall Of Fame was founded in January of 1997 to honor the greatest vocal groups of all time who have achieved world-wide recognition by way of their recordings, television appearances and other entertainment media.

The main objective of The Vocal Group Hall Of Fame is to honor vocal groups dating back to the beginning of audio recording, inducting the most deserving, who have contributed most significantly to creating America’s music and to the social culture of the world by way of their music.

The Vocal Group Hall Of Fame is dedicated to preserving the Inductee’s music, perpetuating their legacies and keeping their music and memory alive in the forefront for generations of people to come, and for those that have been inspired and attracted to their timeless music.

To date, The Vocal Group Hall Of Fame has inducted over two hundred vocal groups of all genre of music in Pop, Rock, Country, Folk, Jazz, Big-Band, Gospel, Barbershop and Rhythm and Blues into its prestigious Hall of Fame.

The Harmony Award, which in essence is a lifetime achievement award, is presented to original, authentic group members, authorized representatives or family members for approximately twelve deserving vocal groups for each annual class inducted. Inductees elected are from past decades that present their music at the Induction Ceremony, Induction Shows and events which have been held in a few states throughout our country.

The Induction Show and Ceremony provide an opportunity for the present and past Inductees to perform live in  unique media presentations that are videotaped and recorded in front of a live audiences, preserved on CD’s  and DVD’s, digital downloads, produced as television “Specials” and other forms of media products.

The induction process is initiated by music industry professionals that make up the Induction Committee. Renowned musicologists, record collectors, Inductees and web site visitors make suggestions of new vocal group candidates to be added to the list of potential inductees known as the “Qualifiers List”.

The Induction Committee then selects from the Qualifiers List  the most deserving, qualified vocal groups by who, in their opinion, have met the required standard to be added to the ballot as Vocal Group Hall Of Fame “Nominees”.

A ballot of new Nominees is distributed by mail, email, magazine publications and posted at the Vocal group Hall Of Fame website, granting voting privileges to fans, supporters and website visitors.

The Vocal Group Hall Of Fame Museum has collected and enshrined memorabilia of over two hundred qualified, nominated and Inducted vocal group’s in a one-of-a-kind world class museum for all ages and all walks of life to experience and enjoy America’s music, history and may obtain insight into the cultural contribution the greatest vocal groups have made to music around the world.

The development of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame attraction (community center, museum, performance venue, restaurant, piano bar and night club) continues at its birthplace in Sharon Pennsylvania with an effort to restore the historic Columbia theatre, an early Warner Brothers theatre built in 1922.

 Discussions and meetings are underway in several cities and tourist destinations in the mid-west and in all corners of the United States.  Donation, Sponsorships, Grants, Strategic Alliances and Public Private Partnerships are encouraged. Interested parties are encouraged to support America’s Music Creators and the preservation of America’s music by contacting The Vocal Group Hall of Fame.

For a list of Inducted vocal groups, to experience a virtual tour of the birthplace museum, learn more about The Hall of Fame sponsored “Truth in Music Bill”, which is now law in 34 states, or for more information of the inner-workings of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame 501c3 non-profit Foundation please visit www.VocalGroup.org

Mission Statement

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame is govern by the Inducted Members and is a 501c3 Non-Profit Foundation. It was founded in January 1997 to honor the “Greatest Vocal Groups of The World” and represents music in every genre.

The basic concept is to induct vocal groups into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, to preserve the music of the inductees, perpetuate their memory and display their memorabilia in a world class Vocal Group Hall of Fame Museum paying tribute to the Inductees as international music treasures.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation was designed to help extend the life-long careers of the inducted Vocal Groups by recognizing them as performers, composers and creators of much of the music that influenced today ’s popular music, the music business and our music culture.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame was created to present the music history of vocal groups to people of all generations, to educate, entertain and enlighten the world to the astounding legacy of music history left by the vocal groups of the past, to sustain the popularity of vocal groups of the present and to pave the way for vocal groups of the future.

Concept

The Foundation was created to benefit the fans, general public and vocal groups of all type and genre with a focus on all members of the Inducted vocal groups.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation is a unique and important organization owned, operated and governed by the Inducted Artists themselves and gives the Inductees direct input into their organization and Non-profit Foundation.

The Board of Directors, Artist Advisory Board, Induction Committee, Truth In Music Committee and Production Committee are made up of Inductees. This enables them to control their Foundation’s destiny. Vocal Group Hall of Fame Inductees play an integral part of the inner-workings of their non-profit Foundation, living museum, performance-theater and production-company.

The Inductees, most of whom are music industry professionals, function as stewards offering guidance and assistance to the administrative process and operations of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation and are active in the development of the Foundation and its various projects

Honor, Respect & Integrity

The overall goal of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation is to give honor and show respect to all vocal groups while maintaining the highest level of integrity necessary to remain true, acuarate and authentic information about the inducted vocal groups and the legacy of the pioneer vocal groups that created America’s music.

History

Tony Butala founded the singing group “The Lettermen” in 1958. Tony conceived the idea of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame in the early 1960’s. His dream of a lifetime was realized in 1998 when he and a financial partner in his hometown of Sharon, Pennsylvania opened The Vocal Group Hall of Fame & Museum Company Inc., at 98 East State Street and began inducting vocal groups into The Vocal Group Hall of Fame.

Sharon, PA was one of many small towns in the rust belt region of Pennsylvania that had become depressed after the closing of the steel mills in the area. It was only a few years after opening the museum that the financial partner walked away from the operation of the commercial project, leaving Tony with the Non-profit Foundation and the financial burden of the project and museum operations. Without proper funding, life for The Vocal Group Hall Fame in Sharon, Pennsylvania was destined to become difficult and has proven to be even more so in recent economic environment.The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation, a 501 ©3 Non-profit Foundation, became responsible for the full operation of the project after the 2001 Inductions and the closing of the original museum in November of 2005.

Tracy Rogers, who already had been an intern for a few years working closely with Tony Butala, stepped up to the challenge and helped Tony save The Vocal Group Hall of Fame, taking on the role of Museum and Operations Director for the last eight years.

Bob Crosby, a concert and TV producer who got his start at Dick Clark Productions in Hollywood had relocated to the area to raise his family in his wife’s hometown of Warren, Ohio. Bob was asked to join The Vocal Group Hall of Fame to assist with the recording of the 2001 Inductions, develop event production for the annual Inductions and was soon appointed to the Board of Directors overseeing the operations of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation as President / CEO in February of 2002.

Bob negotiated a lease on the ex-financial partner’s museum building, opened the museum again this time free to the public with a donation, and lead the effort to give ownership of the Foundation to the Inducted Vocal Groups.

The Foundation purchased the Columbia Theatre, one of the original Warner Brothers Theatres, built in 1922 located just down the street at 82 West State Street, Sharon, PA 16146, in June of 2002. The Foundation went on to produce the 2002 and 2003 Induction Ceremony and Concerts in Ohio at a Cleveland Indians minor league baseball stadium, and the 2004 Induction Ceremony and Concerts funded by the state of NJ – held at the Wildwood Convention Center in New Jersey, creating the first Vocal Group Hall of Fame Public Television Broadcast Special of the Induction Events.

It was only a few years later with the suggestion of Pennsylvania State Officials to remove the Inductee’s memorabilia from the rented facility owned by Tony’s ex-partner, and for the Foundation to purchase its own “Bricks & Mortar” with the intention of relocating the museum to the Foundation’s newly purchased restaurant / bar building next to the Columbia Theatre purchased by the Foundation just a few years earlier.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Museum began to relocate to 100 West State Street Sharon, PA and had planned to re-open as a Museum / Clubhouse next to the theatre in late summer of 2008 following the promise of government grant funding for renovation of the recently purchased facility.

The three-story 24,000 sq. foot building was intended to include a restaurant, malt shop, piano bar, nightclub, banquet center with a three-story museum clubhouse, with the Columbia Theatre to become the future home for Inductions in Sharon, PA.

Now a few years later after a few years of struggling without adequate financial support and un available grant funding for renovations and the the lack of funding from donations and public support of last year’s inductions in Youngstown, Ohio. has caused The Foundation to halt its effort in Sharon Pennsylvania to look life and existence elsewhere.

Despite tough financial condition at the Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation in its current location of Sharon, PA and tough financial condition on the national economy, discussions continue with officials in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Las Vegas and Washington D.C. Efforts to bring the Vocal Group Hall of Fame Museum, Inductions and other Foundation activities to other cities is on going with optimistic discussions now underway.

The Truth In Music Committee headed by Jon Bauman is making progress with the passing of the TRUTH IN MUSIC BILL now law in the most critical 34 states where abuse was the most prevalent. Other progress continues with the MusicFirst Coalition as the PERFORMANCE RIGHTS BILL has recently passed the Senate and is on its way through the House of Representatives.

Thank you to all that participated in the production of past Inductions. Recordings of Inductions are now available at iTunes, Amazon and most music download website outlets.

Inductees that have group recordings that can be made available for download are of great interest to the Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation. The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation Record Company, designed as a fundraising project for the Foundation, and is sharing royalties with Inductees that help by licensing their recordings. Please contact us for more info about downloads if you have recordings and are interested in The Vocal Group Hall of Fame distributing them for you on a non-exclusive bases.

Updates will be posted at the website will be posted as they materialize. Your ideas are welcome so please submit your ideas and suggestions to the Foundation Office address or by email.

Radio Networks & Programs

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Internet Radio Station is soon to be a dynamic new tool for the Foundation. It’s an inexpensive way to promote and advertise The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation’s museum annexes, clubhouses, Inductions, concert tour, concert series, media programs, products, downloads, memberships, merchandise, gift shop and web site. It will create international Internet programming produced weekly that can be re-broadcast throughout the week. The programs will be licensed and will generate barter income from participating broadcast, cable, satellite and other forms of commercial radio sales or licenses. The stations will broadcast, or web cast, the Vocal Group Hall of Fame show after downloading the programming from the Foundation’s web site with a password. The radio programs are to be hosted by Inductees providing services as DJ’s for their own radio shows. LOOK FOR MORE INFO IN THE COMING YEAR 2011

Tour & Concert Dates

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame on tour is one of the best ways to promote the Vocal Group Hall of Fame
nationally and worldwide. Advertising for each tour date or concert series date continues to promote Vocal Group Hall of Fame locations and events. Programs establish public awareness while creating tourism to the attractions. Tours, concert series and dates of various scopes, sizes, duration and price can be custom-made depending on the needs of the sponsor or promoter. ROUTING DATES FOR INDUCTEES ARE NOW AVAILABLE AND IS THE BEGINNING OF THE NETWORK OF LOCATIONS PARTICIPATING IN THE TOUR. Interested Inductees and venues are encouraged to contact Bob Crosby at The Vocal Group Hall of Fame.

Media Products

Media products have been created to honor and celebrate the legacy of the Inducted vocal groups. To date the 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004 Induction Concerts have been captured, archived and distributed as audio and video products in the form of CD’s, DVD’s, digital downloads and Public Television Broadcasts. Funds are currently needed to create media products by editing and mixining audio & video recorded at the 10th Anniversary Inductions featuring the Class’s of 2005, 2006 & 2007. Financial assistance is needed.

The recorded performances entertain, educate and enlighten the public, preserve historic memories for posterity sake, while creating media products to financially serve the Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation. The Inductees continue to support the Foundation by contributing their performances and by donating their audio and video rights. Once again this show of support was illustrated with the Class of 2005, 2006 & 2007 at the 10th Anniversary Induction Concerts, where the artists again donated their performances for the good of the Foundation. However, these shows are not yet edited due to the lack of financing. This material edited and converted into media products will help to promote awareness of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation and raise necessary funds to support the Foundation. The Foundation has developed its own production company to create programming and recordings from the Inductee’s musical contributions, in many cases remaking the music the legendary artists made famous. The products are distributed worldwide for broadcast, cable, syndication, pay per view, music video downloads DVDs and CDs. The products will be made available at the museum, clubhouses, music distribution outlets, on the Internet, and will be available to Inducted vocal groups touring to merchandise at their shows. The media products were provided for sale during a Public Television Broadcast (PBS), which began airing August 2007 as part of a 3-year syndication license. These products are also available at www.Bestbuy.com www.Amazon.com www.Borders.com etc. KEY WORD “Vocal Group Hall of Fame”.

Home Video, DVD and CDs made from the 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004 Induction Concerts and Ceremony highlights are in US and Canadian chain stores, music video outlets, including military bases world wide,
in stores and on the Internet. Foreign distribution begins 2010. Media licenses for worldwide broadcast, cable and syndicated television, pay per-view and music video downloads, are now available and will become significant revenue sources as popularity grows. Presentations are now being made at industry trade shows and broadcast conventions through agents and media representatives marketing its media products and licenses worldwide. Funding is needed to pay the contractors for audio and video recording and for post – production of The Vocal Group Hall of Fame 10th Anniversary Inductions which will be distributed as DVDs & CDs for the Classes of 2005, 2006 and 2007. Other media products can be made from Vocal Group Hall of Fame archived recordings and will be available when funding for post-production becomes available. Inductees that have their recordings distributed by The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Record Label receive royalties. Recordings made at Inductions are made to support the Foundation. Media licenses for worldwide broadcasts, cable and syndicated television, pay per-view and music video downloads are now available and will become significant revenue sources as popularity grows.

Marketing & Merchandising

Travel agencies and tour operators will be marketing Bus Tours that include theatre and museum tickets with meals and buffet styled events at the restaurant. The facility will also be utilized as a banquet center and will be available for business meetings, weddings, class reunions and other functions. Inductees will be booked frequently for the museum and for performances at the piano bar on a regularly basis. All of the operation models would include hard ticketed events produced at the museum, clubhouse or local venue.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation would be endorsing and contributing its brand name, providing the artist’s memorabilia for display, artist’s merchandise, Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation merchandise and media products, tapes, CDs, DVDs etc., and arrange for visits from the artists for autograph signings, meet and greet opportunities and to perform at the piano bar and hard ticketed concerts when a performance area and funding become available.

Grant Funding & Marketing Tourism

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation proposes that grant and sponsor funding to be provided from
selected host cities, through support from the County Convention and Visitors Bureau, or State Economic and Development funds. The most desired form of funding for the Foundation is Federal stimulus grants. Host cities in a few strategic tourist destinations could re-open The Vocal Group Museums. Other possibilities are to open Vocal Group Clubhouse locations with public and/or private partnerships with strategic financial institutions collaborating in the venture. A concessionaire lease agreement could be offered to a restaurateur to license the Clubhouse to be part of its operation.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation would provide its greatest asset (The Inducted Artists) along with its professional production staff to partner with the host city or financial partner to produce a concert series at the Clubhouse. The performances at the Clubhouse would stimulate revitalization of downtown entertainment districts and tourist destinations in the host city.

The Vocal Group Clubhouse consists of a restaurant with authentic memorabilia displayed in a “Soft Rock Café theme banquet center, malt shop, piano-bar and performance theater. Some Museum Clubhouse locations will have a cover charge or minimum drink purchase when a piano bar performance is provided. There would be an admission charged by the Vocal Group Clubhouse when a piano bar performance would be scheduled. Admission might not be charged when memorabilia is on display in the restaurant. It would act as a publicity enticement that would help promote the local museum or concerts where there would be a charge.

Museum admission charges may vary by location. The least expensive Museum Admission should be, not less then $5 per adult, $4 per senior or veteran and $3 per student.

PROPOSED GRANTS ARE ON HOLD CAUSING THE RENOVATION IN SHARON, PA TO STOP.

Summary

One way you can help is to download Induction recordings or items at the ON-Line Gift Shop and to
encourage the supporting public to do the same. This is ultimately the best way to assist in the long term effort of building a National Institution to be loved and respected by people of the world.

Grants, sponsors or private funding provided to The Vocal Group Hall of Fame will give the Foundation the necessary working capital and cash flow for the Foundation to reach its goals, perform its duties and meet its objectives. Implementing the projected business plan over the next few years by providing the requested grants will enable the Foundation to become a self-sustaining organization in a short time and a National Institution that will live for generations.

It is our hope that the City of Sharon, County of Mercer and the State of Pennsylvania will recognize the value of the Vocal Group Hall of Fame and the tourism it will bring to the community and the state and will provide the necessary funding for the project in Sharon, PA. Furthermore, other states participating in the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, museums annexes and clubhouses will also provide funding that will lead to the enjoyment of visitors attracted to their museums, clubhouses, concert tours, and concert series in their area.

People from all over the world will come to The Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation Museum Annexes and Clubhouses to learn and become enlightened to the “History of our Music”. To the Artists, will come honor
and respect for their creation of the music, past, present and future. The aim of the Foundation is to develop and perpetuate an institution with integrity, a model foundation for the entertainment industry.

Through the Foundation’s efforts and Inductees contribution of millions of dollars of in-kind services contributing live performances, audio and video recording rights, along with financing from supporters yet to come to the Foundation will eventually build a national institution, loved and respected by people of the world, the entertainment industry and the artists that created the music.

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame receives promotion and publicity from projects like “Truth In Music” that create awareness that ultimately contributes to the 1/2 million hits per month from visitors of the web site and the hits continues to grow.

National television programs create the equivalent of millions of dollars in advertising. The Foundation could not afford to purchase this advertising and ultimately benefit from the promotion, contributing to tourism to the museum and annexes. In the future the tour and radio programs will add additional national support to the Foundation.

Grants becoming more difficult to acquire makes the consideration of Public / Private Partnership a more realistic and quicker way to forward The Vocal Group Hall of Fame. It is our intention to enter into Public / Private Partnership in the near future.

In conclusion, it is the hope of the Foundation’s Inductees, Board of Directors, committee members, supporters, that the State of Pennsylvania and other states will recognize the contribution and value that The Vocal Group Hall of Fame brings to the United States and the world and will provide the required grants, sponsorships and private funding necessary to make this unique, worthwhile project a success.

This Business Plan is based on conservative assumptions.
Interested parties should contact:

Bob Crosby, President/CEO
Vocal Group Hall of Fame Foundation
Columbia Theatre – 82 West State Street – Sharon, PA 16146
Crosby@VocalGroup.org (724) 983-2025 Phone – (724) 983-0446 Fax

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