There’s more to spritely Texan a cappella group, Pentatonix, than meets the eye.
Obviously every member of the group is chock full of talent and ain’t so hard on the eyes either, but Kirstin Maldonado, Mitch Grassi, Scott Hoying, Avi Kaplan and Kevin Olusola have got a lot more going on underneath the surface — but that doesn’t mean they don’t live like good old-fashioned rockstars, either.
Here’s a little peak at what you might not know about the band, even if you’re already a super fan.
1. Their version of “Hallelujah” will give you chills
It’s hard to top Jeff Buckley’s version of Leonard Cohen’s 1984 classic, but Pentatonix give Buckley a real run for his money.
2. They were super stoked to be part of the Pitch Perfect sequel
“We wanted to be part of it since the first one came out,” Maldonado told SheKnows in 2014.
“I feel like it could have been the fans, too,” Grassi and Hoying chimed in, “because our fans were, like, really gung ho and petitioning.”
3. They have real-life ties to the Bellas
They may have been the new kids on the block during the filming of Pitch Perfect 2, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t fit right in.
“I am really good friends with one of the Bellas,” Hoying told us. “We went to college together, Kelley Jakle [and I]. I was just hanging out with her in the little Bellas tent and Anna Kendrick walked in!”
4. Their motto? No instruments, no problem!
The group agrees on one thing: Music is music.
“We just want it to be like any other band,” Grassi told SheKnows. “We want to be a successful band that creates music, has supporters and plays on the radio. Just because we’re a cappella, I don’t feel like, well obviously it is different, but we are still making music. We’re just doing it without instruments… we don’t want to sell ourselves short, either, because we’re all so individually talented.”
5. At their high school, choir nerds were the cool kids
“I loved high school! I was such a loser, but I had a great time in high school,” said Maldonado. “We went to a great high school. It was huge,” the guys chimed in. “There were like 4,000 people at our high school and our choir program and theater was like 500 people and so we might have been nerdy, but we were in a pool of 500, so it was a great community.”
6. They’re totally math and science geeks
Making sweet, sweet music is their first love, but they also dig on numbers.
“In high school, I really liked chemistry,” Maldonado shared. “There’s, like, something comforting about math and chemistry,” piped in Hoying.
“Algebra is kinda fun!” added Grassi.
7. They conquered their fear of Taylor Swift
When we spoke to Pentatonix in Sept. 2014, they wouldn’t touch “I Knew You Were Trouble” with a 10-foot pole — because they thought it was just too darn hard.
“We were gonna arrange [‘I Knew You Were Trouble’], but we couldn’t find the right key that worked for any of our voices that we really liked,” said Hoying. “It was really hard to sing and with what we do, we have to be able to sing it perfectly live… we were just really intimidated by it.”
But just two months later, the group tackled Swift’s 1989 in its entirety, and totally rocked it.
8. They won’t go on tour without champs and energy drinks
The crew has quite an eclectic tour rider and bubbly and some pick-me-ups top their list.
“Always two bottles of Champagne,” Maldonado, Grassi and Olusola said of their list of demands. “And Red Bull!”
But musicians cannot live on drink alone, so the band also asks for pita chips, hummus, salsa, beef jerky, a rotisserie chicken and fruit.
9. Maldonado gets the princess treatment
“It’s fun!” Maldonado exclaimed of being the only girl. “I get to change in a room separate from the boys.”
That fact may sound like it’s a given, but the guys are jealous that she gets her own space.
“I like it when they come in and visit, though,” she said.
10. They’re perfectly “flawed”
They’re happy to talk about each other’s shortcomings, but their self-proclaimed flaws sound like something you might hear in a job interview.
“I think Kevin’s flaw is that he over-thinks things,” said Hoying of Olusola. “He is a genius and he just always thinks very hard about things logically. Sometimes, I’m just like, ‘Kev, go with the flow.'”
“Avi is very sensitive,” Grassi said of Kaplan. “But that’s good, because… he’s very careful and meticulous about musical ideas.”
And as for Hoying? “Sometimes I feel like I’m overly passionate. Almost controlling,” he said of himself. “Sometimes, I’ll be so excited about an idea that I will not let the group say it’s not OK.”
Guess what, Pentatonix? You got the job!
11. They always let Beyoncé be their guide
Like nearly everyone else of their generation, they hail Queen B.
“I did have a vision board my junior year of high school where I put up a collage of pictures of things I wanted to achieve in life,” Hoying said. “And me holding a Grammy with Beyoncé was one of them. A ton of those vision board visions have come true.
Before you go, check out our slideshow below.