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Ross Barbour of The Four Freshmen has died

Mr. Barbour died at 82 on Saturday, August 20, 2011, at his home in Simi Valley, CA. He was the last of the founding members of the Four Freshmen. The Four Freshmen had a fresh approach to close harmony, influencing the Beach Boys, the Mamas and the Papas, the Lettermen, the Manhattan Transfer and other groups. Their sound was characterized by long, lush chords — Mr. Barbour called them “purple chords” — and an improvisational style that made four voices seem like five or six. Each of the singers also played at least one instrument.

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