The Vanderbilt Melodores were founded in the spring of 2009 by four students. A nine-member group performed for the first time in Vanderbilt's Spotlight Showcase in August, and auditions were held soon after to form a 14-member group. The Melodores tend to have between 11 and 15 members in the group at one time, and hold yearly auditions.
The Melodores' repertoire spans multiple genres. The group is known for performing rock, hip-hop, r&b, pop, country, reggae, and more. Recently, the Melodores have delved into simulating electronic music, and it's not uncommon to find jazz breaks and hip-hop dance features scattered throughout their songs. At random, the guys are known to break out into quartets and starting singing in barbershop harmony. There are not many bounds to the Melodores' style.
The Melodores perform, on average, thirty concerts for Vanderbilt's greek community, charitable organizations, and administration's events each year. They also perform biannual concerts for the student body, faculty, and general public, and make numerous impromptu appearances across campus. Notable performances have been for Vanderbilt's Monroe Carrell Children's Hospital and Vanderbilt Best Buddies. They also perform for the greater Nashville community, singing at local high schools, corporate events, and national conferences, and occasionally work with the Barbershop Harmony Society, which is locally headquartered. The Melodores were also featured performers at Nashville's TEDx Conference in March 2014.
In addition, the Melodores go on a fall tour each year. Tours in previous years include trips to Chicago, Boston, and Los Angeles among others. Wherever they go they give performances at local high schools to talk about continuing with music in college, stimulate interest in applying to Vanderbilt, and to raise awareness of A Cappella music. In addition, while on tour they have performed alongside some of the country's best collegiate and professional groups.
The Vanderbilt Melodores have competed in several a cappella competitions across the nation. In the spring of 2011, the Melodores won the Wild Card round of the International Championships of Collegiate A Cappella (ICCA's), and continued on to ICCA Finals, where they placed third in the world at New York City's Lincoln Center. In the fall of 2012, the Melodores were selected as one of six groups to compete at SoJam, an a cappella festival in North Carolina. They placed that weekend and enjoyed a private masterclass taught by Finnish a cappella group Fork.
In 2014, the Melodores were selected to be one of six groups to compete in Season 5 of NBC's hit show The Sing-Off. The Melodores went on to win The Sing-Off, the only collegiate champions in the show's history, taking home a $50,000 cash prize. The Melodores have kept themselves busy since, recording albums and touring the country.