Music: Barber Shop Chords

Mister Jefferson Lord,
Play that 'barber shop chord,
That soothing harmony;
It makes an awful, awful hit with me.
Play that strain, just to please me, again.
'Cause, mister, when yon start that 'minor part
I feel your finger slipping and gripping at
my heart.
Oh, Lord, play that barber shop chord!

How did amateur singing in close harmony come to be associated with barber shops? Dr. Sigmund Spaeth, author of Barber Shop Ballads, points out that in "ancient" days barber shops were provided with lutes or citterns with which waiting...

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