Listen, groove, and dance to the soulful sounds of the IU Soul Revue, America’s first and finest collegiate popular music ensemble. The "Revue" will bring you back to Black popular music from the 1960s — Motown, Stax, Philly — through the present, capturing a range of emotions, from "love" to "let’s party." Don’t miss it!
The IU Soul Revue was founded in 1971, with ethnomusicologist Portia K. Maultsby appointed as the ensemble’s first director. For more than 40 years the "Revue" has wowed its local audience and audiences across the country with dynamic performances of timeless R&B, Soul, Funk, and contemporary Black popular music styles delivered by its commanding male and female vocal ensemble, powerful horn line, and tight rhythm section. The group makes annual appearances in schools, colleges and universities, nightclubs, and other venues. Revue has also opened for renowned artists, including The Emotions, James Brown, The Temptations, Con Funk Shun and Booker T. Jones. Several Soul Revue alumni have gone on to professional careers in the music industry, such as Isaiah Sanders, former keyboardist with Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson; Keith Mitchell and Kevon Edmonds of the group After Seven; Michael Burton, saxophonist for Tyler Perry, Jill Scott and Mary J. Blige; Lance Tolbert, bassist and keyboardist for Mariah Carey; James Strong, bassist and band leader for LL Cool J.
"The IU Soul Revue more than prepared me for a career in the music industry. In the Revue, we learned to interpret and perform soulful, popular music at the highest level. I will always remember my years in the Revue as the time I was being groomed to be a music professional. Many thanks to Dr. Charles Sykes, Dr. Tyron Cooper, and everyone at the African American Arts Institute."
~ Lance Tolbert, bassist, keyboardist, songwriter - Mariah Carey, Will.i.am, Charlie Wilson, and Backstreet Boys
The Soul Revue is available for public concerts, nightclubs, conventions, school and college programs, lecture-demonstrations, and other types of engagements.
Crystal L. Taliefero is a revered vocalist and instrumentalist. She is a native of Gary, Indiana. She first began performing R&B at a local nightclub at the age of 11. She attended Indiana University where she became a member of the IU Soul Revue and studied under the tutelage of Dr. James Mumford. Crystal earned her big break in 1986 while performing in a local band called Kilo. Her skills impressed John Mellencamp so much that he invited her to join his own band on tour. Through her hard work she then received an invitation to join the Billy Joel Band in 1989. Since then Mrs. Taliefero has enjoyed extensive success as a performer touring with the likes of John Mellencamp, Billy Joel, Bruce Springsteen, Faith Hill, Brooks & Dunn, and a host of other widely successful artists and groups.
She is not only a talented musician, but also a prolific writer and a talented producer/arranger with credits on several multi-platinum albums, most notably her collaboration on the acclaimed "River of Dreams" album with Billy Joel in the mid-1990’s. She also uses her talents and success for service as the co-creator of a series of children’s books as well as actively supporting VH-1’s "Save The Music" campaign.