When NBC’s “The Sing-Off,” hosted by recording artist Nick Lachey, returns for its fourth season Dec. 9, a Maysville native will be among those competing for top prize.
The all-male acoUstiKats, a University of Kentucky a cappella singing group, is among 10 groups that will compete for a grand prize of $100,000 and a recording contract with Sony Music.
Banks Mattingly, the son of Luanne Mattingly and Bas Mattingly of Maysville, is a member of the group, one of 10 in the competition.
Mattingly is a 20-year-old junior communications major at UK and a member of the Delta Tau Delta fraternity. Before college, he attended Darlington School, in Rome, Ga., where he sang in another a cappella group.
He said the UK group auditioned in Nashville on Kentucky Derby Day, May 4.
"When we found out we had made it onto the show, we were ecstatic," Mattingly said. "We couldn't believe we had made it. It was like a dream for us."
Mattingly, who beat boxes for the group, said he auditioned for the acoUstiKats because he enjoys the art of beat boxing.
"When I was a kid, I would sit in the back of the car and make the beat boxing noises," Mattingly said. "I thought it was really cool. My mom would tell me to be quiet all the time, but I guess it paid off."
Mattingly said he is excited for the show to air and wants to thank everyone who has supported him and the group.
"The school has always been behind us," Mattingly said. "And I want to thank the school officials and all our friends, families and fans who have supported us."
"This collegiate group has been serenading sorority girls all over the University of Kentucky campus, but now it’s their time to make it on the big stage. With their southern charm they hope to win over America’s hearts," a spokesperson for the show said.
The season will run for seven episodes, with the two-hour finale set for Dec. 23. The groups will perform for celebrity judges Jewel (“Two Hearts Breaking” “Ring of Fire”) Ben Folds (Ben Folds Five) and Shawn Stockman (Boyz II Men).
Music from season four of “The Sing-Off” will be available on iTunes the day of each telecast.
A new twist will be added this season. At the end of every show, the bottom two groups decided by the judges will face off in an Ultimate Sing Off, trying to knock their opponent out of the competition with the power of only their voices. At the end of the night, one group will be eliminated from the competition. One song, two teams, with their dreams on the line.
The acoUstiKats can be found on Facebook and on their website at http://www.acoustikats.com.