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posted: 8/17/2012 4:44 PM

SCGT winners get thumbs up from Brandmeier

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  • Shawn Kurian of Wheeling, left, and Sanu John of Skokie doing their two-man a cappella during Suburban Chicago's Got Talent at the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre.

       Shawn Kurian of Wheeling, left, and Sanu John of Skokie doing their two-man a cappella during Suburban Chicago's Got Talent at the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre.
    Bob Chwedyk | Staff Photographer

  • Sanu John smiles after learning ilLest Vocals won the first Suburban Chicago's Got Talent finals.

       Sanu John smiles after learning ilLest Vocals won the first Suburban Chicago's Got Talent finals.
    JOE LEWNARD | Staff Photographer

 
 

Basking in the spotlight of winning the Suburban Chicago's Got Talent competition, vocal beat-boxing duo Sanu John and Shawn Kurian were featured on WGN's the Jonathon Brandmeier Show Friday morning.

Not quite sure what to expect, Brandmeier asked the duo to perform in studio and was wowed by their vocal stylings.

"That was awesome, man," Brandmeier said. "I'm watching you guys and it's all coming out of your mouths. Sanu is basically the orchestra. He's the band. He's laying it down. And you guys are just intermingling. You guys are visually crazy."

Brandmeier said as up-and-coming artists, John and Kurian, who call themselves iLLest Vocals, have a winning formula.

"This is the way to go, people," he said. "You don't need to hire a band. You guys are the whole package, I'm telling you. You're going to be big."

John, 25, of Skokie, and Kurian, 25, of Wheeling, have been beat-boxing for a few years. Their style is completely a cappella, "just two guys with two mikes, no back track, no recording, nothing plugged in," they said.

"It's just us doing our vocal magic, I guess," said John, who provides the percussion to accompany Kurian's singing.

John and Kurian performed for the judges Aug. 5 for the final time. Last Saturday, when the winners were announced, a family emergency took Kurian out of the country and John had to fly solo. The winners had already been chosen and it didn't affect the judging. iLLest Vocals still beat four other finalists from the summer talent competition to nab the top prize -- a trophy and a trip to audition for NBC's "America's Got Talent" 2013 season.

The duo also scored highest in the online voting, securing a trip from FunJet Vacations for being the Fan Favorite.

Brandmeier asked whether the duo could make money beat-boxing.

They'll get their chance if they make the cut for "America's Got Talent." Winning that national competition would mean a $1 million prize, recording contract, shows, and tours.

"That's the whole enchilada ... wherever it takes us, hopefully (to) a positive future," they said.

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