The DQ of Amherst College

The 1950s: Hitting Their Stride

In the 1950s, the DQ moved into its second decade as an independent group without a hitch, recording an album in 1952 with the college’s newest singing group, the Zumbyes, and later releasing their own album in 1956. The group’s travel schedule took them across the country, and performances for American soldiers sent them to the Caribbean and to Europe. The 1950s also saw the group’s first appearance on television, in Boston. Back at Amherst, the DQ kept up a busy performance schedule with concerts at fraternity parties and nearby women’s colleges almost every weekend. Late in the decade, the group introduced slapstick routines into the repertoire, which live on today as the skits performed in almost every DQ show.

From “Songs by the DQ and Zumbyes” (1952)

“The ‘DQ’ appeared at the Singing College under the wing of the Glee Club in the twenties.

Disbanded during the war, it resumed as an independent singing group in 1947 and has remained so ever since. In its post war capacity, it is “a group of eight men who liked to sing and who did something about it.

From The Amherst College Double Quartet of 1956

Organized in the twenties as eight men from the College Glee Club, the DQ is now well on its way to becoming one of Amherst’s traditions. The group is known throughout Eastern colleges, and by Amherst men everywhere, for its good music, its relaxed and humorous style – as well as for the DQ trademarks of “Hello” and the Tattersall vest.

In recent years the DQ has sung for college audiences and alumni groups from Milwaukee to Miami. An affiliation with the ‘Kids from Home’ Show, college variety show which entertains American servicemen throughout the world, has enabled the group to sing for a week in Bermuda and for ten weeks in Europe. Despite its sixteen wandering feet, the DQ has still found time to sing at its favorite stand, Amherst College, and has kept very much alive its tradition of delighting Amherst audiences.

From the 1958 Olio

Although at first a part of the Glee Club, the Double Quartet has gained in popularity until today it is an independent singing group. Crisscrossing the Northeast from New York to New Hampshire, these high-spirited performers bring fun and warm songs to all sorts of events… After a successful sale of their recording “The Amherst College Double Quartet,” the group was beset by an old, challenging problem of how to replace graduating members… In the winter, well-attended tryouts were held, from which sophomores…and freshmen… were selected to fill the gaps left open by the departing seniors. These new members combined with the old to treat Amherst to its ninth year of good music sung by the DQ.

The DQ of the 1950s in the Amherst College Olio