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Vocalists with ties to area win NBC’s ‘The Sing-Off’

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota-based vocal quintet Home Free — which has family ties in the Slayton and Westbrook areas — won the grand prize Monday on NBC’s “The Sing-Off,” earning $100,000 and a recording contract with Sony Music.

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The group will be part of an upcoming “Sing-Off” tour that includes a March 21 date in Minneapolis.

“The Sing-Off” featured top a cappella groups from across the country on a seven-episode holiday special that debuted Dec. 9. Judges were singer Jewel, Ben Folds (Ben Folds Five) and Shawn Stockman (Boyz II Men).

Home Free was founded 13 years ago by brothers Adam and Chris Rupp, who grew up in Mankato and attended Gustavus Adolphus College. Their parents are originally from Slayton and Westbrook. The group also includes Rob Lundquist, Austin Brown and Tim Foust.

Home Free is the first act from Minnesota to win a national singing competition since Linda Eder, who was raised in Brainerd, won on “Star Search” in 1987.