RSS

Category Archives: nostalgic

Little Darlin’-The Diamonds-1957

image

The Diamonds are a Canadian vocal quartet that rose to prominence in the 1950s and early 1960s with 16 Billboard hit records. The original members were Dave Somerville (lead), Ted Kowalski (tenor), Phil Levitt (baritone), and Bill Reed (bass). They were most noted for interpreting and introducing rhythm and blues vocal group music to the wider pop music audience. Contrary to popular myth, the father of Tom Hanks was never a member of the group.[1]

History
1950s
In 1953 Dave Somerville, while working as a sound engineer for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in Toronto, Canada, met three other guys one evening who liked to sing as much as he did. They decided to form a stand-up quartet called The Diamonds. The group’s first performance was in the basement of St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Toronto singing in a Christmas minstrel show. The audience’s reaction to the Somerville-led group was so tremendous that they decided that night they would turn professional.

After 18 months of rehearsal, they drove to New York and tied for 1st Place on Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts. The prize of being guest artist for a week on Godfrey’s show led to a recording contract with Coral Records. Professional musician Nat Goodman became their manager. Coral released four songs, the most notable being “Black Denim Trousers & Motorcycle Boots”, written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller.

The next big step was an audition with Cleveland, Ohio, radio disc jockey, Bill Randle, who had aided in the success of some popular groups, such as The Crew-Cuts. Randle was impressed with The Diamonds and introduced them to a producer at Mercury Records who signed the group to a recording contract.

The Diamonds’ first recording for Mercury was “Why Do Fools Fall in Love” (originated by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers), which reached #12 in the U.S. as their first hit, and their follow-up hit single, “Church Bells May Ring” (originally by The Willows), reached #14 in the U.S.

The Diamonds’ biggest hits were 1957’s “Little Darlin'”[2] (originally recorded by The Gladiolas, written by Maurice Williams) and “The Stroll” (1957), an original song written for the group by Clyde Otis, from an idea by Dick Clark.[3]

Although they were signed to do rock and roll, Mercury also paired them with jazz composer and arranger Pete Rugolo, in one of his Meet series recordings. The album, entitled The Diamonds Meet Pete Rugolo, allowed them to return to their roots and do some established standards.

The group sang “Little Darlin'” and “Where Mary Go” in the film The Big Beat, and sang the theme song for another film, Kathy-O.

Their television appearances included the TV shows of Steve Allen, Perry Como, Vic Damone, Tony Bennett, Eddy Arnold and Paul Winchell. They also appeared on American Bandstand.

In the late 1950s Reed, Kowalski and Levitt left the group and were replaced by Mike Douglas, John Felten and Evan Fisher.

1960s and 1970s
Despite the ever-changing style of rock & roll and their Mercury contract expiring, The Diamonds continued touring the country. After Dave Somerville left the group in 1961 to pursue a folk singing career as “David Troy”, he was replaced by Jim Malone. There were no more hit records by The Diamonds after Somerville left. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s The Diamonds performed mostly in Las Vegas led, at first, by Mike Douglas, later being continued by Glenn Stetson. At one time, there were at least two groups performing under The Diamonds name, the other principally being led by John Felten until his death on May 17, 1982, in a plane crash. This created an issue in the late 1980s that ultimately went to court. The right to the use the name “The Diamonds” was awarded to Gary Owens (a member of Felten’s group) with the original members being allowed to use their name on special occasions each year. Owens, along with members Bob Duncan, Steve Smith (both former members of Lawrence Welk’s band and television program) and Gary Cech, released an album in 1987, “Diamonds Are Forever”, which contained two songs that entered the lower reaches of the Country Music Charts, “Just a Little Bit” and “Two Kinds Of Women”.[4] As of 2014, this “trademark” group still tours with Owen, Jerry Siggins, Sean Sooter, and Jeff Dolan.[5]

en.m.Wikipedia.org

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in classic music, nostalgic

 

Tags:

“Del Shannon – Runaway”

image

Runaway” is a number-one Billboard Hot 100 song made famous by Del Shannon in 1961. It was written by Shannon and keyboardist Max Crook, and became a major international hit. It is No. 472 on Rolling Stone ’​s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, compiled in 2010.

Original recording

Singer-guitarist Charles Westover and keyboard player Max Crook performed together as members of “Charlie Johnson and the Big Little Show Band” in Battle Creek, Michigan, before their group won a recording contract in 1960. Westover took the new stage name “Del Shannon”, and Crook, who had invented his own clavioline-based electric keyboard called a Musitron, became “Maximilian”.

After their first recording session for Big Top Records in New York City had ended in failure, their manager Ollie McLaughlin persuaded them to rewrite and re-record an earlier song they had written, “Little Runaway”, to highlight Crook’s unique instrumental sound. On January 24, 1961, they recorded “Runaway” at the Bell Sound recording studios, with Harry Balk as producer, Fred Weinberg as audio engineer and also session musician on several sections- session musician Al Caiola on guitar, and Crook playing the central Musitron break. Other musicians on the record included Al Casamenti and Bucky Pizzarelli on guitar, Milt Hinton on bass, and Joe Marshall on drums. Bill Ramall, who was the arranger for the session, also played baritone sax.[2] After recording in A minor, producer Balk sped up the recording to pitch just below a B-flat minor.[3] “Runaway” was released in February 1961 and was immediately successful. On April 10 of that year, Shannon appeared on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand helping to catapult it to the number one spot on the Billboard charts where it remained for four weeks. Two months later, it also reached number one in the UK.[4] On the R&B charts, “Runaway” peaked at number three.[5] The song was #5 on the Billboard Hot 100 Year-End Chart in 1961. Appearing on David Letterman in 1986, Shannon reprised his hit backed by Paul Schaeffer and the band. He was introduced as having sold as much as 80,000 singles of ‘Runaway’ per day, at its height.

Del Shannon re-recorded it in 1967 as “Runaway ’67”. This version was issued as a single but failed to make the Hot 100.

en.m.Wikipedia.org

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in classic music, nostalgic

 

Tags:

“THE CONTOURS – DO YOU LOVE ME (NOW THAT I CAN DANCE)”

“THE CONTOURS – DO YOU LOVE ME (NOW THAT I CAN DANCE)”

Do You Love Me” is a 1962 hit singlerecorded by The Contours for Motown‘s Gordy Records label. Written and produced by Motown CEO Berry Gordy, Jr., “Do You Love Me?” was the Contours’ only Top 40 single on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. Notably, the record achieved this feat twice, once in 1962 and again in 1988. A main point of the song is to name the Mashed PotatoThe Twist, and a variation of the title “I like it like that”, as “You like it like this”, and many other fad dances of the 1960s.

The song is noted for the spoken recitation heard in the introduction which goes: “You broke my heart / ‘Cause I couldn’t dance / You didn’t even want me around / And now I’m back / To let you know / I can really shake ’em down”

The song is noted for its false ending at 2:26.

Wikipedia.org

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in classic music, nostalgic, r&b

 

Tags:

Image

Bonding…

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in nostalgic

 

Tags:

 “Lynn Anderson – I Beg Your Pardon, I Never Promised You A Rose Garden (BBC Top Of The Pops)” 

 “Lynn Anderson – I Beg Your Pardon, I Never Promised You A Rose Garden (BBC Top Of The Pops)” 

Rose Garden” (also known and covered as “(I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden“) is a song written by Joe South, best known as recorded by country music singer Lynn Anderson, and first released by Billy Joe Royal in 1967. Her October 1970 release topped the U.S. Billboard country chart for five weeks, reached No. 3 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 pop chart, and hit number one on both Cash Boxs and Record Worlds pop and country singles charts. The song was also a major pop hit internationally, topping the charts in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Ireland, and Norway, and reaching the top three in the UK and South Africa.

Anderson’s version of “Rose Garden” remains one of the most successful country crossover recordings of all-time.

The Lynn Anderson single was her third release for Columbia Records in 1970, after several years of recording for Chart Records. The single proved to be the first crossover record of her career.

“Rose Garden” was originally an album cut by the song’s writer, Joe South, in 1969. Several other male vocalists recorded it on albums including Freddy WellerBilly Joe Royal, and Dobie Grayand Third Avenue Blues Band, but it was never a hit until Anderson’s version. A recording by the girl group The Three Degrees, best known for their 1974 hit “When Will I See You Again“, also pre-dated Lynn Anderson’s hit version.

Anderson wanted to record the song but her producer (and husband) Glenn Sutton felt it was a “man’s song”, in part because of the line “I could promise you things like big diamond rings”. According to Anderson, Sutton agreed to record the song as a potential album cut when there was time left during one of her scheduled recording sessions. After arranging a more up-tempo, light-hearted melody, Sutton and the studio musicians, which included a mandolin player, as well as a string section, were impressed with the results. Columbia Records’ executive Clive Davis was equally impressed and insisted the song be released as a single in both the country and pop markets. Shortly after its breakthrough on American Top 40 radio, the song became an international hit. A cover version released by Sandie Shaw in UK failed to chart, as Anderson’s version became a major success there. The song became Anderson’s signature tune and one of the biggest hits of the 1970s, in any genre of music.[citation needed] Anderson won a Grammy Award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance in 1971, and Joe South earned two Grammynominations: “Best Country Song” and “Song of the Year” in the pop field.

Anderson said, “I believe that ‘Rose Garden’ was released at just the right time. People were trying to recover from the Vietnam years. The message in the song—that if you just take hold of life and go ahead, you can make something out of nothing—people just took to that.”[2]

After her Columbia heyday, Lynn Anderson recorded new performances of the song several times for post-1982 albums, including a bluegrass version that was featured in her 2004 comeback album The Bluegrass Sessions. This album earned Anderson her first Grammy nomination in over 30 years.

Wikipedia.org

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in female vocalists, nostalgic

 

Tags: ,

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO HOLLYWOOD’S GOSSIP QUEEN, RONA BARRETT?

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO HOLLYWOOD’S GOSSIP QUEEN, RONA BARRETT?

Born in 1936 in Queens, Barrett’s fascination with celebrities and digging up information began at a young age. She started a fan club for Eddie Fisher in the 1950s and hung out at New York’s hottest spots for up-and-coming talent.  metv.com

HOW RONA BARRETT BECAME THE GOSSIP INDUSTRY’S FORGOTTEN TRAILBLAZER

By Anne Helen Petersen, BuzzFeed News Features Writer

Fifty years ago, Rona Barrett forged a Hollywood gossip empire. Then she left it all behind, her innovations attributed to others, her legacy almost entirely overlooked. But as she nears 80, there’s very little Miss Rona regrets.

At the peak of her powers — back in the mid-’70s, when she was essentially practicing therapy on stars while millions watched — Rona Barrett drove around Hollywood in a Rolls-Royce with a license plate that read MS RONA, the nickname she’d picked up when she first started delivering Hollywood tidbits at the end of the ABC evening news. She wore miniature heels for her size 5 feet and massive minks on her 5-foot frame, crowned with a layered bob (“like an artichoke”) dyed platinum silver.

Her 1974 memoir, Miss Rona, had sold over half a million copies, in part due to its irresistible lede: “Just an inch, Miss Rona, just let me put it in an inch!” Barrett attributed the come-on to a “major masculine Hollywood star,” and rumors swirled as to his identity. It couldn’t be Frank Sinatra, who’d taken to calling Barrett horrible names at every concert — or Love Story star Ryan O’Neal, who’d sent Barrett a live tarantula. 


David Bowie,  Tona Barret and Angela Bowie on Good Morning America


Some guessed it was her neighbor, Kirk Douglas, whose Hollywood estate backed up onto hers. But Barrett would never confirm. Sparking that sort of speculation was what Barrett did best: Every broadcast was an invitation to join her in the campiest, dirtiest game in town.

Image: Everett Collection


Over the course of her 40 years in the gossip industry, Barrett became known as a ball-buster, an indefatigable reporter, and a legitimate pioneer. Her name has faded from national consciousness, yet her innovations remain: She was Barbara Walters and Nikki Finke and TMZ all rolled into one, and she did it first. Reporting industry information — power shake-ups at the studios and box office figures — for a national audience? That was Miss Rona. Hosting hourlong interviews with Hollywood stars? Rona. Getting those stars to talk frankly about sex on national television? All Rona. BuzzFeed.com


Hollywood TV gossip reporter Rona/Barrett. Charles Bonnay / LIFE / Getty


Rona Barrett was the undisputed gossip queen of the 1970s. She covered the decade’s most scandalous stories, attended the most exclusive parties in Hollywood, and developed a rapport with the era’s biggest stars.

Rons Barrett at age 76 (http://www.playbill.com/)

Since the mid ‘80s, however, she’s largely been forgotten as a pioneer of entertainment news, a role that helped change the face of the news industry. To celebrate her 80th birthday later this year, Buzzfeed sat down with “Miss Rona” to get a sense of what really happened during her trailblazing career. Just like her confessional interviews, nothing was off limits. metv.com

Buzzfeed.com

Visit: ronabarrettfoundation.org

 

Tags: ,

“ROBERT & JOHNNY – WE BELONG TOGETHER”

image

We Belong Together” was a 1958 American rhythm and blues hit written and recorded by Robert & Johnny, with a co-writing credit to Hy Weiss. It reached #12 on the R&B charts and #32 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Cover versions

The song was later recorded by several others. The Fleetwoods released a version on their 1959 album, Mr. Blue.

A rendition by Ritchie Valens was released in 1959 on the Del-Fi record label and can be found on several of his albums. It’s also featured in a scene from the 1987 hit film about Valens, La Bamba in which the song was sung by Los Lobos.

The Belmonts released a remake on the Laurie label, Laurie 3080, in 1961, after they had split with Dion. It was not a hit, but was later reissued on a collector’s label because of its musical value.

In 1961, Jimmy Mullins, known as Jimmy Velvit,[1] recorded it in the Dallas, Texas area. It was issued in January, 1962 on M-G-M’s Cub Records label (K9105). It attracted a lot of attention and air-play and became the #1 song on the Dallas radio station, KLIF, for a period of six weeks.

A different singer, Jimmy Tennant, using the name Jimmy Velvet, had a #75 hit with the song on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1964.[2] Tennant had initially recorded and released the song on his own Velvet label (co-owned with Ray Curran) in April, 1963 (Velvet 201-63), using the same name Mullins was using, Jimmy Velvit. That same issue was briefly re-issued in August, 1963 on the Cortland label’s Witch Records subsidiary (#115) in an effort to take the Velvet Records release to a national level. Tennant used another song from the session, “I’m Gonna Try” as the flip side of both releases, the same song the earlier Jimmy Velvit (Jimmy Mullins) had used on his 1962 Cub version. That song had been written by Mullins. The hit release (as by Jimmy Velvet) on ABC-Paramount 10488 used “History Of Love” (recorded at the same April session) as the flip side, which was first issued by November, 1963.[3]

Peaches & Herb included the song on their album, Let’s Fall In Love.

en.m.Wikipedia.org

 

Tags:

 
%d bloggers like this: