The Cats (Santa Monica, CA)
aka Gene & Billy
1955 - Get Gone / You're So Nice (Federal 12238)
1955 - I Don't Care No More / After I Gave You My Heart (Federal 12438)
Gene & Billy
1955 - Zerlene / It's Hot / (Spark 120)
1955 - Zerlene / The Whip (Billy & Billygoats) (Loma 702)
R&B duo Gene & Billy teamed singers Gene Ford and Billy Boyd, who first began collaborating as lead singer & member of the Santa Monica vocal quartet the Chanters along with Alan Boyd (Billy's brother) and Ethel Brown .
When the group broke up, Gene & Billy cut "Zerlene " "It's Hot" in 1955 on the short lived Spark label. Spark Records was the brainchild of the clever Jerry Leiber and the gutsy Mike Stoller.
The Same year, Gene & Billy cut two Singles for Federal, King Record's subsidiary, under the name of the Cats.
I Don't Care No More Get Gone
After I Gave You My Heart You're So Nice
Gene & Billy
Zerlene It's Hot
The Wonders (5) (Akron,OH.)
Fred Kalail (Lead)
Wade Haddad (Tenor)
Ron Kalail (Baritone)
Harvey Russell (Bass)
The Wonders (5)
1957 - Well Now / Cuttin' Out (Reserve 122)
1959 - I'll Write A Book / Hey Senorita (Ember 1051)
1963 - Out of My Teens / Cuttin' Out (Vicki 638)
The Wonders were more of a pop group in the style of the Four Lads or Crew Cuts. Yet they knew what was selling, so they waxed "I'll Write A Book" with a nice version of the penguins' classic "Hey Senorita" in the winter of 1959. They Had previously done a single called "Cuttin' Out", and Fred Kalail sang lead for the group.
The Wonders toured throughout the south and east, but, according to Wade Haddad, never totally adapted to Rock and roll. Several members evolved into another band, playing Arabic music for Akron's large Middle-eastern constituency. In the early 60s Harvey Russell continued to sing 'solo'. He had a local hit with "Out of My Teens" on the Vicki label.
In 1964 Russell started his own record label, Janie, named for his wife. He recorded a record of his own, but also released records by the Decades and Pacers. By 1965 he had decided to start singing for the teenage set, so he partnered with the Rogues, an Akron band who were pretty popular in the teen clubs.
Well Now Cuttin' Out
I'll Write A Book Hey Senorita
The Bel-Larks (Syracuse, NY)
Roselind Allen (Second Lead / Soprano)
Robert Reese (Lead/First Tenor)
Eric Simmons Jr. (Lead/First & Second Tenor)
Frederick Simmons (Baritone)
Robbert Baggett (Lead/Bass)
1962 - A Million And One Dreams / Satisfied (Ransom 5001)
1963 - Get Married In June / A Million And One Dreams (Hammer 6313)
1962 - You're Mine
1962 - I Believe
1962 - It Hurt To Be In Love
1962 - Unchain My Heart (Allen & Kemp)
This Group formed in 1958 and consisted of Robert Reese (Lead/First Tenor), Eric Simmons Jr. (Lead/First & Second Tenor), Frederick Simmons (Baritone) and Robbert Baggett (Lead/Bass). They decided to call themselves the "Bell Larks" (later shortened to "Bel-Larks"), imagining ringing chimes and singing birds. The Bel Larks practiced in the basements of the Simmons' Home singing such as "Only you", "Book Of Love" and "Come Go With Me" . They Also sang few original tunes, including "Bobby" and "Dinner at Baggett's".
E.Simmons, R. Baggett, R.Reese & F. Simmons
As the group became more polished, they started performing at local high school dances, parties and neighborhood nursing homes. In the summer of 1959, they asked Roselind Allen to join the group as the Second Lead and Soprano. Roselind had been singing since the age of four or five and at thirteen she formed a group (the Blendtones) with fellow Madison junior high classmates Marie Smith and Geruleve Outley. The gores sang an original song written by Roselind Allen and Marie Smith, entitled "A Million And One Dreams". In August 1960 Robert Reese joined the Navy.
In 1962, The Bel-Larks hooked up with David Ransom, and he became their Manager. Ransom introduced the group to independent record producer Scott Hilton and Together they booked a recording session for the Bel-Larks at Riposo studios on Warren street in Syracuse. they recorded "A Million And One Dreams" and "You're Mine". A second recording session was set up at Riposo Studios and the Bel-Larks recorded "Satisfied" along with their original Tune "Get Married In June", "I Believe" and "It Hurt To Be In Love".
R. Baggett, F.Simmons,R. Allen, R.Reese & E. Simmons
"A Million And One Dreams" b/w "Satisfied" was released on Ransom Records towards the latter part of 1962 and received airplay on local radio station WNDR. Unfortunately, nothing much happened after the release, But the Bel-Larks continue to perform in the Syracuse Aera….Tragically, on July 29, 1963, 21-year-old David Ransom was in a car accident that led to his death on August 7th. Shortly After Ransom's passing, The Bel-Larks Called to Quit..
A Million And One Dreams Satisfied Get Married In June
The Dreamtones (2) (Pittsburgh)
1957 - Was I Dreaming / Say Hey Baby (Mercury 71222)
1957 - Young & Foolish
The Dreamtones, A three girl group from Pittsburgh consisted by Judy Lanzo, Joanne Gillen & Marian Yates.
In 1957, the girl cut "Was I Dreaming / Say Hey Baby" for Mercury. Jim Drake, Lead singer of the Four Larks arranged "Was I Dreaming" for the Trio.
Was I Dreaming Say Hey Baby
The Fabulous Flames (2) (San Francisco)
Willie "Snake" Johnson
1961 - Do You Remember? / Get To Stepping (Baytones 102)
1961 - Do You Remember? / I Need You, Dear (Baytones 102)
1961 - Lover / I'm So Alone (Baytones 105)
The James Brown's singing group, The Famous Flames, After the group's initial breakup in 1957, with original group members Bobby Byrd, Sylvester Keels, NaFloyd Scott, Nash Knox, and Johnny Terry leaving the group due to the group's managers Clint Brantley and Ben Bart giving James Brown top billing, Brown was having trouble keeping The Flames together.
James Brown & The Famous Flames
Several members came and went over the next several months, including Willie Johnson , Big Bill Hollings, J.W.Archer, Louis Madison and others. One of the bigger bust-ups occurred in the spring of 1959. Hollings, Madison and Archer, who had sung on 'Try Me', had a big confusion out in Oakland, California following a show at the Oakland auditorium at which they opened for Jackie Wilson, Ray Charles, and Hank Ballard & the Midnighters and James Brown left 'em all out there.
The then-Flames claimed that Brown refused to pay them, while Brown claimed it was because of alcohol and drug use on the road. It led to one of the many confusing backwaters of Famous Flame discography Of the marooned ex-Flames, Madison was the busier, forming a group called The Fabulous Flames .
Bay-Tone label owner Brad Taylor & The Fabulous Flames :Madison, Archer, Johnson and Hollings
They recorded three singles in 1959 for the Baytone, a San Franciscan outlet started by Bradley Taylor. Either way, they were fired by Brown, who, by this time, had assumed full literal and financial control of the Famous Flames following the departure of group founder Bobby Byrd.
The Famous Flames (l to r): Bobby Byrd, Bobby Bennett & “Baby” Lloyd Stallworth
Lloyd was recruited as a replacement member of the group one year later, along with Bobby Bennett, and returning members Bobby Byrd and Johnny Terry.These men, along with Brown, became the permanent Famous Flames lineup.
The Fabulous Flames (2)
Do You Remember? / Get To Stepping I Need You, Dear
Lover I'm So Alone
James Brown & The Famous Flames
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