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message 1: by Bentley, Group Founder, Leader, Chief (last edited Jan 25, 2019 05:40PM) (new)

Bentley | 44207 comments Mod
This thread is about the musical style of R&B called Doo-wop.

The name Doo-wop is given to a style of vocal-based rhythm and blues music that developed in African American communities in the 1940s and achieved mainstream popularity in the 1950s and early 1960s. It emerged from New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Baltimore, Newark, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and areas of greater Los Angeles including El Monte and Compton. Built upon vocal harmony, doo-wop was one of the most mainstream, pop-oriented R&B styles of the 1950s and 1960s.

As a musical genre, Doo-wop is a type of vocal group harmony with the musical qualities of many vocal parts, nonsense syllables, a simple beat, little or no instrumentation, and simple music and lyrics. It is ensemble singing with single artists appearing with a backing group. Solo billing usually implies that the individual is more prominent in the musical arrangement.

Remainder of article: Wikipedia

This thread is for Jill.

message 2: by Bentley, Group Founder, Leader, Chief (new)

Bentley | 44207 comments Mod
This is a Doo-wop Megamix:

1961 The Belmonts - Tell Me Why
1956 The Diamonds - Why Do Fools Fall in Love
1963 The Crystals - Da Doo Ron Ron
1960 The Passions - Gloria
1957 The Charts - Dance Girl
1957 Lewis Lymon & The Teenchords - Honey Honey
1963 The Classics - Till Then
1954 The Crew Cuts - Sh-Boom
1961 Barry Mann - Who Put the Bomp
1959 Norman Fox & The Rob Roys - Dream girl
1954 The Penguins - Earth Angel
1955 The Rainbows - Mary Lee
1954 The Wrens - Come Back My Love
1962 The Contours - Do You Love Me
1961 The Marcels - Blue Moon
1957 The Monotones - Book Of Love
1955 The Valentines - Lily Maebelle
1959 The Fascinators - Oh Rose Marie
1961 The Earls - Lookin' for My Baby
1962 The Earls - Remember Then

Source: YouTube

message 3: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Thank you for this thread.....I am always talking about doo wop and now I have a suitable place to bore people to death with my love of this music genre. Doo Wop, as noted above is sung by a group in close harmony and came from the street corners of the cities. Many of the groups had only one hit but each was instrumental in shaping the genre. An excellent book on the subject which links it to the rise of rock and roll is:

The Sound Of The City The Rise Of Rock And Roll by Charlie Gillett by Charlie Gillett

A couple of classics are:
Dance Girl - The Charts

In The Still of the Night - The 5 Satins (with the wonderful Fred Parris in lead)

message 4: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) And of course:
Earl Lewis and the Channels - The Closer You Are

And one of the great voices of Doo Wop, Sonny Til

It's Too Soon To Know - Sonny Til and the Orioles

message 5: by Bentley, Group Founder, Leader, Chief (new)

Bentley | 44207 comments Mod
Yes, and the thread is topic specific. So now folks can find your adds.

message 6: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1830 comments Sonny Til ... swooooon!

message 7: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) 'Aint it the truth, Bea......his voice is just soooooo nice.

Here is another of his hits with the group which is more recognizable.

Crying in the Chapel - Sonny Til and the Orioles

message 8: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Another one-hit wonder which is included on any compilation of doo-wop hits.

Castles in the Sky - The Bop Chords

Another iconic hit about which I have mixed feelings.

The Wind - The Jesters

message 9: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) The hit song that rocketed to the top of the R&B Charts when released in 1954 (there was no Doo Wop Chart!!) It was covered by the Fontaine Sisters for the Top 40 chart and was also a hit....but there is hardly a I am not putting up the alternate.

Otis Williams and the Charms - Hearts of Stone

message 10: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Another of my favorite doo wop girl's name songs and is listed in the top 100 best doo wop songs of all times.

Florence - The Paragons

message 11: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) One of the most lyrical doo wop song ever. It makes the young girls swoon.

The Angels Sang - The Solitaires

message 12: by Dennis (new)

Dennis  | 22 comments Jill, just discovered this. I was born in 1957 but I grew up listening to CBS-FM in NY. They would have a top 500 every year and the #1 song every year was "In the Still of the Night". I could not disagree. The greatest 50s song as far as I am concerned.

message 13: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Dennis.....thank heavens there is another doo wop fan here. I am a true fan of the genre. "In The Still of the Night" deserves to be the #1 song....the lead singer Fred Parris had a wonderful voice and the song still resonates with music fans. Please add some of your other favorites here and thanks for commenting.

message 14: by Dennis (new)

Dennis  | 22 comments Earth Angel certainly. My wife has a habit of saying "You" to me. A short version of "I love you" I played this somg for her and when she heard the final few notes she got a huge smile on her face. it is now my ringtone. Another personal favorite is Mr Bass Man.

Earth Angel - The Penguins

Mr Bass Man - Johnny Cymbal

Goodnight My Love - Jesse Belvin (Norm N Nite would close every show with this song)

And that is just for starters!

message 15: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Wonderful posts, Dennis. It is just great music.

Another song which belongs right up there with "In The Still of the Night", is this one by the Flamingos.

Lovers Never Say Goodbye - The Flamingos

message 16: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) The Falcons didn't get enough attention.....they had a good sound and made some great songs. One of the members was Eddie Floyd who went on to make the hit "Knock on Wood" This is one of my favorites from the group although it sounds like they are singing in someone's basement!

You're So Fine - The Falcons

message 17: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Another of my seems that every song is my favorite but I love this music.
This is the Velvets with the wonderful Virgil Johnson as lead. He was a high school teacher and the group (back in the day) was comprised of his students. It is a classic of doo wop.

Tonight - The Velvets

message 18: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1830 comments I was saddened to read this article in this morning's paper.

BOSTON (Reuters) - Herb Reed, the last of the founding members of 1950s R&B crooners The Platters, known for hits such as "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" and "The Great Pretender," has died in Boston age 83.

Reed's publicists said the singer, who in recent years lived in Arlington, Massachusetts, died on Monday after a period of declining health.

The singing group was formed in Los Angeles in 1953 by Reed along with Joe Jefferson, Cornell Gunther, and Alex Hodge. The group went on to have four number-one singles on the U.S. charts between 1955 and 1958.
The Platters continued to record for another decade and tour in various incarnations, and with more than 100 different members, until the present day.

In recent years Reed, the Platters' bass singer, waged a long and ultimately successful battle in federal court to obtain superior rights to the name The Platters. As the last surviving member of the original group, that made the singer the sole heir to the group's legacy.

The Platters, praised for their smooth, stylized renditions of pop standards, were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

Herb Reed sang bass with the group.
"You'll Never Know"
"Only You"
"The Great Pretender"

message 19: by Jill (last edited Jun 06, 2012 05:30PM) (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Oh no, I missed that announcement, Bea. Who didn't like the Platters? One of my favorites of their songs wasn't really a hit but I have always loved it.

"It's Raining Outside"

message 20: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
Nice, all these bubble-gum, petticoat memories...

message 21: by Brian (last edited Jun 07, 2012 02:15PM) (new)

Brian (brianj48) | 58 comments I may have reached Paradise. Books, History and Doo-Wop! My daughter would note (based upon an experience in Universal Studios in Orlando)that all I need to complete me is some popcorn and a beer.. or two). And a song that must, or I'd humbly suggest, should be included
"Since I Don't Have You" - The Skyliners

message 22: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Hooray, Brian....another doo wop fan. And I totally agree about Jimmy Beaumont and the Skyliners.....I was lucky enough to see them a few years ago and they sounded as good as ever (of course, they have a different female singer but she sounds the same as the original). Beaumont said "You have to remember I was 16 when I first sang Since I Don't Have You and I'm not sure I can hit those high notes anymore". Needless to say, he did and it was wonderful. The group still appears periodically around the Pittsburgh area where they live.

message 23: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Can I Come Over Tonight by the Velours with the great lead vocal by Jerome Ramos. Pretty much a one-hit wonder but it is a wonder!!

message 24: by Jill (last edited Jul 05, 2015 11:08AM) (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) One of my favorite songs (I am always saying that!!) is Sea of Love by Phil Phillips. And then it was updated by The Honeydrippers, fronted by Robert Plant from Led Zep, and again by Tom Waits from the eponymous movie sound track. You decide which one is the best!!

Phil Phillips

The Honeydrippers

Tom Waits

message 25: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
Nice, Jill.
Personally I'd stick with the original. Nice, tender, smooth.
Back when The Honeydrippers came out I never watched Music TV/Clips so this video was new to me - and my, how it made me laugh.
The posing - what in heaven's name do they think they are doing? The haircut (true, Robert Plant was never famous for developing any kind of taste as to his haircuts but this one is the worst if you ask me)
Very funny.
As to Tom Waits, well, I love his songwriting, but when he (tries to) sing... it's just not for me.

message 26: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Tom Waits voice can cause a nervous collapse if listened to long enough!!!....but like you, I love his songwriting. But in the The Sea of Love film, it was rather appropriate since the film was creepy.

message 27: by G (last edited Jul 19, 2012 06:50AM) (new)

G Hodges (glh1) | 901 comments Doo Wop. Oh my gosh. This is not how I remember the song, but, still, let's not forget the Chantels. I love youtube.

and then, there is one of my all time favorites from the Del Vikings, Come Go With Me.

Can someone tell me what happened to the sax in popular music?

message 28: by Jill (last edited Jul 19, 2012 02:32PM) (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) In the earliest rock and roll styles of the late 1940s and early 1950s, either the piano or saxophone was often the lead instrument, but these were generally replaced or supplemented by guitar in the middle to late 1950s..... but who knows why? There were some great sax "honkers" back in the day and Big Jay McNeely and Bill Doggett jump to mind.

message 29: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
G wrote: "Can someone tell me what happened to the sax in popular music?..."

Can someone tell me what happened to popular music? (Smile)

Nice post, G.

message 30: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
Jill wrote: "Tom Waits voice can cause a nervous collapse if listened to long enough!!!..."

I just don't listen to it. Saves me a lot of trouble...(Smile)

message 31: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) This song by the Crests, one of the first groups that featured both black and white members, was a huge hit. One of the original group members was Patricia Van Dross, older sister of the great Luther Van Dross. The lead singer, Johnny Maestro (Mastrangelo), went on to found the group Brooklyn Bridge and stayed on the charts for several years.

Sixteen Candles - The Crests

message 32: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (last edited Aug 29, 2012 02:58AM) (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
Jill wrote: "This song by the Crests..."

Nice with all the movie stills. Even has one with Wolfman Jack...

Wolfman Jack

message 33: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) This is the shortest song ever to reach #1 on the charts: 1 minute, 37 seconds in length, it makes you wish it was longer!!

Stay - Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs

message 34: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1830 comments
Duncan is second from the bottom

Cleve Duncan, who fronted The Penguins, died November 7 in Los Angeles. He was 78. "Earth Angel" was the only hit for the group, but it was a smash!

For more on Duncan see:

Live from Alan Freed's radio show:

message 35: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) A great group which probably deserved more than "one hit wonder" status but that happened often with the doo wop groups. RIP Cleve Duncan.

message 36: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
Wow, a singing penguin!

message 37: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1830 comments André wrote: "Wow, a singing penguin!"

I was amused to find out at the name came from Willie the Penguin, the trademark on Kool cigarette packs since the group wanted to be "cool".

message 38: by André, Honorary Contributor - EMERITUS - Music (new)

André (andrh) | 2849 comments Mod
Probably loves fish too...

message 39: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) A visual history of doo wop by the DJ of the day, Cousin Brucie (Bruce Morrow).

Doo Wop: The Music, the Times,the Era

Doo Wop The Music, the Times, the Era by Bruce Morrow by Bruce Morrow

Doo Wop captures the spirit of an era in spectacular visuals, revealing the roots of the 60’s music explosion. With abundant background and enticing images, it covers way more than just the gorgeous harmonies of the unforgettable doo wop groups. The 50’s were rich in cultural events and iconic performances, and this landmark volume traces the development of the music, politics, art, architecture, and popular culture throughout this exciting and remarkable period. Each chapter delves into one or more years and focuses on the transformative events of the day. You’ll meet the pioneers who started it all, including bands like The Drifters; discover how the songs we love emerged from African rhythms and culture; and watch the music—and America—grow up. The pages teem with archival photography, posters, album covers, newspaper articles, magazine covers, lyrics, and more. Lavish illustrations with duotone and full-color imagery carry readers back in time so they’ll enjoy a deep understanding of our musical and cultural history.

message 40: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) A genre of music that fell somewhere between R&B and Rock and Roll. The doo-wop song introduced the nonsense lyrics such as "shoo doo, shoo doo; sh boom; and doo wop wop", (from which the name of the music originated).

Doo-Wop; The Forgotten Third of Rock 'n Roll

Doo-Wop the Forgotten Third of Rock 'n Roll by Anthony J. Gribin by anthony gribin (no photo)


A must have source for music collectors Thoroughly documents the Doo-Wop music of 1950 through the early '70s. Gribin & Schiff give definitions and illustrations of the nonsensical phraseology in music that fell between rhythm and blues and rock'n roll.

message 41: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Another of the great sounds of the 50s doo wop group The Scarlets.

Dear One

message 42: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) And another by the Cadillacs, fronted by the incomparable Earl "Speedo: Carroll.

Gloria - The Cadillacs

message 43: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) The Complete Book of Doo Wop

(no image available)the complete book of doo wop by anthony gribin (no photo)


If you love the doo-wop genre of music then this is the book for you.....but be warned, it is only for those who truly are interested in the history of this style. Every vocal group and doo-wop song ever made must be listed in this reference book which is thoroughly researched. It will have the fan scrambling to find obscure and lost recordings. Recommended for the obsessive music historian.

message 44: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Oh yes!!!!!

Forever Doo Wop: Race, Nostalgia, and Vocal Harmony

Forever Doo Wop Race, Nostalgia, and Vocal Harmony by John Michael Runowicz by John Michael Runowicz (no photo)


Music can be a storehouse for emotional, social, and cultural experiences that deepen and acquire greater value over time. This is a book about a particular genre of vocal harmony music called doo-wop that has accrued deep meaning and affective power among Americans since its inception in the aftermath of World War II. Although the first doo-wop singers were primarily young black males in major American cities, it wasn't long before white working-class teenagers began emulating their rhythm-and-blues harmonies. The racial exchange of this distinctive genre and the social bonding it engendered have had a significant and lasting impact on American musical culture. In Forever Doo-Wop, John Runowicz traces the history of this music from its origins in nineteenth-century barbershop quartets through its emergence in the postwar era to its nostalgic adulthood from the mid-1960s to today. The book is based on interviews he has conducted and observations he has made over the last twenty-two years working as guitarist, musical director, and second tenor with one of the legendary doo-wop groups, the Cadillacs, on what is popularly known as the "oldies circuit." As a graduate student, he broadened his research to include the wider doo-wop community. Forever Doo-Wop invites readers to gaze through a window on our society and culture where certain truths are revealed about how white and black Americans coexist and interact, about how popular music functions as a vehicle for nostalgia, and about the role of music making over a long lifetime.

message 45: by Jena (new)

Jena (outlanderfan74) I am so glad to find this thread! I love doo wop, but it doesn't seem that many people in my age bracket share my taste for it. This is such an underappreciated genre of music, but it can boast some of the most exquisite harmonies I've ever heard.

(A Short List of Some of my Favorite Songs)

Been So Long - The Pastels

There's a Moon Out Tonight - The Capris

Daddy's Home - Shep and the Limelights

I Only Have Eyes For You - The Flamingoes

I'll be Forever Loving You - The Eldoradoes

Oh Rosemarie - The Fascinators

Sincerely - The Moonglows

Sorry I Ran All the Way Home - The Impalas

Hushabye - The Mystics

Paradise Hill - The Embers

Cry Baby Cry - The Angels

message 46: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Oh, Rachel.......thanks for posting. I was beginning to wonder if anyone else loved doo wop as much as I do. You mentioned many of my favorites and if you scan this thread, there are links to some wonderful songs that you may want to add to your list. I think it is an overlooked genre of music but it was a stepping stone for some great solo artists....Jackie Wilson, Eddie Floyd, etc.

message 47: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) This book is for the serious lover of doo-wop music.

Encyclopedia of Rhythm and Blues and Doo-Wop Vocal Groups

Encyclopedia of Rhythm & Blues and Doo-Wop Vocal Groups by Mitch Rosalsky by Mitch Rosalsky


In this unique guide to rhythm and blues vocal groups, Mitch Rosalsky has collected an abundance of information on individual groups. One of the first books to approach this subject from the groups' personnel standpoint, the Encyclopedia of R&B and Doo Wop Vocal Groups presents trivia about individual members as well as discographies for the groups, and many rare photographs. Over 1,000 groups are listed alphabetically with cross-referencing that allows readers to see when individuals have performed with multiple groups. With its easy-to-use alphabetical format, accurate and hard-to-find information, the Encyclopedia is an essential reference for deejays, collectors, and music historians. Assisted in his research by some of the very same authors of those famous biographies in those now famous but never forgotten magazines, this book is testimony of the need to give immortality to the individuals whose beautiful voices have thrilled us for years. Every effort has been made to present the most up-to-date and accurate information available.(

message 48: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Being a huge fan of doo wop music, I have to admit that I am not familiar with this group.

The Memories: A Doo-Wop Journey

The Memories A Doo-Wop Journey by Lou Martin by Lou Martin(no photo)


The Memories: A Doo-Wop Journey, explores the exciting history of a young professional singing group from their beginning as USO performers at military clubs to their signing with a national record label and performing all over the United States. When Lou Martin joined the doo-wop group called the Bobolinks-later called the Memories-he had no idea that it was the beginning of a lifelong journey into the world of pop music. He chronicles the highs and lows experienced by the group as they made their way through a fifty-five-year career of performing with some of the most recognizable celebrities of the fifties and sixties doo-wop era.

The story begins in the summer of 1957 and revolves around a young man named Lou Martin, who aspires to meet and sing with a group of teenage boys from the southeast section of Washington, DC, called the Bobolinks. He eventually joins the group and begins to learn how to sing harmony and lead. Over the next couple of years, the group evolved into a professional singing group that signed a record contract with a major record label. Their first hit, "Love Bells," brought them lots of radio play and commercial success.

The Memories A Doo Wop Journey provides a unique insider look into the inner workings of a popular singing group and the ups and downs that the members experience as their fame grows.(

message 49: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Although this book looks at rock and roll as an all encompassing genre, the first half of the book which follows the basis for that genre deals with what we now call "doo wop".

The Sound of the City: The Rise of Rock and Roll

The Sound of the City The Rise of Rock and Roll by Charlie Gillett by Charlie Gillett (no photo)


This comprehensive study of the rise of rock and roll from 1954 to 1971 has now been expanded with close to 100 illustrations as well as a new introduction, recommended listening section, and bibliography.

message 50: by Jill (new)

Jill Hutchinson (bucs1960) Doo wop fit into that outmoded appellation of "race music". But, thank heavens, soon it all just became "music"

Race Music

Race Music Black Cultures from Bebop to Hip-Hop by Guthrie P. Ramsey by Guthrie P. Ramsey (no photo)


This powerful book covers the vast and various terrain of African American music, from bebop to hip-hop. Guthrie P. Ramsey, Jr., begins with an absorbing account of his own musical experiences with family and friends on the South Side of Chicago, evoking Sunday-morning worship services, family gatherings with food and dancing, and jam sessions at local nightclubs. This lays the foundation for a brilliant discussion of how musical meaning emerges in the private and communal realms of lived experience and how African American music has shaped and reflected identities in the black community. Deeply informed by Ramsey's experience as an accomplished musician, a sophisticated cultural theorist, and an enthusiast brought up in the community he discusses, Race Music explores the global influence and popularity of African American music, its social relevance, and key questions regarding its interpretation and criticism.

Beginning with jazz, rhythm and blues, and gospel, this book demonstrates that while each genre of music is distinct—possessing its own conventions, performance practices, and formal qualities—each is also grounded in similar techniques and conceptual frameworks identified with African American musical traditions. Ramsey provides vivid glimpses of the careers of Dinah Washington, Louis Jordan, Dizzy Gillespie, Cootie Williams, and Mahalia Jackson, among others, to show how the social changes of the 1940s elicited an Afro-modernism that inspired much of the music and culture that followed.

Race Music illustrates how, by transcending the boundaries between genres, black communities bridged generational divides and passed down knowledge of musical forms and styles. It also considers how the discourse of soul music contributed to the vibrant social climate of the Black Power Era. Multilayered and masterfully written, Race Music provides a dynamic framework for rethinking the many facets of African American music and the ethnocentric energy that infused its creation.

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