This Month In Vocal Group History

October 1, 1958

Little Anthony & The Imperials recorded Neil Sedaka’s “The Diary” along with their street corner classic, “Traveling Stranger”.

Top Single:
“Reach Out” The Four Tops #7 1966

Birthday:
Barbara Parritt (The Toys) 1944
Herbert “Tubo” Rhoad (The Persuasions) 1944
Howard Hewett (Shalamar) 1959

October 2, 1954

The Spaniels “Let’s Make Up” was released.

October 2, 1961

Phil Spector launched his successful label Philles (with partner Lester Still) with the release of The Crystals first single, “There’s No Other”.

Top Single:
“Who Put The Bomp” Barry Mann
& The Edsels #11 1961
“Play That Funky Music” #1 1976

Birthday:
David Sommerville (The Diamonds) 1933
Claude McKnight (Take 6) 1962

October 3, 1955

Elvis Presley made his first public performance at 10 in a dairy show talent contest. He sang “Old Shep” and won $5, finishing 2nd.

October 3, 1981

The Tokens reunited for one Concert at New York’s Radio City Music Hall after more than a decade apart.

Top Single:
“Oh Pretty Woman” Roy Orbison #1 1964
“Candida” Dawn #3 1970

October 4, 1958

George Goldner (End Records President) signed The Flamingos.

October 4, 1962

Bob Dylan showcased at New York’s Carnegie Hall Annex. Fifty three people showed up.

Top Single:
“Hurt So Bad” The Lettermen #18 1969
“Another One Bites The Dust” Queen #1 1980

Birthday:
Arlene Smith (The Chantels) 1941
Patti LaBelle (The Bluebelles) 1944

October 5, 1968

Cream – The 3 ½ year old “Supergroup” led by Eric Clapton began its farewell tour. All three of their LP’s were million sellers.

Top Single:
“Mack The Knife” Bobby Darin #1 1959

October 6, 1958

The Elegants follow-up to their #1 “Little Star”, “Please Believe Me” was issued. They recorded 12 more 45’s but never charted again.

October 6, 1968

After living together for 9 years, ABBA members Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Benny Anderson finally married.

Top Single:
“Glory of Love” The Five Keys #1 R&B 1951
“Sherry” The 4 Seasons” #1 1962

October 7, 1957

The Crests first single “My Juanita” was released. The record reached #86 Pop and the group members each earned $17.50.

October 7, 1967

The Mama’s & The Papa’s British tour and TV appearances were canceled when Mama Cass Elliot was jailed for a night, accused of stealing items from a hotel.

Top Single:
“The Letter” The Box Tops #1 1967
“Everybody Plays The Fool” The Main Ingredient #4 1972
Birthday: Tony Sylvester (The Main Ingredient” 1941

October 8, 1977

The Emotions “Don’t Ask My Neighbors” (#44 Pop, #7 R&B) charted as the follow up to their mega-hit “Best Of My Love” (#1 Pop & R&B). It was their 17th of 30 R&B hits between 1969 and 1984.

Top Single:
“Last Train To Clarksville” The Monkees #6 1966

Birthday:
Fred Cash (The Impressions) 1940

October 9, 1954

Shirley Gunter and The Queens, a Los Angeles female quartet, hit the R&B singles survey with “Oop Shoop” (#*). By the time “Oop Shoop” was released Shirley (sister of Coasters member Cornel Gunter” was legally blind.

October 9, 1958

Eddie Cochran recorded “C’mon Everybody”.

Top Single:
“Bristol Stomp” The Dovells #5 1961
“Hit The Road Jack” Ray Charles #1 1961

October 10, 1958

The Dells opened a weeks engagement headlining at New York’s Apollo Theater.

October 10, 1978

Aerosmith members Joe Perry and Steven Tyler were injured when an over zealous fan launched a “Cherry Bomb” on to the stage in Philadelphia.

Top Single:
“Dancing In The Streets” Martha &
The Vandellas #3 1964
“Mr. Custer” Larry Verne #1 1960

Birthday:
Cyril Neville (The Neville Brothers) 1948

October 11, 1969

The Cowsills last of seven Top 100 entries, Silver Threads (MGM #74) charted.

October 11, 1962

“Love Me Do” become the first Beatles 45 to chart when it debuted at #49 on the British hit list.

Top Single:
“Dance With Me” The Orleans #7 1975
“When I Think Of You” Janet Jackson #1 1986

October 12, 1956

Johnnie Ray’s “Just Walkin’ In The Rain” entered the U.K. charts. The million selling American hit was co-written by Johnny Bragg & Robert Riley, two inmates at the Tennessee State Prison.

Top Single:
“Sugar Shack” Jimmy Gilmer & The Fireballs #1 1963

October 13, 1956

The Heartbeats classic, “A Thousand Miles Away” (#53 Pop, #5 R&B) was released. The groups lead singer, James Sheppard, wrote the standard while lounging in his bath tub.

October 13, 1963

The term “Beatlemania” coined after a near riot at a TV show, Sunday Night at The London Palladium, where the “Mop Tops” appeared.

Top Single:
“Tears On My Pillow” Little Anthony &
The Imperials #4 1958
“It’s All In The Game” Tommy Edwards #1 1958

Birthday:
Marie Osmond (The Osmonds) 1959

October 14, 1957

The Rays timeless tune “Silhouettes” charted en route to #3.

October 14, 1955

19 year old Buddy Holly and his friend Bob Montgomery were opening act (as Buddy & Bob) in their hometown of Lubbock, TX for visiting rock start Bill Haley & The Comets. The next day they opened for Elvis Presley.

Top Single:
“Happy, Happy Birthday Baby”
The Tune Weavers #4 R&B 1957
“Kiss You All Over” Exile #1 1978

October 15, 1960

Danny & The Juniors, hit artists of the era-defining “At The Hop” left ABC Records and signed with Swan Records of Philadelphia.

October 15, 1973

During a concert leader of The Kinks, Ray Davies, announced his retirement and then immediately checked into Whittington Hospital in England after swallowing a bottle of uppers.

Top Single:
“I’ve Got You Under My Skin” The 4 Seasons #9 1966

Birthday:
Marv Johnson (The Seranaders) 1938
Tito Jackson (The Jacksons) 1953

October 16, 1954

Classic 45’s “Bells Of St. Mary’s” by Lee Andrews & The Hearts and “Ling, Ting Tong” by The Five Keys (#28 Pop, #5 R&B) were released.

October 16, 1966

Joan Baez and 123 others were arrested for blocking the entrance to the armed forces induction center in Oakland during draft demonstrations. She spent 10 days in jail.

Top Single:
“Runaround Sue” Dion & The Del Satins #2 1961
Disco Duck” Rick Dees #1 1976

Birthday:
Wendy Wilson (Wilson Phillips) 1969

October 17, 1960

Dion & The Belmonts split up. Dion stayed with Laurie Records while The Belmonts formed their own Sabina Records.

Top Single:
“Save The Last Dance For Me” The Drifters #1 1960

October 18, 1969

Richard Nader’s legendary first Rock & Roll Revival Concert in New York included The Five Satins.

October 18, 1986

Hard to believe, but for the first time in Rock history females held the top 3 spots on the charts. Janet Jackson (“When I Think of You”) Tina Turner (“Typical Male”) and (“True Colors”).

Top Single:
“I Can’t Get Next To You” The Temptations #1 1969

Birthday:
Russ Giguere (The Association) 1943

October 19, 1958

Backup vocalist for Gene Vincent, Tommy Facenda, charted with a most unique single, “High School USA” which was issued with 28 different versions each mentioning the names of different schools in major metropolitan areas. Collectively the record reached #28.

Top Single:
“Emotions” Mariah Carey #1 1991

October 20, 1956

The two biggest names in 50’s Rock &Roll, Bill Haley & The Comets and Elvis Presley performed on the same bill at Brooklyn High School in Cleveland.

October 20, 2000

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame held its second induction awards honoring the class of 1999 and 2000. the “99” class included The Ink Spots, The Imperials, Hank Ballard & The Midnighters, The Moonglows and The Four Seasons among others. 2000 included The Flamingos, Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers, Dion & The Belmonts, The Drifters and The Mama’s & The Papa’s. The awards hosts were music historian Jay Warner and The Supremes Mary Wilson.

Top Single:
“Monster Mash” Bobby “Boris” Pickett #1 1962
“Rock-in Robin” Bobby Day & The Satellites #1 R&B

Birthday:
Jay Siegel (The Tokens) 1939

October 21, 1957

Bobby Day & The Hollywood Flames recorded their soon-to-be hit, “Buzz, Buzz, Buzz” (#11 Pop, #5 R&B). Also in the group at the time was The Penguins Curtis Williams.

October 21, 1958

Buddy Holly’s last formal recording session included “It Doesn’t Matter Anymore” and “True Love Ways”. It was done at Coral Records 80th street New York studio.

Top Single:
“Never My Love” The Association #3 1967
“To Sir With Love” Lulu #1 1967

Birthday:
Norman Wright (The Dell-Vikings) 1937
Garfield Bright (Shai) 1969

October 22, 1988

Ted Taylor of The cadets died in a car accident while touring Louisiana.

Top Single:
“Go Away Little Girl” The Happenings #17 1966

October 23, 1954

50,000 watt, black radio giant, WDIA in Memphis began banning all records with (what was then considered) suggestive lyrics including The Drifters “Honey Love”, The Bess “Toy Bell” and the entire “Annie” series by The Midnighters et al.

October 23, 1966

The first female vocal group to top the U.S. album charts were The Supremes with “Supremes a Go Go”.

Top Single:
“I Love How You Love Me” The Paris Sisters #7 1961
“Runaround Sue” Dion & The Del Satins #1 1961

Birthday:
Barbara Ann Hawkins (The Dixie Cups) 1943
Perry Lee Tavares (Tavares) 1954
Davis Thomas (Take 6) 1966

October 24, 1954

Clyde McPhatter recorded with The Drifters for the last time. The only released single from the session was “Everybody’s Laughing”

October 24, 1978

Keith Richards punishment for a Heroin possession charge in Canada was a one year suspension and an order to play a charity concert for the blind.

Top Single:
“I’ll Be There” The Jackson Five #1 1970
“Do Wha Diddy Diddy” Manfred Mann #1 1964

October 25, 1969

Gladys Knight & The Pips “Friendship Train” (#17 Pop, #4 R&B) became their lucky 13th of 66 Pop charters from 1961 through 1994.

October 25, 1973

John Lennon sued the U.S. Government alleging his phone was tapped while he was fighting a deportation order.

Top Single:
“To Each His Own” Faith, Hope & Charity #1 R&B 1975
“Bad Blood” Neil Sedaka #1 1975

October 26, 1963

A year and 22 days after Bob Dylan played before only 53 people at the Carnegie Hall Annex, he played to a sell out crowd at Carnegie Hall.

Top Single:
“Mack The Knife” Bobby Darin #1 1959

October 27, 1958

The Flamingos first for End, “That Love Is You” was released however its flip side “Lovers Never Say Goodbye” became the classic hit (#52 Pop, #25 R&B). “Lovers” was originally released under the title, “Please Wait For Me”.

October 27, 1960

Ben E. King began his solo career after leaving The Drifters when he recorded four songs including “Spanish Harlem” and “Stand By Me”.

Top Single:
“Do You Love Me” The Contours #2 1962
“Monster Mash” Bobby “Boris” Pickett #1 1962

October 28, 1957

The Cellos “Girlie That I Love” was released.

October 28, 1978

The Barbara Streisand and Neil Diamond hit collaboration on “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers” was not their first performance encounter. In fact, they sang together at New York City’s Erasmus Hall High School in the school choir during the 60’s.

Top Single:
“Besame Mucho” The Ray O Vacs #5 R&B 1950
“Hot Child In The City” Nick Gilder #1 1978

Birthday:
Telma Hopkins (Dawn) 1948

October 29, 1952

The R&B group, The Diamonds recorded their initial four sides including the exquisite debut disc
“A Beggar Four Your Kisses”

Top Single:
“Black Denim Trousers” The Cheers #6 1955\

Birthday:
Eugene Daughtry (The Intruders) 1939

October 30, 1961

Joey Dee & The Starliters “Peppermint Twist” was released. It reached #1.

October 30, 1998

The Vocal Group Hall of Fame held their inaugural induction ceremonies at the Hall’s museum in Sharon, Pennsylvania. Among those inducted were The Mills Brothers, The Ravens, The Orioles, The Original Drifters, The Platters, The Beach Boys, The Supremes and The Manhattan Transfer.
The event was hosted by legendary D.J’s Martha Jean(The Queen) Steinberg, Jack “The Rapper” Gibson and music historian and author Jay Warner.

Top Single:
If You Leave Me Now” Chicago #1 1976 “A Lovers Concerto” The Toys #2 1965

October 31, 1953

Probably the most perfect sounding vocal group single ever issued, The Flamingos third 45, “Golden Teardrops” was released.

October 31, 1960

Johnny Burnette’s “You’re 16” charted eventually reaching #8, the same day Jerry Butler’s “He Will Break Your Heart” charted but reached #7.

Top Single:
“Baby Love” The Supremes #1 1964

Birthday:
Otis Williams (The Temptations) 1941

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