Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes (1954-1972)

On June 25, 1939, lyricist, arranger, and choreographer Harold Melvin was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A self-taught pianist, as a teenager in 1953, Melvin began singing doo-wop with a vocal ensemble called the Charlemagnes. The following year, 1954, he established a quintet, the Blue Notes … Read MoreHarold Melvin & the Blue Notes (1954-1972)

Little Anthony and the Imperials (1958- )

Beginning as the Chesters in 1957, Little Anthony and the Imperials are a legendary Doo-Wop rhythm and blues/soul vocal ensemble founded in Brooklyn, New York by tenor Clarence Collins, Countertenor/Falsetto and principal singer Jerome Anthony “Little Anthony” Gourdine, Ernest Wright, bass Glouster “Nate” Rogers, and … Read MoreLittle Anthony and the Imperials (1958- )

Sonny Charles and the Checkmates (1969-2008)

Sonny Charles Hemphill, arranger, tenor, director, was born in Blytheville, Arkansas, on September 4, 1940, to sharecroppers. However, at the age of 10, he, his six sisters, and parents moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana. At 14 Hemphill, a tenor and harmonica player, sang in the … Read MoreSonny Charles and the Checkmates (1969-2008)

The Soul Stirrers (1926-1990)

The Soul Stirrers were one of the most popular and influential gospel groups of the 20th century. The group was formed by countertenor/falsetto Silas Roy Crain, baritone Reubert H. Harris, baritone Thomas L. Brewster, tenor Edward Allen Rundless, Jr., and bass O.W. Thomas on September … Read MoreThe Soul Stirrers (1926-1990)

The Blind Boys of Alabama (1939 – )

In 1939 during the Jim Crow era, baritone Clarence Fountain, bass Johnny Fields, baritone and guitarist George Scott, baritone Ollice Thomas, and tenor Velma Trayler, all elementary school students attending the Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind and singing in its glee club, formed an … Read MoreThe Blind Boys of Alabama (1939 – )