Classic Urban Harmony, LLC

"We Take You Back In The Day"





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[New!]Wally Osborne & Starfires

Satan & the Angels - Blue Eyed Soul

Tony Talent & the Coalitions

Golden Bells & Contessas

Sweet Delights

Sammy Strain & the Imperials, 1964 -, Part 4 in the series

Sammy Strain & the Imperials, 1961 - 1963 Part 3

Sammy Strain & the Fantastics Part 2

Sammy Strain & the Chips Part 1

Asbury Park Vocal Groups Pt. 2

Asbury Park Vocal Groups, Pt.1

Philly's Original Capris

Little Jimmy & The Tops

Teddy & Twilights, Deckers

Groups from Philly's Francisville - Belltones, Joe Cook's Thrillers, Royal Demons, Madison Brothers

Sensations - Part 1

Sensations - Part 2

Johnny Maestro, the Crests & Brooklyn Bridge

Johnny Stiles & the Medallions on Essex

The Plurals

The Vic Donna Story

Orioles' Deborah Chessler

Tyrone & the Nu-Ports

Windy City Harmony: Calvaes, Blenders & Accents

        The Del Larks

Richard Barrett Part 1: The Valentines

Richard Barrett
Part 2:
Frankie Lymon & Teenagers

Richard Barrett
Part 3: The Chantels, Clickettes,
Fashions Veneers

Richard Barrett
Part 4:

Little Anthony & Imperials

Richard Barrett
Part 5: Lewis Lymon
Teenchords Jimmy Castor & Juniors

Richard Barrett
Part 6: The Channels,
Isley Bros, Del Knights

Richard Barrett Part 7: The 3 Degrees, Showmen

    Visit Our

Our Photo Gallery:
Our Musical Family

Our Photo Gallery:
CUH Archives

Renovations to the Classic Urban Harmony Library

    Concert Reviews,
    Photos & Events

bullet [New!]Choice at Roxy & Dukes
bullet [New!]Philly Ringtones at Franklin Township Library
[New!]Curators Talk, Spirituals to Soul Exhibit
bullet [New!]Sonny Til's son & grandson visit Classic Urban Harmony Headquarters
bullet [New!]Re-MedmberThen at Roxy & Dukes
bullet [New!]Quiet Storm at Roxy & Dukes
bullet [New!]Spirituals to Soul Museum Exhibit, Freehold
bulletVelvet Candles in Barcelona, Spain
bulletFilming Doo Wop Documentary
bullet2015 Portsmouth VA Gospel Concert
bullet Monmouth University West Side Music Exhibit
bulletAsbury Park West Side Music Exhibit Monmouth University - Set Up
bulletAsbury Park West Side Music Exhibit, Heaven Gallery
bullet2014 Philly Doo Wop Festival
bulletTNT with Vic Donna Group & Charlie Horner
bulletAsbury Angels 2014, Bobby Thomas
bulletRichard Nader Doo Wop Concert XXV
bullet2014 Portsmouth VA Gospel Concert
bullet Billy Vera Big Band at the Cutting Room NYC
bullet VGHA Extravaganza III
bullet Asbury Park Gospel Explosion

African American
Museum Philadelphia
Gospel Awards Ceremony

bullet Ray Goodman & Brown in Plainfield
at NJ Doo Wop Singers Club 2013

bulletEncounters at Somerset Run
bulletRichard Nader's Doo Wop Celebration XXVI
2013 Asbury Angels Plaque Dedications
bullet VGHA Acappella Extravaganza II
bullet2013 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
bullet Time Capsule Show 50th Anniversary
2013 Portsmouth, VA Gospel Concert
at Manchester, NJ

at New Providence Library

bulletJohn Moore's Middle Room Records Closes
bulletLittle Isidore in Fair Lawn, NJ
bulletNJ Doo Wop Singers Club Jan 2013
bulletCelebrating Asbury Park's West Side Harmony
bulletDoo Wop Singers Club 4th Anniversary
bulletChuck Berry Honored by the R&R Hall of Fame
bulletQuiet Storm at Somerset Run
bulletAsbury Angels 2012 Induction Ceremony
bullet2012 Philly Doo Wop Festival
bullet2012 Lead East
bulletTNT R&B and Doo Wop Party, Aug 2012
bulletPam Nardella's Frankie Lymon Tombstone BBQ
bullet Classic Urban Harmony Celebrates Vocal Harmony & the Masqueraders 50th Anniversary
bulletFrankie Lymon Tombstone Finds a New Home
bulletStormin Norman Seldin & Return of Ray & Darchaes in Monmouth Beach NJ
bullet2012 Portsmouth VA Gospel Concert
bulletTNT North Jersey R&B and Doo Wop Party - 2nd Anniversary
bulletAcappella Extravaganza at Molloy College 2011
bulletDoo Wop Singers Club (NJ) Third Anniversary
bulletSoul of Asbury Park Concert
bulletMasqueraders Silver Star Competition
bullet6th Annual Philly Doo Wop Festival
bulletSouth Philly String Band Club After Party to 6th Philly Doo Wop Festival
bulletTymes' Norman & Peggy Burnett BBQ 2011
bullet2011 Lead East
bullet Morris Museum Acappella & Doo Wop Concert # Two
bullet Morris Museum Acappella Concert # One
bulletClassic Urban Harmony Presentation NJ Doo Wop Groups Part 2
bulletClassic Urban Harmony Presentation NJ Doo Wop Groups Part 1
bulletMorris Museum LaBamba & Quiet Storm Concert
bulletMorris Museum Jersey Rocks Exhibit Opening
bulletMorris Museum Jersey Rocks Launch Party
bulletEvening With Vocal Group Legends Concert
bulletRe-memberThen Finds Its Echo
bulletSteve Applebaum Tribute Concert
bulletWFDU Fundraiser, Teaneck, NJ March 2011
bullet Four J's Jimmy Testa Tribute & Benefit Concert
bulletVic Donna Group Rehearsal at CUH Headquarters
bulletPam & Charlie's 5th Anniversary Celebration - Multi Parts
bullet2010 Philly Doo Wop Festival
bullet"Doll Face" Musical Comedy
bulletNJ Doo Wop & Street Corner Harmony Association
bulletNick @ Nite Open Mic Night
bulletLeins Wedding
bullet"Fun-Raiser" at South Philly String Band Club
bulletRichard Nader’s Summer Doowop Reunion XXI
bulletPhilly Doo Wop Diner Mural
bulletMaking Crossroads 2
bulletCornerstone CD Release Party
bulletVirginia Legends of Gospel Concert
bulletS. Philly Stringband Club Jan 13, 2010
bulletRemembering Ronnie I. Concert Nov 2009
bulletPGHA's Heavenly Harmony XII Concert
bulletS. Philly Stringband
bulletFilming a Documentary
on Acappella
bulletAcappella Group Soul'D
Out on
Oct 2009
bulletBattleship New Jersey Dance & Concert
bulletWVLT Cruisin' 92.1 Concert
bulletTymes' Norman & Peggy Burnett 2009 BBQ
bullet2009 Charleston Beach Music & Shag Festival
bulletAcappella Group Choice at Franklin Township Public Library
bullet American Bandstand Studio Fundraiser
bulletAcappella at the South Philly String Band Club Revisited
bulletFour Man Trio at At Dover NJ's Attilio's Tavern
bulletNicky Addeo at Asbury Park's Wonder Bar
bulletASAP's First Acappella Concert
bulletAcappella at the South Philly String Band Club
bulletVisiting Radio's Past & Present at WDVR-FM
bullet Chicago SoulTrip USA
bulletR&R Hall
of Fame
Interview with
Orioles' Deborah

bulletSilhouettes' John Wilson Visits CUH World Headquarters
bulletNJ Doowop Group Harmony Club, 2009.
bullet New Years Eve 2008 with Nicky Addeo & Nite Owls
bullet 2008 European Road Trip: Deep River Quartet & Golden Gate Quartet
bullet 2008 Black Swan Burlington Concert
bullet 2008 Charleston Beach Music & Shag Festival
bullet Mills Bros,
Ink Spots
Beach Haven

bulletPhilly Doo Wop
Festival 2008

bullet Philly Doo Wop
Festival 2006


    In Tribute

bullet Dick Rietveld, Deep River Quartet
bullet Robert Murphy, Neighbors Complaint
bullet Walter McNeil, Gospel Nobleaires
bullet Jewel Akens, 4 Dots
bulletVirgil Johnson, Velvets
bulletCleotha Staples, Staple Singers
bulletDarlene McCrae, Cookies, Raeletts
bulletGregory Carroll, Four Buddies, Orioles, Dappers, Ink Spots
bulletJerome Ramos, Velours
bulletMickey "Guitar" Baker
bulletEarl Speedo Carroll, Cadillacs
bulletMajor Harris, Delfonics, Nat Turner Rebellion, R&B Soloist
bulletBilly Scott, Prophets
bulletCleve Duncan, Penguins
bulletDeborah Chessler, Songwriter,Mentor to the Orioles
bulletWilla Ward, Ward Singers, Gay Charmers
bulletBobby Thomas, Vibranaires, Vibes, V-Eights, Orioles
bulletJohn Jones, Moments Pleasure, Norristones, Copians
bulletChester Brown. The Counts
bulletJimmy Ellis, Trammps, Cordells, Exceptions
bulletJimmy Castor
bulletJack Scandura
bullet Cadillacs' Bobby Phillips
bulletBobby Robinson
bulletRobins' Grady Chapman
bullet Blue Notes' Roosevelt Brodie
bullet Moonglows' Harvey Fuqua
bulletCrests' & Brooklyn Bridge's Johnny Maestro
bulletDelroys' Reggie Walker
bulletSolitaires' & Vocaleers' Herman Dunham
bulletValentines' & Del-Knights' Eddie Edgehill
bulletChris Bartley
bulletSilhouettes' John Wilson
bulletLes Paul
bullet Castelles' Billy Taylor

    1950's R&B &
    Doo Wop


The Academics 


The Avalons


The Avons


The Blue Notes (original)


Claude Robinson & Creations


The 5 Embers


The Juveniles/ Twilights/ Embers


The Silhouettes

    1960's Soul

bulletThe Ad-Libs
bullet Jackson Five (Pre-Motown & Other Rarities)

    Carolina Beach Music

bullet The Poor Souls

    Modern Era
    Doo Wop Groups

bullet40 Years of Group Harmony: Ray Block's Photos of Vintage, Ad-Libs, Reunion, Bon-Aires, East River Drive
bulletYounger Dayz

    Gospel Groups

Angelic Gospel

bulletClaude Jeter & the Swan Silvertones

    Early Black
    Vocal Groups
    1870 -1930


The American
Jubilee Singers



The Dinwiddie Quartet

   History of


The 60th Anniversary of the Vinyl 45 RPM Single

    Rare Record

bulletHico Label

   Holiday Harmony

bullet Vocalaries' White Christmas
bulletPenguins' A Christmas Prayer
bulletDominoes' Christmas In Heaven
bulletCameos' Merry Christmas
bulletDrifters' White Christmas
Lonely Christmas


bullet Philadelphia Area Doo Wop & Acappella Groups
bulletBermuda Vocal Groups


Unknown Vocal Groups

     Great LINKS




4th Annual Charleston Beach Music & Shag Festival
Charleston, SC, August 27-30, 2009

By Pamela Horner



On the last four days of August, 2009, the Beach Music & Shag Preservation Society of South Carolina presented their 4th Annual Charleston Beach Music & Shag Festival.  With our busy schedule, Charlie and I could only make it to one day of the Festival.  Fortunately for us, it was the day they celebrated the 50th Anniversary of one of America’s finest soul and beach music vocal groups, the Tams.  That day was also dedicated to the memory of Joe Pope, one of the founding members of the Tams.  In fact, the mayor of Charleston even sent over a proclamation officially making August 30th “Tams Day” in the city.

Arriving at Charleston’s Citadel Alumni House on Sunday afternoon, we were greeted with a shag dance workshop for those who wanted to learn (or sharpen their skills on) the official dance of the Carolinas.  Charlie and I haven’t quite mastered the shag yet but we still had fun swing dancing throughout the day.  The shag is a slower, structured variation of the jitterbug.  It originated in the late 1940’s by teenagers dancing to R&B music in Carolina beach clubs.  These days it seems that people shag to almost any tune that has 115 to 135 beats per minute.

The Citadel Alumni House

Festival Wristband

Dancing the Shag


Festival Producer, Harriett Grady-Thomas and part of her staff

The first group on stage was the Catalinas.  This group started in Charlotte, N.C., in 1957.  Initially they were singing beach flavored doo wop, but by 1975 their “Summertime’s Calling Me” had established them as beach music stars.  Over the years, there have been more than 60 performers in Catalinas.  There are currently seven men in the group and like most beach music groups they play instruments and sing.  The oldest member of the group, Gary Barkes, has been with the group since 1968.  The lead singer, Dale McCaskill, told us he’d only been with the group three years.  The Catalinas sing an extensive repertoire of beach music tunes including “Ms. Grace” (The Tymes), “My Girl” (Temptations), and their beach music standard “Summertime’s Calling Me.”  The group concluded their set with a song from their latest CD, “Love Be With You”.

The Catalinas' first record (1960)
In the early days, the Catalinas were heavily doo wop influenced.
(From the Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

The Catalinas' second record (1961)
A remake of the Gladiolas' "Hey Little Girl"
(From the Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

The Catalinas performing at the 2009 Charleston Beach Music Festival

The Catalinas

The Catalinas' 1975 Beach Music classic, "Summertimes' Calling Me"
(From the Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

Catalinas' current lead singer, Dale McCaskill with Charlie


The second group, The East Coast Party Band (ECPB), didn’t have to travel far, as they’re from Charleston.  The group officially started in 1991 but most of the members have performed in other groups prior to joining ECPB.  The group was large enough to accommodate a full horn and rhythm section, having nine members on stage.  ECPB performs a wide variety of material covering everything from songs by Spinners to Sam Cooke and Rod Steward.  Some of the songs I loved were “This Old Heart Of Mine” (Isley Brothers), “Old People” (Archie Bell), and Sam Cooke’s “What A Wonderful World” (and what a wonderful sax break in this song).  I enjoyed the harmony in “The Way You Do The Things You Do” (Temptations) and “Shining Star” (Manhattans).  Some of the beach music classics the group did were “Hold Back The Night” (Trammps) and the national anthem of beach music, “I Love Beach Music” (Embers).

The East Coast Party Band

East Coast Party Band

East Coast Party Band

East Coast Party Band Cup Insulator
(A new addition to the Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

Since we only could attend the final day of the Festival, we regretfully missed two of our favorite acts, the Fabulous Shades and Angel Rissoff.  We were happy to see our friend Dana Jones, who along with other members of the Fabulous Shades were in the audience on Sunday.

Charlie, Pam and Dana Jones from the Fabulous Shades

The third act at Sunday’s Beach Music and Shag Festival was the Swingin’ Medallions.  They have a long history that is outlined in their website [reached from our Links page].  The Swingin’ Medallions started in 1963 in Greenwood, South Carolina.  The group broke nationally in 1966 with their song “Double Shot (Of My Baby’s Love)”.  The song was originally pressed on the group’s own 4 Sale label and was then picked up for national distribution by the Smash label.  It sold a million copies.  Over the years the personnel has changed but the group now contains two sons of original member John McElrath.  We were fortunate to meet another original member, Joe Morris, who rejoined the Swingin’ Medallions for this special occasion.  The group took the stage wearing Swingin’ Medallion t-shirts and Madras pants.  What a powerful, energetic group this is, consisting of musician/vocalists.  We noted three saxophones, one trumpet, one guitar, drums, and keyboard. They demonstrated great choreography, dancing while playing instruments and singing.  We’ve seen other groups where the saxophonist plays while lying on his back.  The Swingin’ Medallions’ Shawn McElrath not only did that but continued playing while other group members hung him upside down by his knees.  We understand he holds the Guinness Book of Worlds Records for most notes played on a sax while upside down.

"Double Shot" on the Smash label (1966).
We've never had a copy on the original 4 Sale label.

Swingin' Medallions at the 2009 Charleston Beach Music Festival

Swingin' Medallions' Shawn McElrath

Some of the songs that the Swingin’ Medallions performed were the beach music standards “Hey Baby” and “Under The Boardwalk”.  They also did rock and soul classics like “Honky Tonk Women,” “Shotgun,” and “Celebration.”  One of the highlights of their performance was when Joe Morris joined them on stage to do their signature song “Double Shot (Of My Baby’s Love).”  We were greatly impressed with our first time seeing the Swingin” Medallions and hope to see them again.

Swingin' Medallions singing "Double Shot" with Joe Morris (third from the left)

Original Swingin' Medallion, Joe Morris (center)

Charlie, Swingin' Medallion's Joe Morris, Pam

[New!]Current Swingin' Medallions
(Photo courtesy of the Swingin' Medallions)

Popular North Myrtle Beach (SC) radio station "94.9, The SURF" was one of the Festival sponsors

Before the grand finale, Festival producer Harriett Grady-Thomas presented plaques to all the members of the Tams and their extended musical family to proclaim the group’s 50th anniversary.  Active member Charles Pope and his brother, the late Joseph Pope, founded the group in Atlanta, GA, in 1959.  Charles’ son, Little Redd joined the Tams in the 1970’s when he was seven years old and has been with them ever since.  Rounding out the group today are Robert Arnold, Reginald Preston and the newest Tam, Greg Gallashaw.  A proclamation from the Mayor of Charleston was read, declaring August 30th “Tams Day”.  Next, the stage was cleared leaving only the Tams' band, The Fourteen Karat Soul Band.  The Band played “Mustang Sally.”  This stellar band has been with the Tams for many years.

The Tam's first record, "Untie Me" (1962)
(From the Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

The Tam's biggest hit, "What Kind Of Fool" (1963)
(From the Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

The Tams at the North Myrtle Beach (SC) Holiday Inn, August 1981
Note pre-teenage Little Redd (third from left)
(Photo by Charlie Horner.  From Classic Urban Harmony Archives)


Little Redd (center) performing with the Tams in August, 1981
(Photo by Charlie Horner.  From Classic Urban Harmony Archives)

Tams' Charles Pope and son, Little Redd, receiving plaques from Harriett Grady-Thomas

Reading of the Mayor's "Tams Day" Proclamation

The 14 Karat Soul Band

The high energy Tams ran on stage to thunderous applause.  The Tams were impeccably dressed in white pants and vests with silver shirts and ties and their white signature tamoshanter berets.  We were expecting a fabulous show and were not disappointed.  Little Redd captured the crowd immediately with his rendition of “You’re Love Is Lifting Me Higher.”  Redd, the “fastest feet in the South,” was instantly off the stage and down the aisle into the crowd.  The Tams followed this with their biggest hit, “What Kind of Fool (Do You Think I Am)”.  Group founder Charles Pope led the next song, “Hey Girl Don’t Bother Me” with the rest of the group feverishly dancing up a storm while harmonizing background.  Many Tams’ favorites followed including, “Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy,” “I’ve Been Hurt,” and “Too Much Foolin’ Around.”

Charles Pope & the Tams performing at the 2009 Charleston Beach Music Festival

The Tams

Tams' Little Redd

The Tams

Tams' Little Redd

In an emotional moment, Little Redd embraced his father, Charles Pope, and said, “He made me what I am today.”  Charles took the mike and led on “Silly Little Girl (Come Back to Me)”.  Many other Tams songs followed.  As we’ve come to expect, Little Redd interacted frequently with the audience, making us all feel like we were part of the show.  It’s difficult to think of a harder working, more exciting act that has not lost any momentum in fifty years.  In traditional Tams’ fashion they ended the Festival with the Doobie Brothers’ “Long Train Running,” with four of the Tams dancing their way through the audience while Charles Pope finished the song on stage.

Tams' original member and founder, Charles Pope

Tams' Little Redd interacting with the audience

The Tams

Festival Producer Harriett Grady-Thomas and Tams' Little Redd

Charles Pope leading the Tams

This was our fourth time seeing the Tams perform in the past six years.  If you ever get the opportunity to see The Charles Pope Tams, don’t hesitate.  They are worth the trip from New Jersey.

Tams' Charles Pope

For more info on the Tams, Swingin' Medallions, East Coast Party Band, Catalinas, Fabulous Shades, Angel Rissoff and the
Beach Music & Shag Preservation Society of South Carolina visit their websites through our Links Page.  For info on Beach Music in general, visit the site of our friend Willie C's Beach Music Cafe from our Links Page.  To see our review and photos of last year's Festival click 2008 (3rd Annual) Charleston Beach Music and Shag Festival.

All photos property of Charlie & Pamela Horner
Copyright © Classic Urban Harmony LLC, 2009.  All Rights Reserved.