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Museum Philadelphia
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bulletRe-MemberThen
at NJ Doo Wop Singers Club 2013

 
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2013 Asbury Angels Plaque Dedications
 
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at Manchester, NJ

 
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at New Providence Library

 
bulletJohn Moore's Middle Room Records Closes
 
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bulletNJ Doo Wop Singers Club Jan 2013
 
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bulletQuiet Storm at Somerset Run
 
bulletAsbury Angels 2012 Induction Ceremony
 
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Multi-Part
 
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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
 
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[New!]6th Annual Philly Doo Wop Festival
Philadelphia, PA, September 17, 2011

By Pamela Horner

(Our thanks to Matty G and John Bishop for use of some of their photos.
Where not stated, all other photos are from the Classic Urban harmony Archives.)

 


Each year Charlie and I look forward to the annual Philadelphia Doo Wop Festival at Penn’s Landing which benefits the Philadelphia Veterans’ Multi-Service & Educational Center.  The large outdoor festival is produced annually by Bill Diamond and his staff.  This year the weather was threatening but the many fans that turned out not deterred by the dark clouds.  As it was, rain was not a factor and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.
 

Pam & Charlie arriving early at Penn's Landing along the Delaware River
(Photo courtesy of John Bishop)


The crowd and the excitement started building.
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Almost show time


Pam & Charlie brought portable chairs and set up in front of the stage
(Photo courtesy of John Bishop)


Festival producer, Bill Diamond & Pam Horner


The crowd contained numerous doo wop, R&B and Gospel singers and radio personalities, past and present.


Beverly and Jimmy "Cannonball" Parsons greet Robert Hoffman
who traveled from Germany to attend the event.
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Local singing stars, Frank Lafaro and Smitty (from Quiet Storm) getting ready to perform
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Radio personalities Jimmy "Cannonball" Parsons and Jimmy DePre
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Neighbor's Complaint's L.A. Moore & Charlie Horner


Shelly Buchansky (of Vito & Salutations, 5 Discs, Silk City) and Pam Horner


Matty G & Jack Strong (formerly of the Contenders, now with One More Time)


Shelly Buchansky (Vito & Salutations) with Tony Gutierrez and John Bishop
(both of the acappella group, Still Around)
 

After the posting of the colors and the Star Spangled Banner, Frank Lafaro sang the quintessential song “Philadelphia" which he wrote and recorded.


Frank Lafaro


Frank Lafaro
 

The Men Of Jubilee, a Gospel group who were all veterans, sang next.  It was noted that they’d won the National Veterans Association Award.  Their harmony was impeccable and they spoke about the close relationship between doo wop and Gospel.  Men of Jubilee sang several soulful numbers including "People get Ready," "Jesus Met The Woman At The Well," and "I'm Grateful".


Men of Jubilee


Men of Jubilee
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Men of Jubilee
 

DJ Steve Kurtz introduced the first doo wop group, our friends Re-MemberThen.  They are a new acappella group who displayed tight harmony.  Re-MemberThen opened with "Tonight Could Be The Night," ending with a crowd pleasing “You Are” in honor of the Cadillacs’ lead, Earl Carroll.


Re-Member Then, (left to right): Randy Croce, Marty Geliebeter,
Frank Cicerale, Marty Rosen, Jim Offner


Sunshine Croce, Marian Cicerale and Helene Geliebeter cheering on their
husbands, all members of the acappella group, Re-MemberThen


Re-MemberThen


Re-MemberThen


Re-MemberThen's Frank Cicerale and Jim Offner
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Re-MemberThen


Frank Cicerale and Frank Lafaro


Frank Cicerale, Frank Lafaro and Still Around's John Bishop


Frank Lafaro, Marty Rosen, Frank Cicerale, Marian Cicerale, Pam Horner, John Bishop


Charlie Horner, Frank Cicerale, Frank Lafaro, John Bishop
 

After a short dance party with DJ’s King Arthur and Steve Kurtz, another group of our friends took the stage.  The Vic Donna Group harmonized to many of the songs from Vic’s long singing career, including acappella versions of the recordings he made with the Parakeets, "Teenage Rose" and "Love Was A Stranger To Me".  All together the Vic Donna Group sang nine fabulous vocal harmony songs, including some of our favorites, "Great Big Night For Love" and "Hurt".


Pam Horner and Vic Donna Group's bass singer, George Marchese


WRSU's "Big Beat Show" host Lou Rallo with Dom D'Elia of the Vic Donna Group


The Vic Donna Group waiting to perform


The Vic Donna Group, (Left to right): Vic Donna, Dom D'Elia,
George Marchese, Danny Pesci and John Mirabile


Charlie & Pam with the Vic Donna Group


Vic Donna Group, Re-MemberThen and Shelly Buchansky


The Vic Donna Group


The Vic Donna Group


Vic Donna


Shelly Buchansky greets WRSU's Lou Rallo and WMTR's Alan David Stein
 

Neighbor’s Complaint, a Philly doo wop group active for more than thirty years, sang next.  They are comprised of three Navy vets, led by the dynamic lead of Bob "Big Murph" Murphy.   Rounding out the group are L. A. Moore and Kenny Latrell.  Neighbor's Complaint was in fine form, singing a number of Little Anthony & the Imperials' songs like "Shimmy Shimmy Ko-Ko-Bop," ""On The Outside Looking In," and "Tears On My Pillow" (Murph and Little Anthony have similar voices).  The also performed "True Love (Drifters)," "I Don't Want To Cry (Chuck Jackson) and several other tune.  We especially loved their version of the Flamingos’ “I Was Such A Fool”.


Neighbor's Complaint


Neighbor's Complaint


Neighbor's Complaint lead, Bob Murphy


Neighbor's Complaint on stage


Neighbor's Complaint:  Ken Latrell, Bob Murphy & L. A. Moore


Neighbor's Complaint with Charlie & Pam
Charlie helped the group early in their career and is an honorary
non-singing member of Neighbor's Complaint


Neighbor's Complaint with Golden Voice Harry Schmitt,
a former member of the group.  Harry's current group Cornerstone
has performed at all six Philly Doo Wop Festivals.
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)
 

Riding up on a bicycle was Jerry Blavat, “The Geater With The Heater,” a Philadelphia legend.  The Geater stopped by the stage long enough to make a donation before making his way to a booth to autograph copies of his new autobiography, “You Only Rock Once”.


Festival producer, Bill Diamond, on stage explaining how donations at the
Festival benefit
the Philadelphia Veterans’ Multi-Service & Educational Center.


Philly radio, TV and music industry legend, Jerry Blavat


The Geater making a donation


Jerry Blavat & Charlie Horner


The Geater, Pam & Charlie


Gold Radio's George Frunzi, Jerry Blavat & Charlie Horner
George Frunzi's Echoes of the Past article on the Geater
is quoted in Jerry's autobiography, "You Only Rock Once"


Jerry Blavat & Sirius XM Radio's Cool Bobby B


Jerry Blavat & Matty G
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


King Arthur, Bill Diamond, Janet (Queen) Alvarez


Angelo & Delores Pompeo, Pam Horner


Vic Donna & Angelo Pompeo


Cornerstone's Harry Schmitt & Matty G
 

Crowd enjoying the Festival


DJ's Janet Alvarez, King Arthur & Steve Kurtz


WMTR's Alan David Stein on stage
 

A number of local singers combined to lead the audience in an emotional “This Land Is Your Land”.  There was a moment of silence for members of the Philly doo wop community who passed away during the past year.

DJ Jimmy Parsons, “The Cannonball,” introduced the very popular acappella group, Quiet Storm.  They began their set with the rhythmic “Don’t Leave Me Baby”.  Quiet Storm had the crowd in the palm of their hands as they entertained for twenty-five minutes with songs like "You're Mine" (Crickets), "Love, I'm So Glad I Found You" (Spinners), "Your Promise To Be Mine" (Drifters) and "Can I" (Manhattans).

Quiet Storm waiting to perform


Jimmy Cannonball Parsons introducing Quiet Storm


Quiet Storm


Quiet Storm


Eddie Natale (One of the hosts of the South Philly String Band Club),
Jack Strong and Matty G


Crowd at Penn's Landing.  Sailing ship in background.


Pam Horner & Cool Bobby B


Popular vocal group, 45 RPM, has been on the Philly music scene for several years and they performed for thirty minutes.  Their repertoire included “Have You Heard,” “Sh-Boom” and other crowd favorites.


45 RPM


45 RPM on stage


Sammy Strain (of the Chips, Fantastics, Little Anthony's Imperials & O'Jays),
Andre Verdin (of the Gospel Nobleaires), Charlie & Pam Horner


The Copians' Rich Giresi and Pam Horner


Returning to the Festival once again, Cornerstone, lead by Golden Voice Harry, sang a mixture of doo wop and soul music standards.  As usual, Harry’s strong voice was complimented by fine background vocal harmony.  Performing with a band, Cornerstone gave us outstanding renditions of "The Way You Look Tonight" (Jaguars), "When I Woke Up This Morning" (Bopchords), "Gonna Take A Miracle" (Royalettes) and more.


Cornerstone waiting to perform


Cornerstone


Cornerstone


Cornerstone's Golden Voice Harry


Charlie & Neighbor's Complaint's Big Murph
(Courtesy of Matty G)


Big Murph wearing the Neighbor's Complaint jacket


Strolling acappella group, Still Around, harmonizing
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


There were plenty of singers in the audience.
Here members of the Emeralds gather by the stage.
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Refreshment stand at the Festival
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


John Wisdo, three members of the Majors ("Wonderful Dream")
including original member Ronnie Gathers (third from right),
Pam & Charlie Horner


Steve Kurtz, the Majors, Sammy Strain, Tom Hight, John Wisdo


Tom Hight, the Majors, Steve Kurtz, Frank Chille, Sammy Strain
Pam & Charlie Horner


The Majors, John Wisdo, Steve Kurtz, Frank Chille, Donna Whitworth
Sammy Strain, Pam & Charlie Horner
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)


Pam with former Destinations' Al Muyzchka and Ray Murphy


Charlie & Pam swing dancing
(Photo courtesy of John Bishop)


Members of the audience line dancing by the stage


The headliners of the show were Herb Cox and the Cleftones.  The Cleftones have been singing doo wop for the past 56 years.  Their songbook paid tribute to artists that they’d worked with, along with their own hits like “Heart And Soul,” “You Baby You,” and “Little Girl Of Mine” and "Can't We Be Sweethearts".


Cleftones' Herb Cox arrives and is greeted by the Geater


The Cleftones


The Cleftones


The Cleftones


The Cleftones' Herb Cox
(Photo courtesy of Matty G)
 

It was nice too see so many old friends and make some new ones.  Doo Wop is definitely still alive in Philadelphia.

We've also posting photos of the After Party at the South Philly String Band Club.  To see those photos click After Party at South Philly String Band Club.

 

Copyright © Classic Urban Harmony LLC, 2011.  All Rights Reserved.