Classic Urban Harmony Presentations

We offer a number of live multimedia presentations, all based on the history of Rhythm & Blues, Doo Wop, Soul, Spiritual and Gospel vocal group music. All presentations are 60 or 90 minute PowerPoint talks including music and video clips, rare photos of singers, records, sheet music and other memorabilia as well as stories of vocal groups, as told to us by the singers themselves. Many photos are unpublished and come from the singers themselves or were taken by us. Presentations include anecdotes direct from the singers.

Presentations also include table displays of rare doo wop group photos, sheet music, lobby cards or other memorabilia.

Our multimedia presentations are meant to educate as well as entertain. We help our audiences learn the stories behind the songs they grew up with as well as the singers who sang those songs.

We offer our presentations for a modest fee to libraries, museums, historical societies, active adult and retirement communities, senior centers, churches, colleges and corporate functions in New Jersey and Southeastern Pennsylvania. We are also available to talk at music conventions, educational forums and on themed cruise ships, worldwide.

To see an 11 minute excerpt from one of our presentations click the YouTube video here.

 

Here are the multimedia presentations we currently offer. Contact us for more information including our fees per talk.

(CUH-101) Under The Streetlamp: Tales from the Doo Wop Era – Part 1

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

In our first and most popular talk, music historians Charlie and Pamela Horner trace the growth of Doo Wop Music from its roots with the Mills Brothers and Ink Spots, Ravens and Orioles to the teenage sounds of Frankie Lymon and beyond. Learn the true stories behind groups like the Cadillacs, Moonglows, Penguins, Flamingos and Dubs. Hear about the Chantels, Crows, Five Satins and Dion & the Belmonts as well as some of the lesser known but still fascinating artists of the Golden Age of Vocal Groups. Recall the days when groups harmonized under streetlamps to tunes like “In The Still Of The Night,” “Gloria,” and “Earth Angel”.

Based on our forty years of research and hundreds of interviews with 1950’s singers. This presentation is assembled through their memories and personal stories as well as Classic Urban Harmony’s huge archive of records, photographs, sheet music and other memorabilia. Some memorabilia will be displayed during the talk.

(CUH-102) Under The Streetlamp: Tales from the Doo Wop Era – Part 2

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

Whether or not you attended Part 1, you’ll love Part 2!!! All NEW stories about the history of doo wop music from its roots through the Golden Age of the 1950’s. Learn the actual stories behind vocal groups like the Clovers, Chords, Platters, Heartbeats, Shep & Limelites and Lee Andrews & the Hearts. Hear about these as well as some of the lesser known but still fascinating artists like the Prisonaires. Follow Hank Ballard and the Midnighters through the series of Annie records. Recall again the days when groups harmonized on the corner to tunes like “A Thousand Miles away,” “Sh-Boom,” and “Long Lonely Nights”.

Doo wop music historians Charlie & Pam Horner continue their journey through the doo wop era with more tales from under the streetlamp. As usual there’ll be captivating stories, photos from the Classic Urban Harmony Archives of records, photographs, sheet music and memorabilia, and plenty of music clips for you to sing along to.

(CUH-103) Under The Streetlamp: Tales from the Doo Wop Era – Part 3

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

You don’t need to attend Parts 1 or 2 to enjoy Part 3. Even more stories about the history of doo wop music from its roots through the Golden Age of the 1950’s. Learn the actual stories behind vocal the groups the Del Vikings, the original Blue Notes, the Sensations, the Crests, Virgil Johnson & the Velvets, the Mello Kings and more. Recall one more time the days when groups harmonized on the corner.

Doo Wop music historians Charlie & Pam Horner conclude their journey through the doo wop era with more tales from under the streetlamp. As usual there’ll be captivating stories, photos from the Classic Urban Harmony Archives of records, photographs, sheet music and memorabilia, and plenty of music clips for you to sing along to.

(CUH-104) Doo Wop Groups of New Jersey – Part 1

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

The Garden State produced some of the finer groups of the 1950’s and early 1960’s but is rarely given credit. Join us to explore New Jersey’s history of harmony, as we examine the stories of the Coleman Brothers, Rivals, Rivieras, Duprees, Plurals, Del-Larks, Four Lovers (Four Seasons), Vibranaires, Ronnie & the Hi-Lites and many more.

(CUH-105) Doo Wop Groups of New Jersey – Part 2

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

A continuation of our acclaimed “Doo Wop Groups of New Jersey” series, Part 2 contains the stories of the Shirelles, Monotones, Kodaks, Fiestas, Ad Libs, Hi Fives, Fourteen Karat Soul and many more.

(CUH-106) Doo Wop Groups of New Jersey

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

A combination of CUH-104 and CUH-105, this presentation gives an overview of New Jersey Doo Wop groups while covering the major groups like the Monotones, Shirelles, Duprees, Rivieras and the roots of the Four Seasons. This is a great introductory talk for those exploring the music in the Garden State.

(CUH-107) Doo Wop Groups of Central New Jersey

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

While the vocal groups from central Jersey counties of Middlesex, Mercer, Somerset and Hunterdon never got the exposure that Northern New Jersey groups got, these counties did produce a wealth of great sounding doo wop groups. Hear about groups like the Cordials (Perth Amboy), the Brook Four (Bound Brook), the Golden Bells (New Brunswick), Contessas (New Brunswick), Off Keys (Princeton). Majestics (Trenton), Satan & the Angels (Trenton) and many more. We’ll also cover doo wop groups formed at McGuire Air Force Base like the Glowtones, Cor-Dons Vines and Logics. We wrap up the talk with a discussion on the Plainfield groups like the Plazas, Dynamics, Del Larks and George Clinton & the Parliaments.

(CUH-108) Doo Wop Groups and the New Jersey Shore

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

The resort cities of the New Jersey Shore have provided the perfect environment for R&B and doo wop vocal groups to thrive throughout the 1950’s and 1960’s. We explore the entertainment scenes of Wildwood, Atlantic City, Seaside Heights, Asbury Park and other shore towns in relationship to the vocal harmony group that sang there.

(CUH-109) Doo Wop Around the World

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

While r&b and doo wop harmony began in the United States, today it is sung and enjoyed all over the world. Pam & Charlie Horner have traveled throughout the world in search of such international vocal groups and have brought back their videos and recordings. In this presentation, we present doo wop harmony from Spain, France, Germany, England, Japan, Russia, Jamaica, Holland, South Africa, Czech Republic, China, Thailand and many more locations. As always, we present group photos, record labels, song clips, videos and great stories.

(CUH-110) West Side Harmony: Asbury Park’s Vocal Group Legacy

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

Long before Springsteen, Bon Jovi and Southside Johnny, Asbury Park NJ was producing great entertainers. Many came from across the tracks in the predominately African American section along Springwood Avenue. We’ll explore the musical heritage of West Side vocal groups, including such talented R&B vocalists as the Vibranaires, Ray Dots, V-Eights, Darchaes, Shondells, Broadways, Lenny Welch’s Markeys and many more.

(CUH-111) Spiritual to Soul: African American Musical Heritage in Monmouth County (NJ), 1880 – 1980

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

Originally developed as a companion talk to our huge exhibition, this presentation gives a unique perspective on black music in Asbury Park and the rest of Monmouth County from 1880 to 1980. It covers spirituals, gospel, jazz, rhythm & blues, doo wop and soul music. Learn about Asbury Park’s Springwood Avenue music scene as it influenced everyone from Count Basie and Duke Ellington to soul singers Ray Goodman & Brown and everything in between.

(CUH-112) Crossing Jordan: How African American Spirituals Changed the World

Presented by Charlie & Pamela Horner

In 1871, the Fisk University Jubilee Singers left Nashville on a series of tours to raise funds for their impoverished school. They battled prejudice and oppression, as well as the hardships of the road. Often with no rest or money, they faced hunger, exhaustion and serious illness. But through perseverance they sang their way into the hearts of a nation and the world. By the time they returned seven years later, they’d raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for their school. They’d toured the United States and much of Europe, singing for audiences of presidents and royalty, as well as the common people. This 90-minute multimedia presentation will cover the development and evolution of African American Spirituals from slavery times through the middle of the 20th Century, including a brief analysis of the importance of Spirituals during slavery, including their use in communication, secret meanings to the lyrics, etc. The presentation includes a history of the Fisk Jubilee Singers’ tours of the U.S. and Europe in the 1800’s and performances for President Grant, Mark Twain and Queen Victoria. It also covers notable Jubilee and Gospel groups from the 1800’s through the 1950’s like the Norfolk Jubilee singers, Golden Gate Quartet, Swan Silvertones and Soul Stirrers. Finally, the talk details the influence of Spirituals on our American musical heritage. It includes photos of Jubilee singers, their songbooks and memorabilia, and sound and video clips of spirituals.

Multimedia presentation locations and past clients: