The Soundtrack For The Baby Boomer Generation

Step back to a time when singers were as bright as the stars in the heavens
and the music they sang was really swingin'. Stacks of wax to fit every occasion!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Still Performing After All These Years

Artist: The Four Lads
Song: Oceans Of Love (b-side) (a-side is Giuggiola [Joo-Joo-Lah])
Label: Kapp K-412X (White Label Promotional Record - Not For Sale)
Number: K-5876
Songwriters: Carl Sigman
Time: 2:12
Released: 1961

The Four Lads formed in the late-1940's, and from what I can find on the internet, are still together to this day and performing live shows. That's 58 years they've been in the entertainment industry! The founding members were Corrado "Connie" Codarini, bass; John Bernard "Bernie" Toorish (born March 2nd, 1931), tenor; James F. "Jimmy" Arnold, (January 4th, 1932 - June 15th, 2004) lead; and Frank Busseri, baritone and group leader. They grew up together in Toronto, Ontario and were members of St. Michael's Choir School. This is where they learned to sing and worked hard at practicing their harmonies. By 1950, they began performing at local clubs and were noticed by scouts. Recruited to go to New York, the quartet were spotted by Mitch Miller, who immediately put them to work singing backup with some of the artists he produced. One such singer they backed was Johnny Ray and his big hit Cry, in 1951. This made them well known.
They released their first single, The Mocking Bird, in 1952. By 1953, they made their first gold record with Istanbul (Not Constantinople). This kept them busy throughout the 1950's and 1960's and was followed by such hits as Moments To Remember, No, Not Much, Standin' On The Corner and Who Needs You? Today's post comes just a few years after those hits.
The song Oceans Of Love, with Joe Sherman directing the orchestra, is a catchy little, guitar-driven ditty. As a guitarist myself, I can tell that this record features a guitar played on a Fender Twin Reverb amplifier, which is how it achieves it's particular sound. This guitar sound was later exemplified by such Surf-Rock groups as The Surfaris and The Ventures.
Codarini was replaced by Johnny D'Arc in 1962 and in the early 1970's, Toorish was replaced by Sid Edwards. Jimmy Arnolds died of lung cancer in Sacramento, California, aged 72. It is original member Frank Busseri who reconstituted the group and sings to nostalgia crowds to this day. But, this record is from when they were in their heyday, with all their original members. Download Oceans Of Love by The Four Lads and relive the wonderful times when you could hear those glorious vocal groups from the Fifties! Back when gasoline cost 20 cents a gallon and the music was priceless.

1 comment:

WillowRose said...

Ah..the wonderful Four Lads. In 1957, my first love and I danced to their song "No, Not Much" and it became "our" song. I remember buying the 45 in a record shop and telling another customer what a great song it was. He winced, then smirked and told me I didn't know music. I would love to see his face today, knowing this song, "No, Not Much" is now a classic.