The Rivingtons: Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow - Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow The Bird (7inch, 45rpm, BC)
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The Bird's The Word
A lot of years of recording for a lot of labels under a lot of names finally paid off in 1962 when The Rivingtons crashed the airwaves with their explosive Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow (it's on our previous disc) for Liberty Records. Lead Carl White, tenor John 'Sonny' Harris, baritone Al Frazier, and bass Turner 'Rocky' Wilson, Jr. had paid their dues on the Los Angeles circuit many times over. Frazier was an original member of The Lamplighters, while Wilson came into the group last, around 1960.
The Rivingtons' Liberty encore Kickapoo Joy Juice stiffed, as did the flamboyantly frenetic sequel Mama-Oom-Mow Mow (The Bird) at the end of 1962. The Rivingtons seemed to do best with their own material, rebounding in early '63 with another hauler along the same lines as Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow. The Bird's The Word, in the same frenzied mode as its predecessor, flew to #27 R&B and #52 pop that summer. Its reach extended to Minneapolis/St. Paul, where a garage outfit, The Trashmen, fused Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow and The Bird's The Word together to hatch the volcanic Surfin' Bird, a #4 pop blockbuster in early '64.
The Rivingtons kept their feet in perpetual motion on a two-part The Shaky Bird and The Weejee Walk, their last Liberty outing in early '64. The company also put together a long-player on the quartet, 'Doin' The Bird,' complete with instructional photos of the quartet demonstrating the dance on the rear cover. Subsequent 45s on Reprise, Vee-Jay, Columbia, and RCA Victor brought The Rivingtons to the end of the decade. White died of acute tonsillitis on January 7, 1980 in L.A.; Frazier passed away on November 13, 2005.
Various - Street Corner Symphonies Vol.15, 1963 The Complete Story Of Doo Wop
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