Sunday, October 28, 2012

RAY ALLEN TRIO aka THE GUM DROPS aka RAY ALLEN & THE UPBEATS


Ray “Allen” Albanese from the Fordham section of the Bronx, N.Y. started his musical career in 1952 with he help of his uncle Johnn Vaccari a professional guitar player.


Allen decided to form a music group and with Harold ”Stone” Firestone(Piano,Tenor),Frank Rey(Bass,Baritone) and myself(Piano,Lead Tenor) create the vocal-instrumental group THE RAY ALLEN TRIO.


During 1953 singing  in some of the best clubs in the Bronx and as have a big acceptacion from their audience decide a make a record and at the Delta Studios on the 46th St. in Manhattan recorded some demos of some old standards.


Allen took the demos around to the different labels that were in the N.Y.C. also played the songs to Henry Glover who was King’s East Coast representative them,he sent them to Cincinnati and finally the King label sign the group to a contract.

The group signed Crew Cut’s manager,George Brown and recorded in 1954 three pop records on King...

-Love My Love/Why Should I Love You (B Side originally by the black group the Harptones).

-Amapola/Love In Rhyme.

-I Miss You So/Money,Money,Money. (A Side originally by the black group The Orioles).

LISTEN...



Without sucess, Vinnie”Bell”Gambella joined as Tenor. In 1955 the label want the group to recorded the Otis Williams tune_Gumdrops. And suggested the new name of the group, THE GUM DROPS, this side was released with the B Side_Don’t Take It So Hard.

LISTEN...




Followed this same year by_I’ll Wait For One More Train/Don’t Take It So Hard.


In 1956 the group recorded...

-I’ll Follow You/I Wonder & Wonder.
-Chapel Of Hearts/Natural Born Lover.

And in 1957...

-Pigeon/Ba-Bee Da Boat Is Leaving.

The King’s recordings have an awful lot of airplay in the N.Y. area but failed in the national charts and King didn’t renew the contract.In this time Frank Rey left and joined Joe Micoletti, in 1958 with the help of an Allen’s friend who work on Decca Records signed with this label and recorded ...

-You’re The One/Gum Drop Shoes and Bells In Her Hair.

Downloat at:

https://app.box.com/s/3y4d2e65gf04nsmuihlc

https://app.box.com/s/2lge3nzgwyurb0c5g9wf

LISTEN...



This popish/rock recording have a big local airplay and the label mnoved the group to their subsidiary label, Coral Records where recorded three new singles...


-My Own True Love/On The Wings Of The Wing-1958 (A Side later a hit by The Duprees).
-I Spoke Toon Soon/Sie Tu-1959 (sides with words in italian).
-It Happens Everyday/They Wake Me-1959.

LISTEN...

 



Again without success during 1960 the group singing in clubs in the East Coast,Baltimore,Atlantic City,Indiana... but in the time of the Rock & Roll sound their pop style not obtaining the attention of new record labels.


In 1961 Vinnie left and the trio back to the name RAY ALLEN TRIO and recorded one single on the Joy label_Two Angels/See Africa First. Again in a pop style.


In late 1961 signed with Vinny Catalano doo wop label, Blast Records....


...where recorded the doo wop sides_Let Them Talk/Sweet Lorraine. Under the group name of RAY ALLEN & THE UPBEATS.



 To Listen or Download_Sweet Lorraine, please visit; http://www.box.net/shared/8ts3k9t6yh

LISTEN...

 

This recording have a big local acceptacion and Catalano recorded an album with the group Ray Allen & The Upbeats”Tribute To Six”.


In this album the group singing songs originally recorded by six artists,Buddy Holly,Eddie Cochran,Ritchie Valens,Big Bopper,Johnny Horton and Jesse Belvin.

-C'mon Everyboby / Peggy Sue / Sittin' In The Balcony / Earth Angel / Chantilly Lace / Battle Of New Orleans / La Bamba / Every Day / Running Bear / Donna / North To Alaska / Goodnight My Love.

LISTEN...



In 1962 another Catalano’s label, Sinclair released two sides of the album as a single_Peggy/La Bamba.

LISTEN...

 

In late 1962 Joe Micoletti left the trio, Ray with the help of Harold recorded as a solo artist for Mala or Roulette Records, in this last label he recorded some albums(many with italian songs).


In 1976-77 Ray and Harold with new drummer Mike Pretti singing again by a brief time as THE RAY ALLEN TRIO (see below picture).


Additional Note...

Ray Allen wrote many songs for his group and also wrote songs for other artists as_Pepino The Italian Mouse. For Lou Monte.

1 comment:

Dena Vitale said...

I would love to buy one of his Italian Albums