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The Five Sharps

The Five Sharps were a short-lived vocal group from the Jamaica housing projects in Queens, NY, and are best known today for their "Stormy Weather" (Jubilee), which is today considered one of the most collectible doo wop singles ever released.

In 1952, this young quintet -- led by first tenor Bobby Ward -- recorded an original "Sleepy Little Cowboy" and "Stormy Weather," a hit ten years earlier for Lena Horne. The Five Sharps' version was much slower in pace, crudely harmonized and recorded, and had cheap sound effects of clapping thunder. The recording session took most of the day and the quintet were paid in hot dogs and soda pop. Jubilee 5104 was the Five Sharps' only release and appeared in stores in 1953. Not long afterward, the Five Sharps broke up and a couple of the members joined the army. End of story.

Two of the Sharps, Clarence Bassett and lead singer Ronald Cuffey, later recorded in 1958 for Casino Records as the Videos and had a small hit with "Trickle Trickle." Bassett then joined Shep & the Limelights and sang background on the 1961 hit "Daddy's Home" (number two on the pop charts that May). In 1964, Jubilee hired another group of Five Sharps and recorded a new version of "Stormy Weather" (Jubilee 5458), but that version isn't as collectible as the first version, which has sold for nearly 4,000 dollars in auction due to its limited pressing.

Cuffey was diagnosed with leukemia and passed away in the early '60s. After leaving the Limelites, Bassett joined late-period incarnations of both the Drifters and the Flamingos, and later, formed the '70s band Creative Funk. The other Five Sharps -- pianist Tommy Duckett, Mickey Owens, and Bobby Ward -- left the music industry until 1975, when four of the surviving group members performed at the Academy of Music in New York. ~ Bryan Thomas
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Encyclopedia Of Doo Wop: Volume 5

Disc 1

2. They Say

3. Is There A Love For Me

5. Cruise To The Moon

6. Lamplight

7. Alphabet Of Love

8. Cry Like I Cried

9. Stormy Weather

10. Runaround

11. I'll Pray For You

12. Wedding Bells

17. Angel Face

18. Crazy For You

19. Ding Dong

20. There Goes My Girl

21. Heaven Above Me

23. Darling Can't You Tell

24. Rip Van Winkle

25. Let It Please Be You

Disc 2

1. Zoom

2. Little Girl Of Mine

3. Im Not A Know It All

4. Your Way

5. Rendezvous With You

6. I Cried My Heart Out

7. Sympathy

8. Too Young

9. Two People In The World

10. I Talk To My Echo

11. Goodbye To Love

12. I Found

13. Dont Ask Me To Be Lonely

14. Angel In Disguise

15. Shining Star

16. Everybodys Somebodys Fool

17. Natures Creation

19. Baby Baby

20. Ive Got To Have You Baby

21. Rubber Biscuit

24. Thats The Way It Goes

25. He's Gone

Disc 3

1. Gee

2. I Won't Be The Fool Anymore

3. Baby

4. Traveling Stranger

5. Sugar Sugar

6. Goodbye To Love

7. Our Love Will Never End

9. Dream

10. On Sunday Afternoon

11. Every Night

12. Woo Woo Train

13. You Are So Beautiful

15. That's My Desire

16. I Found Out Why

17. Be Sure My Love

18. Paper Castles

19. You Can Come If You Want To

21. You Baby You

23. China Doll

24. Don't Say Goodnight

25. Forever

Disc 4

1. A Thousand Miles Away

2. Little Boy Blue

3. String Around My Heart

4. The Shrine Of St. Cecelia

5. Beside My Love

6. I'm Not A Juvenile Delinquent

7. I Love You Darling

8. In My Lonely Room

9. Altar Of Love

10. Summertime

12. You Are

14. Share

15. I Love You So

18. Whisper (Softly)

19. Diamonds & Pearls

20. Snow White

22. Teenage Rock

24. Teenage Love

25. Your Last Chance

x

Track List: Vocal Groups: Classic Doo Wop

Disc 1

2. Sweet Georgia Brown

3. Sweet And Slow

4. Swing Is The Thing

5. My Walking Stick

6. I'd Rather Drink Muddy Water

7. If I Didn't Care

9. Whispering Grass

11. That's The Rhythm

12. I Like Pie, I Like Cake

13. Milk Shake Stand

15. The Blues Can Jump

17. Hoe Cake, Hominy And Sassafras Tea

19. Wig Blues

20. Write Me A Letter

21. Around About Midnite

22. Ever Lovin' Slick

23. It's Too Soon To Know

24. Five O'Clock Blues

25. Jumping Jack

26. Rival Blues

Disc 2

1. Too Much Of A Little Bit

2. What's The Matter With You

3. Lemon Squeezing Daddy

4. Please Don't Leave Me

5. My Baby's Gone

6. How Could You

7. One More Time

8. Will You Be Mine

9. Sixty Minute Man

10. Make Me Thrill Again

11. Mary Jo

12. Ting-A-Ling

13. Stormy Weather

14. Eyesight To The Blind

15. The Glory Of Love

17. Good Googa Mooga

18. Just Walking In The Rain

19. I Wasn't Thinkin', I Was Drinkin'

20. Money Honey

21. Gee

22. I Found Out

23. A Sunday Kind Of Love

24. Get With It

Disc 3

1. Be Bop Wino

2. Feel So Good

3. Goodnite, Sweetheart, Goodnite

5. Tell Me

6. Big Leg Mama

8. Is It A Dream

11. Hearts Of Stone

12. Baby Let Me Bang Your Box

13. The Stars Are Out Tonight

15. Gloria

16. Riot In Cell Block No.9

17. Oop Shoop

18. Grief By Day, Grief By Night

19. What Do You Do

20. Mary Lee

23. Buick '59

24. Earth Angel (Will You Be Mine)

25. Newly Wed

Disc 4

1. Smokey Joe's Cafe

2. You Didn't Learn It At Home

3. Witchcraft

4. Chop Chop Boom

5. Rollin' Stone

6. No No Cherry

7. My Angel

8. I'm Leavin' (Clickity Clack)

9. The Door Is Still Open

10. That's Your Mistake

11. Baby Let's Play House

12. Be Bop Baby

14. Hug A Little, Kiss A Little

15. I Need You So

16. When You Dance

17. At My Front Door

18. Lonely Nights

19. Red Hots And Chili Mac

20. Bye Bye

21. A Story Untold

22. Don't Play No Mambo

23. Peace And Contentment

24. Nobody Knows

26. The Great Pretender

Comments

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