It is taking longer than expected to fetch the next song to play. The music should be playing soon. If you get tired of waiting, you can try reloading your browser.


Please check our Help page for information about troubleshooting Pandora on your browser.

Please ensure you are using the latest Flash Player.


If you are unable or do not wish to upgrade your Flash Player,
please try a different browser.


Please check our Help page for information about troubleshooting Pandora on your browser.
Your Pandora One subscription will expire shortly.
More Info
No Thanks
Your Pandora One trial will expire shortly.
Restore
Close
close
Your Pandora One trial subscription will expire shortly. Upgrade to continue unlimited, ad-free listening.
Upgrade Now
You've listened to hours of Pandora this month. Consider upgrading to Pandora One.
More Info
No Thanks
Close
Hi . Pandora is using Facebook to personalize your experience. Learn MoreNo Thanks
 Upgrade  sign up   |   help   |  
-0:00
0:00
Change Skin

Free personalized radio that
plays the music you love

Now Playing
Music Feed
My Profile
Create a Station
People who also like this

The Moroccos

The Moroccos came out of the Englewood community, on the south side of Chicago, the same region that produced both the El Dorados and Dukays. They scored a national hit and regional smash with their rendition of Harold Arlen's "Over the Rainbow." The core group -- Norman Bradford (lead), Prayer "George" Kemp (baritone), Fred Martin (bass), Melvin Morrow (tenor), and Lawrence Johnson (tenor) -- formed around 1952. Kemp, whose birth surname was actually Prayer (but who used his father's name George as his stage name), generally acted as the group's spokesperson and leader and met with Leo Allen about a recording contract with United Records. Shortly before this, however, Johnson dropped out, and Bradford -- who reportedly had to make himself scarce in the Chicago area for some unknown reason -- joined the Army. At the last minute, Kemp recruited Ralph Vernon as his replacement. (Years later Johnson would become a member of an obscure '70s group, the Majestic Arrows.)

The first session, in the fall of 1954, did not prove satisfactory. The group -- who were by then calling themselves the Four Chimes -- recorded "Easy Baby" and "When Was My Baby Born," the latter of which was a reworking of an old Negro religious folk song called "The Last Month of the Year." United decided to shelve the recordings and Allen and the group agreed that what they needed was -- not only a fifth member -- but also an additional lead.

The group recruited Sollie McElroy, formerly of the Flamingos (from nearby Douglas, a suburb of Chicago). McElroy had been the Flamingo's lead singer since 1952, but he was having problems in the group and wanted out. He was already in his twenties, while the remaining Four Chimes were still in their teens. Nevertheless, he fit in much better, and with McElroy as a member, the group went into session again in January 1955. One of the musicians in the studio had a set of maracas, which inspired the group to adopt the name, becoming the Moroccos. The first session yielded a dance tune, "Chicken," which became the Moroccos' first 45 release, which actually received some airplay, but failed to chart.

The next session, in May 1955, produced a McElroy-led version of the Harold Arlen tune "(Somewhere) Over the Rainbow." Released in October, this record was a double-sided hit in the Chicago area, but "Over the Rainbow" would land the group their first national attention. The Moroccos might have been able to exploit the single's popularity with live appearances; however -- after auditioning as "The Harlem Blackbirds" -- they had already signed a contract for an eight-week promotional tour of Australia with Larry Steele's Smart Affairs road show (the preeminent black entertainment organization presenting a variety of black acts in one package tour). Each member of the group made 150 dollars per week as a per diem on the Australian tour.

The Moroccos returned to Chicago in mid-February 1956 and high schooler Vernon (who was underage and unable to travel with them) rejoined the group for a Midwest tour, sharing bills along the way with the Coasters, the Flamingos, the Danderliers, and the Dells. They also backed Lilian Brooks on a session for King Records.

In late July, the Moroccos had one more lined up session with United, but shortly before the group was to go into the studio, Prayer Kemp joined the Marines. His replacement was Calvin Baron. The session ended up producing two releases for the Moroccos, including "What Is a Teenager's Prayer," later a hit for Joe Simon.

Unfortunately, United was incapable of promoting and pushing the Moroccos as the company was about to fold. The Moroccos did one more session, this one for Salem Records, but it too failed to attract an audience, and the group decided to split.

Vernon and Martin followed Kemp's lead and joined the Marines, while Morrow later joined the Army. Only McElroy and Baron immediately continued intermittently in the music business. In 1961, McElroy joined the Chaunteurs. Near the end of the 1950s, Calvin Baron joined the Cosmic Rays, a vocal group created and recorded by the avant-garde jazz artist Sun Ra.

In the late 1960s, Kemp and Morrow joined with the former El Dorados lead Pirkle Lee Moses to form the Major-Minors and put out an obscure record on the Scat label in Detroit. In 1970, when they recorded some tunes for Al Smith's Torrid label, Smith insisted on having their name changed to the recognizable El Dorados name. Shortly afterward the group broke up. Moses and Kemp were part of yet another El Dorados revival group during the '80s.

Around 1982, McElroy formed a new Moroccos group with original member Larry Johnson, Fred Martin, and former El Dorados member Richard Nickens. No recording career developed and infrequent gigs paid poorly, so when Fred Martin died in 1986, the group broke up. Johnson later joined a revived El Dorados group, but passed away in 1998. Morrow died in 1982, Kemp in 1992, and McElroy in 1995. ~ Bryan Thomas
full bio

Selected Discography

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

Report as inappropriate
Red Hot French Fries & Chili Mac - sounds like I'm listening to the Bossman Porky
Report as inappropriate
I took a vacation in South West Pa. but no red hot french fries and chili mac

Don't have a Pandora account? Sign up

We're sorry, but a browser plugin or firewall may be preventing Pandora from loading.

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please upgrade to a more current browser.

Please check our Help page for more information.

It looks like your browser does not support modern SSL/TLS. Please upgrade your browser.

If you need help, please email: pandora-support@pandora.com.

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please upgrade to a more current browser
or install a newer version of Flash (v.10 or later).

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please install Adobe Flash (v.10 or later).

[76, 114, 73, 93, 126, 124, 126, 71, 96, 75, 103, 113, 111, 84, 94, 114, 96, 65, 65, 110, 99, 80, 76, 68, 86, 107, 77, 90, 70, 74, 112, 92, 117, 123, 93, 106, 119, 105, 123, 116, 111, 123, 84, 124, 98, 66, 99, 114, 101, 79, 88, 77, 102, 112, 75, 90, 117, 113, 93, 97, 123, 75, 73, 88, 91, 88, 91, 106, 126, 67, 101, 115, 114, 92, 103, 74, 66, 100, 74, 85, 69, 119, 122, 83, 118, 101, 103, 65, 95, 104, 76, 67, 70, 68, 127, 64, 112, 79, 74, 81, 83, 89, 71, 68, 116, 113, 66, 82, 79, 88, 109, 90, 107, 95, 97, 113, 117, 71, 82, 125, 118, 99, 66, 109, 124, 67, 101, 80, 109, 95, 74, 87, 116, 112, 106, 72, 89, 77, 90, 100, 81, 89, 113, 101, 80, 101, 89, 67, 114, 101, 86, 124, 104, 68, 115, 123, 108, 84, 107, 77, 105, 103, 125, 90, 87, 125, 109, 72, 113, 106, 87, 121, 87, 81, 89, 101, 117, 68, 115, 119, 90, 108, 85, 93, 87, 65, 117, 96, 91, 114, 119, 120, 64, 114, 67, 119, 82, 98, 114, 103, 72, 80, 81, 88, 112, 87, 116, 64, 110, 117, 83, 114, 96, 93, 108, 105, 107, 83, 109, 115, 127, 113, 113, 91, 84, 77, 98, 96, 78, 74, 127, 66, 110, 109, 70, 112, 121, 112, 78, 98, 111, 99, 64, 76, 67, 113, 92, 85, 83, 101, 80, 124, 94, 65, 89, 74, 93, 70, 72, 104, 100, 120, 117, 66, 77, 69, 101, 67, 83, 117, 110, 90, 101, 91, 81, 76, 72, 71, 85, 124, 114, 95, 67, 101, 115, 96, 71, 124, 97, 117, 112, 83, 67, 65, 122, 93, 106, 70, 83, 71, 118, 123, 101, 89, 71, 86, 97, 123, 82, 68, 68, 89, 65, 124, 76, 113, 106, 99, 125, 92, 102, 109, 97, 92, 64, 118, 118, 67, 114, 125, 71, 85, 112, 106, 102, 122, 69, 122, 92, 122, 120, 124, 75, 67, 86, 123, 102, 81, 108, 120, 91, 112, 89, 122, 92, 117, 117, 118, 69, 127, 65, 109, 97, 85, 117, 75, 103, 116, 96, 120, 79, 99, 109, 76, 120, 109, 96, 76, 94, 66, 70, 119, 109, 121, 111, 127, 85, 68, 65, 120, 64, 67, 102, 69, 87, 111, 107, 75, 86, 79, 101, 95, 91, 123, 107, 127, 97, 83, 78, 108, 86, 75, 80, 112, 87, 106, 118, 108, 95, 96, 94, 111, 118, 102, 100, 126, 90, 124, 121, 117, 83, 127, 88, 74, 100, 109, 111, 94, 70, 66, 106, 117, 89, 126, 123, 69, 91, 82, 104, 76, 109, 126, 84, 116, 125, 81, 123, 76, 84, 72, 86, 90, 125, 79, 117, 75, 98, 74, 119, 83, 85, 64, 86, 88, 75, 95, 100, 67, 126, 102, 96, 110, 126, 103, 69, 71, 115, 89, 92, 67, 96, 125, 101, 124, 67, 105, 103, 101, 114, 97, 89, 117, 118, 84, 68, 84, 106, 74, 125, 70, 67, 121]