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The Beltones

The Beltones were a product of the thriving Jamaica, Queens, doo wop community that also launched the Rivileers, the Deltairs, and the Five Sharps. According to Marv Goldberg's profile in the December 2000 issue of Discoveries, the quartet was founded in 1954 by lead Andrew Pope, first tenor Clayton "Dickie" Williams, baritone Herb Rooney, and bass Robert Brown -- the latter also moonlighted in rival vocal group the Love Larks, and when their career began taking off, Brown exited to join their ranks full-time. With new bass Alva Martin, the Beltones eventually signed to Hull Records, recording their debut single, "I Talk to My Echo," in the summer of 1956. For reasons unknown Hull did not issue the disc until the following spring, and when it predictably failed to generate much excitement, the label parted ways with the group. By that time, the Love Larks were no more, so Brown returned to the Beltones, prompting Martin's exit. Brown brought with him fellow Love Larks alum/second tenor Wilbur "Buzzy" Brown (no relation). Soon after, Rooney resigned, and with new baritone George "Buster" Cottman, the Beltones signed to the legendary Old Town label to cut a four-song session in the spring of 1958. While the group mulled a name change to the Symbols, Hull got wind of the session and threatened a breach of contract suit, effectively rendering any moves moot. Old Town shelved the tapes, and although the Beltones continued touring the Queens live circuit for more than a year, in 1960 Pope was called to military duty, and "Buzzy" Brown quit soon after. The remaining trio convinced Rooney to return, adding lead David Banks and changing their name to the Masters. This lineup recorded the 1961 End Records effort "A Man Is Not Supposed to Cry," followed a year later by "Crying My Heart Out," originally written by Pope for the Old Town session. In 1962 the Masters dissolved and Rooney joined their sister group, the Masterettes, which as the Exciters later recorded the classic smash "Tell Him." ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Fatty Fatty (1967-1970)

1. Fatty Fatty

2. Holly Holy

3. Phantom

4. Say What You're Saying

5. Please Stay

6. Foolish Fool

7. Mr. Midnight

8. Simple Simon

9. C.N. Express

10. Mademoiselle

11. No Good Girl

13. Auntie Lulu

14. Don't Look Back

15. My Lonely Days Alone

17. Old Man Say

18. Easy Snappin'

19. Soul Power

20. Bag A Boo

22. Here Comes The Night

23. Promises

24. I Don't Care

25. Rub It Down

26. Rathid

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

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