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The Chords (1950s)

By the end of 1978, it was evident that punk had spit its last, and new groups began springing up like weeds, all giving allegiance to the sounds of the past but dragging them through the ashes of punk. Among these bands were the Chords, a southeast London group formed in January 1979 when singer/guitarist Billy Hassett and his bassist cousin Martin Mason advertised for musicians in The NME and found guitarist and band songwriter Chris Pope. Original drummer Paul Halpin didn't stay long, at least behind his kit; eventually he became the group's tour manager. In his stead came Brett "Buddy" Halpin, and by March the Chords were taking the stage. They gigged continuously over the spring and summer, headlining two mod festivals at London hotspot the Marquee and recording their first Radio One session for DJ John Peel in early July. The Chords' reputation was rising quickly, and among their early supporters were Paul Weller, who caught one of their first shows, and Sham 69er Jimmy Pursey, who swiftly signed the group to his JP Productions company.

The quartet cut a handful of demos for Pursey before the relationship soured after he heckled the Undertones at a show which the Chords opened. This gave Polydor its chance, and the label now stepped in and signed the band. For their debut single, the Chords chose one of the songs recorded for Pursey, "Now It's Gone," recut it, and released it in September 1979. It rose to Number 63 in the U.K. chart, and they followed it up in January with "Maybe Tomorrow," which, bolstered by rave reviews in the press, shot up to the Top 40. A second Peel session was recorded in March, and the next month their third single, "Something's Missing," arrived. This taster for their debut album, So Far Away, didn't do quite as well as its predecessor, only reaching number 55. However, any worries that were harbored about the success of the full-length were put to rest with its arrival in May when the album slammed into the Top 30, bolstered by a U.K. tour.

The "The British Way of Life" single arrived in July and reached a measly number 55; "In My Street," released in October, did slightly better. However, the group continued touring successfully, until a show at London's Music Machine in November 1980. What transpired behind the scenes remains a mystery, but in the aftermath Hassett was relieved of his duties. In his stead came ex-Vibrators singer Kip Herring, although the old lineup was featured on the cover of their next single, "One More Minute," which arrived in May 1981. It was a flop, as was August's "Turn Away Again." The Chords called it a day the following month. However, the group was fondly remembered, and in 1986 a live set arrived, the cheekily titled No One's Listening Anymore, recorded back in 1980. A decade later, the two-CD compilation This Is What They Want gave fans precisely that, while the band's Peel sessions landed in shops the following year. ~ Jo-Ann Greene
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Vocal Groups: Classic Doo Wop

Disc 1
Disc 2
Disc 3
Disc 4

Comments

Report as inappropriate
cynthia_93
1) Kiss your left hand 10 times
2) Say your crush's name
3) Say your name
4) Post this on 15 other songs and your crush will ask you out in 2 days
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Jordon life could be a dream
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?Why do people say black and white that's kinda offensive
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It would be nice to have the lack of responsibili t i e s , the innocence, but the wisdom to handle what can. Summer nights and my friend and sister showed me some of my best knowledge (no we did not fool around).
Rest in Peace sis.
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Me likey!
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The chords wrote this song in 1954 which was passed onto the crew cuts who were white
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if time travel was real i would go back to the fifties and live the rest of my life there.
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I like this song!
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katybrown5
Cool!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
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I can remember the day, the place, everything about the first time I heard this great hit ShBoom. This was the song that turned me on to rock and roll.
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Nice song
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gyrlfrend
I like the version from Clue better, but I don't know who sings it.
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kjwheelock9
Beanie boos
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Life could be a dream! Love it!!!
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jkcallahan.j c
Opps
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CARS
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First doo wop song I loved
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I love cars
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daisygoddess n c
I herd this song in the Cars movie!!!
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jojoleanderw h i t e
I like you're songs
I'm hoping you can sing more
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robo312
The Chords r way better that crew cuts,the Chords version is cooler and well better way of lyrics!Go Chords!
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crew cuts had a better version, I feel. still a fun tune
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Love this song
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The best song ever
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Love it
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love it!!!!!!!!!! !
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I was 5 or 6 when this song came out A lady that ha d teenagers was babysitting Me while My parents worked. I love this version better than the crew-cuts version
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One of the first rock & roll songs I remember as a kid in the early 50s
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marvins39
maybe the first doo-wop song. they are from the bronx. still love hearing it
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marv58johnso n . m j
One of the greatest songs of the 50's,
Helped keep dreams alive!!!
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Makes me want to by a bomba one with rocket fins and cruise
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Luvvv thi song !!!!!!!! ;p
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kool song its awesome
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joseph44mill e r
Never got the recognition they deserve. (Shame) there music lives on MB/JA
Report as inappropriate
Sh- Boom right before Rock n Roll Chords much better than Crewcuts { just ask Dee Kelley if you don't believe me }
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Sh-boom I <3 this song...it's so different;)
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jgordon6245
What Doo Wop is about, 5 part harmony
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cars
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leilanilouis e
The crew cuts are good so are the chords!!!!!
Report as inappropriate
Crew cut version sucks, this the one and only!!!!
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cespos5804
What a difference from that stupid version by the Crewcuts
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justamy70068
Love it!!!
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Good song
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leilanilouis e
Love it!!!!!!!!!! ! ! !
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Love it!
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Follow for a follow
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love this song... when love songs were so straight forward, simple, and all about true love... classic.. I grew up listening to this stuff... great music to dance too .. roller skate tooo.. my kids love it.
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Love this song!!
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I love this song!
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I'm not old but im sure this song was during better times
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