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The Demise Of Doo Wop

The Drifters.
The Drifters.

This week on Cyprus Avenue, host Bill Shapiro turns back the clock for a taste of Doo Wop, featuring The Drifters, Dion, the Beach Boys & more.

Legend has it that Doo Wop music got its famous nonsense-name from a 1954 record for a song called "Never," by a Los Angeles-based group called Carlyle Dundee & The Dundees.

In 1955, The Turbans' Top 40 song, "When You Dance," featured the group chanting "doo-wop" several times.

The style, known for its vocal harmonies, simple beats and sometimes "nonsense" lyrics, gained even wider-spread mainstream recognition in 1960 with the release of Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters' 1953 recording of "Let the Boogie Woogie Roll." The recording featured the group repeating "doo-wop" throughout the song behind Clyde's lead vocals.

Below: The Dundees' "Never." Listen for the "Doo Wop!"

The Turbans' "When You Dance:"

Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters' "Let the Boogie Woogie Roll" - you can't miss the "Doo Wop!"

The Coasters' "Zing Went The Strings Of My Heart"

The Colts' "Sheik of Araby"

And the full playlist from this week's show:
The Drifters/There Goes My Baby
The Drifters/Fools Fall in Love
The Dominos/Have Mercy Baby
The Cadets/Stranded in the Jungle
Terry Allen & The Champs/Nite Owl
The Chantels/Maybe
The Colts/The Sheik of Araby
Dion/Donna the Primadonna
The El Dorados/Bim Bam Boom
The Clovers/Blue Velvet
The Coasters/Zing Went the Strings of My Heart
The Del Vikings/Cool Shake
Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters/Money Honey
The Beach Boys/Barbara Ann
Manhattan Transfer/Baby Come Back To Me
Kenny Vance/Looking for an Echo
The Bobs/You Really Got a Hold on Me

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