The Checkers

Very Best of the Checkers: White Cliffs of Dover

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The Checkers were a short-lived vocal group founded in 1952 and lasting until 1954. During these short two years, the group released 11 singles on King, and found some commercial success despite heavy turnover. White Cliffs of Dover collects these 22 Checkers' songs, represented by the A- and B- sides of their 11 releases. The title track is probably the quartet's best-known release, but other tracks -- "Without a Song" and "Don't Stop Dan" -- also sold fairly well. The latter song, interestingly, is a belated answer song to "Sixty Minute Man" (which had also been sung by Checkers' founder, Bill Brown) and is coupled with a fantastic version of "House With No Windows." There's also the odd coupling of "You've Been Fooling Around" with a vibrant take on "Over the Rainbow." Interestingly, the group's last single -- "Heaven Only Knows" and "Nine More Miles" -- wasn't released until 1958, four years after the group had busted up. Whether these recordings emanated from the original group and had been hidden away in the vault, or King hired a new group to record them remains a mystery. White Cliffs of Dover is a fine collection and will be warmly embraced by fans of '50s vocal music.

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