Various Artists

25 Original Vocal Groups Sing About "The Great Ladies of Doo Wop"

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Doo wop groups spend most of their time singing about the wonders of one special girl (that is, when they are not lamenting the loss of one special girl), so Collectables Records' idea of compiling 25 doo wop songs named after 25 girls and sung by 25 different acts is a clever one. Beyond the unifying concept, however, 25 Original Vocal Groups Sing About "The Great Ladies of Doo Wop" is just a sampler that will please fans of the style without expanding its appeal. Of the 25 tracks, only one, the Charts' "Deserie," was ever anything like a countrywide hit, and only a few of the groups represented -- the Paragons, the Crests, the Three Friends -- ever had any national profile. (The Temptations heard here are not the ones who recorded for Motown.) The groups sing in familiar ways. For example, Little Bobby Rivera & the Hemlocks sound like Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers on "Cora Lee." The most excited of the singers is the leader of Jackie & the Starlites, who gets positively apoplectic over "Valerie." But all of these girls seem worthy of devotion, at least to the harmonious males who sing their praises here.

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