The Daylighters, from Chicago, Illinois, USA, were one of the most significant transitional groups that bridged the doo-wop and the soul eras. The group was formed in 1956 in Birmingham, Alabama, by schoolmates at Hooper City High School. In 1959 the group moved to Chicago and recorded ‘Mad House Jump’, which was basically a jump blues. The group’s first notable record was ‘Oh What A Way To Be Loved’ (1962), which combined a supper-club soul feel with haunting doo-wop harmonies; it featured Gerald Sims (lead), Charles Colbert, Eddie Thomas, Dorsey Wood and George Wood. The same line-up then recorded the group’s biggest local hit, the soul-styled ‘Cool Breeze’ (1962). Sims left to join producer Carl Davis at OKeh Records, and became an important session guitarist, arranger and producer. The group’s next two local sensations, ‘Bottomless Pit’ (1963) and ‘Oh Mom (Teach Me How To Uncle Willie)’ (1964), both featured Colbert as lead. By mid-1964 the group had reorganized, with Colbert and Thomas joined by Curtis Burrell, Ulysses McDonald and Tony Gideon, the latter of whom had been in the group from 1956-61. Gideon led on the group’s last notable local hit, ‘Whisper Of The Wind’ (1964). By early 1965 the Daylighters had broken up, and Colbert went on to play bass in American Breed.
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