• The Astors aka The Chips (3) (Menphis, Tenessee)

    Personnel :

    Curtis Johnson

    Elihue Stanback

    Sam "Byrnes" Jones

    Richard Harris

    Discography :

    The Chips (3)

    1961 - You Make Me Feel So Good / As You Can See (Satellite 105)

    The Astors

    1963 - What can it be / Just enough to hurt me (Stax 139)
    1965 - I found out / Candy (Stax 170)
    1965 - In The Twilight Zone / Mystery Woman (Stax 179)
    1967 - Daddy Didn't Tell Me / More Power To You (Stax 232)
    N/A - Candy (Live) (Stax) (Unreleased)
    N/A - Come Out Tonight (Stax) (Unreleased)
    N/A - A Woman Who Needs The Love of A Man (Stax) (Unreleased)
    N/A - Strut Miss Sally (Stax) (Unreleased)
    N/A - Uncle Willie Good Time  (Stax) (Unreleased)

    Biography :

    The Astors, Curtis Johnson, Eliehue Stanback, Sam (Byrnes) Jones, Richard Harris, grew up in The Orange Mound community in Memphis, Tennessee, while attending Melrose High School, along with Richard Griffin, a member of the original group called The Duntinos, and Harold Johnsn, Curtis' brother who joined the group when Richard Harris left the group for a while in 1967. The group was organized in 1958 by a neighborhood pianist, Herman "Red" Arnett who held auditions for a singing group at his home in the "Mound".

    "Red" brought Curtis, Eliehue, Richard, Sam, and Richard Griffin, together for months of work before calling them a "group". The group, The Duntinos, quickly made a name for themselves performing regularly at local Beale Street and area venues. "Red" taught the guys to perform, and they learned to entertain under the tutelage of Rufus "Walking The Dog" Thomas, while working the "Chittlin Circuit" with him and his band, The Bearcats.


    The Chips (3)

    After Curtis and Eliehue graduated, the Duntinos moved to Buffalo, New York with Curtis' ralatives, looking, for the "Bright Lights" of New York, but found that Buffalo was very cold, and a long way from "The Big Apple". After working a few jobs in Buffalo, the group return to Memphis to do some backup vocals for Carla and Rufus Thomas and other artist recording at a new studio, then called Satellite Records. In 1961 the group recorded their first release "You Make Me Feel So Good"(Curtis -lead), a song that Curtis wrote b/w  "As You Can See"(Eliehue-lead), written by Eliehue Stanback.

    The group's name was changed to The Chips for this release, named after producer, Chips Moman.  In 1961, Curtis joined the Air Force, but continued to record when on leave from the Military.  In 1963 the group's name was changed again to The Astors for the next release, written by guitarist, Larry Lee who played with Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock and later played with Al Green for years. That record was " What Can It Be" b/w "Just Enough To Hurt Me"(Curtis-lead).
    In 1965, Stax Records, formerly Satellite, released a song  on the group "Candy" that was recorded while Curtis was on leave.


    "Candy"(Curtis-lead), written by Booker T & MG's guitarist Steve Cropper and Isaac Hayes, was their biggest record.  The song b/w "I Found Out" , written by Eliehue, climbed to #12 on the Billboard Top 100 R&B charts, and #63 on the Top 100 Pop charts. As "Candy" moved up the charts, The Astors performed on shows at the Uptown Theater in Philly, the Howard Theater in D.C., The Regal Theater in Chicago, and The Apollo Theater in New York.  The other performers on these shows included The O'Jays, The Coasters, Curtis Mayfield and The Impressions, and Redd Foxx to name a few.  The Astors also spent 2 1/2 months performing on tour with The James Brown Review.


    Songs :

    What can it be                       Just enough to hurt me

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