• Eddie Cooley & The Dimples (1) (New York)


    Personnel :

    Eddie Cooley (Lead)

    Beverly Coates

    Carolyn Coates

    Barbara Sanders


    Discography :

    1956 - Priscillia / Got A Little Woman (Royal Roost 621)
    1957 - A spark Met A Flame / Driftwood (Royal Roost 626)
    1957 - Hey You / Pull, Mon Pull (Royal Roost 628)
    1959 - Leona / Be My Steady (Clementine) (Triumph 609)
    1960 - Priscillia / A spark Met A Flame (Roulette 4272)

    N/A - Juicy Fruit
    N/A - The Wildest Time
    N/A - Betty Lou
    N/A - Let's Carve Our Names
    N/A - Harry And Carry
    N/A - Fever
    N/A - Lay it on


    Biography :

    Eddie Cooley was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and later relocated to New York. His lasting claim to fame is that he wrote the smash hit (and subsequent standard) 'Fever' that has been successfully recorded by many artists including Little Willie John, The McCoys, Terry Dene, Elvis Presley and, of course, Peggy Lee. The song was co-written with the legendary composer and singer Otis Blackwell who, for this piece, adopted the nom de plume of John Davenport. This happened to be the real name of Blackwell's stepfather.

    As Otis explained: "Eddie Cooley was a friend of mine from New York and he called me up and said "Man, I got an idea for a song called "Fever", but I can´t finish it. I had to write it under another name because, at that time, I was still under contract to Joe Davis." Eddie Cooley and Blackwell went on to write other songs for King Record artists such as The Lamplighters, The 5 Royales and Joe Tex. When Boyd Bennett of 'Seventeen' fame rejected the song 'Priscilla', a demo version was played to Teddy Reig, the A&R man for Royal Roost Records. The label was launched, initially as Roost Records, in 1950 in New York by Arthur & Bill Fadden along with Monty Kay and Ralph Watkins and was nominally owned by Jack Hooke, manager of Alan Freed.

    However, in August 1958, Roulette Records bought out the company. Reig liked the demo by Cooley and arranged for Eddie to re-cut 'Priscilla' as a master. This time, it was with a trio of girls who were under the collective name of The Dimples. Otis Blackwell recalled: Well, Eddie was not really a singer, understand, so what I did was I found three girls that were living in the projects over there, and I put them together.


    Cause at that time there was no girls backing up any singer, one particular singer. There were all girl groups, all boy groups, there were duets. But, there was no group where the lead was a male and the backup singers were girls. So that's how that got over. 'Priscilla' when released on Royal Roost 621 in mid-1956 became successful on the East Coast with the help of Alan Freed playing it on the radio and booking the outfit m on some of his shows. A reviewer in Billboard wrote : Here is yet another left-field hit.

    Eddie Cooley & The Dimples (1)

    Starting off with unusually good volume in Eastern cities like New York, Philadelphia, Boston and Baltimore, the disc has moved out now in almost every part of the country. Detroit and Pittsburgh are very keen on the disc, and it seems about ready to make a big surge to the national listings. On 24th November 1956, the song reached its highest chart position at # 20.

    Songs :

    Pull Man Pull                              Driftwood                      Hey You

    Fever                        The Wildest Time           Be My Steady (Clementine)

    Priscilla                                  A Spark Met A Flame              Leona

    Got A Little Woman               The Wildest Time




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