•  Dante & The Evergreens (2) (Santa Monica, California)
    aka The Aktones


    Personnel :

    Donald "Dante" Drowty (Lead)

    Frank Rosenthal

    Bill Young

    Tony Moon (Guitar & Vocal)


    Discography :

    Tony Moon & The Aktones
    1959 - L-O-V-E / N-A-C-L (Pan World 514)

    Akim & The Aktones
    1959 - Fall In Love With Me / Voodoo Drums (with The Ravels) (Pan World 520)

    Will Wendel & The Aktones
    1960 - Lonely Blue Boy / Lover (Trans American 10 000)


    Dante & The Evergreens (2)

    1960 - Alley-Oop / The Right Time (Madison 130)

    1960 - Dream Land / Time Machine (Madison 135)
    1960 - Yeah, Baby / What Are You Doing New Year's Eve (Madison 143)

    1961 - Da Doo / Think Sweet Thoughts (Madison 154)

    Unreleased :
    1960 - Special kind of love (Madison)
    1960 - Starbright (Madison)
    1960 - We're Ready For Love (Madison)
    1960 - Lover Not A Fighter (Madison)
    1960 - I don't Mind Anymore (Madison)
    1960 - Love is a miracle Maker (Madison)

    1960 - Dante & The Evergreens (Madison LP 1002)
    Alley-Oop / Dream Lover / Let the Good Times Roll / Glory of Love / Da Doo / Hush A Bye / Time Machine / Venus / The Right Time / Blue Moon


    Dante & His Friends (3) (The Rivingtons)

    1961 - Are You Just My Friend / Something Happens (Imperial 5798)
    1962 - Miss America / Now I've Got You (Imperial 5827)
    1962 - Magic Ring / Am I The One (Imperial 5867)


    Biography :

    Dean Torrence (Jan & Dean) had discovered The Pastels, a trio composed by Don Drowty (Dante), Bill Young, and Frank Rosenthal while attending Santa Monica City College. Producer Kim Fowley asked Tony Moon to help the Pastels improve their harmonies. The group's sound was solidified with the addition of guitarist, arranger, and vocal coach Tony who became a fourth Pastel.

    TAt this time, The Pastels also working with Aki Aleong, who put out "L-O-V-E" b/w "N-A-C-L" credited to Tony Moon and the Aktones on his Pan World records. The Pastels backed Aki on  "Fall In Love With Me" again named the Aktones. Aki Aleong used the Pastels to provide backup vocal for Will Wendel on his Trans American label with "Lonely Blue Boy" and "Lover". A year later, Aki had a nice hit himself with 'Trade Winds, Trade Winds' (Reprise 20021).

    Dean Torrence introduced the Pastels to Herb Alpert and Lou Adler (Jan & Dean's management and production team). who asked if they would cover ‘Alley Oop’ for Madison. Agreeing to do so, they parted amicably with Aki Aleong and signed with Madison. There was another group of Pastels, known then for the hit "Been So Long",  so they changed their name to Dante and the Evergreens and rushed into the studio. Their 'Alley Oop' (Madison 130) was out in just two or three days!

    With Merv Griffin

    Gary Paxton had assembled a group which included Dallas Frazier and himself, which he called the Hollywood Argyles, and they had recorded the original version of Alley Oop.There was also a third recording by a similar group known as the Dyna-Sores. Frazier had been inspired by the comic strip of the same name about a caveman and his whereabouts. It was a novelty song and the versions by both Dante and the Evergreens and the Hollywood Argyles entered the charts on May 30, 1960.

    Both proved to be big hits. Both went to #1 on the Cash Box chart, Paxton's version made #1 on Billboard while Drowty's settled at #15 on that chart, and the Dyna-Sores charted with it, but fell short of the top forty. Dante and the Evergreens had a hit. The group was popular for a while, particularly on the East Coast, where their version of Alley Oop outsold the original version of the song which had been recorded by Paxton's group. Dante and the Evergreens was a white group that played at some of the venues that were popular with black music lovers, such as the Apollo Theatre in Harlem.


    They stayed together for several more years, recording and touring. They had another minor hit with Time Machine. Eventually the various members would pursue other interests, disbanding in 1964. Donald "Dante" Drowty (Lead) recorded six sides for Imperial as DANTE AND HIS FRIENDS, using The Rivingtons as the background group.. One tune recorded by the group, "Little Girl (You're My Miss America)," was covered by the Beach Boys on their 1962 Surfin' Safari album.

    Bill Young pursued a career as a solo act, and in acting. Frank Rosenthal returned to college and eventually became a successful Beverly Hills attorney. Tony Moon went on to a career as a record producer in Nashville. And Don "Dante" Drowty worked for many years as a songwriter and producer at Mellin Music Publishing Company, producing records by various artists such as the Isley Brothers and the McCoys.

    With Merv Griffin & Joannie Sommers

    Drowty in his later years has been active in numerous charitable events on the West Coast. He collects various donated items -- shoes, toys, clothing -- and distributes them to those in need. He has provided music lessons and other services to Native Americans. Drowty directs much of his charitable work through his Project Touch organization, and he has retained his friendship over the years with Alpert and Adler. Dante and the Evergreens are remembered by fans of 60's pop music for their huge hit from 1960 Alley Oop.


    Songs :

    Dante & The Evergreens (2)

    Alley-Oop                       The Right Time                  Dream Land

    Time Machine             Think Sweet Thoughts    What Are You Doing New Year's Eve

    Yeah, Baby                           Da Doo                         Hushabye

    Dream Lover                        Venus                          Blue Moon

    Special kind of love                 Starbright                  We're Ready For Love

    Lover Not A Fighter                Glory Of Love             Let The Good Times Roll


    Will Wendel & The Aktones

    Lonely Blue Boy                                     Lover           

    Tony Moon & The Aktones

    L-O-V-E                                                  N-A-C-L

    Akim & The Aktones

    Fall In Love With Me


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