• The Five Wings (1) aka The Checkers (2)
    Three of the Five Wings (L to R)  Billy Carlisle, Richard Blandon & Tomy Gratte

    The Five Wings (1) (Harlem, New York)
    aka The Checkers (2)

    ref  The Dubs
    ref  The Scale-Tones
    ref  The Marvels (1)

    Personnel :

    Jackie Rue (Lead)

    Billy Carlisle (Second Tenor)

    Frank Edwards (Tenor)

    Melvin Flood (Baritone)

    Tommy Grate (Bass)


    Discography :

    The Five Wings (1)
    Singles :
    1955 - Johnny Has Gone / Johnny's Still Singing (King 4778)
    1955 - Rock-A-Locka / Teardrops Are Falling (King 4781)
    Unreleased :
    1955 - Middle Of The Night (King)

    Billy Nelson bb the Five Wings
    Singles :
    1955 - Walk Along / Pack-Shack And Stack Your Blues Away (Savoy 1183)
    Unreleased :
    1955 - Angel Time (Savoy)
    1955 - Hurry Up Honey (Savoy)
    1955 - My Gal (Savoy)

    The Checkers (2)
    1959 - Rock-A-Locka / Teardrops Are Falling (King 5199)


    Biography :

    Second tenor Billy Carlisle and bass singer Tommy Grate (brother of Dovers' lead Miriam Grate) were members of a local vocal group from Harlem called the Five Wings. Along with lead singer Jackie Rue (later of Jackie and the Starlites) tenor Frank Edwards (who replaced Bobby Johnson in the Dovers in 1959), and baritone Melvin Flood, the quintet had recorded two songs on the King Records label on February 2nd 1955; "Johnny Has Gone" and "Johnny's Still Singing", both tributes to the recently deceased recording artist Johnny Ace. On the 18th, they had their second King session, at which they recorded "Teardrops Are Falling" and "Rock-A-Locka." These were released in March. The Same sides were re-released in 1959 as by the "Checkers," on King 5199.

    The Five Wings (1) aka The Checkers (2)   The Five Wings (1) aka The Checkers (2)
       Frank Edwards                                                           Frank Edwards with The Dovers
    But when those sides, as well as the two first  failed to attract attention, Rue, Edwards, and Flood quit the outfit and Kenny "Butch" Hamilton was recruited to replace Edwards.  Richard Blandon, a cousin of Carlisle and a lead singer who had just been discharged from the U.S. Air Force, came to visit with Carlisle and ended up fronting the Five Wings. In November 1955, Hiram Johnson got the Wings one last session, backing up blues singer Billy Nelson. Although the label credits the 5 Wings, the only voices backing up Nelson were Carlisle, Grate, and Hamilton. Billy Carlisle, Tommy Grate and Richard Blandon joined the Dubs in 1957.


    Songs :

    The Five Wings (1)

           Johnny Has Gone / Johnny's Still Singing                      Rock-A-Locka                     

    Teardrops Are Falling

    Billy Nelson bb the Five Wings

    Walk Along / Pack-Shack And Stack Your Blues Away       Hurry Up Honey / My Gal            


    your comment

    Follow this section's article RSS flux
    Follow this section's comments RSS flux