Little Joey & The Flips (4)
Little Joey & The Flips (4) (Philadelphia)
Joseph Hall (Lead)
Fred Gerace (First Tenor)
James Mehagher (Second Tenor)
John Smith (Baritone)
Jeff Leonard (Bass)
Jimmy Dilks (Falsetto)
1962 - Bongo Stomp / Lost Love (Joy 262)
1962 - Bongo Gully / It Was Like Heaven (Joy 268)
1964 - The Beachcomber / Fool Fool Fool (Cameo 327)
1976 - The Mystery Of The Night / Hot Rod (Monogram 111)
This group began in 1959 in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, harmonizing in the familiar places that made groups sound great — hallways, restrooms, and so on. They started out as The Elads (first tenor Fred Gerace, second tenor James Mehagher, baritone John Smith, bass Jeff Leonard and falsetto Jimmy Dilks). Sy Kaplan, who later became their manager, overheard them harmonizing. He was joined by Barry Rich, another collector, and soon after had them record demo tapes. Kaplan felt that original lead Jimmy Dilks was not unique enough and was replaced at lead by diminutive (5 feet) black Joseph Hall.
Rich and Kaplan brought "Bongo Stomp" to Eddie Joy of Joy Records to see if he was satisfied with the Flips song. Joy Records was opened as a sideline in 1958 by Guy Mitchell's manager, Eddie Joy, and operated through to 1965 featuring such artists as Guy, The Five Blobs, James Gilreath, Jamie Horton and Senor Wences, the ventriloquist of The Ed Sullivan Show fame. Joy loved it and soon released it on his label.
When the tune began to take off, the Flips began touring up and down the East Coast. As the story usually goes, Joy and his organization, despite inquiries and litigation, paid the Flips or their management no royalties. Little Joey & The Flips fared no better as none among Bongo Gully b/w It Was Like Heaven on Joy 268 in 1962, The Beachcomber b/w Fool Fool Fool on Cameo 327 in 1964, and The Mystery Of The Night b/w Hot Rod on Monogram 111 in 1972 could get them back on the charts.
Fortunately, the success of "Bongo Stomp" provided work for the group, including commercials and so on, but personal problems prevailed and after their Cameo disc, they decided to call it quits.
(updated by Hans-Joachim)
Bongo Stomp Lost Love It Was Like Heaven
The Mystery Of The Night Hot Rod Bongo Gully
The Beachcomber / Fool, Fool, Fool
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