• Herb Johnson & The Premiers (7) (Baltimore, M.D.)


    Personnel :

    Herb Johnson

    Louis Jackson


    Discography :

    1962 - Help / Crying Blues (Palm 301)


    Biography :

    One-time upholsterer Venton "Buddy" Caldwell started his own V-Tone label in 1958 in Philadelphia. The same year, he started Len Records as a subsidiary. V-Tone lasted until 1962 and Len until 1960. The company was located at 2034 Ridge Avenue in Philadelphia. When he discontinued V-Tone in late 1962,  Caldwell then started the Palm label, and began with the exact same single. Herb Johnson was the most notable single artist who sang for Len/V-Tone/Palm. Herb recorded 'You Belong to Me,' also recorded by the Orioles. In 1953, he joined the Air Force and sang with a group called the Lyrics and also sang with the group the Ambassadors.


     Herb's first single for Len was "Guilty" "Have You Heard" released in the spring of 1960, According to Johnson, he was backed by The Cruisers from Washington, D.C. who handled vocal harmonies. "Help"  was recorded and released in 1963 on Caldwell's Palm label, the successor to Len & V-Tones. The String-filled instrumental backing is a concession to the changing early sixties market, but the strong r&b group backing "Help" and "Crying Blues", the flip side, is strictly fifties. Herb was backed up by an accomplished group from Baltimore featuring  Louis Jackson called the Premiers.


    Songs :

    Help                                                  Crying Blues


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