•  The Rockers (2) aka The Trojans (2)

    The Rockers (2) (St. Louis)
    aka  The Trojans (2)


    Personnel :

    Art Lassiter (Lead)

    Douglas Martin

    George Green

    Murrey Green

    Discography :

    The Trojans (2)
    1955 - As Long As I Have You / I Wanna Make Love To You (RPM 446)

    The Rockers (2)
    1956 - What Am I To Do / I’ll Die In Love With You (Federal 12267)
    1956 - Down In The Bottom / Why Don’t You Believe (Federal 12273)
    1957 - Tell Me Why / Count Every Star (Carter 3029)

    Biography :

    Lassiter was born in 1928 in North Carolina. His parents were cotton sharecroppers, and Lassiter began singing after joining his uncles' gospel group. At the age of 14, he moved to Newark, New Jersey to live with his mother who had moved there for work. While in Newark, Lassiter performed with the Jubilaires. Lassiter later joined the United States Army and served during the Korean War. After leaving active service, Lassiter returned to the United States. During a cross-country drive, he broke down in St. Louis. While there he sang at an amateur club night, and was given a permanent booking. He often sang covers of Ray Charles songs, and formed The Bel-Airs with brothers George and Murrey Green and Douglas Martin. By late 1955, the band renamed themselves The Trojans and recorded with RCA Records, backing Ike Turner's Kings of Rhythm. The group backed Turner again the following February, this time on Federal Records under the name of The Rockers.

    The Rockers (2) aka The Trojans (2)
    Ike Turner's Kings of Rhythm

    Turner offered Lassiter a place in his Rhythm Revue, where he subsequently met and worked with Tina Turner, Sam Cooke, and Albert Cook. In March 1960, Turner chose Lassiter to front the Kings of Rhythm. Lassiter's trio of backup singers — Robbie Montgomery, Frances Hodges, and Sandra Harding  were called The Artettes, and eventually formed the foundation of The Ikettes. Ike Turner wrote "A Fool in Love" specifically for Lassiter, but Lassiter failed to turn up to the song's recording session at the expensive Technosonic Studios in St Louis. Tina Turner—then going by the stage name Little Ann—knew the song from rehearsal sessions, and recorded a guide track to act as a demo. Lassiter's failure to appear for the session was around the time he had disagreements with Ike Turner over financial matters; he was soon no longer a member of the Rhythm Revue.

    Songs :

    The Trojans (2)

     As Long As I Have You                  I Wanna Make Love To You

    The Rockers (2)

    What Am I To Do                           Down In The Bottom

    Tell Me Why                         Count Every Star

    I’ll Die In Love With You                        Why Don’t You Believe

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