• The Cosmic Rays

    The Cosmic Rays

    The Cosmic Rays (Chicago, IL)


    Personnel :

    Calvin Barron (Lead)

    Matt Swif

    Lonnie Tolbert



    Discography :

    Singles :
    1960 - Bye Bye Swift / Somebody's In Love (Saturn 223)
    1960 - Dreaming  / Daddy's Gonna Tell You No Lie (Saturn 401/402)

    Unreleased rehearsals:
    1954 - Africa**
    1955 - Daddy’s Gonna Tell You No Lie*
    1955 - Dreaming**
    1955 - Somebody’s In Love*
    1955 - Summertime**
    1955 - There’s A Small Hotel**
    1955 - The Second Stop Is Jupiter*
    1958 - Black Sky & Blue Moon**
    1958 - Bye Bye**
    1958 - Come Rain or Come Shine**
    1958 - Honey**
    1958 - Honey (diff. vers.)**

    *home rehearsal
    **studio rehearsal


    Biography :

    El Saturn Records is a Record label formed in Chicago in 1957 by Alton Abraham and Sun Ra, along with Abraham’s brother Artis, who founded El Saturn Research in 1957, which would record and distribute albums by the Arkestra as well as the vocal and R&B groups rehearsed by Sun Ra during the late 1950s. Before they were the Cosmic Rays, Calvin Barron, Matt Swif, Lonnie Tolbert and ? were a nameless vocal quartet working outdoors in Chicago’s black neighborhoods during the mid-‘50s. It was on the beach at 63rd and Jackson Park that a man named Raymond Dancer first heard them, liked them and suggested that he manage them. Like Sun Ra, Dancer was a native of Birmingham, Alabama, and he’d seen Ra lead a big band in Birmingham in what must have been a return engagement at a masonic hall sometime in the very early ‘50s. Late in ’56 or early the following year, Dancer met Sun Ra at Budland, during one of his Arkestra appearances at the club. He told Ra about the group and it was Ra’s suggestion that he bring them by and informally audition them. Saturn Records released two singles by the group. Calvin Barron would later join the Moroccos.

    Songs :

    Daddy's Gonna Tell You No Lies               Somebody's In Love           

    Dreaming                                    Bye Bye Swift


    Unissued studio rehearsals:

         Summertime                        There's A Small Hotel       The Second Stop Is Jupiter

                 Honey                 Daddy's Gonna Tell You No Lie          Somebody's In Love

                Africa                          Black Sky & Blue Moon


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