The great Site “The History of Rock.Com”sums up the formation of the Del Vikings up until this first national hit as follows:
“The original group had served together in the US Air Force. In 1955, they were stationed in at the Air Force installation at the Pittsburgh airport in nearby Carapolis. Singing together in their spare time brought a desire to hear for themselves what they sounded like.
In October 1956, the group consisted of Norman Wright, lead tenor, Corinthian “Kripp” Johnson, first tenor, Don Jackson, second tenor, Clarence Quick, second bass; and Dave Larchey, baritone. During a rehearsal they recorded nine a capella songs in the basement of a local deejay and music entrepreneur, Barry Kaye. Listening to the tape they all agreed the sound was close, the style was coming around and all that was needed was a little more work.
Three months later the group was in a downtown Pittsburgh’s Sheraton Hotel in a makeshift studio set up by Fee-Bee records, a small local label owned by Joe Auerbach. They were backed by a pickup band of Air Force buddies. At the session they recorded “Baby, Let Me Know,” “Come Go With Me,” “True Love,” “When I Come Home,” “Don’t Be a Fool,” and “Watching the Moon.” Their first release, “True Love” b\w “Baby, Let Me Know”came in the fall of 1956. “True Love” was a typical rhythm and blues ballad.
“True Love” began receiving local airplay in early December prompting Auerbach to re-release it with a stronger B-side. During the second week of January 1957, the re-titled “How Can I Find True” was released with “Come Go With Me” on the flip side. In almost no time deejays flipped the record and discovered “Come Go With Me.” The popularity of “Come Go With Me” began to spread from Pittsburgh to Youngstown and then Cleveland.“
Composed by Clarence E. Quick, “Come Go With Me” charted #2 R&B and #4 Pop in 1957.
Watch as a re-formed Del Vikings configuration performs their classic on one of the recent PBS Do-Wop specials of this decade. They still “got it” half a century later!
Aren’t these PBS Specials the best? I so would like to see one of these “Oldies Shows” live, but it is close to impossible to get in unless you can afford to pay the steep $300.00 ticket prices. The upcoming performance for April 2009 is going to be in Baltimore (a short ride for me), but the tickets are just far too expensive for me. Guess I will just have to continue to contribute what I can to my local PBS station in hopes that they will continue to air this type of programming for us to see on video.
I am so very glad you dropped in.