Johnnie and Joe Headlines Oldies But Goodies Doo Wop Cruise
They did it in a big way. "Over The Mountain Across The Sea" was a huge hit and when you hear Jonnie and Joe perform it today, you would think the clock turned back to 1957.
[USPRwire, Tue Mar 30 2010] Grant Williams CEO of Memory Lane Concert Cruises today announced the prestigious Johnnie and Joe will be among nine of the greatest Doo Wop recording groups from both the East and West Coasts that will be headliners on the Oldies But Goodies Doo Wop Cruise. These are the original recording groups that were popular in the 50's and 60’s that will be performing on this Doo Wop Cruise. “They did it in a big way.”Over The Mountain Across The Sea “was a huge hit and when you hear Jonnie and Joe perform it today, you would think the clock turned back to 1957.” said Williams
Johnnie and Joe were an American R&B vocal duo from the Bronx, best known for their 1957 hit "Over the Mountain, Across the Sea". The female half of this duo-Johnnie Richardson was the daughter of Zell Sanders a well-known entrepreneur in the early fifties among R & B record producers. She had a collaborative association with neighbor Rex Garvin, a pianist, writer, and arranger. They were both much involved with The Hearts the Baton label girl group that recorded some of the strongest sides ever made in the mid fifties. Rex had championed newcomer Joe Rivers as a vocal stylist, and tried out some new tunes.
As the story goes, Zell thought there was something missing in their music that her Daughter, Johnnie could provide. So a new rock and roll duo was born. Johnnie and Joe started recording for Zell Sanders small independent label J & S. The duo recorded "I'll Be Spinning" and "Feel Allright". The rhythmic ballad side "Spinning" was an immediate hit in New York and soon the excellence of this record began to spread across the country with increased radio play. Chess records in Chicago picked up the distribution from J & S. The tune was selling big time and this resulted in a cover version by The Cadets on the west coast. A second strong released ballad called "It Was There" on J & S, which followed after their first release, was picked up by Chess with the B-side "There Goes My Heart".
After two strong recordings, the duo was looking to go over-the-top. They did just that in a big way. "Over The Mountain (Across The Sea)" on J & S was the perfect vehicle to top the charts. A dramatic opening, standard R & B ballad form with great vocal performances and a spoken word fade-out makes for one of the true classics ever recorded during the nineteen fifties. The most interesting part of this record is that a trio performs it-if you listen, you will hear a second voice singing harmony with Joe Rivers while Johnnie sings wordless countermelody throughout the song. That third voice belongs to the previously mentioned and wonderfully talented Rex Garvin. The J & S original was quickly picked up by Chess once again, and it exploded all over the United States. Dick Clark got on the record on his nationally televised American Bandstand and it hit the pop charts and stayed there for an incredible four months. As happens often, the high point of the accomplishments by this duo could not be sustained. They came up with fine sounding songs, but the records just did not click with the listeners. "I Was So Lonely" and "If You Tell Me You're Mine" on Chess.
In early 1958 they first were on Gone Records with recording "Who Do You Love" and "Trust In Me." Followed by "Warm Soft and Lovely“- "False Love Has Got To Go" - "Why Did She Go" and "Why Oh Why" were all released on Chess. Johnnie and Joe ended that year recording "Across The Sea" and "I Adore You” that were an ABC-Paramount recording. However it did little to further the appeal of Johnnie & Joe. Also in the same year, they formed their own record label called Dice Records.
In the spring of 1959 on J&S they recorded "Red Sails In The Sunset" and "Where Did She Go?" Their biggest success in these years however, was a rerelease of "Over The Mountain" in 1960. Further releases for various labels went nowhere and the time of Johnnie & Joe was now over. The first three sides for J & S live on as a testament to the talent and excellence of this great duo. It is a shame that most of the public is aware only of "Over The Mountain".
After a brief association in the Jaynetts girl group in 1963, Richardson resumed her career with Rivers and the pair made records throughout the 60s. During the 70s and 80s, they performed in oldies concerts, and made a critically acclaimed album in 1982. They continued to record sporadically even into the late 80's on the Ambient Sound label which suddenly ended when Richardson died of complications from a stroke on October 25, 1988. Joe continues to perform today with his new partner; you would think the clock turned back to 1957.
On April 10th 2011, the Oldies But Goodies cruise will depart from Los Angeles, California aboard Carnival's new ship, the Splendor on a seven-day sailing to the Mexican Riviera. You will enjoy the most Romanic and exciting ports of Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas. Performers include the Arlene Smith’s Chantels, Johnnie and Joe, Six Teens, Pentagons, Olympics, Super Girls Group which features artists from the Hearts/Jaynetts, Exciters, Cookies, and Rainbows. Also appearing are the legendary Calvanes, Elgins and Vel Omarr’s Sam Cooke tribute.
Be a part of this history-making event, and join us in bringing back the greatest Doo Wop recording legends of the 50's-60’s. “There has not been an event this spectacular featuring these sensational Doo Wop artists since those memorable days we spent at the Brooklyn Fox Theater and El Monte Legion Stadium.” said Williams.
Memory Lane Concert Cruises is musical theme cruise operator that offers world-class concerts of performing artists in an array of music styles aboard luxury liners. http://www.mlccruises.com
Memory Lane Concert Cruises, LLC
Los Angeles, CA
541 879 6298