In the 1950s, Canadian vocal groups dominated the music charts, not only in Canada and the United States, but also in Europe. The Crew-Cuts, the Diamonds and the Four Lads — all from Toronto — had a total of 38 hits on the Billboard Top 40 charts. The music they made helped pave the path for rock and roll in North America.
The Crew-Cuts were the first to find success. Naming themselves after the popular haircut — one of the earliest examples of the link between hairstyle and popular music — the vocal quartet’s first hit single, “Crazy ’Bout You, Baby,” reached No. 8 in the U.S. in June 1954, followed by “Earth Angel,” which went to No. 3. Their best-known hit, a cover of the Chords’ hit “Sh-Boom,” was No. 1 for over two months in 1954 and stayed on the charts for 20 weeks. Their other Top 10 hits included “Ko Ko Mo (I Love You So)” and “Gum Drop.”
The group disbanded in 1964 and its members found new careers: John Perkins became an entertainment editor for a newspaper chain in Slidell, Louisiana. His brother Ray ran a printing business in California. Rudi Maugeri became Music Director for Radio Arts in California, and Pat Barrett began working in the auto industry in New Jersey.
The Crew-Cuts, The Four Lads and The Diamonds form in Toronto in the early 1950s.
Reach No. 3 with “Earth Angel.”
1 hit “Sh-boom” stays on the charts for 20 weeks.