Previous Vocal Group Record of the Week
#810 (3/29/14 - 4/11/14)

"Someday We'll Meet Again"/"I Want You To Be My Baby"
by The Royals
on Venus 103
released in 1954

Above: The Royals, who were from Detroit, went under several names during their recording career... The Serenaders, Musketeers, Muskateers, Royals, and Royal Jokers. The above is a 1954 picture of The Royal Jokers (L-R) Norman Thrasher (baritone), Ted Green (bass), Thearon Hill (tenor), and Noah Howell (baritone/tenor). The Royals on Venus, which was prior to this picture, had Isaac Reese singing bass in place of Green.

From The Billboard, November 1954: ....The Royals, the latest group by that name, and who have been recording for Venus Records, have changed their name to the Royal Jokers. The group is managed by Chuck Darwin. The latter also manages Carolyn Hayes, new blues singer out of Detroit, who is also signed to Venus Records....

From The Billboard, March 1955: ....The Royal Jokers, Detroit vocal group co-managed by Al (Flame Show Bar) Green and Chuck Darwin, have signed with the Gale Agency....

From Pittsburgh Courier, March 1956: ....Detroit's Royal Jokers soon to leave for England....

Click HERE for an article about The Serenaders/Royals/Royal Jokers by Marv Goldberg.
(Will open in a separate window)

Above: A 1955 picture of The Royal Jokers (L-R) Willie Jones (tenor), Norman Thrasher (baritone), Ted Green (bass), Thearon Hill (tenor), and Noah Howell (baritone/tenor).

At left is Thearon Hill singing lead on "Someday We'll Meet Again" with a "Royals" group, which included Willie Jones. This was at Ronnie I's Collectors Groups Concert on May 17, 1996 in New Jersey.

The Serenaders/Royals/Royal Jokers performed for 40 minutes, took a break, and then came back to sing another four songs, ending with "Someday We'll Meet Again." This was followed by a 20 minute question and answer session with the audience. Fortunately, I had a front row seat for all of it.

Windows Media Player: Listen to "Someday We'll Meet Again" by Thearon Hill and "The Royals" on May 17, 1996.

The Venus master of "Someday We'll Meet Again" was obtained by Dawn Records and re-released as by The Scooters (a name never used by The Royals). The Billboard gave the side a rating of 80 (excellent).

The Billboard Review (2/16/57):

Someday We'll Meet Again
(80) This boys' group has a high-voiced lead who really wails on this teary-eyed ballad. His voice has a cutting edge that can't fail to perk up listeners' ears. Material also impresses as commercially potent.

(The flip side, "Really," is not The Royals.)

(Clipping at left is from The Billboard dated 2/16/57)

Above: Label image of Venus 103 released in October 1954. It was the only record released using the group's "Royals" name. Thearon Hill sings lead on "Someday We'll Meet Again." Venus was a small Detroit label. Noah Howell and Maurice King are shown as composers on both sides. Maurice King and his Wolverines were a Detroit band that had releases on Columbia/Okeh in the early 1950's, including backing up Bea Baker (LaVern Baker) on some of them. King also operated a booking office in Detroit, the "Wolverine Theatrical Agency." Do not know if it's his band on Venus 103.

This is a vinyl 78-rpm record. The matrix number is shown upside down on both sides, and is the same on the 45-rpm record. The song title on the flip side is followed by " - Mambo."

The Billboard Review (11/6/54):

Someday We'll Meet Again
(76) Sincere vocal treatment of a plaintive weeper, with effective lead warbling. Good juke programming.
I Want You To Be My Baby (69) A comparatively mild mambo warbled pleasantly by the boys. However, flip is better showcase for group.

(Note that Billboard credited "The Royal Jokers," not "The Royals.")

(NOTE: Ratings had a range of 0-100 with 0-49 as "poor," 50-59 as "limited," 60-69 as "satisfactory," 70-79 as "good," 80-89 as "excellent," and 90-100 as "tops.")

Listen to this week's selections by The Royals on Venus 103 from 1954:
[Audio restoration by Dave Saviet.]

          1. Someday We'll Meet Again
          2. I Want You To Be My Baby
          BOTH played in sequence

     B. Download RealAudio...
          1. Someday We'll Meet Again
          2. I Want You To Be My Baby

     C. Stream/Download Media Player...
          1. Someday We'll Meet Again
          2. I Want You To Be My Baby

     [To download audio files, right-click on link and then select "Save (Link) Target As..."]


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