Tales from the Atomic Age

The Twist: Ballard's Brainchild, Checker's Change of Fortune

Joey Dee made it two chart-topping "Twist" hits in a row, knocking the Checker single off the number one spot at the end of the month. Both acts stayed with the theme; Dee followed with "Hey, Let's Twist," while Checker gave in to his gyration diversion, releasing no less than seven "Twist" albums and hitting with seven singles celebrating the dance including "Slow Twistin'," which introduced Dee Dee Sharp, who would immediately start a new dance of her own... MORE ››

Top 100 Lists

Eddie Harris

Eddie Harris and his sax represent the jazz scene on the Top 100 Vee-Jay Hits 1954-1966! Check out the great songs and artists from the Chicago label ... MORE ››

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THE LETTERMEN

The Lettermen

Several college-focused vocal groups emerged in the latter half of the 1950s, taking a non-rock-and-roll position while catering to the same youthful music fans. Being an actual student was not a prerequisite, but performing at colleges and universities was a great way to build an audience; folk bands like The Kingston Trio and The Brothers Four did so regularly. More specific to the trendy academic image were The Four Freshmen and The Four Preps; live concert albums, often recorded at campus shows, were released by all these acts and others. The group that took this strategy the furthest was The Lettermen, who actually wore striped letterman sweaters (each sporting a large "L") on their first three Capitol albums, then exhibited a more dapper man-about-campus ... MORE ››



Vinyl Attack Sanford Clark

The Fool
by Sanford Clark

Although he was the son of a wildcat oil driller, Lee Hazlewood didn't make his fortune off dad's precarious line of work (the highly volatile wildcat business often involves drilling on potentially oilless land). Instead he forged a hit-and-miss career in music; the disc jockey-songwriter-producer-singer had a great deal of success with "twangy" guitar man ... MORE ››