Experience Legendary Doo Wop Artists for Free at the Philadelphia Doo Wop Festival at Penn’s Landing

Enjoy a Philadelphia-Favorite Genre While Supporting a Noble Cause

PHILADELPHIA, PA— In the mid 1950s, the Doo Wop music genre emerged from the streets of northeastern cities. All one needed was their voice to create beautiful music, and hundreds of groups were formed on street corners and front porches. Using tight harmonies and centering on themes about love and life, this music holds a special place in history. The 5th annual Philadelphia Doo Wop Festival returns to Penn’s Landing on Saturday, September 11, 2010 from 1:00-7:00 p.m. The Chantels headline a spectacular line-up of local and nationally-known Doo Wop artists on the new RiverStage, located on Columbus Boulevard at Chestnut Street. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear some of the greatest names in Doo Wop for FREE during this fabulous event produced by the Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service Education Center.

While entrance into the Philadelphia Doo Wop Festival is FREE, donations will be accepted for the Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service Education Center. This non-profit organization aims to provide employment, training, and related educational services to all facets of the community, especially Veterans, regardless of their station in life. In addition, they offer social and human services counseling and referrals to less fortunate clients experiencing barriers in finding their way back into the mainstream of society.

The Philadelphia Doo Wop Festival featured talent:
CORNERSTONE featuring the Golden Voice of Harry Schmitt
45 RPM

The Chantels got their start in New York in 1956. The original members, Arlene Smith, Renee Minus, Jacquelyn Landry, Sonia Goring and Lois Harris attended elementary school together in the Bronx, NY and were members of St. Anthony’s church choir. Their unique sound was rooted in the influences of both the church and the sounds of the street corner singers they heard in their neighborhood. The Chantels scored a national hit with their second release “Maybe” and were an overnight success, including appearances on nationwide tours with Alan Freed and on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand.

In 1959 after their record label folded, original lead singer Arlene Smith left to pursue a solo career. Three years later, The Chantels released their highest-charting hit “Look in My Eyes,” followed by another hit “Well I told You,” which was an answer to Ray Charles’ “Hit the Road Jack.” Recently, The Chantels have appeared on the PBS TV special “Doo Wop ’50,” as well as numerous appearances at marquee venues like the world famous Apollo Theater and Radio City Music Hall. The Chantels recently released a new CD “Eternally.”

Cornerstone is a group of five gentlemen with deep roots in the original Philly Doo Wop scene. Lead singer Harry Schmidt is a local Philadelphia legend nicknamed “The Golden Voice.” Some of their hits include “When I Woke Up This Morning,” “Gloria My Love,” and “Have You No Heart.”

Based in Philadelphia, Quiet Storm is a vocal harmony group specializing in Classic and Contemporary Rhythm and Blues and Soul. Founded in 2007, the group’s aim is to bring back music that speaks about love from the heart. Quiet Storm is Kamau “Smitty” Akibu, “Marti” Bentley, “Ramon” Bentley, Richard “Rich” Hildegard and Vincent “Vinnie” Tucker. Quiet Storm has performed in and around the Philadelphia area in festivals and on the radio.

Also from Philadelphia, Junior and the Four Seniors is Jimmy DePre, Bobby Buerklin, Joe Mehl (formerly of the 4 Graduates & Juke Box Serenade), John Paloney (formerly of the Intentions, the Ecstasies, Memory Lane and many other groups), and Dave Moore (formerly of the Ecstasies).

For more information on the festival and performers visit www.phillydoowopfestival.org.

Public Programming at Penn’s Landing would not be possible without the continued support of corporate partners such as PECO, Pennsylvania Lottery, Live Nation, the Philadelphia Coca-Cola Bottling Company and the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, all of whom are committed to serving the Greater Philadelphia community.

The 2010 Summer Program of Free Events at Penn’s Landing is funded and produced by the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation (DRWC). All events produced by DRWC are FREE to the public on the Great Plaza, the heart of Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia’s premier Delaware River waterfront entertainment destination. The DRWC is a nonprofit corporation created in January 2009, exclusively for the benefit of the City of Philadelphia and its citizens. The fundamental purpose of DRWC is to design, develop and manage the central Delaware River waterfront in Philadelphia. DRWC intends to transform the waterfront into a vibrant destination location for recreational, cultural, and commercial activities for the residents and visitors of Philadelphia.

For more information and event details, please call (215) 922-2FUN or visit http://www.delawareriverevents.com. This website is a virtual resource for the waterfront which can help visitors plan to easily park, play and stay all day at Penn’s Landing.

Laurie Heinerichs
Delaware River Waterfront Corp.
267.228.1990 (cell)

About DooWop Music
DooWop is a style of music. It is a derivative of rhythm & blues and jazz. It is known to have started on the east coast of the United States mainly in the urban areas of some of the larger cities. Kids would gather in schools, parks, and on back porches, but mostly in the inner city on the street corner. From Baltimore and D.C to Philadelphia and New York and on up to Boston hundreds and hundreds of groups were being formed. DooWop groups usually consisted of five members, a bass, baritone, two tenors, and naturally a lead singer. The songs were mostly about love, as a new generation was seeking its own identity breaking away from the established music of their parents.

The group harmony sounds of DooWop music exploded on the nation in the mid 1950’s, and continued until the English invasion of the 1960’s. Many groups and artists born right here in our fair city of Philadelphia came into prominence during this era. Some of our early travelers were, The Castelles, The Hideaways, The Angels, The Re-Vels, The Capris, The Bluenotes, and Teddy & The Twilites. Also The Orlons, Dovells, and The Tymes. We cant forget The Dreamlovers, Anthony & The Sophmores and Billy & The Essentials, and two of our most prominent groups of the era were The Silhouettes, and Danny & The Juniors both making major contributions.

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Published in: on May 14, 2010 at 10:17 AM  Leave a Comment  

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