Previous Vocal Group Record of the Week
#841 (6/20/15 - 7/3/15)

"Come Back To Me"/"Mambo Oongh"
by The Dappers
on Peacock 1651
released in 1955

[The above photo courtesy of Jean-Christophe Piazza.]

Above: The Dappers, who had one release on Peacock in 1955, consisted of George "Dapper" Cromwell (lead tenor), Roland Clements (tenor), Jimmy Shappel (bass), and Jimmy Williams (baritone, guitar). This is not the same group as The Dappers who had one release each on Groove and Rainbow in 1956.

[The above image courtesy of Jean-Christophe Piazza.]

(From The Billboard Dated 5/7/55)

(From The Billboard Dated 9/3/55)

(At Left) Don Robey, owner and president of Peacock and Duke Records, both located in Houstin, Texas (Duke originally formed in Memphis, Tennessee).


  • Sales Promotion - Dave Clark, Irving Marcus.
  • A&R - Bill Harvey, Johnny Otis, Don Robey, Joe Scott.
  • Subsidiary label - Duke.
  • Vocal groups included The Tempo Toppers, Peacocks, Clefs, Dappers, Scamps, Cherokees, Masters, Uniques, Downbeats, Spirit Of Memphis (gospel).


  • Sales Promotion - Dave Clark, Irving Marcus.
  • A&R - Gilbert Caple, Bill Harvey, Johnny Otis, Don Robey, Joe Scott.
  • Parent label - Peacock.
  • Vocal groups included The Mighty Dukes, Four Dukes, Peacocks, Sultans, El Torros, Choraletters, Capistranos, Southern Tones (gospel).
  • Duke's biggest hit-maker was Johnny Ace.
  • Bill Fitzgerald and David J. Mattis had owned Duke until Don Robey bought them out in 1953.

The Billboard, December 24, 1949: Peacock Disks Into Blues, Rhythm Field, CHICAGO, Dec. 17—Newest contender in the blues and rhythm disk field is Peacock Records, formed recently by Don D. Robey, Houston talent booker and promoter. The label, which sells for 79 cents a copy, is building a roster of talent, including Skippy Brooks and Gatemouth Brown. Distributors include Chord, Chicago; Major, New York; and Pan-American, Detroit.

The Billboard, August 2, 1952: Peacock Adds Duke to Fold, NEW YORK, July 26—Peacock Records has taken over the Memphis-based r&b diskery, Duke Records. The new Duke firm is headed by Don Robey and Irving Marcus of Peacock, and David Mattis of Tri-State Recording. Peacock will continue to issue wax under the Duke label as well as its own r&b and spiritual platters. Duke Records, tho a fairly recent addition to the r&b platter firms, has some well-known artists in its line-up, including Rosco Gordon and Johnny Ace. Peacock, who has been strong in the spiritual market for the past few years, has recently branched out into the r&b wax field.

EXTRA AUDIO (Windows Media Player):

Listen to "Aint That Good News" - The Tempo Toppers - Peacock 5-1616 - 1953.

The Tempo Toppers consisted of Billy Brooks, Barry Gilmore, Jimmy Swan, and Little Richard (Penniman), who is at the right in this picture. It was their only record.

Little Richard went on to gain fame recording for Specialty Records. Billy Brooks later recorded as a single artist for the Duke label, achieving some success with "Song Of The Dreamer" in 1955.

The Billboard, June 20, 1953....Peacock has signed the Tempo Toppers, a new vocal group, to a term pact. Little Richard sings the lead with the group....

Above: Label image of Peacock 1651 recorded in 1954 and released in May 1955. There were four other songs recorded in the same session. The artist listed in Peacock's master files for the session is "the Riveriras" [sic sb Rivieras]. The Dappers, with a new line-up including only George Cromwell from the original group, also had one record each on Epic (1960) and Foxie (1961).

George Cromwell is composer of both sides. Irving Marcus, Peacock's Sales Promotion, somehow was included on the front side as co-composer.

The Billboard Review (5/21/55):

Come Back To Me
(76) The lead pours out heart and soul, entreating his girl to return to him. A recited chorus near the end adds emotional weight and ought to provoke above-average response. A good commercial record that will do well if given enough exposure.
Mambo Oongh (72) A ballad woven expertly over a mambo rhythm pattern. The melody and close harmony of this material are appealing and will undoubtedly get its deserved share of radio play.

(NOTE: A ratings range of 70-79 was considered "good.")

Listen to this week's selections by The Dappers on Peacock 1651 from 1955:
[Audio restoration by Dave Saviet.]

     A. Stream RealAudio...
          1. Come Back To Me
          2. Mambo Oongh
          BOTH played in sequence

     B. Download RealAudio...
          1. Come Back To Me
          2. Mambo Oongh

     C. Stream/Download Media Player...
          1. Come Back To Me
          2. Mambo Oongh

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


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