Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Villagers on TVU

The Villagers
L-R Larry Carver, Tommy Henderson, Wayne Reed, Larry Williams, Melvin Sinclair, Curt Bradford, Jimmy Kirby, Jim Woods (sitting on ground) Ken Sparks, Kenny Royster

TVU 4016

18801 - Send Down All Your Loving
18802 - Tossin and Turnin

The 'Original' Villagers were an R&B (Beach) band hailing from Union and Whimire in upstate South Carolina between "1965 - 1969". The 8-9 member group enjoyed popularity with the college and high school crowds from Virginia to Florida and as far west as Arkansas. The 'Original' Villagers could often be found backing-up the popular R&B vocal groups touring the south in those days such as The Platters, The Showmen, The Radiants and others in "live” performances in the tri-state area. They were also a front band for the “Pieces of Eight” for a period of time after the “Pieces” rise in popularity with their recording “Lonely Drifter”. The Villagers performed in places like “The Red Rooster” in Panama City, Fla., the Pavilion at Myrtle Beach, and , of course, at fraternities and sororities in every major college and university in the southeast. The group recorded two 45-rpm records. The first was recorded and released in 1966 on the TVU label titled “Send Down All Your Lovin’, b/w Tossin and Turning, their version of the 1961 hit recorded by Bobby Lewis. The second release was an instrumental entitled Bye Bye J. J. b/w Love is the Word on the Emerald Label and recorded in Greenwood under the name “The Townsmen” in 1967. They briefly performed using that name before reclaiming their original name, The ‘Original’ Villagers a few months later. The groups’ final performance was in October, 1969 at a University of Alabama frat party. By that time, the draft and Viet Nam war had taken half of the band, and the remaining members decided to go their separate ways.
Ken Sparks Keyboards, The Original Villagers

Send Down All Your Loving

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