Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Royal Dukes on Bee

The Royal Dukes

Muiccio - Barbour
B&G Music

7990 ~ Najavo
J. Massey-R. Wilson
B&G Music

Bee 1118

 The Royal Dukes were all from the Reading area. The group consisted of Bill Bower on sax, Wilson Bohanok and Bill Yuhas on guitar, Stan Witinski on bass, and Dominic Muiccio on drums.

They backed Don Ellis (a.k.a. Harold Shultters) on his Bee recordings (1958-1961).  

X-Bat Records released in 2008 a double-CD, "Bee Records Story", containing four unreleased tracks by the Royal Dukes :  The Claw, Nameless, Little Pussy Cat   (feat. Sonny Muiccio) and Treble Guitar (feat. Wilson Bohanok)

"Little Pussy Cat" and "Treble Guitar" are probably from the "Fat Man Twist" session.  Sonny Muiccio (=Dominic Muiccio ?)  is also probably the vocalist on "Fat Man Twist".  The X-Bat booklet may have more information.

Grover Barbour, who founded Bee Records, had a gym on Court Street, Reading, Pa. and a stable of boxers in the late forties/early fifites.  In 1957.he owned dry cleaning business,  Society Cleaners, located at 664 Schuykill Avenue, Reading, Pennsylvania.  But Grover Barbour had always wanted to be in the music business.

One day, after a conversation with Russ Golding, a young aspiring song writer who had his cleaning done at Grover Barbour shop, he decided to finance B&G Music.    The publishing company  was formed on March 26, 1957, with Grover as president and Russ as general manager.   The whole venture started out with the idea of only being a music publisher. T   he plan was to market their songs to established record companies and artists.   To do this, it was necessary to record «demos» of their songs.   To this end, Grover and Russ assembled a group of teenagers who they called « Candy Heart and the Valentines ». This group rehearsed, but never recorded.    Russ recalls :  « Talent came to us by word of mouth » Society Cleaners became the beehive, serving as a mukti-purpose business office, reception area, rehearsal studio and occasionally a makeshift recording studio (not to mention a busy dry cleaning establishment.) ........


  1. this record is in on Ebay for sale right now !
    picture taken from Ebay

  2. Yes, right, here :