TIME TUNNEL FEATURED ARTIST – THE DELLS
The "Mighty, Mighty" Dells... The Dells were formed in Harvey, IL, in the 1950's. They originally started with Doo- Wop while most of the members attended Thornton Township High School, and they would practice under an overpass because, "it had good acoustics", according to Marvin Jr. The group eventually became well known for R&B.
Lead singer, Marvin Junior, had a versatile voice that often reached into tenor territory, and his voice remained strong through more than a two dozen albums and 57 years of performing.
The Dells' first hit, Oh What A Nite, was written by Marvin with band member Johnny Funches. The song was originally released in 1956, and re-released in 1965 as Oh What a Night. Then came, Stay In My Corner, which was originally released in 1965 and re-released in 1969. Both revised songs hit Number 1 on the Billboard R&B chart, and scored in the Top 10 on the pop chart.
The Dells were consultants, and inspiration for the movie, The Five Heartbeats. The movie was about a fictituous singing group, however, Robert Townsend spent time with the Dells while doing research for his movie, and the Dells recorded A Heart Is A House for Love, for the soundtrack which reached the Top 100.
The Dells were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004, and they have not performed since 2009.
They have had very few personnel changes, and they have had no angry break-ups.
Marvin held the note in "Stay In My Corner for 17 seconds"!!
Marvin Junior died at his home in Harvey, IL, on May 29, 2013 from kidney and heart problems. He was 77.
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