The Chimes

There may well have been hundreds of groups during the 1950s that used the name the Chimes. Only the quintet from Brooklyn -- Lenny Cocco (lead), Pat DePrisco (first tenor), Richard Mercado (second tenor), Joseph Croce (baritone), Pat McGuire (bass) -- ever made the charts, however, or became more than local stars. Lenny Cocco, the son of a Brooklyn accordion player, organized the group in the mid-'50s, and their first record was a vocal arrangement of the old Tommy Dorsey hit "Once in a While," which was issued on the Tag label. The quintet scored right out of the box as that record reached number 11, which led to a follow-up record, a recording of the 1930s standard "I'm in the Mood for Love." By 1962, they were cutting songs under the name Lenny & the Chimes. They left Tag Records in 1963, jumping first to Metro and then to Laurie, before releasing a single, "Two Times," on Vee Jay in 1964. The group broke up in 1964 amid the onslaught of the British Invasion and the collapse of Vee Jay, but they have re-formed, usually as Lenny & the Chimes, in various configurations for oldies shows since the early '70s. ~ Bruce Eder

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