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Runaround
by The Regents, feat. Guy Villari, lead vocals
Guy Villari (1942 to 2017) was an American 'doo wop' singer, with 'The Regents'. Gaetano Villari was born on August 11th 1942 in the Bronx, New York, USA. He first worked with Sal Cuomo, Chuck Fassert and Ernie Maresca when they formed the 'doo wop' vocal group 'The Monterays' in about 1957. However, when Maresca left to pursue a solo career (he later wrote songs for others, and had a big hit himself with "Shout! Shout! (Knock Yourself Out)"), they were instead joined by Don Jacobucci and Tony Gravagna as replacements, changing their names to 'The Desires' in 1959. They recorded a number of 'demo' records in the 'Bell Sound', 'Associated' and 'Regent Sound' studios, and were eventually signed by 'Seville Records', though they did not receive any single releases. While with 'Seville', they most notably cut the Villari-written "A Teenager's Love", as well as a song called "Barbara-Ann". However, unable to convince their label to release anything, they promptly broke up. It was only when Jacobucci's brother Eddie and his group 'The Consorts' had a smash hit with "Barbara-Ann" that new rights-owner 'Cousins Records' decided to put out their version by 'The Regents' shortly afterwards. The original group then reunited, and 'Cousins' released "Barbara-Ann" in March 1961, after which it became a No. 1 record in the New York local charts. After distribution worldwide by 'Roulette/Gee', it reached No. 13 in the Billboard Hot 100, and their follow-up release ("Runaround", written by former member Maresca and featured here) got to No. 28 in that chart. After two more record releases ("Liar" and "Laura"), followed by a royalties dispute with the record label, the group broke up again. They reformed again in 1973, but with Villari the only remaining original member, and enjoyed much success in concert during tours across the United States. In 1988, they were selected as one of only four "oldies" groups to appear on the "Grammy Awards Show", with 'The Cadillacs', 'The Flamingos' and 'The Angels' being the others. In 1995, another incarnation of 'The Regents' was formed - this time, Tony Valitutto, Frank Civatillo and Tony Cacace joined Villari in re-creating the band's Sixties 'doo wop' sound. His high intensity performances lasted well into that decade, and he later hosted an online radio show called "Good Times Rock and Roll". Guy Villari died at the Orange Regional Medical Center in Middletown, New York, on September 21st 2017, aged 75. http://www.harris-fh.com/notices/GaetanoGuy-Villari
Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Regents_%28doo-wop_band%29 - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3644132/bio
Posted: 21st October 2017
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† REST IN PEACE †
Hundreds of very talented musicians pass away each year, some without much recognition at all. On "Rest In Peace", I aim to give them a fitting 'send-off', with a decent Tribute. I hope you will join me in marking their passing.....
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