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The Four Freshmen


The 4 Freshmen were among the top vocal sets of the 1950s, and formed the bridge between ’40s ensembles just like the Mel-Tones and harmony-based rock and roll & roll rings like the Seaside Boys in addition to groupings like Spanky & Our Gang as well as the Manhattan Transfer. The group’s root base get back to the end from the 1940s along with a barbershop quartet-influenced clothing known as Hal’s Harmonizers, arranged on the Arthur Jordan Conservatory of Butler School in Indiana by two brothers, Ross and Don Barbour. Their repertoire devoted to standards such as for example “Moonglow” and “The Xmas Song,” plus they began to present an unusually free of charge, improvisational method of their harmony performing. Several membership adjustments brought Bob Flanigan, a cousin, in to the flip alongside Hal Kratzsch, and instantly the Four Freshmen had been assembled in every but name, which dropped into place just a little afterwards. The group battled for a long period, living hand-to-mouth while creating a repertoire along with a sound — lots of people who’ve noticed the group’s information or are aware of their sound are unaware that these were also totally self-contained instrumentally, each member playing several instrument and enabling the others to change off to different jobs. They found attention of varied jazz figures from the period, including Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, and Stan Kenton, and it had been Kenton who took issues into his very own hands, getting the group to the eye of Capitol Information, where in fact the bandleader acquired a longstanding romantic relationship. Thus began an extended and successful relationship using the label, originally under the assistance of arranger Pete Rugolo — gigs implemented within the Steve Allen Display (the other from the top-rated entertainment showcases on tv) along with Ray Anthony’s music group; they also were able to make an appearance within the MGM film Rich, Youthful and Fairly. Their first strike solitary was “From the Blue Globe,” released in 1952, plus they loved further achievement with “Feeling Indigo” (1954), “DAILY” (1955), and “Graduation Day time” (1956). They released their 1st LP, Voices in Contemporary, in 1955 (plus some dozen even more 12″ discs on the following five years); that record was as amazing a jazz record since it was a vocal pop work, showcasing the group associates’ playing in addition to their performing and showing these men acquired lots of complicated musical strings within their bow. It had been on these albums the fact that quartet also demonstrated itself to be always a very smart clothing, not only in musical conditions but logistically aswell. Rather than merely carrying out any 12 music that might have already been functioning well in its stage action, the group produced these produces into conceptual functions, either musically (constructed around the noises achieved by combos from the group’s audio and particular accompaniments, such as for example Four Freshmen and 5 Trombones, Four Freshmen and Five Guitars, etc.) or as thematic arrays of music (such as for example Voices in Like and Voices in Latin). This process to devising and creating albums (which paralleled the type of function that Frank Sinatra was carrying out concurrently on a single label) could have an impact on groups just like the Seaside Boys which was almost as essential as their tranquility audio; it’s also a significant reason why, in conjunction with their virtuosity, their albums possess organized so well across 40 years. Their audio and range had been helped by the actual fact that their benefactor, Kenton, was on a single label, which managed to get possible for these to record collectively on occasion. The majority of their past due-’50s albums had been good retailers — most have already been reissued many times on vinyl fabric and Compact disc — plus they experienced no lack of best bookings and best pay to maintain them entering the first ’60s. There have been membership changes on the way — Kratzsch remaining in the springtime of 1953, to become changed by Ken Errair who, subsequently, was been successful by Ken Albers in Apr of 1956, while Don Barbour remaining in 1960, changed by Expenses Comstock. That lineup lasted undamaged for pretty much 13 years, in to the 1970s, but by that point the group’s impact experienced faded to next to nothing. The Four Freshmen experienced were able to stay competitive with additional pop acts with the mid-’60s, and also got an extremely visible boost from your Seaside Boys, by means of Brian Wilson’s regular expressions of admiration for the quartet within his motivation behind piecing together the rock and roll & move group’s audio, but following arrival from the United kingdom Invasion, these were no more anywhere close to the leading edge of pop music. They continuing to record and perform, also assimilating such modern music as Jimmy Webb’s “By enough time I Reach Phoenix,” however they had been effectively relegated towards the “easy hearing” channels. Their agreement with Capitol finished in 1964, as well as the group’s last affiliation with a significant label is at the next half of the 10 years with Liberty Information, which yielded four LPs but no strikes. By 1977, Bob Flanigan was the last primary member, and he retired in 1992. Flanigan passed away of heart failing at his house in NEVADA, Nevada on, may 15, 2011 and cousin Ross Barbour, the final of the initial Four Freshmen, passed away of lung cancers in Simi Valley, California 90 days afterwards, on August 20, 2011. New lineups of the group (like the latter-day quartet of Brian Eichenberger, Curtis Calderon, Bob Ferreira, and Vince Johnson) possess continuing to perform in to the second 10 years from the 21st hundred years, however, and also have been regarded as an artistically valid ensemble. (In 2000 the Four Freshmen had been voted Vocal Band of the entire year by Down Defeat magazine’s visitors.) And in 2001, believe it or not a label than Mosaic Information — the business that issues full catalogs of jazz legends heading back towards the 1930s, in deluxe product packaging — released a multi-CD package from the Four Freshmen’s full 1950s recordings, happily (and also defiantly, provided the label’s catalog) proclaiming the quartet’s validity like a jazz clothing.

Quick Facts

Full Name The Four Freshmen
Music Songs Graduation Day, It's A Blue World, Poinciana, Their Hearts Were Full of Spring, The Day Isn't Long Enough, Surfer Girl, Early Autumn, There Will Never Be Another You, It Happened Once Before, Charmaine, The Last Time I Saw Paris, Whistle Me Some Blues, How Can I Tell Her, Love Turns Winter to Spring, It Never Occurred to Me, In This Whole Wide World, Polka Dots and Moonbeams, Lulu's Back in Town, And So It's Over, Teach Me Tonight, I Thought About You, You Stepped Out Of A Dream, It Could Happen To You, Now You Know, Give Me The Simple Life, Got a Date With an Angel, He Who Loves and Runs Away, Pick Up Your Tears, Mam'Selle, I Remember You, When My Sugar Walks Down the Street, Seems Like Old Times
Albums Four Freshmen and 5 Trombones, Voices in Love, The Four Freshmen and Five Guitars, Four Freshmen and Five Saxes, The Four Freshmen (Live), Voices in Fun, Love Lost, First Affair, Voices In Modern, Freshmen Favorites, Voices in Latin!, The Stars in Our Eyes, Two Classic Albums from The Four Freshmen, Freshmas!, Voices in Love / Love Lost, Four Freshmen and Friends, Blue World, Live in Holland, Live From Las Vegas, Live in the New Millennium, Still Fresh, Live At the Franklin Theatre, Road Shows, Peasant Tasting Christmas Dinner, Blue Haze, Four Freshmen and Five Saxes (feat. Dave Pell / Bud Shank) [Remastered 2017], Graduation Day, Live, Their Very Best, In Session, Four Freshmen and 5 Trombones (feat. Shelly Manne / Frank Rosolino) [Remastered 2017], Barbershop, Voices in Latin (Remastered 2017), The Freshmen Year (Remastered 2017), Love Songs, Snowfall, Fresh!, The Freshman Year, French Lick - Live, The Four Freshmen Day By Day, Graduation Day - Four Complete Albums, Voices And Brass, Freshmen Favorites Volume 2, The Four Freshmen & LIVE Trombones
Nominations Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals, Grammy Award for Best Performance by a Vocal Group

  • Facts
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1 Don Barbour died in a car crash in 1961. Hal Kratzsch died in 1970. Bobby Flanigan died in 2011.
2 They made over 50 albums and 70 singles, with six Grammy nominations.
3 Their biggest hits are "It's a Blue World", "Mood Indigo", "Day by Day", and "Graduation Day".
4 Vocal group formed at Butler University (Indianapolis, IN) in 1948 by Bobby Flanigan, Hal Kratzsch, Don Barbour, and Ross Barbour.



Love & Mercy 2014 performer: "Day by Day", "Bed Montage"
Brian Wilson: Songwriting 1961-1969 2010 Video documentary performer: "Charmaine", "It's a Blue World" - as The Four Freshman
Art That Shook the World 2002 TV Series documentary performer - 1 episode
Hollywood a Go Go 1965 TV Series performer - 1 episode
Mirth and Melody 1956 Short performer: "Crew Cut", "Feet Up"
Lucy Gallant 1955 performer: "How Can I Tell Her?" - as The Four Freshmen
Rich, Young and Pretty 1951 performer: "How D'Ya Like Your Eggs in the Morning" - as The Four Freshmen



Mirth and Melody 1956 Short The Four Freshmen
Rich, Young and Pretty 1951 Singing Quartette (as 'Four Freshmen' Quartette)
Dusty 1966 TV Series
Die alte Welle 1961 TV Movie Singer
Ontdek de ster 1961 TV Series Singers



Imagine 2012 TV Series documentary Themselves
Moments to Remember: My Music 2006 TV Movie documentary Themselves
Magic Moments: The Best of 50's Pop 2004 TV Movie documentary Themselves
Soundstage 1976 TV Series Themselves
The Mike Douglas Show 1966-1972 TV Series Themselves - Vocalists / Themselves
The Leslie Crowther Show 1971 TV Series Themselves
Della 1969 TV Series Themselves
The Joey Bishop Show 1968-1969 TV Series Themselves
The David Frost Show 1969 TV Series Themselves
Showtime 1968 TV Series Themselves
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson 1963-1968 TV Series Themselves - Guests
International Cabaret 1968 TV Series Themselves
Dee Time 1968 TV Series Themselves
The Merv Griffin Show 1965 TV Series Themselves
Hollywood a Go Go 1965 TV Series Themselves - Singers
New American Bandstand 1965 1965 TV Series Themselves - Musical Guests
That Regis Philbin Show 1964 TV Series Themselves
The Charlie Chester Music Hall 1962 TV Series Themselves
Thank Your Lucky Stars 1962 TV Series Themselves
Frances Langford Presents 1959 TV Series Themselves
The Julius LaRosa Show 1957 TV Series Themselves
The Ray Anthony Show 1956 TV Series Themselves
Music 55 1955 TV Series documentary Themselves
Screen Snapshots: Jimmy McHugh's Song Party 1951 Short Themselves

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

Classic Albums: The Beach Boys - Pet Sounds 2016 TV Movie documentary Themselves
Brian Wilson: Songwriting 1961-1969 2010 Video documentary Themselves
God Only Knows: Vocal Harmony - The Voice 2003 TV Movie documentary Themselves
Art That Shook the World 2002 TV Series documentary Themselves

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