The Platters Only You: The End of A Legacy

This is another event where great entertainers in the last twenty years have past on and left us with their legacy of doo-wop. Just like the others, the memory of Herb Reed will live on through the many expressions of his talent.

Herb Reed was the last member of the Platters, one of the most popular singing groups of our time. He was 83 years of age at his time of departure in life.  In the 1950’s the singing group, the Platters were formed. The Platters were extremely popular in the 50’s and 60’s and had many hit doo-wop songs, such as; SMOKE GETS IN YOUR EYES, TWILIGHT TIME, MY PRAYER AND THE ONE. Even though this is before my listening time, the one I remember most is, ONLY YOU.

What a lot of people listening and also a lot of today’s musicians don’t realize, is during this time of recording it wasn’t about a lot of overdub when they were recording, the band played live and together on each take of the song and directly on to the acetone without allowing a mistake.

It didn’t matter who was leading the song, because they all had quality voices and the background was always tight, whether it was doo-wop or sweet songbird oohs, it was of perfection.

The Platters had a very large range in their doo-wop style that influenced many groups such as The Four Tops, The Motown sound, Johnny Mathis, and many others of that time.  It is a smooth and sometimes up-tempo sound that consisted of three men and a woman. Most of the doo-wop songs had elaborate arrangements with a big smooth sound and sweetly sung vocals.  The musical doo-wop arrangement was unique and stylish.  With the big drums, the rest of the rhythm session was engulfed within and the strings on top with the horns playing off them and embellished by the flowing tinkling Harp arrangements.  But the prime giving of their selections were the vocal arrangements.

R.I. P Herb Reed and The Platters.

I pray your legacy continues to live on through the spread of your timeless music,