1961 The Halos – Nag

1961 The Halos – Nag

A group of doo-wop singers from the Bronx formed in the mid-fifties and included singers J.R. Bailey, Al Cleveland, Arthur Crier, and Harold Johnson. In 1956, J. R. left the group and joined The Cadillacs (who had just had a hit with Speedo) and Phil Johnson took his place.

Producer Morty Craft hired the group to sing background vocals on records he was producing and eventually produced a few tracks for the band itself as well. Group member Arthur Crier co-wrote their first single with Morty, but its release in early 1961 failed to chart.

Arthur wrote their second single, Nag, all by himself. They released the record later in 1961 using a different group name, The Halos. The doo-wop song peaked at #25 in 1961.

A few more singles came and went without attracting an audience. The group remained together as studio singers, and sang background vocals on quite a few other records, including a few hits in 1961:

Barry Mann’s biggest solo hitWho Put The Bomp, which reached #7 on the Hot 100 in 1961.

Pretty Little Angel Eyes by Curtis Lee. Phil Spector produced the single, which also reached  #7 in 1961.

Gene Pitney’s second charting singleEvery Breath I Take. Another single produced by Phil. This one stalled at #42 in 1961 and really should have been a bigger hit.

They went on to sing backup for many other artists, including Connie Francis, Tommy Hunt, Bobby Vinton, the Coasters, Brian Hyland, Johnny Nash, Dion, Little Eva, Shirley and Lee, and Johnny Mathis.


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