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Hi-Lo's

Hi-Lo's

One of the most innovative jazz/pop vocal groups of all time, the pioneering Hi-Lo's influenced countless pop, R&B, and doo wop groups from the '50s right up to the present.

They formed in December 1953 when Gene Puerling of Milwaukee and friend Bob Strasen met Clark Burroughs and Bob Morse. The latter two were vocalists with the Encores, the vocal group for the Billy May Band. When Billy's band stopped traveling, the Hi-Lo's were born. Reportedly named because of their extreme vocal and physical ranges (Strasen and Morse were tall, Gene and Clark were short), the Hi-Lo's practiced at Clark and Gene's Los Angeles apartment, refining their revolutionary voicings. The group were themselves influenced by such artists as The Four Freshmen, The Modernaires, and Mel Torme's Mel-Tones.

With Clark on lead, Bob and Bob on tenors, and Gene on bass, the Hi-Lo's fractured the traditional definition of vocal group structure with a tonal blend rarely equaled by any quartet.

Discography

Displaying 1-10 of 10 items.


Hi-Lo's : A Musical Thrill

Review: A musical thrill indeed! Vocal jazz at its best with the arrangements of the genius himself Gene Puerling.

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7497c | 00 2 CDs | $22.95 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Listen to
Fools Rush In

Hi-Lo's : Listen To The Hi-Lo's!

Review: Here's the recording that started the career of quite possibly the best vocal jazz arranger ever and certainly one of our favorites. In April 1953 24-year-old Gene Puerling and his friend Bob Strasen met Clark Burroughs and Bob Morse within a week of moving to Los Angeles and together formed the Hi-Lo's. Taking their name from the incredible vocal range they covered between them it was also true that, while Puerling and Burroughs were five feet seven and five feet five respectively, Morse and Strasen topped six feet. Recorded for Starlite Records and released in 1954 "Listen to The Hi-Lo's" received rich praise from the critics and led to a series of titles on Starlight which included collaborations with Frank Comstock. Gene Puerling's genius in arranging complex yet pleasing vocal arrangements is apparent from the very first track on this historic recording which is here released for the first time on CD. This import has the original liner notes and the earliest photographs we have seen of the group and shows how young they were when they first found success. This is a collector's title that will gather no dust on your shelf, as you will be listening to it time and time again. Fabulous!

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7488c | 00 1 CD | $12.98 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Listen to
Besame Mucho

Hi-Lo's : This Time It's Love

Review: I really don't have to go into who the Hi-Lo's were, or how their sound defined jazz and pop singing from the 1950s on, do I? Good! This CD starts with an lp, originally released on Columbia Records in 1962, "This Time It's Love," of 12 (accompanied by an Orchestra conducted by Clare Fischer) love songs, and then goes on to add 14 bonus tracks, including 3 previously unreleased tracks--a generous helping of classic Hi-Lo's. The title tune, "More Than You Know," "The Second Time Around," "Besame Mucho," "Only Forever," "There's a Small Hotel"--these songs by the Hi-Lo's are listed in the dictionary under "romantic." Why? Because we can understand every word, and, dammit, we believe every word they're singing! The previously unreleased tracks are "The Ever-Changing Plains," "Nobody's Heart" and "Camelot." One song, the lovely "Star Carol" is a cappella. Tremendous value, great music!

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4520c | 00 1 CD | $15.98 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Hi-Lo's : Happen To Bossa Nova / Happen to Folk Songs

Review: Here, in their full glory, are the first two releases the group recorded on Reprise. This is classic stuff as these vocal masters explore two different musical genres with their usual sophistication and expertise. They use the most difficult form of voice pattern. Unlike many vocal groups, which keeps to intervals of thirds fifths and ninths, The Hi-Lo's apply intricate harmonies, moving tones, and suspended chord intervals using about every altered degree of the solmization scale in their arrangements. There are many gems including the practically a cappella "Black Is The Color of My True Love's Hair" featuring a rare solo exquisitely sung by Clark Burroughs and most of the vocal arrangements are by the man himself, Gene Puerling. The majority of these tracks have not been previously released on CD making this a great addition to all of their fans collection. Includes original LP art work and liner notes.

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4479c | 00 1 CD | $13.95 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Listen to
My Romance

Hi-Lo's : Love Nest / All Over The Place

Review: A new release from the Hi-Lo's is always a welcome occurrence but especially so on this disc which features two of their finest recordings; the 1959 "Love Nest" and the 1960 "All Over the Place". Accompanied by their long time collaborators The Frank Comstock Orchestra and with vocal arrangements from the incomparable Gene Puerling, this is some of the finest vocal jazz you could have the pleasure of hearing. This recording features many Hi-Lo's gems that have not been available on previously released compilations with such classics as "Fairyland", "Isle of Capri", "April in Fairbanks" and "Island of the West Indies" among others. The Hi-Lo's were at the height of their fame when they recorded these albums and were recent winners of reader's poll in both Downbeat and Playboy and were performing regularly around the country. These sophisticated, bright and swinging arrangements overjoyed both critics and public alike and we feel confident you, as vocal harmony fans, will be equally bowled over.

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4447c | 00 1 CD | $15.98 | Accompanied Men's Vintage CDs


Hi-Lo's : Now Hear This / Broadway Playbill

Review: We admit we're unabashed Hi-Lo's devotees, and the love fest continues with this latest re-issue, comprising 1957's "Now Hear This" and 1960's "Broadway Playbill." What's exceptional about this collection - aside from the performances themselves, of course - is that 18 of the 25 tracks aren't presently available anywhere else. For example, the Hi-lo's arrangements of "My Favorite Things" and "Climb Ev'ry Mountain," from the "Sound Of Music" had been only a memory until now! Yes, they're accompanied (with orchestrations by Frank Comstock and Warren Barker), but the vocals are so prominent that there's no doubt who's in charge here. The many moods of Gene Puerling's often-imitated style run the gamut from sheer joy ("Sunnyside Up") to the purest expression of longing ("There's No You'). The Hi-Lo's capture the essence of emotion that is music.

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4311c | 00 1 CD | $15.98 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Hi-Lo's : Clap Yo' Hands

Review: Comprising two of their records from the 1950's-1954's "I Presume" and 1958's "In Stereo"-"Clap Yo' Hands" captures the close harmony sound of the Hi-Lo's, who defined the vocal jazz of their era. The playground for the talents of the brilliant arranger Gene Puerling, who went on to form the Singers Unlimited, the Hi-Lo's toured with theJudy Garland show and sang with legends such as Frank Sinatra and Rosemary Clooney. These tracks are orchestrated (by Frank Comstock, who backed the group on many early recordings) and include wonderful standards such as "Summertime," "Long Ago and Far Away," "Surrey With The Fringe On Top" and "Nice Work If You Can Get It." This is a jubilant recording that is alive with the joy of music. We have it on good authority that "Clap Yo' Hands" includes some of the group's favorite songs.

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4213c | 00 1 CD | $11.95 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Listen to
Tenderly

Hi-Lo's : Suddenly It's The Hi-Lo's / Harmony In Jazz

Review: Though the Hi-Lo's never had any significant impact on the charts, their influence was profound indeed, and later pop harmony groups such as the Beach Boys are much in their debt. Founded by Gene Puerling, who as their arranger must be given credit for the sound they pioneered, the Hi-Lo's versions of standards such as "Fascinatin' Rhythm," "Tenderly" and "Stormy Weather" are definitely immortal. Contemporary listeners are fortunate indeed that these early recordings are now being re-released in CD format. All twenty-three of these accompanied songs were compiled from their years at Columbia (1956-61), and the track list includes "My Sugar Is So Refined," "Swing Low Sweet Chariot" and "Deep Purple," (the latter was also recorded by the Ravens). "Sugar" opens with a classical flute melody and then explodes into a brassy blast of ear candy; "Sweet Chariot" has the swing feel of a Western musical hoedown.

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4214c | 00 1 CD | $15.98 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Listen to
Molly Malone

Hi-Lo's : Under Glass / I Presume

Review: A spate of Hi-Lo's albums have been recently released on CD, but this may be the most auspicious re-emergence yet: the Hi-lo's first two records, paired up for over an hour's worth of great listening. Though some of the cuts can be found on other recordings, the a cappella "Molly Malone" and "Through The Years" aren't available anywhere else, and the remarkable harmonizations that were Gene Puerling's unique artistry are gloriously displayed in a riot of tonal color. Also, "Georgia On My Mind," and "They Don't Believe Me," from their first 1953 recording session for Trend, are included; the latter was on the previously available "Nice Work If You Can Get It" CD, which has since been discontinued. Anyway, suffice it to say, that among the vocal harmony groups of the 1950's, the Hi-lo's were much imitated, but never duplicated, and their appeal is timeless. Mostly accompanied, with orchestrations by frequent music director Frank Comstock.

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4792c | 00 1 CD | $15.98 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs


Hi-Lo's : Cherries And Other Delights

Review: The Hi-lo's were formed in April of l953 by bass singer and arranger Gene Puerling. Their tight, close, ringing harmonies are applied to an eclectic variety of music, barbershop, folk, bossa nova etc. etc. All the songs are accompanied by a three piece combo of piano, bass, and drums except for the extremely beautiful "Down By The Sally Gardens." Aside from the title track other well known tunes are "Lazy Afternoon," "Georgia On My Mind," "Fascinatin' Rhythm" and "You Must Have Been A Beautiful Baby." On less well known tunes they rock, they jazz it up, they visit Hawaii. They are formidable!

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4204c | 00 1 CD | $14.95 | Some a cappella Men's Vintage CDs

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