5 April 1932, Wilmington, North Carolina, USA. Billy Bland was an R&B singer whose best-known recording was the 1960 US Top 10 hit, Let The Little Girl Dance. Bland, the youngest of 19 children, began his career in 1947 in New York City, where he performed in the bands of Lionel Hampton and Buddy Johnson before starting his own group, the Four Bees. He was brought to New Orleans by producer Dave Bartholomew in 1954 and sang on a single for Imperial Records, Toy Bell. Bland signed to Old Town Records in 1955 and recorded singles that were hits regionally, such as Chicken In The Basket and Chicken Hop. He recorded the bouncy Let The Little Girl Dance in late 1959, also for Old Town, and it reached the charts in early 1960, eventually climbing to number 7. Bland had three further singles in the pop charts, but recorded no albums. He retired in the 70s.
Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.