New Christy Minstrels
Randy Sparks (29 July 1933, Leavenworth, Kansas, USA), formed this commercialized folk group in 1961. Determined to create a unit that was a compromise between the Norman Luboff Choir and the Kingston Trio, he added a popular Oregon quartet, the Fairmount Singers, to his own Randy Sparks Three. A third unit, the Inn Group, which featured Jerry Yester, was absorbed into the line-up, while other Los Angeles-based performers embellished these core acts. Fourteen singers made up the original New Christy Minstrels but although the ensemble was viewed as supplementary to the participants other careers, interest in the groups debut Presenting The New Christy Minstrels, led to it becoming a full-time venture. Most of these early recruits, including the entire Inn Group, abandoned Sparks creation at this point, creating the need for further, wholesale changes. New recruits, including Barry McGuire, Barry Kane and Larry Ramos, joined the...