Originally known as the Challengers, this adaptable vocal group, Walter Sleepy Ward (28 August 1940, Jackson, Mississippi, USA, d. 11 December 2006, Northridge, California, USA; lead), Eddie Lewis (b. Houston, Texas, USA; tenor), Charles Fizer (b. 6 June 1940, Shreveport, Louisiana, USA, d. 14 August 1965, Los Angeles, California, USA; baritone) and Walter Hammond (baritone), was formed in Compton, California, in 1954. They recorded one single (I Can Tell) for Melatone Records as the Challengers before changing their name. The Olympics finest moment came with Western Movies (1958), a humorous novelty disc in the vein of the Coasters and the Clovers, which reached the pop Top 10 in the USA and Top 20 in the UK. The song was produced and co-written by Fred Smith, who later worked with Bob And Earl. The same was true of Private Eye, another laconic tribute to 50s pulp-fiction culture, but it was 1960 before the...
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