The original line-up consisted of Robert Byrd (b. 1932) and Earl Nelson (b. 1928). They both had been members of The Hollywood Flames, a Los Angeles doo-wop group whose major hit was "Buzz-Buzz-Buzz" in 1958.
In 1960, Byrd and Nelson worked together as 'Bob & Earl' but, unfortunately, these releases had relatively scarce success, leading Byrd to restart his solo career.
In 1962, Nelson engaged a second "Bob": Bob Relf. They recorded several singles for different labels, before recording 'Harlem Shuffle', produced by Barry White, which was a modest success in America and a major hit in England.