Real Name:
Pittsburgh R&B septet the El Capris formed in the city's Hill District in 1954 -- according to Marv Goldberg's profile on his www.group-harmony.com website, founders Eddie Jackson (lead tenor), James Scott (first tenor), Theodore McCrary (second tenor), Leon Gray (baritone), William Germany (baritone and conga drums), Larry Hill (bass), and James Ward (bass and bongos) were all between the ages of 13 and 14 years old at the time of the group's creation. Dubbing themselves the El Capris -- reportedly a badly misguided attempt to add Spanish flair to their original choice, the Bluebirds -- the group won a local talent contest on Independence Day 1955, earning an audition with Bullseye Records owner Woody Henderling.

Sufficiently impressed to offer the El Capris a contract on the spot, Henderling returned to Pittsburgh at year's end to cut their debut single, "(Shimmy Shimmy) Ko Ko Wop." Issued in the spring of 1956, the record quickly went nowhere, and the group signed to the local Fee Bee imprint to cut the follow-up, 1957's "Your Star." Though promoted via live appearances at venues including Harlem's landmark Apollo Theatre, the record met the same fate as its predecessor and after a third single, "Safari" (issued on Fee Bee's sister label Ring-O), the El Capris began to splinter. By 1958 only McCrary, Gray, and Germany remained from the original lineup, but they forged on, recruiting first tenor Percy Wharton and bass Sam Askue to cut "Ivy League Clean" for the Paris label. Although the El Capris did not reenter the studio, the group continued touring the East Coast nightclub circuit until 1970 -- a quarter century later, co-founders Germany and Jackson played a series of revival showcases in a reconstituted lineup featuring second tenor Shane Plummer and bass Doc Battle.

Singles & EPs

B-102 El-Capris - Ko Ko Wop album art The El Capris* Ko Ko Wop (Single) Bullseye Records (5) B-102 US 1956 Sell This Version
45-525 El-Capris - They're Always Laughin' At Me album art El Capris* They're Always Laughin' At Me (Single) Paris (5) 45-525 US 1958 Sell This Version
FB-216 El-Capris - Your Star / Dance All Night album art The El Capris* Your Star / Dance All Night (Single) Fee Bee Records (2) FB-216 US 1958 Sell This Version
RI 308 El-Capris - Safari (Part 2) / Quit Pulling My Woman album art The El Capris* Safari (Part 2) / Quit Pulling My Woman(7", Single) Ring-O Records RI 308 US 1965 Sell This Version


EC 0010 El-Capris - El Carpis Then And Now album art El Capris* El Carpis Then And Now(CDr, Comp) No Label EC 0010 US 2010 Sell This Version