Cleveland, Ohio disc jockey Bill Randle of WERE, responsible for opening the door to stardom for several recording stars of the 50’s, did much to further the career of four Toronto college students, Dave Somerville, Ted Kowalski, Phil Levitt and Bill Reed who were the original members of the singing group called the Diamonds.
During a time when black recording artists were seldom heard on the radio, like Elvis, Pat Boone and others, the Diamonds gave recognition to early R&B music by exposing songs originally recorded by black singers, but largely unknown to most record buyers.
With sixteen visits to the charts in five years, they first entered the Hit Parade in 1956 with their version of a Frankie Lymon song, “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” and “Church Bells May Ring,” originally recorded by the Willows, the Diamonds leaped to the top of the charts with “Little Darlin’,” a best seller for 26 straight weeks in 1957 that earned the Canadian lads their first gold record award. Two more million sellers followed with “Silhouettes,” originally recorded by the Rays and “The Stroll,” a dance craze from American Bandstand.
In 1984 the Diamonds received the “Juno” award and were inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, with similar honors given by the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Doo-Wop Hall of Fame in 2006. They were inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame in 2007.