1950s EASY-POP Songs and Singers...on the verge of Rock 'n Roll
The Mills Brothers John Jr. bass, (b.1911), replaced in 1936 by John Sr. baritone, (b.1882) Herbert, tenor, (b.1912), Harry, baritone, (b.1913), Donald, lead tenor, (b.1915)
Famous EASY-POP hit single during the 50s: Glow-Worm 1952
They also had hits with Say “Si Si” in 1953 and Get a Job in 1958.
Recording career with hits on the charts: 1931-1968 Record Labels: Decca & Dot
The four young Mills brothers from Piqua, Ohio, were proficient at imitating musical instruments. John would imitate the tuba and Harry the trumpet. Herbert became second trumpet and Donald trombone. They entertained on the Midwest theater circuit with their amazing ability to harmonize. The quartet achieved fame in vaudeville, radio, and film. In 1930, broadcast executive William Paley at CBS radio, heard their audition and they became the first African-Americans to have a network show on radio. John Jr. died in 1936 and the brothers considered breaking up the quartet but their father, John Sr. replaced the deceased brother—as a tribute to their brother they retained the name The Mills Brothers. Their 1943 hit Paper Doll was #1 for three months and sold six million copies. In 1952, Glow Worm jumped to number one on the pop charts.
The Mills Brothers' Best 45rpm Single Recordings:
Say "Si Si"
The Mills Brothers' Best Fabulous-But-Forgotten Song: