Friday, April 12, 2013

The Four Coins--Shangri-La (1957)

     As you remember from the post a couple of days ago, I mentioned that Philadelphia was a hotbed for pop all through the 50's. One place that has a rich heritage of music in the same state was Pittsburgh. As early as 1952, cousins George Mantalis, Jim Gregorakis, and George Mahramas were singing harmonies behind singer and friend Bobby Vinton on gigs with the "Band of Tomorrow" Orchestra. The boys added George's brother Michael, and went on their own singing harmonies in clubs around the area as The Four Keys. They signed with a local record company and recorded a few sides, but things began to change when they secured an audition with agent Danny Kessler (who was managing Johnny Ray at the time). Kessler came on as a manager, and soon got them a record deal with Epic in 1954.
     Having changed their names to The Four Coins, the group released, "We'll Be Married" in August of 1954 and began a string of hits that lasted until the late 50's. Shangri-la reached #11 in 1957 and was the groups biggest hit. In 1959 Michael went to pursue and acting career with another brother, Jack, replacing him. This formation of the group were together until 1965. The three Mahramas toured from the mid-60's until 1970 as, "The Original Three Coins" and then later "Brothers James".
     The group reformed in 2003 and continue to tour today.

You can follow us on Facebook at "The Rock and Roll Omnibus"
You can follow us on Twitter for the latest blogs and rock/pop news @Rokandrollbus



Post a Comment