The Diamonds are a Canadian vocal quartet that rose to prominence in the 1950s and early 1960s with 16 Billboard hit records. The original members were Dave Somerville (lead), Ted Kowalski (tenor), Phil Levitt (baritone), and Bill Reed (bass). They were most noted for interpreting and introducing rhythm and blues vocal group music to the wider pop music audience. Contrary to a popular myth, the father of Tom Hanks was never a member of the group.
In 1953, Dave Somerville, while working as a sound engineer for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, met three other young singers. They decided to form a stand-up quartet called the Diamonds. The group’s first performance was in the basement of St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Toronto singing in a Christmas minstrel show. The audience’s reaction to the Somerville-led group was so positive that they decided that night they would turn professional
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