Brooklyn Music Boys: The Chuckles and The Bowties

The Musical Boys From Brooklyn
The Brooklyn music boys were the eight young men who comprised The Three Chuckles and Cirino & The Bowties. Some of them had been friends since childhood playing sandlot baseball. Some met in local bowling alleys, a venue of their day for playing live music dates. It wasn’t until Alan Freed, a Cleveland, Ohio based Disc Jockey turned music promoter, came to New York City that a concert style venue became available for these up-and-coming music groups he described as singing, ‘Rock’n’Roll’. [1]

The Three Chuckles Before, During And After
The Three Chuckles During their heyday, before Teddy was lead singer and after the group disbanded

The Three Chuckles originally consisted of Tommy Romano, Russ Gilberto and Phil Benti. When the group started to travel to perform, accordion and keyboard player, Benti dropped out. He preferred to stay home with his wife and children. The very young Teddy Randazzo, a talented accordion player who was 15 at the time, replaced him. Within a year, his singing talent elevated him to lead singer of the group. He was more than 10 years younger than the other members of The Chuckles.[2]

Cirino and The Bowties from doo-wop.blogg.org
Cirino (second from right)  and The Bowties from doo-wop.blogg.org

Their first hit, Runaround, happened to be written by Cirino Colacrai.  Cirino was Teddy’s childhood friend. Sometimes known as Sereno or Serino, he had such a good voice that he was encouraged to form a group of his own. He created Cirino and The Bowties. The group included Cirino Colacrai (aka Del Serino)(Lead), John Granada, Jimmy Piro and Vince “Diddy” Cipoldo.

 

Biography of a Hit Song and a Movie Appearance
In their repertoire when touring, The Three Chuckles,  sang “Runaround”, the song that Del Serino’s had written. “Runaround” became a huge hit and was eventually purchased by RCA from Serino. RCA then signed Serino as a staff writer for their regent label; here he wrote “Foolishly”. Because Serino sang and performed his demo so well, he was asked to form his own group to sing some of his tunes. Both groups appeared in the Alan Freed movie ‘Rock, Rock, Rock’ in 1956. [3]

The Bowties were eventually heard by Jack Hook and Teddy Reig of Royal Roost Records, who signed them and changed Serino’s name to “Cirino” and had him record “Rosemarie”. They recorded four singles in 1955-56 for Royal Roost Records. The Bowties had some other successes besides the movie both groups appeared in.They were on the Ed Sullivan and Jack Paar Shows. “In the late 1950s, the Bowties seemed to slowly break up, as they lost their contract to Roost, and Cirino followed other, more songwriting-type, projects. Cirino’s songs were featured in the movies “Jamboree” and “Country Music Holiday” during the late-’50s, such as “Toreador,” “I Don’t Like You No More,” and “Goodbye My Darlin’.” During the 1960s, Cirino continued to write more pop songs, some of them moderate hits”. Cirino also bought a luncheonette in Redhook, Brooklyn which became a local attraction. Cirino’s musical buddies would often stop by to the delight of the neighborhood kids.[4]

In a similar manner, Teddy Randazzo moved on, leaving The Three Chuckles. He went out on his own. Over the years, he became extremely successful. He starred in several other teen idol movies, sang, wrote over 650 songs, and produced as well as arranged his music for other singers who had huge hits from his music. All of this elevated him to a level of professional accomplishment that few people ever experience. He was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2007. [5]

Rock, Rock, Rock
Poster from Rock, Rock, Rock found on the Mill, Creek Musings Blog Post [6]
Afterword
Totally by happenstance, or was it, on the evening on April 25, 2016 when this blog post was completed, the main Turner Classic Movies entertainment of the evening was the 1956 movie, Rock, Rock, Rock! Write it and they will come . . . .

Sources and Resources
[1] Alan Freed coined the term Rock’n’Roll
[2] The Three Chuckles
[3] Cirino and The Bowties
[4] Cirino Colacrai
[5] Teddy Randazzo was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2007
[6] Mill Creek Musings: Rock, Rock, Rock Blog Post
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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