Hello,  The Castells were a male vocal quartet from Santa Rosa, California.  Members included, Bob Ussery, Tom Hicks, Joe Kelly and Chuck Girard.  Their vocals were a blend of light rock, collegiate harmony and jazz.  They were popular with both teenagers and adults.  The group formed at Santa Rosa, California High School.  The group took demo recording to record companies in Hollywood, California and finally Era Records signed them to a recording contract.

The Castells first record,  LITTLE SAD EYES in February of 1961 failed to reach the Billboard Hot 100, but did chart on the Billboard Bubbling Under The Hot 100 chart at #101.  In May of 1961 their second record,  SACRED did chart and become a big hit.  SACRED climbed the Billboard Hot 100 all the way to #20 and remained on the chart for 12 weeks.  This song became a big hit with the Adult Contemporary audience as well as the pop market.  The groups follow-up failed to reach the success of  SACRED.  MAKE BELIEVE WEDDING charted on October 9, 1961 and reached #98 on the Hot 100.

In April of 1962 The Castells had a new hit,  SO THIS IS LOVE, a wonderful song of love that reached #21 on the Hot 100 and remained on the chart for 13 weeks.  This song is still a much requested song on oldies radio.  In August of 1962 the group would chart their last Hot 100 hit with another love song,  OH! WHAT IT SEEMED TO BE.  The single charted at #91.

They would continue to record for a few years, first with Warner Brothers Records and end their recording career with Decca Records.  They disbanded in the mid 1960’s.  Chuck Girard later joined the surf rock group, The Hondells.  Their recordings of  SACRED and SO THIS IS LOVE are a wonderful example of their fine vocals.  Their hits are still popular with those of us who grew up in the early 1960’s and discovered their music.  They have a place in the “Golden Era Of Rock And Roll”.  The Castells may have only had a few hit records, but two of them continue to show just how good they really were, their legacy is their music.

Till the next time—Joe


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