THE MONOTONES–“BOOK OF LOVE”

Hello,  The Monotones are an R&B vocal group from Newark, New Jersey.  Members included, Charles Patrick-lead, Warren Davis, George Malone, Frank Smith, John Ryanes and his brother Warren Ryanes.  The group formed in 1955, they began performing covers of popular songs.  They all began singing with the New Hop Baptist Choir, directed by Cissy Houston.  They began their career with a 1956 appearance on Ted Mack’s Amateur Hour television program, winning first prize.

In 1957 The Monotones recorded they classic hit record,  BOOK OF LOVE, which was released on Mascot Records in December.  The small record label could not handle the popularity of the hit and it was reissued on Argo Records, which was a part of the Chess Records label.  The single made its Billboard Top 100 debut on March 24, 1958 and became a #5 hit on the Top 100.  The single crossed over to the Billboard R&B chart, where it became a #3 hit.  The Monotones,  BOOK OF LOVE sold over one million copies and was awarded a “Gold Record”.  It also was a huge hit in Australia, charting at #5.

The group recorded follow-ups, but they were not successful.  In 1962 the group disbanded.  George Malone passed away in 2007 at the age of 67, Frank Smith died in 2000 at the age of 61, John Ryanes passed away in 1972 at the age of 31 and Warren Ryanes died in 1982 at the age of 45.  The surviving members met to revive  BOOK OF LOVE  on several occassions.  The Monotones million-seller has been selected by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as one of the songs that shaped rock and roll. 

A classic oldie, that is a favorite on oldies radio, is a reminder of the great times and great music of the “Golden Era Of Rock And Roll”…”I wonder, wonder, wonder who!, who wrote the book of love”

Till the next time—Joe

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