The Royal Guardsmen are a pop group from Ocala, Florida. Members included: Barry Winslow-vocals and guitar, Chris Nunley-vocals, Tom Richards-lead guitar, Bill Balough-bass, John Burdett-drums and Billy Taylor-organ.
Their first record on Laurie Records failed to chart, the first time around. That record was…BABY LET’S WAIT”. It would chart in November of 1968 and become a Top 40 hit, charting at #35 on the Hot 100. It was the second record that made The Royal Guardsmen a household name…SNOOPY VS. THE RED BARON (Laurie 3366). The song was inspired by Snoopy the Beagle in the “Peanuts” comic strip. The single charted on December 17, 1966 and became a huge hit, climbing all the way to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and remaining at #2 for 4 weeks. SNOOPY VS. THE RED BARON sold over 1 million copies and was awarded a “Gold Record”. The original Canadian version (also Laurie 3366) was released as SQUEAKY VS. THE BLACK KNIGHT.
In February of 1967 they were back on the Hot 100 with…THE RETURN OF THE RED BARON (Laurie 3379). The single became a Top 20 hit, charting at #15 on the Hot 100. The Royal Guardsmen also charted two more hits in 1967, they are: AIRPLANE SONG (MY AIRPLANE)-#46 and…WEDNESDAY-#97. The song that became a Christmas classic, did not chart on the Hot 100, but did rule the BILLBOARD CHRISTMAS MUSIC CHARTS in 1967…SNOOPY’S CHRISTMAS a smash hit, is still a favorite during the Holidays each and every year.
The group would chart three more Hot 100 hits all in 1968, they are: I SAY LOVE-#72…SNOOPY FOR PRESIDENT-#85 and as mentioned…BABY LET’S WAIT-#35 their last Billboard Hot 100 hit.
The Royal Guardsmen’s drummer,Tom Richards died in 1979. Pat Waddell then became the groups drummer. They were still performing into the 2000’s. Can’t help but sing along to their hits…they were fun. Oldies radio is now home to the music of The Royal Guardsmen. Their songs reflect a time when music was much simplier and fun to listen to…”THE GOLDEN ERA OF ROCK AND ROLL”
Till the next time—Joe