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The Derbys

A.k.a. The Carpets (3)

Kansas City soul and rhythm & blues group originally called The Carpets (3). When James Gadson got out of the Air Force in 1961, he found that his brother Thomas Gadson had learned to play the guitar and had formed an R&B band called The Carpets. The members were: Walter Chisolm (sax), Harold Rice (bassist), Harry Wilkins (drums), and Thomas Gadson (guitar). James joined as lead vocalist (the others sang background vocals). When Harold Rice left to join Jay McShann's orchestra, drummer Harry Wilkins switched over to bass. James then took over the open drum spot. A late addition to the group was trumpeter Percy Cooper, brother of organist Earl Grant; he was the only non-singing member. Around 1962, they changed their name to The Derbys (3), and released a single in December 1962 on KC Records label (owned by Nat King Cole) and in 1963 on Kansas City's Central Records (3). After this, the Derbys were booked on a tour of the South (on which they had to pretend to be a different famous group in each town). At the point when they were ready to leave Florida, James decided to stay behind as a member Hank Ballard & The Midnighters.

Popular Tracks   
Lonely One on The Music City Story by Various Artists
Lonely One on Music City Vocal Groups: Greasy Love Songs of Teenage Romance, Regret, Hope and Despair by Various Artists
Happy Happy Birthday Baby - A Cappella on Music City Vocal Groups: Greasy Love Songs of Teenage Romance, Regret, Hope and Despair by Various Artists

Track list and 30sec audio provided by

Title Artist Year Type
Socking It Back / I Saw BatmanThomas Gadson & The Derbys1967Single
Goin' Back To Houston / Standin' In My WayThomas Gadson And The Derbys1966Single
The Crow / A Different Woman Every DayThe Derbys1965Single
I Aint Gonna Love You / Teach Me To MonkeyThe Derbys1963Single
Any Old Way / The Huckster ManThe Derbys1962Single
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To all the music fans that are contributing on Discogs, MusicBrainz and Wikipedia. Thanks to Franz Flückiger for providing Storygram used to visualize band membership and together with Stefan Guggisberg for the visual data mining application ArtistAnalytics.
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