KingstoneThe youths growing up in Singapore 60s could sing, hum or whistle, "Tom Dooley". The Kingston Trio was formed in 1957 and by the following year had this very successful single at the top the pop charts. The trio, though certainly more commercially viable than some of the more authentic folkies of the late '50s, had a lot to do with the success of the folk revival in that era; folk music rang out from college campuses everywhere in the late '50s and 60s.
Whether or not they knew their music was paving the way for artists more deeply involved in these changes (Bob Dylan, Joan Baez), it did sell plenty of records. The Kingston Trio began in San Francisco.
Their first album, THE KINGSTON TRIO, included "Tom Dooley" and it was played extensively by DJs that Capitol released it as a single that eventually sold nearly 3 million records. The song was taken from a 19th century mountain ballad about Tom Dula, who was hanged for murdering his sweetheart.
Several albums ensued for the trio, all doing well commercially but, while it had 10 singles charted by 1963, only "Reverend Mr. Black" got into the Top 10. However, the Kingston Trio is remembered for other tunes like "M.T.A.," "The Tijuana Jail," "A Worried Man", "Greenback Dollar" and Pete Seegar's, "Where Have All The Flowers Gone?" Like "Tom Dooley", it's another pop hit turned classic.
As the more intensive folk-rock grew, making songs like the Kingston Trio's became outdated and the trio broke up in 1968. A TV reunion in 1981 had all six members together for the first time.
Whether duos, trios, quartets or quintets, the influence of vocal groups like THE EVERLY BROTHERS (2), THE KINGSTON TRIO (3), THE BROTHERS FOUR (4), THE PLATTERS (5), certainly made an impact on our local music scene. Carbon copies or otherwise our 60s musicians certainly learnt a lot from their US counterparts.
(From: Kingston Trio Website).