UPDATED: 7-20-2002
RANDY JONES (1936-2002)

Bass vocalist Randy Jones, an early member of such Los Angeles doo-wop groups as the Meadowlarks, the Penguins and the Flairs, died at an L.A. convalescent home on June 24, 2002, thirteen months after being felled by a stroke that left him in a near coma. He was 66.

Randall Jones Jr. was born May 20, 1936, in Kilgore, Texas, and grew up in Los Angeles. In his late teens he joined The Meadowlarks, led by Don Julian, who were all a couple of years younger than he was, and recorded with them on their first two recordings for RPM Records before the group went to Dootone in late 1954. He also wrote one of their songs, "L.F.M.S.T Blues," which he claimed meant Please (??) Find My Sweet Theresa, but which more likely was taken from a popular cigarette slogan, L.S.M.F.T., which meant Lucky Strikes Mean Fine Tobacco, but which teenagers commonly reinterpreted as Loose Sweaters Make Floppy Titties and other such ribald expressions. Randy left the Meadowlarks, he said later, because he was 18 years old and married, while the other members were still in high school.

Though Randy wasn't there to enjoy The Meadowlarks' success on Dootone, he soon found his own place in the company stable when owner Dootsie Williams called him in to replace Bruce Tate, the bass singer in The Penguins, after Tate was involved in a fatal hit and run accident in late 1954. He sang lead on one Penguins' song, "Kiss a Fool Goodbye," and appeared on their later Mercury, Atlantic and Dooto sides.

He also replaced Richard Berry in The Flairs and appeared on two of the group's singles, "Love Me Love Me Love Me" (Flair 1051), which was credited to The Chimes, and "Hold Me Thrill Me Chill Me" (Flair 1056). With another group, called The Jac-O-Lacs--with former Flairs Cornel Gunter and Young Jessie, along with Fred Romain and Thomas Fox--he appeared on "Cindy Lou"/"Sha-Ba-Da-Ba-Do" and sang background on several Oscar McLollie tracks.

Randy later sang with The Flares on their hit 1961 recording of "Footstompin', Part 1."

In more recent years Randy Jones worked as an extra and bit player in Hollywood films. He also performed as the bass singer with The Jacks and, at one Southern California Doo-Wop Society Show, with The Penguins. He was rehearsing with The Jacks for a May 2001 Doo-Wop Society show when he had the stroke that debilitated him.


The Meadowlarks
RPM 399 Love Only You/Real Pretty Mama 1954
RPM 406 L.F.M.S.T. Blues/Pass the Gin 1954
The Jac-O-Lacs
Tampa 103 Cindy Lou/Sha-Ba-Da-Ba-Do 1955
Chimes (Flairs)
Flair 1051 Love Me, Love Me, Love Me/My Heart's Crying For You 1955
Flair 1056 Hold Me, Thrill Me, Chill Me/I'll Never Let You Go 1955
The Penguins
Dootone 362 Kiss a Fool Goodbye/ 1955
Mercury 70610 Be Mine (Or Be a Fool)/Don't Do It 1955
Mercury 70654 Walkin' Down Broadway/It Only Happens With You 1955
Mercury 70703 Devil That I See/Promises, Promises, Promises/ 1955
Mercury 70762 Jingle Jangle/A Christmas Prayer 1955
Mercury 70799 My Troubles Are Not at an End/She's Gone, Gone 1956
Mercury 70943 Earth Angel/Ice 1956
Mercury 71033 Will You Be Mine/Cool, Baby Cool 1956
Wing 90076 Dealer of Dreams/Peace of Mind 1956
Atlantic 1132 Pledge of Love/I Knew I'd Fall in Love 1957
Dooto 428 That's How Much I Need You/Be My Loving Baby 1957
Dooto 432 Let Me Make Up Your Mind/Sweet Love 1958
Dooto 435 Do Not Pretend/If You're Mine 1958
Felsted 8624 Footstompin' Part 1/Footstompin' Part 2 1961

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