Thursday, August 22, 2013

August 22: Bob Flanagan founding member of The Four Freshmen was born on this date in 1926...

The Four Freshmen - Capitol Collectors Series

... he died on May 15, 2011 at the age of  84.

The Four Freshmen began as a barbershop quartet called Hal's Harmonizers at Butler University's Arthur Jordan Conservatory in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 1950, The Four Freshmen got a break when band leader Stan Kenton heard the quartet in Dayton, Ohio, and arranged for an audition with his label, Capitol Records, which signed The Four later that year. In 1952, they released their first hit single "It's a Blue World". Further hits included "Mood Indigo" in 1954, "Day by Day" in 1955, and "Graduation Day" in 1956.

Flanigan, a respected trombonist, also played bass with the outfit for several decades, beginning on September 20, 1948, and sang the top part.

The Four Freshmen won Best Vocal Group of the Year in Down Beat magazine's Readers' Polls in 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958, 2000, and 2001.

Still performing after 62 years, (1948–present), The Four Freshmen have recorded 49 albums, CDs, and DVDs. After retiring from performing in 1992, Flanigan maintained the band's name and was responsible for the group's changing cast of performers.

In his autobiography, Brian Wilson attributes the success of the Beach Boys' initial sound to the harmonic chord choices found in Four Freshmen arrangements. The Beach Boy's often perform "In My Room," acappella during concerts as a tribute to the Four Freshmen.

-- A Visit with Bob Flanigan of The Four Freshmen

For more about The Four Freshman, visit their Website at-


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