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The Capris

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An unbelievable story!! The Capris, from total obscurity to the rage of a nation. 1957 Ozone Park, Queens, New York five young teens do what 1000's like them were doing. They formed a vocal group and harmonized on the street corners. Nick Santa Maria (aka Nick Santo) - lead tenor, Mike Mincelli - 1st tenor, Frank Reina - 2nd tenor, Vinnie Narcado - baritone & John Cassesa - bass calling themselves the Capris. They sang the songs of the day. Influenced by the Heartbeats, Flamingos, Cadillacs & Little Anthony & the Imperials, they honed their vocal skills.

Answering an ad in a local paper for recording artists, they auditioned singing their original penned "There's A Moon Out Tonight". Shortly thereafter they recorded Moon and the finished product was presented to a small NYC label Planet Records.

The record backed with "Indian Girl" was released in 1957 and as fast as it was released it faded into oblivion. Year now is 1960. Times Square Records, NYC. As was the custom of the times credit is given for used records towards the purchase of new ones.

Into Times Square Records walks a fellow with a copy of Planet#1010 for credit. "There's A Moon Out Tonight"!. Not being familiar with the record the store gives .50 cents in credit. Later the record is brought to a local DJ Allen Fredericks to be aired on his "Night Train" radio show. The record is played and Allen mentions that $1.00 in credit would be given for copies of this record. No copies were traded in, however 100's of people called to buy the record. Thus the beginning of HIT three years after it was recorded.

Originally re-issued on Lost Nite records in 1960 then again on Old Town records in 1961 for national distribution. "There's A Moon Out Tonight" reached #4 nationally.

Now for the KICKER!! Where are the CAPRIS?? The group had disbanded in 1958. Going their own ways but still in the NYC area, the guys hear their song on the air. They re-form and are now signed to Old Town Records. They go on to record through '64. Again they break up. With the Nostalgia Craze in the late 70's and early 80's the Capris again reform. Now recording on Ambient Sound they achieve their 2nd national hit.

"Morse Code Of Love". With the success of Moon & Morse the Capris are still performing the Oldies Circuit today.

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