Tony Allen And The Wonders
Tony Allen And The Wonders
@tony-allen-and-the-wonders
 

Tony Allen was born Anthony Penia Allan on August 13, 1932 in New Orleans. His mother was French Creole and was the sax player in the The Sweethearts of Rhythm. His uncle Frank Penia owned the New Orleans's top R&B club Dew-Drop Inn, a hot spot in the 40s and 50s. Tony Allen grew up in the Ninth Ward near Fats Domino.

He went to Los Angeles under the influence of his Uncle Frank and attended George Washington Carver High with Arthur Lee Maye, who introduced Tony to Jesse Belvin, a neighbor on 41st Place and Long Beach Boulevard.

Tony Allen’s first recording, "Angel Child," also called "Strange One," was done at the age of 14 on Emmett Jose’s Aries label.

Bumps Blackwell of Specialty Records heard Tony playing the piano when Jesse Belvin visited the label and took Tony with him. “Bumps came over and asked me if I was under contract. I said I wasn't, so he called me back not too long after that when he was having trouble with Jesse.” Tony’s Specialty recording of “Nite Owl” owed its subject to Tony’s nickname given to him by his aunt, with whom he lived in LA, “because I was always staying out late at night.”

Tony Allen was working at Al Levine's pressing plant when the record came out, so he knew that the first batch of labels were mixed up and the supposed A side, “I,” actually played “Nite Owl.” That became the hit, once they started playing it on purpose. "I was pressing my own record at Levine's when Art [Rupe of Specialty Records] called me up to say that it was a hit.”

Labels he recorded for besides Specialty and Jamie were Aladdin, Dig, Bethlehem and Original Sound Records. Tony Allen got to Jamie through Fabor Robison, the publisher and owner of Fabor and Abbott Records and a presence in the Los Angeles music scene.

 

One Million Years of Doo Wop

Title
Genre
Doo-Wop

single

Title
Genre
Doo-Wop
Doo-Wop
Doo-Wop