BILL MEDLEY

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Bill Medley Biography

We are very proud that our 60's Unchained Concert at Wembley Arena was Bill Medley's First and only live concert in the UK!

 

Medley first met his singing partner Bobby Hatfield through Barry Rillera

who was in both Hatfield's and Medley's group and asked them to see each other's show. They were later brought together by saxophone player John Wimber, who later went on to found The Vineyard Church movement, to form a new group in 1962, but kept the name Paramours. They performed at The Black Derby nightclub in Santa Ana, and released a single "There She Goes (She's Walking Away)" in December 1962 with a small record label Moonglow. However the band did not have much success and soon broke up, leaving Hatfield and Medley to perform as a duo in 1963. Medley and Hatfield adopted the name The

Righteous Brothers, and their first single was the Medley-penned "Little

Latin Lupe Lu" released under the label Moonglow Records. Medley also recorded as a solo artist with Moonglow, and released a single "Gotta Tell You How I Feel" which did not chart.

In 1964, The Righteous Brothers appeared in a show with other groups in the Cow Palace in San Francisco where Phil Spector was conducting the band for the entire show. Spector was impressed by the duo and arranged to have them record for his own label Philles Records. In 1965, they had their first No.1 hit, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'", which was produced by Phil Spector. According to music publishing watchdog Broadcast Music, Inc., "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" is the most-played song in the history of American radio. They also recorded other songs such as "Unchained Melody" with Philles Records. Medley, who had produced the duo before they signed with Spector and Philles, was the actual producer on many tracks and 'B' sides credited to Spector, including "Unchained Melody" which was originally intended to be an album track. On singles such as "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" and Just Once in My Life, the vocals were concentrated mainly on Medley, but on a few singles, such as "Unchained Melody" and "Ebb Tide", Hatfield performed solo.

The duo left Spector in 1966 to sign with Verve Records where they had a hit with "Soul and Inspiration", but broke up in 1968 when Medley left to pursue his own career. Medley was also performing three shows a night in Las Vegas; according to Medley, he found it too much of a strain on his voice singing solo, and lost his voice for a while. Under advice, he sought out Hatfield to reform The Righteous Brothers in 1974.  They signed with Haven Records, quickly recorded "Rock and Roll Heaven" which became a hit. Medley however quit music for a while after the death of his first wife in 1976, but reunited with Bobby Hatfield in 1981 for the 30th special of American Bandstand (where they performed an updated version of "Rock and Roll

Heaven").

 

Although Medley focused his attention on his solo career in the 1980s, they continued to appear together as a duo. After a resurgence in popularity in 1990s due to the use of "Unchained Melody" in the film Ghost, they toured extensively as a duo right until Hatfield's death in November 2003. The Righteous Brothers were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 2003 by Billy Joel.

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BILL MEDLEY

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