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Larry Chance & The Earls: Doo-Wop

Posted Aug. 20, 2012, at 1:55 p.m.

Spanning from the late 50s into the new millennium, Larry Chance & the Earls have pleased audiences with their flawless harmonies, ceaseless vitality and endearing dedication to their fans. The group represents the music that helped define rock and roll, the original doo-wop era that put the street-corner society onto the national charts.

Larry Chance was born in Philadelphia, raised in a neighborhood noted for its show-business roots that spawned such talents as Fabian, Frankie Avalon, Chubby Checker, Mario Lanza, Danny & the Juniors, Joey Bishop, David Brenner, and many more. It was here that Chance began his love affair with show business.

When his family moved to the Bronx, N.Y., in 1955, Chance discovered that vocal groups were found on almost every street corner. He developed one of his own in 1957 with five friends, The High-Hatters. By 1960 the group had evolved into “the Earls.” Through the years, the original members moved on to other things.

Bobby “T” Tribuzio is such a gifted drummer that one wonders if the “T” stands for “talented.” Born and raised in Little Italy in the Bronx, Tribuzio was born with a drumstick in his hand. He spent most of his childhood listening to jazz and jazz drummers; Gene Krupa was a huge influence and is still his idol.

Tribuzio backed up Dion at neighborhood functions. Nightclubs were next on the agenda, when at 16 he joined a rock-and-roll group called “Richie and the Perfections.” Tribuzio joined the Earls in 1963. Never really liking the rock and roll he played before, he loved working with Chance. Tribuzio has backed up such luminaries as Chuck Berry, Bo Diddly, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Ruby and the Romantics, The Shirelles, Chubby Checker, The Flamingos, The Drifters, and Patti La Belle.

Bobby Coleman joined the Earls more recently on bass, guitar, keyboards, and vocals. Coleman is also a fine songwriter and has teamed with Chance for many compositions on recent Earls albums. Earlier in his career, Coleman also worked with the Belmonts and the Regents.

Chuck Mearizo (guitar and vocals) is a fine sound engineer and has his own recording studio in Rutherford, N.J. In fact, two of the most recent Earls albums, “Back On the Streets of the Bronx” and “Moonlight Kiss,” were recorded at his studio.

Vitto Garcia is the most recent addition to the Earls. Garcia does bass, keyboards, guitar, drums, trombone, vocals, and more. He’s also a music instructor, arranger and composer.

The group has placed many songs on the charts, including “Life Is But a Dream,” “Never, I Believe,” and the classic “Remember Then.” They’ve recorded many other classics including “Looking For My Baby,” “Eyes,” “Kissin’,” and “Cry, Cry, Cry.” An Earls performance features audience participation and comedy. Chance’s comedy talents were featured on the Imus in the Morning show, where he performed, memorably, character voices for 10 years.

Larry Chance & the Earls were very honored to be inducted into the Bronx Walk of Fame on June 21, 2008, joining such notables as Colin Powell, Regis Philbin, Danny Aiello, Red Buttons, Rita Moreno, Bobby Darin and Luther Vandross. This is the highest honor the borough bestows. Larry Chance & the Earls were also very honored to be inducted into the Wildwood, New Jersey Walk of Fame in 2008.

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