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Band Still Serves A Full Platter Of Soul

Thu., July 4, 1996, midnight

According to Dave Marsh of Rolling Stone, the Platters were “one of the slickest R&B; groups of the Fifties.”

Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990, The Platters are still going strong even though several of the original members have died. The band was formed in Los Angeles in 1953 by Tony Williams, David Lynch, Paul Robi, Herb Reed and Zola Taylor.

Best known for their smash hits “The Great Pretender,” “Harbor Lights,” “Only You” and “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes,” the group perfected the kind of funky smooch music that Curtis Mayfield’s Impressions and Smokey Robinson’s Miracles would later make an art form,” writes Marsh in “The New Rolling Stone Record Guide.”

Twenty years of legal battles gave Paul Robi sole legal rights to the name The Platters, and his wife, Martha, and daughter, Franchesca Robi, carried on the tradition after his death in 1989.

The group’s current lineup is Gia Von Karl, John Hopkins, Myles Thompkins and Gene Van Buren. They will be performing the hits from the ‘50s and ‘60s at 8:45 tonight at the Lilac Bowl in Riverfront Park.

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