The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum


Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers

Why Do Fools Fall in Love

 

 

Frankie Lymon Teenagers 1993 Induction Ceremony Biography Timeline

Frankie Lymon Teenagers Why Do Fools Fall In Love Gee Records 1956

Digital Classroom Teacher Resource

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Listen

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Why It Matters

"Why Do Fools Fall in Love" (1956)

Why Do Fools Fall in Love Gee Records Frankie LymonVocal harmony, or “doo wop” records were essential to the first wave of rock and roll. The groups, based in urban areas like New York and Philadelphia, created a unique sound featuring harmony singing and light or no instrumentation. Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers, from Harlem, New York released the most exciting and influential vocal harmony record, “Why Do Fools Fall in Love?” in 1956, when Lymon was only 13 years old. The song hit #1 on the R&B charts, #6 pop, and even hit number one in the United Kingdom, where rock and roll broke big. Lymon’s high, energetic voice and dynamic performance characterized the excitement and fun that defined rock and roll. The record also inspired many female performers who created their own groups, such as The Chantels and The Ronettes.

Frankie Lymon Objective

Frankie Lymon Objective

Frankie Lymon Objective

Frankie Lymon Objective                             Frankie Lymon Objective                           Frankie Lymon Objective 

Spotlight Video

Boyz II Men inducts Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.

From the Collection Artifact

Why Do Fools Fall in Love Sheet Music Gee Records“Why Do Fools Fall in Love” Sheet Music, 1956

Click on image to enlarge.

Describe what you see. What do you observe?  

  • Frankie Lymon shares songwriting credit with George Goldner (producer and owner of Gee Records). What does this shared credit suggest about the realities of publishing royalties? What does it reveal about the relationship between artists and management/record companies in the early years of rock and roll?
  • What does the image used suggest about Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers as performers?  How is Frankie Lymon set apart? Note that “Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers” doesn’t appear as text in any prominent way. Why might that be?
  • What was the purpose of sheet music? How did sheet music help to market a song and build an audience in the 1950s?

 

Right Here Right Now

You can hear the influence of Frankie Lymon's vocal style combined with the Teenagers' harmony in the Ronettes (fronted by Ronnie Spector) and the Jackson 5 (fronted by Michael Jackson) and Destiny's Child (fronted by Beyonce).

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Lesson Plam Frankie Lymon                             Classroom Tools Frankie Lymon                           Glossary Frankie Lymon                        Resource Guide Frankie Lymon                   Power Point Frankie Lymon  

 

    Digital Classroom Teacher Resource



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