Black Music at Elon During Integration

Shaunta Alvarez
February 17, 2012

Although there were no African American students on campus until 1963, Elon was not immune to the popularity of the doo-wop, R&B/soul sounds that swept the nation during the 1950s and 1960s. As Elon began to welcome black students to the campus in the mid-to-late 1960s, popular black music groups were also welcomed. Between 1964 and 1970, several African-American groups were invited to Elon to perform during two of the most significant social campus events—Homecoming and Spring Weekend.

Here are some of the groups that were brought to campus.

Examples of each group’s songs are included to help jog your memory (but not necessarily the songs that were performed at Elon).

1964 Homecoming

The Drifters—“Save the Last Dance for Me,” “Up on the Roof,” “On Broadway”

1965 Spring Weekend

Little Royal and the Swingmasters—“Razor Blade,” “Jealous”

The Marvelettes—“Please Mr. Postman,” “Don’t Mess with Bill”

The Blue Notes –“My Hero,” “Get Out (And Let Me Cry),” “If You Don’t Know Me By Now”

1965 Homecoming

 The Shirelles—“Dedicated to the One I Love,” “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow,” “Soldier Boy”

1966 Spring Weekend

The Vibrations—“My Girl Sloopy,” “The Watusi,” “Cause You’re Mine”

1966 Homecoming

The Platters—“Only You (And You Alone),” The Great Pretender,” “If I Didn’t Care”

1967 Spring Weekend

The Temptations—“Ain’t Too Proud to Beg,” “My Girl,” “Get Ready”

1967 Homecoming

Little Anthony and the Imperials—“I’m on the Outside Looking In,” “Hurt So Bad”

1968 Spring Weekend

Carla Thomas— “Gee Whiz (Look At His Eyes),” “I’ll Never Stop Loving You”

Billy Stewart—“Strange Feeling,” “I Do Love You,” “Sitting in the Park”

1968 Homecoming

Jerry Butler—“For Your Precious Love,” “He Will Break Your Heart,” “Only the Strong Survive”

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