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Lollipop Ronald & Ruby (RCA, 1958)

Ronald Gumm and Beverly “Ruby” Ross compromised an interracial pop vocal duo in the 1950s when few interracial groups existed. Ronald & Ruby did not appear in public or in press or on TV outlets. In 1958, they had a #20 Hot 100 hit with Lollipop. The song was written by Ross and Julius Dixson. Lollipop remains a favorite song for barbershop music performers.

The inspiration for Lollipop? Dixson was late for a recording session with Ross because his daughter had gotten a lollipop stuck in her hair. Ross was struck by a lightening bolt. She sat down at the piano and wrote an ode to lollipops on the spot. She recorded a demo with Gumm, who was Dixson’s neighbor. RCA got ahold of the demo and Ronald & Ruby had a hit.

Soon, The Chordettes, a popular female quartet, recorded their own version and went to #2 on the pop chart and #3 on the R&B chart. Now Lollipop had worldwide attention. The Chordettes took the song international, peaking at #6 in the UK.