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The Bells (band): Wikis


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The Bells were a Canadian rock band from Montreal that had two hit singles in the early 1970s. Featuring South African natives Anne and Jackie Ralph as well as Cliff Edwards, Doug Gravelle and Gordie McLeod, the group started in 1965 as The Five Bells.

They had their first hit in 1969 with "Moody Manitoba Morning", followed in 1970 — after shortening their name and making some personnel changes — by "Fly Little White Dove, Fly", which became a Top 10 hit in Canada. Piano player Frank Mills joined The Bells for a short period from 1970 to 1971, after which he pursued a successful solo career, the highlight of which was the #3 1979 U.S. hit single "Music Box Dancer." Charlie Clark also joined the band in 1970 as a guitarist and vocalist; he now lives in Saint John, New Brunswick.

"White Dove" was followed up in 1971 by "Stay Awhile", a duet featuring Ralph and Edwards. Written by Saint John native Ken Tobias, the song became a major hit worldwide, selling four million copies and became their only Top 40 hit in the U.S., reaching #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.[1] This disc sold over one million copies before the major U.S. radio stations played it, and received a gold disc awarded by the R.I.A.A. on 27 May 1971.[1] The song features a whispered vocal by Jackie Ralph. The success led to invitations to perform on The Tonight Show in June 1971[1] and The Merv Griffin Show.

In Australia "Stay Awhile" reached #9.

Despite Edwards's departure to set out on a successful solo career in 1973, the group has continued to perform occasionally over the years. Edwards is now owner of a restaurant in Gananoque, Ontario called MacNeil's Landing.


  1. ^ a b c Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 301. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.  

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