She formed a high school singing group with buddies that came to be called The Shirelles. Harris died of a heart attack in a performance in 1982. Vocalist. The four girls soon found they weren’t only inseparable as buddies but also musically cohesive. Motivated by friends to cultivate their ability, the girls formed a singing group patterned after The Chantels, calling themselves The Poquellos (Spanish for “small birds”). Shortly the girls started composing and rehearsing their particular tunes with Reeves as the lead singer.
The Poquellos composed and performed their very first tune, “I Met Him on a Sunday,” a cappella in a high school talent show, gaining tremendous applause from their peers. One buddy in particular adored the group so much that she convinced the girls to audition for her mom, Florence Greenberg, the head of a tiny record label. Greenberg was so impressed with all the girls’ raw talent and possibility that she immediately signed on as their supervisor, altering their stage name in the Poquellos to The Shirelles (inspired by the lead singer’s first name and The Chantels).
The very first single released by Harris and Greenberg’s three school buddies was the 1st song they ever composed and performed, “I Met Him on a Sunday.” Professionally recorded and licensed under Decca Records in 1958, the tune shortly hit the radio and deciphered the National Top 50. After two following singles flopped, Decca passed on releasing any more records in the group as well as the women were signed to Greenberg’s new label, Scepter Records. Greenberg brought in a more creative producer named Luther Dixon to revamp the Shirelles’ design. Luther’s string-significant compositions helped create the group’s trademark sound, which combined elements of pop and doo wop.
Just released tracks in 1960 — tunes such as “Dedicated to the One I Love” and “Tonight’s the Night” — neglected to make much of an influence on the pop charts but got a bit of success in the R&B format. After in 1960, yet, Harris and her band mates struck gold with “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?” composed by Gerry Goffin and Carole King.
A couple of further singles, “Mama Said” and “Big John,” did the same afterwards in the exact same year.
The Shirelles managed to score one more double pop/R&B Top 10 hit with 1963’s “Foolish Little Girl,” but found it hard to keep their previous degree of success as the British Invasion led to changing musical preferences after in the 1960s, shortly relegating pop-significant early-1960s menu to the standing of “oldies.”
Though no longer chart toppers, Harris and the Shirelles continued to tour and perform their hits before passionate supporters in the 1970s and 1980s. Various members went on hiatus for several years at a time to raise young kids, but Harris stayed a constant presence throughout. Disaster hit, however, when Harris suffered a massive heart attack in a performance in Atlanta, Georgia, in June 1982. Paramedics were not able to save the Shirelles, and Harris died in age 42. In the aftermath of Harris’ terrible passing, the first Shirelles disbanded; afterwards, distinct groups including various former members of the group performed underneath the name. However, the ability and coherence of the first quartet of high school buddies would never again be matched.