Ronnie & The Hi-Lites were a doo-wop group from New Jersey formed during the early 1960s. They are best remembered for the romantic ballad, "I Wish That We Were Married," featuring an emotional and weepy spoken passage about midway through the song. Led by the young sweet-voiced soprano, Ronnie Goodson, this group is often compared stylistically to Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers, another hitmaking doo-wop group featuring a boy soprano lead singer.
They began as a group known as The Cascades (not to be confused with the same-named group of "Rhythm Of The Rain" fame) originally consisting of Sonny Caldwell (tenor), John Witney (tenor), Kenny Overby (bass), and Stanley Brown (baritone). The group added Ronnie Goodson, then only 12 years old, who became the new lead singer. The Cascades were introduced to the producer/songwriter husband-and-wife team, Hal and Marion Weiss, who offered the group "I Wish We Were Married," a song co-written by Marion Weiss and Edna Lewis. Joy Records, a small, New York-based independent label owned by the Weisses, picked up The Cascades' demo, signed a deal with the group which it renamed Ronnie & The Hi-Lites, and subsequently released the single.
Ronnie & The Hi-Lites made their debut on the Pop/Rock charts in 1962 with "I Wish We Were Married," which became a Top 20 hit. Two minor hits followed, "Be Kind" (1962) and "A Slow Dance" (1963). The group recorded several more songs on both the Win and Joy labels before finally disbanding around the mid 1960s.
Ronnie Goodson later joined John Fred & His Playboy Band as a trumpeter. He died on November 4, 1980 at age 31 of a brain tumor.
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Ronnie And The Hi-Lites
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