“Last Kiss” by J.Frank Wilson & The Cavaliers-Rayman’s Song of the day [AUDIO]
On this day in 1964, J.Frank Wilson and his manager/producer Sonley Roush were involved in a tragic car accident. J. Frank was driving, and fell asleep. He was badly injured, Sonley Roush was killed.
Sonley Roush was a strange man who lived with his mother, and was obsessed with the song” Last Kiss.” Originally recorded by Wayne Cochran, the song all but flopped, and Cochran resorted to playing small clubs in Texas. It was at one of these clubs that Sonlee first heard “Last Kiss.” Unimpressed with Wayne Cochran, he bought the record and brought it to J.Franks band, urging them to record it, which they did. Sonley not only sat in on the session, but also produced the record, and eventually sold the distribution rights to “Josie Records.”
Soon the song topped the Billboard charts at #1. This brought J.Frank Wilson almost superstar status, but along with that came all night parties complete with sex, booze and whatever else you care to throw into the mix.. J.Frank became so delusional that the Cavaliers (his backing band) left him after only a handful of gigs.
Sonley continued to manage J.Frank, and the two were on away to a gig in Canton Ohio when the crash occurred.With the loss of Sonlee Roush coupled with the fact he was never able to duplicate the success of “Last Kiss”, J. Frank Wilson’s alcoholic problems became worse than ever. He had gone through eight marriages as he sank deeper into alcoholism. Desperate, he took to working odd jobs, or day jobs. His last job was mopping floors at an institution. He died shortly after, penniless.