Cadillacs and Coasters Singer Earl Carroll Dead at 75
Classic singer, Earl Carroll, passed away over the weekend in New York City. The 75-year-old was in a nursing facility and had been suffering from diabetes and the effects of a stroke.
Carroll first found fame in the 1950s with the doo-wop group he helped create, the Cadillacs. With him as their lead singer, they went on to release hits including “Wishing Well,” “Gloria,” “You Are,” “My Girlfriend,” and “Peek-a-Boo.” They also performed a jive-inspired covered of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”
During an interview in 1994, the singer talked about his nickname, “Speedo” (which also served as the name of one of their many songs). The origins have nothing to do with the famous swimwear, rather, he explained: "I always liked to take my time, do things at my own pace. Since I was a kid, the other guys would be telling me, 'C'mon, hurry up, Speedy.'"
In the early 1960s, Carroll began fronting the Coasters, a rival group, and remained with them for two decades but, ultimately, he reunited with the Cadillacs for a car commercial.
As is the case with many stars, he went on to work in a slightly less glamorous occupation. For years he served as the janitor at New York City’s Public School 87 where he was referred to as “Speedo” and even inspired the book, That’s Our Custodian.
Undoubtedly, this man will surely be missed.
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