Earl Lewis & The Channels were known just as the Channels at the start back in 1956. They were from a combination of two vocal groups, the Channels and the Lotharios. When two member of the Channels left, bass singer Clifton Wright and Earl Michael Lewis of the Lotharios were recruited by the remaining Channels. The following became the Classic Channel lineup: Earl Lewis, Clifton Wright, Edward Doulphin, Billy Morris and Larry Hampden.This New York City group from Harlem had a unique style all to themselves; Edward, Billy and Larry would sing the verse in three part harmony while Clifton rounded out the bottom. Earl's lead and falsetto would take over the bridge. The Channels recorded their signature song 'The Closer You Are' in 1956, which was penned by Earl Lewis. They would later record the 'Gleam In Your Eye' which Earl wrote when he was working on his newspaper route. The Channels would record a string of hits such as 'My Love Will Never Die', 'Altar Of Love', 'My Heart Is Sad', 'Gloria' and Frankie Laine's 'That's My Desire'.
The current group lineup consist of :
Earl Lewis (Lead Vocals) - Earl hails from NYC and began singing while working on his newspaper route as a boy. It was there where Earl began writing his own material. Earl's voice is still in rare form; he continues to sing his material in their original key. Earl is also a Christian.
Jack Brown (Bass/Baritone & member since 1969) - Jack began singing in his church while his mother played the piano. This senior member, next to Earl, can be heard on the 'Take 1 & Take 2' CD's as well as the Channels' recent CD 'Especially For You'.
Salahuddin Aziz (1st Tenor) - Salahuddin (pronounced Sa-la-hoo-deen) has returned to the Channels. A member of The Roamers in 1954 and acapella group The Attributes he brings his fine tenor back to the Channels. A fan favorite who's number one request is 'My Heart Is Sad'.
Joe Rivera III (1st Tenor/2nd Tenor/Baritone/Bass) - Joe hails from the Bronx and began singing in high school. Joe plays keyboards and is a Christian who loves the LORD JESUS. His influences are Sam Cooke, David Ruffin, Eddie Kendricks and Billy Stewart.
The Channels' Band are:
David Camacho - Keyboards
Dante DeLemus - Lead Guitar
John Eve - Bass Guitar
Angel 'Soupy' Zambrana - Drums
Over the last FIFTY YEARS, past venues have included; Beacon Theater (NYC), Benedum Theater (Pittsburgh, PA), Continental Airlines Arena (E. Rutherford, NJ), Ford Community Performing Arts Center (Dearborn, MI), Keswick Theater (Glenside, PA), Mellon Arena (Pittsburgh, PA), Mohegan Sun (Uncasville, CT), Radio City Music Hall (NYC), The Theater @Madison Square Garden (NYC), Westbury Music Fair (Westbury, NY) and two PBS Specials; to name a few.