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The Swingin' Medallions have been based out of the Greenwood South
since the early 1960's. Their musical roots came from
listening to the early
and blues acts. The music most often associated with the band is beach music,
rock, R&B, or shaggin' music. After a few years of
touring colleges from
the Carolinas to the
Louisiana Bayou, John McElrath took the group to Arthur
Smith's Studio in Charlotte North
Carolina, to record "Double Shot
(of My Baby's
Love)". The song became a million seller in 1966,
and has been a party classic
for college students for decades. "She Drives Me Out Of My Mind"
Baby" were top 40 hits in 1966 and 1967, but "Double Shot" remains the signature
song of the Swingin' Medallions.
The members of the Swingin' Medallions have changed over the past thirty years, with John McElrath being the leader and only member to be performing today. The personnel of the band has always included around eight members with at least a four piece horn section. The high energy party style stage performance of the first Medallions has been passed down to the band that performs today. The present Medallions stage show has coined them the name "The Party Band of the South."
Many of the Medallions attended and graduated from Lander University in Greenwood, SC while performing in the south east. The University of Georgia was also the home of some of the band members.
Lewis Grizzard wrote in a 1993 article that, "Even today, when I hear the Swingin' Medallions sing "Double Shot of My Baby's Love, " it makes me want to stand outside in the hot sun with a milkshake cup full of beer in one hand and a slightly-drenched nineteen-year-old coed in the other."
The Original Band that recorded "Double Shot"
(back row left to right) *Charlie Webber-trumpet, vocals *Steve Caldwell - saxophone, vocals *Jimmy Perkins-saxophone, bass guitar, vocals *John McElrath-keyboards, vocals *Carroll Bledsoe-trumpet,vocals *Jim Doares-guitar, vocals (front row) *Brent Fortson-saxophone, flute, vocals *Joe Morris-drums, vocals
Steve Caldwell and Brent Fortson formed the Pieces of Eight in
they were replaced by Hack Bartley and Johnny Cox. Grainger
Hines was added to the band in late 1967, when
Huey became the Drummer.