Monday, May 14, 2007

78s fRom HeLL: The Nov-Elites - Cicero Mama

A small combo, a bouncy tune, and some completely insane background vocalizing - - like a blend of bop scatting and an ocarina impersonation.

I can't find a bit of info about The Nov-Elites. I'm going to guess this record was released in the USA around 1950, and I'll take a stab and guess they're referring to Cicero, Illinois.

I'd love to hear from you if you can fill in any further details. In the meantime, enjoy.






Listen to: The Nov-Elites - Cicero Mama (click for audio)

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

I believe this is probably the same group that was in Jerry Lewis' movie, The Bellboy. They were credited as The Novelites. I believe they are the same because a guy named Frankie Carr was in a group that was credited with both names, The Novelites and The Nov-Elites.

Anonymous said...

This group was a trio composed of Joe Mayer, Frankie Carr and Art Terry who all came from Cleveland, Ohio. They played in Cleveland, Las Vegas and also appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show in the 1960's. Joe was my father's first cousin on the Mayer side of the family.

Anonymous said...

JOE MAYER AND CREATOR OF THE NOV-ELITES IN 1943 STILL ALIVE AND IN THE MOVIES JITTER BUGHOUSE,I SURENDER DEAR,BELL BOY WENT SOLO ON OTHER MOVIES AFTER 30 YRS.

Anonymous said...

JOE MAYER THE ORIGINATOR OF THE NOV-ELITES STILL ALIVE.LIVES IN LAS VEGAS AND IT AMUSES HIM TO HEAR ALL THE WRONG THINGS ABOUT THE GROUP.JOE WROTE CICERO MAMA IF YOU LOOK AT THE RECORD WITH HIS NAME ON IT AND ALSO RECORDED THE VOCAL AND BASS PART.

Anonymous said...

Joe Mayer is my grandfather. He still lives in Las Vegas. Too many records to name but he also played in "The Rolling Dixie Jazz Band" . His daughter, I call her mom, lives in southern California. Leave a name or email address for contact.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous is correct. This trio was in the movie. Joe Mayer was also in a group called "The Rolling Dixie Jazz Band". They performed at the golden Nugget in Las Vegas. Joe Mayer is my grandfather. He is still living in Las Vegas. and is on Facebook as well as myself, Ken Boyle. Any other questions and I will try to answer them ASAP.

Anonymous said...

hes alive and well and living in vegas

Anonymous said...

THE NOV-ELITES JOE MAYER,FRANK CARR, ART TERRY WERE A ONE OF A KIND ACT.IN THE 40'S THEY PLAYED THE LAST OF VAUDIVILLE THEATRES,CHICAGO THEATRE,ORIENTAL,STRATFORD,OLYMPIA,AND AFEW IN INDIANA,ILLINOIS,ETC.ALL GREAT MUSICIANS,VOCALIST,COMEDIANS,IMPRESSIONIST,PLAYED EVERY TOP SUPPER CLUB IN THE U.S.FROM N Y TO SAN FRANCISCO,MOVIES,T V AND EUROPE TOUR AND TO MUCH MORE TO MENTION.

Anonymous said...

THE ORIGINAL NOV-ELITES FORMED IN 1942 IN CLEVELAND AND WERE JOE MAYER-LENNY COLYER-TONY ANZELONE WERE TOGEATHER A YEAR AND LET TONY GO AND BROUGHT IN FRANK CARR.

Anonymous said...

I am Lenny Colyer's daughter and I revel in the information 'Uncle' Joe told me about my father and the group. Tell me what you know about the early years!!!! Before my father went solo....

Lana said...

Joe Mayer, you are loved!
I met Joe in the 90's in Sarasota, Fl. My husband played drums with him at an annual event. Joe was playing banjo, singing and of course telling jokes. I am honored to be your friend still!

joe mayer said...

AT ONE POINT THERE WERE ABOUT 25 ACTS MIMICING THE NOV-ELTES BUT NONE COULD DO IT BECAUSE OF THE TALENT THE GROUP HAD.CHUCK LENNARD TOOK THE THE PLACE OF ART TERRY AND WAS WITH THE GROUP THE LAST 20 YRS.OF THEIR EXISTANCE WITH JOE AND FRANK.FRANK TRIED A DUO WITH DON CORNELL WHICH WAS SHORT LIVED,THEN TRIED TO RECREATE THE ORIGINAL ACT AND WAS SHORT LIVED.

Holly Hermann said...

I am Frankie Carr's granddaughter and am thrilled to finally see the past history of the Novelites hit the net. I too am looking forward to seeing Joe Mayer this week at my boyfriends performance. I have many fantastic memories of The Novelites and am so proud to be Frankie's granddaughter. He will always be greatly missed. I am forever grateful to Joe for sharing and converting several old format film of The Novelities to DVD. Which I just watched hours of with my mom....Hilarious even today as my boyfriend stated.

Anonymous said...

THE NOV-ELITES DURING WORLD WAR 2PLAYED USO CLUBS,BOND RALLIES,DEFENSE PLANTS,VETRANS HOSPITALS LIKE WALTER REED GOING FROM BED TO BED PUTING ON SHOW,HEART FUND,CANCER FUND,SOCIETY FOR THE BLIND AND EVERY CHAIRITABLE CAUSE THAT CAME ALONG .WE DONATED OUR TIME TO ALL OF THIS AND MORE. JOE MAYER

Dealer said...

In 1961 I was a dealer at the Stardust hotel in Las Vegas. My future wife was a singer with Esquivel.
The Novelites worked in the lounge, and I became good friends with Frankie Carr, Joe Mayer and the third member at that time Chuck Leonard. They did their comedy routine on a revolving stage alternating with other acts.
Interestingly Lee Greenwood, the popular country music singer, played background music for the group.
Joe was into Karate at that time and he would give classes to some of us on the lawn in front of his motel room.
I lost touch with them some time ago and don't know anything about them
now.

John Montesanto
sumi12000@msn.com

Suldog said...

I just watched them perform in the short subject "Jitter Bughouse" with "Curly Joe" De Rita (later a member of the Three Stooges), Christine Mcintyre, Emil Sitka. It was a fun little film with the group definitely stealing the show. I went to the 'net to see what I could find out about other appearances, and I ended up here. Glad to find out these guys had some further success. They were very funny and also good musicians.

Gary Horrell said...

When I was little (early 50's) they would visit the barber(Jack and his wife Jen) who lived downstairs of us on 60th and Ashland in Chicago.
Not to far from Cicero IL. Thanks for posting the song - I've been looking for them for years

Laurel Former said...

In the 80's I worked at the Riviera Cafe Noir with Antoinette Bowan. Her maiden name was Carrozza. I believe Frankie Carr was her Father. Would that be your mother?

Noreen Jackson said...

Back in the sixties I met the Novelites at Tahoe. Stayed at Joe's home with his wife Elda when I moved to Vegas. Joe is a great guy and so savvy. Thank you Joe for all your kindness to me.

Noreen Jackson

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