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Joe Ames Obituary

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Joe Ames, the deep-voiced anchor and eldest member of the 1950s hit singing group the Ames Brothers, has died. He was 86.

Ames died Dec. 22 at a hospital several days after suffering a heart attack, said his daughter, Jo-Ellen Ames.

Joe Ames and brothers Ed, Gene and Vic were one of the most popular quartets in the decades before the advent of rock 'n' roll.

For nearly three decades, the Ames brothers built a career that included eight gold records and regular appearances on TV, in fancy nightclubs and Las Vegas. They had international hits such as "The Naughty Lady of Shady Lane" and sang a variety of styles, from folk songs to rhythm and blues.

They were named Billboard magazine's best vocal group of the year in 1958.

The group disbanded in the early 1960s. Ed Ames had a solo career and later went into acting. Joe and the others recorded some albums as a group and had a television show in Houston in the early 1960s.

In 1965, Joe Ames moved to Germany, where he had intended to try an operatic career but instead became involved in producing and managing other talents, his daughter said.

As a consultant, he conceived and developed musical programs for German public television channel ZDF. He continued consulting for the channel until retiring about 15 years ago, his daughter said.

Copyright © 2008 The Associated Press

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