The year was 1963.
Joan Marie Johnson Faust and her cousins, Barbara Ann and Rosa Lee Hawkins competed in a high school talent contest. The young women called themselves the Mel-Tones. They didn’t win.
Still, they were good enough to draw the attention of Joe Jones who became their manager. Jones got them an audition before producers Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, two of the most successful songwriters of all time.
Leiber and Stoller signed the three to their record label, Red Bird. The Mel-Tones name was out. In came the Dixie Cups.
Within a year they recorded their first single. In1964 it went all the way to #1, knocking the Beatles out of the top spot.
Joan Marie Johnson Faust died earlier this week of congestive heart failure. She was 72.