Doo Wop Groups
The great lyrics have helped this song endure over the decades. They speak to being in the city and leaving the troubles of the world behind when you go up on the roof: “I climb way up to the top of the stairs / And all my cares just drift right into space.” The song was written by the prolific team of Gerry Goffin and Carole King. Released in 1962, The Drifters’ recording went to #5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #4 on the R&B Chart in early 1963. (In the U.K., versions by Kenny Lynch (#10) and then later Robson & Jerome (#1) charted more successfully than the one by The Drifters.)
The Drifters are a New York City group, originally formed by Clyde McPhatter, that has gone through so many iterations and splinter groups that it would require an encyclopedia article to go through them all. To make an epic short, for “Up on the Roof,” Rudy Lewis was the lead vocalist and Carole King one of the pianists. The Drifters continue to tour and perform.