Herschel Edison Foshee (1911-1949)


Herschel Foshee, from Mississippi, was an employee of the Stamps-Baxter Music and Printing Company working in the printing plant and singing bass in several of the company’s quartets during the late 1930s including the Original Stamps Quartet (V.O. Stamps Quartet) of Dallas.

In 1940, V.O. Stamps, president of Stamps-Baxter, sent Foshee to manage and sing bass in the Stamps-Baxter Melody Boys (aka Stamps Melody Boys) in Arkansas. Well known pianist , songwriter, and arranger Joe Roper was also in the group.

Foshee left the Melody Boys to serve in the US Army during WW2 where he rose to the rank of Sergeant. After the war, he became the manager and bass singer of a group called Herschel Foshee and his Stamps-Baxter Quartet. Joe Roper joined him in the new group. They began in Mississippi in 1946, but they soon moved to Illinois before moving back to Arkansas in 1948. There Foshee organized an additional group called the Herschel Foshee Junior Quartet.

On November 16, 1949, Herschel Foshee died from heart disease at the age of 38.

The remaining Herschel Foshee Stamps-Baxter Quartet members continued on with Smilin’ Joe Roper in charge and soon reclaimed the pre-war name, the Melody Boys. Gerald Williams, who had been the bass for the Foshee Junior Quartet became the bass singer for the Melody Boys and would go on to much success as the manager of the Melody Boys, continuing Foshee’s legacy for many years.

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