"Beach music has best been described as happy music."

For more than fifty years, the Swingin’ Medallions have been idolized by fans of beach music. The band, as described by Bledsoe, one of the original members, got its start among some Southern college students. The first choice of a name was the Medallions, but as that name was already taken, the Swingin’ Medallions became the band’s moniker. Early on, the group began working on their version of a then little-known song, “Double Shot of My Baby’s Love.” Their rendition would eventually propel them to nationwide recognition. With a unique mix that included two trumpets and three saxophones, the group had just the right sound to record the song, a tune which became a perennial fan favorite, boosting the band to tour all over America. They even performed once for the Rat Pack—Frank Sinatra and other stars who dug the beach music energy.

Bledsoe writes with good humor but takes the band and its accomplishments seriously. Over the years, the group has had more than sixty members. The author also weaves in some intriguing historical trivia such as the fact that beach music has its roots in the Carolinas, was popularized in Myrtle Beach, and has certain signature tunes like “Double Shot” and dance styles like the Shag associated with it. Bledsoe has created a lively chronicle of the band’s downs (arrests, seasick fishing trips, grappling with the Boston accent vs. their Southern drawl) and the huge ups (the Sinatra party, the long US tour, and a big royalty check out of the blue for “Double Shot”). He poignantly recalls members who have passed on and others who left the music scene, while proudly noting that the Swingin’ Medallions still perform today. American culture, mid-twentieth-century music, and youthful ambitions all play into this nostalgic tribute that will be appreciated by family and fans.

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