THE SKEE BROTHERS
The Skee Brothers are, in fact, brothers Jim and T.J. Shedlowsky from Pontiac, Michigan (born 1937 and '38 respectively. Jim Shedlowsky, now 78, and his brother T.J., who is 77, formed their band back in 1958 when rock 'n roll was just emerging against a backdrop of crooners and folk singers. Encouraged by their parents, Joe and Tommie Lee, who owned a general store, and who had a country music band of their own, the brothers practiced at home and eventually went on to wow the public on American Bandstand in 1958. Their music sounded very similar to that of the Everly Brothers. Over the years, a variety of drummers and guitarists has helped to augment their sound. The Skee Brothers were a very active band for approximately 15 to 20 years, receiving air play, traveling around much of lower Michigan, where they had a big following that included five or six fan clubs. An affiliate of the MCA booking agency put the brothers in touch with the team of Bob Crewe and Frank Slay in New York. Crewe and Slay had been producing the Rays and Billy & Lillie, and had already racked up several hits by the time the Shedlowkys came to them. By this time Crewe and Slay had set up XYZ Records on 160 W. 87th Street in New York, and they brought the Shedlowskys to town for several weeks of rehearsing and recording. Crewe and Slay pitched the brothers' masters to Columbia Records and negotiated a sale on April 1, 1958. Crewe and Slay produced the brothers for Roulette Records and Southern Sound Records. Their Philadelphia contracts landed the brothers a spot on American Bandstand, but otherwise the Skee Brothers didn't venture far from Detroit. Realizing that only a fraction of those who try to actually make it to the big time, the brothers opted to preserve their bank while pursuing careers. Jim, who has a degree from the University of Michigan, is an engineer, retired from General Motors and T.J. is a computer systems analyst retired from EDS. From the time they began recording until about 1975 the brothers worked night clubs as many as four nights a week while also working their day jobs. The Skee Brothers continued to perform over the years and now, after 57 years, various releases on labels including Epic Records and Columbia Records, the Skee Brothers have joined Dharma Records USA for an opportunity to release a number of their original tunes in 2015 and again share their music with the world!