PHILADELPHIA (CelebrityAccess) Joe “Terry” Terranova, 78, longtime frontman of Danny and the Juniors, died of natural causes at his home in Williamstown April 15, according to former bandmate Frank Marffei.
Terry began his career singing on the street corners of Philadelphia before forming a group called the Juvenaires with three other neighborhood teens. The name was eventually changed to Danny & The Juniors. The singing group included Danny Rapp, David White and Maffei.
“We used to sing in school, in electric shop, when we were doing bell wire and stuff like that,” Maffei told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “The teacher would say, ‘You better learn how to run those wires. … You sure aren’t going to make a living singing.’
“He was wrong.”
The band’s first single was “At The Hop.” It was broadcast live on “American Bandstand” and sold 7,000 copies in Philly its first week. It became a national No. 1 hit for seven straight weeks. That was followed by the hit “Rock and Roll Is Here to Stay.”
White left the group in 1960 and Rapp died in 1983. Terry, along with Maffei and Maffei’s brother, toured the act for several decades.
“Terry was smart. He could always get us to work,” Maffei said. “We worked all over the world.”
The act toured Canada, Europe, South America and Asia and performed alongside acts like Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly and Fats Domino. They were honored by the Philadelphia Music Alliance in 1992 and inducted into the Walk of Fame and Hall of Fame.