Of the many groups that sprung up in the wake of the phenomenal success of The Kingston Trio, The Limeliters were among the more authentic interpreters of folk in a sea of bland, college friendly sound-alike groups.
Singer Glenn Yarbrough, had also been at St John’s College with Holzman, and among their fellow students they were voted as the two least likely to succeed. Yarbrough had already released two albums for Elektra: Here We Go Baby! in 1957 (later renamed Glenn Yarbrough); and, with Marilyn Child, English And American Folksongs before he began performing at the Limelite club in Aspen, Colorado with Alex Hassilev. They teamed up with musicologist and bass player Lou Gottlieb, once with the influential Gateway Singers. The trio soon built up a reputation for music in California’s top clubs Cosmo Alley and the hungry I.
All three were fine instrumentalists, but they also delivered a highly entertaining stage act. The Limeliters also harboured pop ambitions, Elektra releasing “The Hammer Song” as a single, then unusual for the label. It made no impact but the group’s debut album, The Limeliters, gave Elektra its first ever chart album, reaching a lofty Number 72.