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"Sonny" Charles Hemphill was born in Arkansas and moved with his family to Ft. Wayne, Indiana when he was a young boy. It was there that he joined Bobby Stevens and his boyhood friends starting a band and began singing. After several talent shows, they decided to try to make some money and started having real paying gigs. Later the band "TheCheckmates, Ltd.", one of, if not the first mixed group of the era, there were two white members… read more

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