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"the Phantom" Vs. Sonny Craver

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everyone on the internet is saying that this record by "The Phantom" is sonny craver:




here is audio:



the record is produced by sonny craver. Does anyone have any actual evidence of this besides speculation and everyone copying everyone else's information? Listening to this record and comparing it to other sonny craver 45s I guess it's possible but on other 45s Sonny Craver has a deeper voice and less of a southern accent. The more I listen the less I think it's Sonny Craver and instead an internet rumor. Anyone have any actual substantiating evidence (e.g. something concrete saying that Sonny Craver went by that pseudonym or an interview with Sonny himself?). I also don't see why he would produce the record and randomly make up the pseudonym for this one record. Thanks in advance for any info on this.

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Definitely not Sonny. Most likely Ervin Rucker whom he would have been working with at the time. Probably cut it during the Musette contract and issued as The Phantom to skirt the label bosses.

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wow thanks a lot. i see you sold an ervin rucker 45, do you have more info on him / connections to him? I checked out this video:



the southern accent is much closer, but the voice doesn't exactly match. But the youtube video could have been sped up / slowed down.

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i listened to a bunch of ervin rucker 45s on youtube. unfortunately a lot are sped up and slowed down. this is the closest one vocally i could find (but it has noise reduction that renders it unlistenable):



the accent is the same at least

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Sonny Craver recorded this track as well got at least two releases, I have it on Stanson, and I have seen it on Musette, I also have the Phantom version, definitely a different singer.





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His real name is Ervin Groves and he was Lani(Lenni) Groves father. By the time he would have cut this he was pushing his daughters career and she was under contract with Musette, as well. The flip of the Ervin Rucker discovery I posted for offers(which is still available) is a version of "Sentimental Reasons". I'll give it a listen and compare. Another possibility is Jimmy Gresham whom Sonny would have been working with here in San Diego, as well. Some of these guys had very wide ranging voices it's tough to tell sometimes!

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The flip of the Phantom is written by Cliff Chambers for what it's worth. It doesn't sound like him either. Voices have wide ranges but accents are harder to fake. The accent is pretty exact on Ervin Rucker, although the voice doesn't exactly match.

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Just to say I love this record - his voice, the strings, the backing vocals, the lyrics, the production - one of my absolute faves


I offload records all the time to make room for more, but would never part with this one


Sorry, no idea who The Phantom is though!

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Wow, Missed this thread. I've collected allot of the Musette 45's, and tried to piece together the history of the label, I have a contact with a daughter of one of the then co-owners of Musette records, so happy to ask about the the Phantom / Stanton / Musette couplings, see what comes back.


Agree with the above, the Phantom is definitely the better of the two releases (Musette, Karisma) on 'Come Back to Me'...


Erin is deffo Lenni's father, and he turns up all over the place. His Musette 45 is very good and the song and his voice is a dead ringer for Bobby Blands "Yeild not to Temptation' in fact its a very thinly disguised version basically. So Erin Rucker and Erwin Groves are one of the same person...





MR-100— Unknown "¨MR-101— Unknown

MR-102 — Sonny Craver - I’m No Fool / Come Back "¨"¨

MR-103 — Unknown

MR-104 — Unknown

MR-105 — Unknown

MR-106— Unknown

MR-107— Unknown

MR-108— Unknown

MR-109 / MR-110 - Bobby Bryant Sextet -Fifty-Eighth Street / A Change is Gonna Come

MR-112 — June Jackson - You're Welcome  /Bottoms Up "¨"¨"¨

76- 9151 — Mickie Champion -What Good Am I(Without You) / The Hurt Still Lingers On "¨

"¨65-10 — Lenni Groves - Sweet Sixteen (With A Broken Heart) / Fool For A Day "¨"¨

65-11 — Lennie Groves - Bye Bye Baby / A Million Tears Ago "¨"¨

65-12 — Lenni Groves - Sweet Sixteen (With A Broken Heart) / Good Show "¨"¨

65-13 — Garnett Sykes -Longer Than Forever /Go Go Girl "¨"¨

65-14 — Ervin Rucker -She's Alright / Kids Together "¨"¨

65-15 — Unknown - However a Musette Acetate exists and states - You know How Love Is / Show Business "¨(MR xx 615) * not credited but June Jackson but vocally definitely him.

"¨65-16 — Arlene Williams - Duck 'All Over Town'/ Duck 'All Over Town' (Part 2)

"¨"¨65-17 — The Other Four - Searching For My Love/ Why


The numbering seems to be per side as apposed to per disc, if you get my meaning, Meaning MR103 - MR - 108 are likely to be 3 45's as apposed to 6, But I dont have actual evidence to support that, it's just my guess. Bit of Maths for ya.... yes thats Math with an 'S' to our American Brothers and sisters... Laughs






Edited by Mal C

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