The Midnight String Quartet were an easy listening chamber music quartet, consisting of two violins, a viola, and a cello, made up of students (at the time) or graduates from the University of Southern California. They played lush ethereal sounds to covers and standards over several albums from 1966 to the early seventies, supplemented by a professional rhythm section, often including bass, drums and guitar and sometimes piano and harpsichord.

History

The Midnight String Quartet made a series of instrumental exotica recordings produced by "Tommy 'Snuff' Garrett," on Viva Records (U.S.), a subsidiary of Snuff Garrett Records. Their First album, Rhapsodies for Young Lovers (1966) was arranged by Leon Russell and spent 59 weeks in the Billboard charts peaking at number 17 in November 1966.,

More chart success followed in the U.S. with Spanish Rhapsodies for Young Lovers, reaching number 76 in May 1967 and Rhapsodies for Young Lovers, Volume Two, reaching number 67 in July 1967.Christmas Rhapsodies for Young Lovers reached number 18 at Christmas 1967 while Love Rhapsodies only making number 129 in March 1968.The Look of Love and Other Rhapsodies for Young Lovers reached number 194 in August 1968.,

Midnight String Quartet continued releasing albums with a double album Best of the Midnight String Quartet being released in 1971.,

Interest resurfaced during the Lounge Revival of the mid nineties and has seen among others, the re- release on cd of Rhapsodies for Young Lovers on the Varese Sarabande label with extra tracks and additional liner notes by 'Elevator music' and'The Cocktail' author Joseph Lanza.

Oddly, none of the 4 members ever received a dime.....

Personnel

Besides the string quartet itself (The Midnight String Quartet), other players in the rhythm section of their first album Rhapsodies For Young Lovers include:, Leon Russell- Piano, arrangements & conductor. Jim W. Gordon- Drums. Michel Rubini- Harpsichord. Lyle Workman- Bass.

Midnight Strings Quartet Members: Violins: Ron Folsom and Jay Rosen. Viola: Jerry Epstein. Cello: Ryan Selberg.