The Kingston Trio were one of the connectors between what can be called traditional folk music and modern folk-music of the 1960s.
The group was formed in San Francisco by Bob Shane, Nick Reynolds, and Dave Guard. They were quickly signed to a recording contract by Capital. It was a good move as in the late 1950s-early 1960s pre-Beatles era, their albums consistently reached number one and sold tens-of-millions of copies.
“Tom Dula” was a mountain man hanged for murder in 1868. A folk tune was written about his death. Nearly a century later, The Kinston Trio resurrected the song and took it all the way to number one on the BILLBOARD hot 100 for the week of November 17, 1958.
John Stewart replaced Dave Guard in 1961 and remained with the group until 1967. There have been reunions and Bob Shane fronted the band for decades.