Although vocalist Jimmy Helms was born in Florida in 1944, he scored his hits and marked his career almost entirely in the United Kingdom. An early burning desire for music was fed during his years in the United States Army, where he played in the Fort Jackson Army Band. Switching from band to song and changing his home base from America to Britain after his stint in the service, Helms released his first single, "Ragtime Girl," on Pye records in 1963. He followed up with one more early single in 1969 when London released "If You Let Me." Neither managed to do anything, but they certainly helped build the forward momentum that pushed Helms to the spotlight during the '70s.