Wearing a black, cocktail-length dress and glittery shoes, Lipton Parker stepped onto the stage of Wilmington’s Grand Opera House while The Tymes played “So Much in Love,” their 1963 chart-topping song. On that night in September 2019, Lipton Parker was inducted into Delaware’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame.
“I was so honored that people came from near and far for my induction,” Lipton Parker says. “But I also thought, ‘It’s about time.’” Indeed, Lipton Parker has been on the First State’s music scene since the days of WAMS Friday night dances in the early 1960s. At the Claymont Fire Hall and Scottish Rite Cathedral, she saw The Beatles, Elvis, the Everly Brothers, The Drifters, Ray Charles and many more.
When WAMS need a traffic manager, she was offered the job of managing commercials. “Without computers, it was a nightmare,” she remembers. Lipton Parker left WAMS in 1972 to pursue a career as a medical assistant, eventually owning DelCare Medical and Rehabilitation Center. But she never left music, continuing to produce concerts for a variety of artists.
One of her biggest feats was selling out all 1,140 seats of The Grand Opera House for a 2013 show hosted by WVLT’s Lou Costello featuring Jimmy Clanton, The Tokens and The Teenagers, among others. “I worked day and night to do that,” Lipton Parker says, “but I absolutely love it. All my teenage idols are my best friends today.”