Sadly, Lymon's career and life was shortlived. He broke from the Teenagers in 1957 to pursue a solo career, but lost his soprano voice once he went through puberty. He started singing in a falsetto voice to compensate and during his last television appearance - on Hollywood a Go-Go in 1965 - the now 22 year-old lipsynched to his 13 year-old recorded self singing "Why Do Fools Fall in Love?" He also caused a scandal in 1957 when he began dancing with a white girl during Alan Freed's live ABC show, The Big Beat. He was married and divorced a few times. But most tragically of all, Lymon got hooked on heroin when he was 15 and would die from an overdose of the drug ten years later, at the age of 25. He had actually been clean for three years and had served in the military in the mid-60s but decided to celebrate securing a new recording contract by shooting up again.
Interestingly, Lymon's life was made into a 1998 movie called (can you guess?) Why Do Fools Fall in Love? and costarred Halle Berry as one of Lymon's three wives fighting for his estate after his death. It was not a commercial success, but it did help reintroduce Lymon's music to the public.
Here's two TV appearances of Frankie Lymon (the first with The Teenagers) singing his most famous hits - and check out his dancing skills in the second video clip!