Anyway, here is the youtube clip of the overdubbed Golden Teardrops, followed by a clip of the original, undoctored recording (sans guitars, as Clarke put it), if you fancy making a comparison. It's not really a fair competition, however, as the sound of the second youtube clip happens to be superior - and doesn't stop before the end. But it's a handy excuse to remind yourself of what a great record (or two) it is.
Nevertheless, maybe a guitar is simply a more natural accompaniment for voices. But I dunno. I think you can say, however, that it's underlining something already there, or implicit, in the existing accompaniment - maybe a bit like Ringo adding some simple drumming in earlier Beatle days when a track had been bounced down several times. The only difference is that presumably Golden Teardrops was live, so the self-effacement of the musicians was presumably a conscious decision on their or the engineer's part - or whatever the technical term was in those days. So could it be said that the guitar is too on-the-nose, musically? I can't decide - but maybe you can.
Rereading Unca Marvy's article, I see that when the group were starting to perform, they did an Ink Spots number, and Sollie says that he based his stage style on that of Bill Kenny:
You sang. You used your hands to express [waving around a zircon ring his mother had given him - in the same way Bill Kenny waved around his diamonds].With that model, who knows - maybe the guitar just seemed an omission which had to be rectified to whoever was respnsible at Vee-Jay, as opposed to an attempt to cash in on the Flamingos' later success or sweeten the product for a crossover audience? I have read that someone at Vee-Jay (I think Calvin Carter) was almost like a mechanic - ie he would add a vocal if a group's sound wasn't quite right on a recording - and even filled in for a few months when the Spaniels were touring. Was it his decision to add the guitar? And which version is better? There's only one way to decide ...