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The Dramatics - (Artist Of The Week)

The Dramatics - (Artist Of The Week) magazine cover

Artist of the Week takes another look at the music of The Dramatics

The Dramatics Discography (Soulful Kinda Music Link)

>>> THE DRAMATICS <<<

The Dramatics
The Dramatics (formerly The Dynamics) are an American soul music vocal group, formed in Detroit, Michigan, in 1964. They are best known for their 1970s hit songs "In the Rain" and "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get", both of which were Top 10 Pop hits, as well as their later 1993 collaboration "Doggy Dogg World" with Snoop Dogg, a top 20 hit on the Billboard Rhythmic Top 40.

Read more at Wikipedia


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Paul profile photo

Posted

Fantastic group and lots of great tracks to choose from but 'I Can't Get Over You' (with lead vocals by LJ Reynolds) is probably my favourite. It's from the 'Joy Ride' LP and I raved over it in Black Echoes when it was issued as a single in 1976.

Another exceptional ballad from their ABC days is 'I Cried All The Way Home', a great Tony Hestor song from the 'Dramatic Jackpot' LP. It was also issued as a single on the flip side of 'Me & Mrs Jones'.

  • Up vote 1
HARRY CROSBY profile photo

Posted

One of my favourite groups, good shout Roger, heres a lovely little cheapie thats allways in my playbox

  • Up vote 1
Steve G profile photo

Posted (edited)

Can we do their worst one?

"We are the champions" - the Queen song.....did it with Thomas The Hitman Hearns as I recall.

Edited by Steve G
John Reed profile photo

Posted

Can we do their worst one?

"We are the champions" - the Queen song.....did it with Thomas The Hitman Hearns as I recall.

I think that one just pips Born To Be Wild

boba profile photo

Posted

Can we do their worst one?

"We are the champions" - the Queen song.....did it with Thomas The Hitman Hearns as I recall.

The dramatics were so good that it probably would be easier to list crappy singles.

"whatcha see is whatcha get" has to be one of the greatest soul songs of the 70s. FWIW I think the greatest soul song of the 70s is the spinners "I'll be around" -- it's totally played out but still great.

Steve G profile photo

Posted

Agreed Bob. I have the shortened version of "In the Rain" as well which is pretty good which Volt put out as a promo because the radio jocks wouldn't play the 5 min version.....

boba profile photo

Posted

Agreed Bob. I have the shortened version of "In the Rain" as well which is pretty good which Volt put out as a promo because the radio jocks wouldn't play the 5 min version.....

That song is great but it's a little too slow to play at a dance event. Their other big hit "hey you get off my mountain" has a nice groove. I really like "fell for you" and "I panicked". In Chicago the dramatics theme is a big steppers cut:

Steve Edgar profile photo

Posted

for me, much as I love "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" (and have done since I first heard it on the radio) the flip, "Thankful For Your Love" has to be one of the finest moments The Dramatics had, amidst so many!

Wee Gee never sounded better to me. Tony Hester yet again with the credits, and Johnny Allen's arrangement.... Sublime SOUL!

(as an aside, Tony Hester should have been a giant in the music industry imho)

steve

http://youtu.be/sfBsgx4gSEc

  • Up vote 1
boba profile photo

Posted

for me, much as I love "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" (and have done since I first heard it on the radio) the flip, "Thankful For Your Love" has to be one of the finest moments The Dramatics had, amidst so many!

Wee Gee never sounded better to me. Tony Hester yet again with the credits, and Johnny Allen's arrangement.... Sublime SOUL!

(as an aside, Tony Hester should have been a giant in the music industry imho)

steve

I never played this side, this is really good. I will probably steal your exclusive track and play it on my radio show.

Steve Edgar profile photo

Posted

I never played this side, this is really good. I will probably steal your exclusive track and play it on my radio show.

Ha ha! far from an "exclusive" Bob, tis well known mate, but glad it's a new track for you (tis what this site is all about for me, sharing and discovering new tunes) And amidst the quality stuff you play on ya show, would fit well I'm sure. :thumbsup:

steve

Kev Cane profile photo

Posted

Agree with the input so far, this could go on for a while, Boba, Steve, Paul etc have touched on the volume of quality stuff they put out.A couple worthy of a mention IMHO are "Don,t make me no promises" included in the great "Dells v Dramatics" set (also on a 7) and from the same album as "And I Panicked" "You Got Me Going Through A Thing" no matter what the tempo, these guys could handle anything, Brilliant !!

Kev

boba profile photo

Posted

I have this really trashy slapstick comedy blacksploitation movie where they have an incredible performance of "whatcha see is whatcha get" (it's lip sync but it's awesome). I have it on DVD but can't remember the title right now. They're imprisoned in a dungeon when they do the performance... The movie also had an incredible acapella version of the mad lads doing "don't have to shop around" (and it actually has john gary williams, unlike that black and white 60s clip that floated around youtube that was filmed while john gary was in the military).

pikeys dog profile photo

Posted

Can we do their worst one?

"We are the champions" - the Queen song.....did it with Thomas The Hitman Hearns as I recall.

Presuming it's the same group, Inky Dinky Wang Dang Doo gives it a run for it's money.

boba profile photo

Posted (edited)

CHICAGO COMBINES WITH DETROIT TO PRODUCE THS GREAT TRACK

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vV4PEFN2DdY

KEV

This is nice, I don't think I've heard this one before. I really like "love is missing from your lives" from the dells vs dramatics album

Edited by boba
Paul profile photo

Posted

Agree with the input so far, this could go on for a while, Boba, Steve, Paul etc have touched on the volume of quality stuff they put out.A couple worthy of a mention IMHO are "Don,t make me no promises" included in the great "Dells v Dramatics" set (also on a 7) and from the same album as "And I Panicked" "You Got Me Going Through A Thing" no matter what the tempo, these guys could handle anything, Brilliant !!

Kev

Hello Kev,

They really couldn't do wrong as long as the material was good - and it was great for a long time.

The same applies to The Dells, of course.

This topic also made me think of 'Give A Helping Hand' (William Howard) and 'Hold On To Your Dreams' (Wee Gee).

Best wishes,

Paul

boba profile photo

Posted

there is some crazy youtube footage of wee gee performing on a local detroit public access station in the early 80s. there's like a fog machine and all this other crazy stuff going on.

Ian Dewhirst profile photo

Posted (edited)

Still rockin' in the 80's too......

Ian D :D

Edited by Ian Dewhirst
Kev Cane profile photo

Posted

Hello Kev,

They really couldn't do wrong as long as the material was good - and it was great for a long time.

The same applies to The Dells, of course.

This topic also made me think of 'Give A Helping Hand' (William Howard) and 'Hold On To Your Dreams' (Wee Gee).

Best wishes,

Paul

Hi Paul

Yes, the Wee Gee on Cat "Give a helping hand" regular play in my house, other side aswell Paul "Come to me" fantastic mover. I can,t find the album with "Hold on to your dreams" so I will have to get another one. Dells always brought into the debate when vocal groups are the subject of debate, guess you could say many people see them as the yardstick to compare with.

Best Regards

Kev

Guest allnightandy profile photo

Posted

What do you people think of this ?

I have it but think it's Pants , because it came out of Wigans Pop era !

Paul profile photo

Posted

Still consistantly fails to sell for 99p on the Bay, :rolleyes:

Well that proves that nobody ever listens to me...

:ohmy:

Paul

Guest phillybuster profile photo

Posted

for me, much as I love "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" (and have done since I first heard it on the radio) the flip, "Thankful For Your Love" has to be one of the finest moments The Dramatics had, amidst so many!

Wee Gee never sounded better to me. Tony Hester yet again with the credits, and Johnny Allen's arrangement.... Sublime SOUL!

(as an aside, Tony Hester should have been a giant in the music industry imho)

steve

Agree,think "Fall In Love,Lady Love" is another stunner.Wee Gee had a great voice,Don Davis had to stop him sounding too much like David Ruffin.Nice compliment to him though.

Tony O profile photo

Posted

Have a listen to Toy Soldier on Crackerjack records now thats awesome and rare. The b side Hello Summer isnt bad either imho. :yes:

Guest Dave Turner profile photo

Posted

What do you people think of this ?

I have it but think it's Pants , because it came out of Wigans Pop era !

Ok, musically not up to their later stuff, but I suppose that's a matter of opinion ie 60s V 70's.

Well before Wigan's pop era though. Massive Torch sound and IMO one of the tracks that defines Northern of the Torch era.

It's all a matter of context.

Guest Dave Turner profile photo

Posted

Old thread re the Dynamics/Dramatics label mix up on "Bingo". Clip shows both labels

jocko profile photo

Posted (edited)

Some of their later albums were patchy but they generally contained a gem or 2 and this is a gem and a half!

Having my usual trouble embedding, here is the link

Edited by jocko
  • Up vote 1
Steve Edgar profile photo

Posted

Old thread re the Dynamics/Dramatics label mix up on "Bingo". Clip shows both labels

Talkin bout Dramatics "Bingo" Dave, I remember many moons ago when Arthur Robinson put me onto the flip in the early hours one morning at "The Bothy" the Oh so typically Ric-Tic'ish "Somewhere" what a cracking track! Wonder what Ed Wingate was up to on their first release calling the Dynamics?

steve

http://youtu.be/ChGHMaQQklY

Guest Dave Turner profile photo

Posted (edited)

F**k me Steve, made the fatal mistake (again) of never flippin' it

Nice one that mate, lovely stuff :thumbsup:

I see it gives writer credit as "Dynamics", was that also altered on the Dramatics label?

Edited by Dave Turner
jocko profile photo

Posted

And another of their stone cold classics

kevinsoulman profile photo

Posted

This is nice, I don't think I've heard this one before. I really like "love is missing from your lives" from the dells vs dramatics album

HAVE A COUPLE OF SPARES IF ANYONES INTERESTED

KEV

Steve Edgar profile photo

Posted

F**k me Steve, made the fatal mistake (again) of never flippin' it

Nice one that mate, lovely stuff :thumbsup:

I see it gives writer credit as "Dynamics", was that also altered on the Dramatics label?

now then Dave (nearly said Howwww Much" there :D ) Only got that Dynamics issue, so don't know what it sez when they corrected the typo on the group?

btw dave what happened to Arkwight? you'll do owt to show off ya new T shirt collection! :D

steve

Guest Dave Turner profile photo

Posted

now then Dave (nearly said Howwww Much" there :D ) Only got that Dynamics issue, so don't know what it sez when they corrected the typo on the group?

btw dave what happened to Arkwight? you'll do owt to show off ya new T shirt collection! :D

steve

Got rid of him mate, his fffffuckin' ss stuttering was gettin' on me tt tits :lol:

s0ul45 profile photo

Posted

Just got to have a TUNE UP.

Steve Edgar profile photo

Posted

Got rid of him mate, his fffffuckin' ss stuttering was gettin' on me tt tits :lol:

:lol:

Guest profile photo

Posted (edited)

One of my fave DRAMATICS cuts, not many people mention it....Got that DAVIS stamp all over it...Awesome musical arrangement, especially the middle eight... :hatsoff2:

Edited by rich chorley
Steve Edgar profile photo

Posted

And another of their stone cold classics

"Hey You Get Off My Mountain"

Tony Hester does it again with the guys Jocko! Superb! :thumbup: (and yet again there's a certain Johnny Allen in there with the arrangement! :thumbsup: )

steve

boba profile photo

Posted

Have a listen to Toy Soldier on Crackerjack records now thats awesome and rare. The b side Hello Summer isnt bad either imho. :yes:

This group is supposed to have no connection to the volt group. I think members were specifically asked about this group.

boba profile photo

Posted

Like almost every track of theirs, this is good, but this one is sort of played out for me. For some reason I can hear "whatcha see is whatcha get" a million times without it being played out though.

Sleeps45 profile photo

Posted

Like almost every track of theirs, this is good, but this one is sort of played out for me. For some reason I can hear "whatcha see is whatcha get" a million times without it being played out though.

I think I played out all of their stuff years ago..I still do have my favorites though..watcha see is watcha get is always nice

boba profile photo

Posted

I think I played out all of their stuff years ago..I still do have my favorites though..watcha see is watcha get is always nice

It's funny, some stuff that's totally played out that you would never play at your house becomes exciting when it actually goes on the radio, like I recognize it and start singing along. Like I would never play the temptations "since I found my baby" at home but when it comes on the radio I'm totally pumped.

Guest profile photo

Posted

It's funny, some stuff that's totally played out that you would never play at your house becomes exciting when it actually goes on the radio, like I recognize it and start singing along. Like I would never play the temptations "since I found my baby" at home but when it comes on the radio I'm totally pumped.

Funny enough...Just played my cherished British Tamla Motown copy of it this morning for first time in three years I reckon and boy did it sound great!!.... :hatsoff2:

boba profile photo

Posted

Hi!

"Toy Soldier" wasn't by our group.

Also the group never used the name "The Dynamics",

see

http://www.soulexpre...discography.htm

Best regards

Heikki

Hi Heikki, thanks for posting! I have a few questions about the dramatics:

1. your website mentions Chess recordings. Is there some specific reason (for example, licensing problems) that they haven't been released on CD? It would be awesome to hear. Do you have some idea as to how many recordings were done at chess? Have you heard them?

2. I think the splinter dramatics (mainstream group) may have been the same group as the Theatrics on VR. Elbert Wilkins wrote the a-side of the Theatrics 45. Do you have any way to confirm this or get more info on the group? Also, here is the lineup I have of the Dramatics on Mainstream:

Elbert Wilkins, Isaac Reed, William "Weegee" Howard (d. 2/22/00), Dupree Sims. Wilkins and Howard were both formerly of The Dramatics on Volt.

Your discography only lists 2 members but says there were 3 other members. I'm not sure of the source of the lineup I'm giving you but it seems pretty specific. Maybe you should update your discography of the Mainstream group with these names?

I have one more question but it is sort of messed up and I don't want to ask it publicly. What is the best way to contact you? Thanks a lot

Pierstomper profile photo

Posted

Presuming it's the same group, Inky Dinky Wang Dang Doo gives it a run for it's money.

pikeys dog

Now were talking mate, top casino sound in my day, still in my box and spun at venues by me ! helping educate the new soul people !

boba profile photo

Posted

pikeys dog

Now were talking mate, top casino sound in my day, still in my box and spun at venues by me ! helping educate the new soul people !

I think you're misreading the post you're responding to.

Guest Dave Turner profile photo

Posted

pikeys dog

Now were talking mate, top casino sound in my day, still in my box and spun at venues by me ! helping educate the new soul people !

I think if you read pikeys post he's saying he thinks it's shit.

Myself, I think musically it's not a great record but in the context it was "big" it's one of the iconic Torch era sounds slotting in with the likes of Sam & Kitty, Shalamars etc etc

pikeys dog profile photo

Posted

I think you're misreading the post you're responding to.

Not 'arf.

In my top ten worst Northern Soul Records Ever list fo shure.

Heikki profile photo

Posted

Hi "boba"!

1. They cut for Chess "You Should Be My Lady" with Andre Williams. Ron Banks: "...we just knew we were ready to make it happen. Then we ran into something we knew nothing about called 'backstage theatrics'. We were getting ready to do the project with Chess/Janus, but Andre Williams and one of the Chess brothers had a personal problem about some lady. It set us back again, and the frustrations were added again."

Incidentally, there's also an album that they cut with Steve Cropper in the winter of 1969 that's still in the can.

2. Yes, the line-up of that "splinter" group was William Howard, Elbert Wilkins, Arthur Phillips, Dupree Sims and Isaac Red. There are a lot of quotes on that group in the Dramatics story, part 2, and I can't possible reprint it all here. Altogether the whole 4-part story is 27-page long + later updates.

As far as I know, the Theatrics cut that single in 1980, and that other Dramatics lasted only for about a year or two, so it can't be them. The real Dramatics called the other group 'the Fanatics'.

3. You'll find me at heikki.suosalo@wmail.fi

Best regards

Heikki

.....................

Hi Heikki, thanks for posting! I have a few questions about the dramatics:

1. your website mentions Chess recordings. Is there some specific reason (for example, licensing problems) that they haven't been released on CD? It would be awesome to hear. Do you have some idea as to how many recordings were done at chess? Have you heard them?

2. I think the splinter dramatics (mainstream group) may have been the same group as the Theatrics on VR. Elbert Wilkins wrote the a-side of the Theatrics 45. Do you have any way to confirm this or get more info on the group? Also, here is the lineup I have of the Dramatics on Mainstream:

Elbert Wilkins, Isaac Reed, William "Weegee" Howard (d. 2/22/00), Dupree Sims. Wilkins and Howard were both formerly of The Dramatics on Volt.

Your discography only lists 2 members but says there were 3 other members. I'm not sure of the source of the lineup I'm giving you but it seems pretty specific. Maybe you should update your discography of the Mainstream group with these names?

I have one more question but it is sort of messed up and I don't want to ask it publicly. What is the best way to contact you? Thanks a lot

boba profile photo

Posted

Hi "boba"!

1. They cut for Chess "You Should Be My Lady" with Andre Williams. Ron Banks: "...we just knew we were ready to make it happen. Then we ran into something we knew nothing about called 'backstage theatrics'. We were getting ready to do the project with Chess/Janus, but Andre Williams and one of the Chess brothers had a personal problem about some lady. It set us back again, and the frustrations were added again."

Incidentally, there's also an album that they cut with Steve Cropper in the winter of 1969 that's still in the can.

2. Yes, the line-up of that "splinter" group was William Howard, Elbert Wilkins, Arthur Phillips, Dupree Sims and Isaac Red. There are a lot of quotes on that group in the Dramatics story, part 2, and I can't possible reprint it all here. Altogether the whole 4-part story is 27-page long + later updates.

As far as I know, the Theatrics cut that single in 1980, and that other Dramatics lasted only for about a year or two, so it can't be them. The real Dramatics called the other group 'the Fanatics'.

3. You'll find me at heikki.suosalo@wmail.fi

Best regards

Heikki

.....................

Hi "boba"!

1. They cut for Chess "You Should Be My Lady" with Andre Williams. Ron Banks: "...we just knew we were ready to make it happen. Then we ran into something we knew nothing about called 'backstage theatrics'. We were getting ready to do the project with Chess/Janus, but Andre Williams and one of the Chess brothers had a personal problem about some lady. It set us back again, and the frustrations were added again."

Incidentally, there's also an album that they cut with Steve Cropper in the winter of 1969 that's still in the can.

2. Yes, the line-up of that "splinter" group was William Howard, Elbert Wilkins, Arthur Phillips, Dupree Sims and Isaac Red. There are a lot of quotes on that group in the Dramatics story, part 2, and I can't possible reprint it all here. Altogether the whole 4-part story is 27-page long + later updates.

As far as I know, the Theatrics cut that single in 1980, and that other Dramatics lasted only for about a year or two, so it can't be them. The real Dramatics called the other group 'the Fanatics'.

3. You'll find me at heikki.suosalo@wmail.fi

Best regards

Heikki

.....................

thanks so much for the great info, will email you hopefully in a day or two. thanks again.

Guest profile photo

Posted (edited)

Splendid both sides...prime quality Detroit Soul :hatsoff2:

post-9555-0-42219200-1329827661_thumb.jp

Edited by Flynny



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