Monday, September 14, 2009
Jango Song Of The Day-The Dramatics
Song:In The Rain
The 1972 top five hit In The Rain was the biggest hit for the smooth soul group The Dramatics. The group was from Detroit but they were on Stax, not Motown. There's a story behind that. They started out as The Dynamics in 1962 and signed with Wingate Records. The group leader from the beginning has been Ron Banks. Otherwise there have been a lot of personnel changes over the years. The Dramatics had a minor R & B hit with All Because Of You in 1967. But it wasn't enough and lead singer Larry Reed was replaced by William "Wee Gee" Howard and bass Rob Davis was replaced by Willie Ford of The Capitols. Meanwhile Stax president Al Bell wanted to bring a more uptown soul sound to Stax. So he hired former Wingate producer Don Davis and Davis had a lot of success with Johnnie Taylor. Davis already had The Dramatics under contract so he brought them to Stax. He also brought songwriter Tony Hester in. What Davis, Hester and The Dramatics had in common is they all hung around Motown with little success. The Dramatics first single on Volt was the Hester song Watcha See Is Watcha Get. It reached #3 on the R & B chart and #9 on the Billboard Hot 100. In The Rain did even better and topped the R & B chart and reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100. But Howard left The Dramatics in 1973 and was replaced by L.J. Reynolds. Original member Elbert Wilkins left and started his own version of The Dramatics. The original group became Ron Banks & The Dramatics. Then Stax went out of business and The Dramatics moved to ABC Records. They continued to have success on the R & B charts in the 70s. Don Davis went to Columbia with Johnnie Taylor and produced the hit Disco Lady. Tony Hester had drug problems and died. This comp has their Stax and ABC hits. Beware of CDs that don't have the full five minute version of In The Rain. The Dramatics officially disbanded in 1983 but Ron Banks and L.J. Reynolds reformed the group and they still tour today. Here are The Dramatics performing In The Rain.