Saturday, March 18, 2017

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Three Degrees

Artist:The Three Degrees
Album:Greatest Hits

The Three Degrees are best known for the 1974 smash hit When Will I See You Again written and produced by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff for Philadelphia International. But they had success before that most notably this 1970 cover of The Chantels classic Maybe for Roulette Records. The Three Degrees were formed in 1963 in Philadelphia. And then they were discovered by Richard Barrett who was lead singer of the doo wop group The Valentines. By this time he had turned to producing. He signed The Three Degrees to Swan Records and they released several singles. None of them went anywhere. This included a 1966 cover of Maybe which Barrett wrote. Beware as this is not the version that was a hit. The Three Degrees went through several personnel changes until Valerie Holiday arrived in 1967. The other two members were Fayette Pinkney and Sheila Ferguson. That was the lineup for all their hits with Valerie usually singing lead. After Swan got caught up in a payola investigation, The Three Degrees recorded for Warner Bros-Seven Arts, the Gamble-Huff owned Neptune Records and Metromedia before they landed with Roulette Records. Maybe was the first single and it reached #4 on the R&B Singles chart and #29 on the Billboard Hot 100. The long version of Maybe is on this 3CD box set from the British reissue label Goldies which is owned by Proper Records. This is a budget release that has hits from several labels. The Three Degrees did a TV special in Australia and they appeared in the 1971 film The French Connection. They only recorded one album for Roulette followed by some singles. Barrett decided to move them to Philadelphia International and the group had most of their success there. They are particularly popular in England. Apparently Prince Charles is a big fan. They left Philadelphia international in 1975 for Epic. Then they moved to Ariola and producer Georgio Moroder who had just had success with Donna Summer. But The Three Degrees didn't have success there and they bounced around a few labels in the 80s. Valerie Holiday still leads The Three Degrees and they tour mostly in England as they were always bigger there than in North America. Here are The Three Degrees performing Maybe from that 1970 Australian TV special.

No comments:

Post a Comment