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The Spinners

The Spinners were the greatest soul group of the early '70s, creating a body of work that defined the lush, seductive sound of Philly soul. Ironically, the band's roots lay in Detroit, where they formed as a doo wop group during the late '50s. Throughout the '60s, the Spinners tried to land a hit by adapting to the shifting fashions of R&B and pop. By the mid-'60s, they had signed with Motown Records, but the label never gave the group much consideration. "It's a Shame" became a hit in 1970, but the label continued to ignore the group, and dropped the band two years later. Unsigned and featuring new lead singer Phillipe Wynne, the Spinners seemed destined to never break into the big leagues, but they managed to sign with Atlantic Records, where they began working with producer Thom Bell. With his assistance, the Spinners developed a distinctive sound, one that relied on Wynne's breathtaking falsetto and the group's intricate vocal harmonies. Bell provided the group with an appropriately detailed production, creating a detailed web of horns, strings, backing vocals, and lightly funky rhythms. Between 1972 and 1977, the Spinners and Bell recorded a number of soul classics, including "I'll Be Around," "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love," "Mighty Love," "Ghetto Child," "Then Came You," "Games People Play," and "The Rubberband Man." Wynne left in 1977 and the Spinners had hits for a few years after his departure, but the group will always be remembered for its classic mid-'70s work.

Originally, called the Domingoes, the Spinners formed when the quintet members were high school students in the Detroit suburb of Ferndale in 1957. At the time, the group featured Bobbie Smith, Pervis Jackson, George W. Dixon, Billy Henderson, and Henry Fambrough. Four years later, they came to the attention of producer Harvey Fuqua, who began recording the group -- who were now called the Spinners -- for his Tri-Phi Records. The band's first single, "That's What Girls Are Made For," became a Top Ten R&B hit upon its 1961 release and featured Smith on vocals. Following its release, Dixon was replaced by Edgar "Chico" Edwards. Over the next few years, the group released a series of failed singles, and when Tri-Phi was bought out by Motown in the mid-'60s, the Spinners became part of the larger company's roster. By that time, Edwards had been replaced by G.C. Cameron.

Though the Spinners had some R&B hits at Motown during the late '60s, including "I'll Always Love You" and "Truly Yours," they didn't have a genuine crossover success until 1970, when Stevie Wonder gave the group "It's a Shame." Motown never concentrated on the Spinners, and they let the group go in 1972. Before the band signed with Atlantic Records, Phillipe Wynne replaced Cameron as the group's lead vocalist. Wynne had previously sung with Catfish and Bootsy Collins.

At Atlantic Records, the Spinners worked with producer Thom Bell, who gave the group a lush, seductive sound, complete with sighing strings, a tight rhythm section, sultry horns, and a slight funk underpinning. Wynne quickly emerged as a first-rate soul singer, and the combination of the group's harmonies, Wynne's soaring leads, and Bell's meticulous production made the Spinners the most popular soul group of the '70s. Once the group signed with Atlantic, they became a veritable hit machine, topping the R&B and pop charts with songs like "I'll Be Around," "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love," "One of a Kind (Love Affair)," "Ghetto Child," "Rubberband Man," and "You're Throwing a Good Love Away." Not only were their singles hits, but their albums constantly went gold and charted in the Top 20.

Wynne left the band to pursue a solo career in 1977; he was replaced by John Edwards. Though none of Wynne's solo records were big hits, his tours with Parliament-Funkadelic were well received, as were his solo concerts. In October 1984, he died of a heart attack during a concert in Oakland, California. The Spinners, meanwhile, had a number of minor hits in the late '70s, highlighted by their disco covers of "Working My Way Back to You" and the medley "Cupid/I've Loved You for a Long Time." During the early '80s, they had several minor hits before fading away from the charts and entering the oldies circuit, reprising their earlier material for 1999's new studio effort At Their Best. Bobbie Smith, who sang lead on several of the Spinners' '70s hits including "I'll Be Around" and "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love," died from complications of pneumonia and influenza in March 2013. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: The Chrome Collection

Disc 1
Disc 2
Disc 3

Comments

Best 70 song
Alex♥
Games People Play is just one of my favorites by the Spinners ;)
tomman30
great song...
One of the better songs by the Spinners ! U know
pandora is my medication on the weekends. You go pandora!!
The songs of Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff !! Masters !!
Old dog Detroit girl! Love these tunes....... . .
THESE SONGS, MAKE ME FEEL, 16 AGAIN.
Hewas so smooth
Soul 2 Soul 5.8k 3m 14y
poppop.moo
11
♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥↕
wirefireohio
Kieth Sweat Nobody Twisted Go listen My favorite artist may be your and u dont know it yet
The voice of the Spinners was and always will be the great Bobby Smith. Phillipe Wynne did have success as the groups lead vocalist on a few of the hits but the heavy lifting was done by the terribly underrated Smith. RIP Mr. Smith...some of us still remember your great sound and will continue to set the record straight whenever possible.
Spinners awesome love the beat and the lyrics I said I'm working my way bac to you baby Tony
OH boy does this remind me of being young and invicible
ONE BEAUITFUL MARRIED SONG OF ALL TIME SMILE...
CHILDHOOD MEMORIES SONGS FROM THE MIGHTLY SPINNERS SMILE..
This is one of the best yet from the Spinners.
My dad(Johnny Burns) loved this song... I can see him smiling & singing... RIP Dad...what a great song !!!!!!!
my song
love it
keep SPINNIN
drlev196864
Sing it, Bobbie and Felipe!!
Another one of my jams from WSU COUGARS..... P u l l m a n , WA 1972
WSU COUGS...Pull m a n , Washington 1972!! This was my Jam!!!
Excellent music by an excellent group....goo d childhood memories!
I don't think there's a bad song thee guys made! I love them!
lol..LOVE IT! LOVE IT:(
Dont read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest possible Fri. by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However,if u don't post this u will die in 2 days. Now that you've started reading this don't stop. This is scary but post this on at least 5 songs in 143 min. When done press f6 and Th name of your lover will appear on the screen in big letters, it really works
f.stanback12
The best music ever
frederica.br i d g e t t e
Payback byjamesbrown
japorter24
Could it be im fallin in love!!!
Another classic from the Spinners...
Words wisdom tell the one you love every day /
heath fetter
bっsry
Love doesn't mean
L egs O pen V ery E asily !
Cloydroberts s r @ g m a i l . c o m
One of a kind , love don't love nobody
Real music stays real! Real people are real all by themselves 1+1=2 complete people make 2 happy people
Not 1/2+1/2=1 =2 incomplete people
Makes 2 stupid people .You must be complete first before you can have a relationship !
berryduaneki m 2 0 0 4
Love The Spinners!!! Fantastic songs!! RIP BOBBIE! <3 <3 Heaven made you specially such lovely lyrics!! <3
Its ashame the why I mess around wit my men, its got 2 b ashame...
Oh yeah most def.
Yep I can dig it.
Tha spinnerz is tha best group ever real talk I think back wen I here it first groupin up and now I'm a man that will have my lil boyz listen too tha old skool that show u life and what do it all mean tru story
soul
I am so glad I lived through a time when black people gave us really great music and you loved them and their music because they were black and not the degrade stuff they do now.
Are. Commadors. Still around. Bee
spinners oh my god! you couldn't hear the lyrics for me singing along. their music educated me and show me the way to love
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