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The Stylistics

After the Spinners and the O'Jays, the Stylistics were the leading Philly soul group produced by Thom Bell. During the early '70s, the band had 12 straight Top Ten hits, including "You Are Everything," "Betcha by Golly, Wow," "I'm Stone in Love With You," "Break Up to Make Up," and "You Make Me Feel Brand New." Of all their peers, the Stylistics were one of the smoothest and sweetest soul groups of their era. All of their hits were ballads, graced by the soaring falsetto of Russell Thompkins, Jr. and the lush yet graceful productions of Bell, which helped make the Stylistics one of the most successful soul groups of the first half of the '70s.

The Stylistics formed in 1968, when members of the Philadelphia soul groups the Monarchs and the Percussions joined forces after their respective band dissolved. Thompkins, James Smith, and Airrion Love hailed from the Monarchs; James Dunn and Herbie Murrell were from the Percussions. In 1970, the group recorded "You're a Big Girl Now," a song their road manager Marty Bryant co-wrote with Robert Douglas, a member of their backing band Slim and the Boys, and the single became a regional hit for Sebring Records. The larger Avco Records soon signed the Stylistics, and single eventually climbed to number seven in early 1971.

Once they were on Avco, the Stylistics began working with producer/songwriter Thom Bell, who had previously worked with the Delfonics. The Stylistics became Bell's pet project and with lyricist Linda Creed, he crafted a series of hit singles that relied as much on the intricately arranged and lush production as they did on Thompkins' falsetto. Every single that Bell produced for the Stylistics was a Top Ten R&B hit, and several -- "You Are Everything," "Betcha by Golly, Wow," "I'm Stone in Love With You," "Break Up to Make Up," and "You Make Me Feel Brand New" -- were also Top Ten pop hits.

Following "You Make Me Feel Brand New" in the spring of 1974, the Stylistics broke away from Bell and began working with Van McCoy, who helped move the group towards a softer, easy listening style. In 1976, they left Avco and signed with H&L. The group's American record sales declined, yet they remained popular in Europe, particularly in Great Britain, where "Sing Baby Sing" (1975), "Na Na Is the Saddest Word" (1975), "Can't Give You Anything" (1975), and "Can't Help Falling in Love" (1976) were all Top Five hits. The Stylistics continued to tour and record throughout the latter half of the '70s, as their popularity steadily declined. In 1980, Dunn left the group because of poor health, and he was followed later that year by Smith. The remaining Stylistics continued performing as a trio on oldies shows into the '90s. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Comments

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5 star classic. Sweet nostalgia... . . . .
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Love we had stays on mind
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Amazing. Russell Thompkins still has a great voice.
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Beautiful. Song wish. I. Could. Turn. Back time
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I remember those days playing ur wonderful music. I will missed.
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Oh u an always has been my everything. Lets not ever 4get u spoke to my Daddy bout u&I.
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love the Stylistics
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Nice memories.
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Beautiful love song.Men really knew how to express their feelings then.Wonderf u l !
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You're everything and everything is you
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Good song
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True luv & care for our hearts.
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Nobody makes Great Music like this anymore.
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Great Song
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Love the classics. ..heck yeahhh. ...
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people still making the world go round
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Love the Stylistics. My coming of age music.
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A great band that had a sound that was undeniable their songs were truly one of a kind.... I remember the first time I heard People make the world go round epic....
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I love these guys OMG! Yes, yes
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I love this band even though they are before my time.
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Rachel I will break up with always just aslong we make up love ualeays. Cane 805
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Rachel you will always make me feel brand new yours cane 805
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Love the Sylistics, every song they did, love them all!!! This is when music, was music, great talent, lyrics, just beautiful love songs!
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jmcabanag
...always..l o v e youuuu..forr r r e v e r . . . s i n g i n g the song of love in da daze of my love.R.I.P.
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Reminds me of a time in a moment of a transcending space in my lyfe.
A defining moment in time!!!
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The Absolute Truth!!!
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Love the stylistics
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shawnda_wash i n g t o n
All the Stylistics songs remind me of my cousin Miguel R.I.P...miss you����
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Break up to make up that's all we do first you love me then you hete me that's a game for fool... ♥ The Stylistics
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The Stylistics and great love songs are one in the same !!!!!
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prieta1114 has it rights nothing better than the stylistics except for marvin
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You know that I'm stoned in love with you and the Stylistics. To my daughter Yvonne from "Downtown" Willie B. S.F. Ca.
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A game for fools. True!
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stone in love with you yeh i know everyone in england still loves them
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its a toss up - sam cooke marvin and the stylistics - love them all
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Love love
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Everything they sing are my favorites. The best recorded singer s ever.
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sdheck1
I am going to ask my wife to slow dance!
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All these good old goodies i grew up on !
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Stylistics: Stop lestin t your heart!!
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Had a high school boyfriend who looked like Billy Paul!
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Couldn't agree more Prieta. Fond memories of growing up through this era. !!
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prieta1114
This is the music that will outlive all the current music that is being played today. It has rhythm, soul, love lyrics with real meaning to the songs and not all the curse words and demeaning language that is used to refer to people. Gotta love this music. It's here to stay forever and I love it.
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Grew up to this and I still love it!!! ��
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Brings me back in the days chillen with my folks at Excelsior Park oldies 4 ever.
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tlk4302
These songs take me back
To better happy times . Love them still
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I had the pleasure of watching and listening to Russell Thompkins Jr and the New Stylistics on the Soul Train Cruise 2015. Wow !
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Only you...cared when i need it a friend. ...to my love cheryl. ..love you...
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Great Group to the one I love You are my destiny I can't breathe without you.I love You now N forever.You are The One.
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Rock and Roll Baby (Sammy)
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