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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
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Fabulous

1. Because I Love You, Girl

2. Can't Help Falling In Love

3. Maybe It's Because You're Lonely

4. You Are

5. It's So Good

6. Sixteen Bars

7. Baby, Don't Change Your Mind

8. I Will Love You Always

9. Starvin' For Love

10. You Ought To Be With Me

11. Lovin' Proof

12. Because Of You

x

Track List: The Best Of The Stylistics Vol. 2

1. You'll Never Get To Heaven

2. Hey Girl, Come And Get It

3. Sixteen Bars

4. The Miracle

5. You Are Beautiful

6. Sing Baby Sing

7. Star On A TV Show

8. Na-Na Is The Saddest Word

9. Thank You Baby

10. Funky Weekend

x

Track List: Rockin' Roll Baby

1. Only For The Children

2. Could This Be The End

3. Let Them Work It Out

4. Make It Last

5. Pay Back Is A Dog

6. Love Comes Easy

7. There's No Reason

8. Rockin' Roll Baby

9. You Make Me Feel Brand New

10. I Won't Give You Up

x

Track List: Round 2

1. I'm Stone In Love With You

2. If You Don't Watch Out

3. You And Me

4. It's Too Late

5. Children Of The Night

6. You'll Never Get To Heaven

7. Break Up To Make Up

8. Peek-A-Boo

9. You're As Right As Rain

10. Pieces

x

Track List: The Stylistics

1. Stop, Look, Listen (To Your Heart)

2. Point Of No Return

3. Betcha By Golly, Wow

4. Country Living

5. You're A Big Girl Now

6. You Are Everything

7. People Make The World Go Round

8. Ebony Eyes

9. If I Love You

Comments

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ANOTHER UNDERRATED GROUP, GREAT CHEMISTRY , RUSSELL TOMPKINS GREAT VOICE
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Ahhh, memories
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I love this kind of music, this kind of music goes right to your soul,even though I'm not even though I'm only 48 yr old
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Music like this makes me think of my girl
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Cleaning my house now love the music.
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lizabdiaz
Oh yeah I had tried so hard
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Break up to make up..
Your a big girl now..
Old Addict .
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hlore58
So wonderful and romantic. :)))
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xnaprace
I love you Jimmy
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You never did...or rather you didn't try hard enough. All we did was to break up and make up .. but it never worked out no matter what we did !!!!!!##!
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Wow Just What We Need Today! Good Memories!!! Peace
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I fill ya
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Nothing better than some oldies and a loving girl to share them with
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Love Songs....fro m groups like the The Stylistics being played on the radio just seemed that our communities were happier and thrived more being peaceful.#Ol d S c h o o l G r o o v e s N e v e r G e t s O l d
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I love this old song alot to
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I remember card games peeking down stairs saying you thirsty the days
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I love the old school song, they just don't make them like they use too, and I dislike when the artist mix the old with the artists of today.
Kids don't know what real music is, I grow up on these artists, I even got my children and grandchildre n listening to lol.
It also reminds me of my childhood as well.
I do find myself cleaning up with Pandora, as Pandora is a great Radio station to have on the go.
I can say times has most definitely changed over the years.
Thank you Pandora for a cool way
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P
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Four
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A great time band!! Dance music.
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Makes my heart beat faster
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And Every thing U are NOT, look for it hard!
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My First Love...Beaut i f u l Song this is real love..
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All time Great of my childhood to teenager years
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This was for my daughter although she will always be my babygirl.
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All time favorite group
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What can I say the stylistics the sexy side of music
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love that music, soulful and relaxing, what else can I say?
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barbaralove1 9 7 7
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The stylistics ate the bomb from me to u aka willie b from park Slope
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Stylistics will forever b da bomb
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Love this song the Stylisticss got it going on today
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Your. A. Big. Girl. Now.
I'm always my daddy's little girl.
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Yes cynthia this we're the good love days now it almost as if it's fading like as the years pass until people listen to this song then the realize how love was a time ago.
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Forces intimacy of another level
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barbarajacks o n 8 7 4
Loved the Stylistics, the singers of today know nothing about good music, love songs and ballads kept me going, heard Jeffery Osborn last night and flipped out, loved his voice,smooth and sure.
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Nothiing is better han love
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I think it was 1982 when I treated my parents to 3 nights in Vegas. They were in their early 60's. The Stylistics were performing and we went to the show. I remember how much my father enjoyed them. He said Russell Thompkins had the most perfect tenor voice he ever heard. I agreed.
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The Stylistics are the best. Mr. Russell Thompkins jr has an awesome voice. Been a fan since I I'm was about 14 and I am 57 yrs old. Thank you for the many songs that have beena good part of my life.
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Stoned in LOVE GOOD 1# RITE RITE
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Staying up An Listening to my Music is Happieness
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I love this radio, pandura!!!
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Classic Soul @ it's best!! Stop Look Listen To Your Heart
#OldSchoolGr o o v e s M a k e s M e S m i l e P e a c h c o b b l e r 5 1 0
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A great song to make love to after a fight.
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Break Up to Make Up--my all time favorite!
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Old school love songs that's way to go grown folk music Tone Capone said that
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Your a Big Girl Now, No More Mommy's Little Girl. BabyGirl I love You
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"God bless you.......!
Yes....Yes.. . . . Y o u . . . . . "
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I can't go to sleep....eve r y song wakes me up
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This is type of music if you can appreciate it you just can't appreciate music. Bottom line nougH said
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