The Spinners

With their sweet harmonies and strutting funk rhythms, The Spinners helped define the exultant sound of soul in the 1970s and scored a string timeless pop hits that continue to fill dancefloors today. Formed by Henry Fambrough in the housing projects of Detroit, Michigan, they took their name as a nod to the spinning wheels of the city's auto industry and debuted with the single That's What Girls Are Made For in 1961 (featuring a young Marvin Gaye on drums). They were part of the legendary Motown Records roster and had hits with I'll Always Love You and It's A Shame (written and produced by Stevie Wonder), but were overshadowed by The Temptations, Four Tops and the great harmony groups of the era. Things picked up though when they left Motown for Atlantic Records in the 1970s and the influence of funk, disco and R&B transformed their innocent, sugar pop melodies into swaggering, anthemic, modern soul. The classic line-up of Fambrough, Phillippe Wynne, Bobby Smith, Billy Henderson and Pervis Jackson produced the Top 10 hits I'll Be Around, Could It Be I'm Falling In Love and the chart-topping duet Then Came You with Dionne Warwick, as they rose to become one of the top soul acts around. Albums New And Improved (1974) and Pick Of The Litter (1975) both made the US Top 10 and singles Games Peple Play, Cupid and The Rubberband Man brought more success. But their signature hit Working My Way Back To You remains their finest moment, reaching Number 2 in the US charts and becoming a much-loved, pop classic. Still touring with remaining original member Fambrough, the group were inducted into the Vocal Hall of Fame in 1999 and had their track Are You Ready For Love recorded by Elton John in 2003.

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