The Dramatics: Wikis


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The Dramatics
Origin Detroit, Michigan, United States
Genres Rhythm & blues, soul, pop
Years active 1962–1990s

The Dramatics (formerly The Dynamics) were a American soul music vocal group, formed in Detroit, Michigan in 1967. They are best known for their 1970s hit songs, "In the Rain" and "Whatcha See is Whatcha Get" - both of which were #1 R&B and Top 10 Pop hits.[1]



The Dramatics originally formed in 1962 as the Dynamics. They changed their name by 1967, when they garnered their first minor hit single, "All Because of You." However, the group did not break through until their 1971 single, "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get," which broke into the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #9.[1] Their first million selling disc "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" was awarded gold disc status by the R.I.A.A. in December 1971.[1]

Their members at this time were Ron Banks (who died of a heart attack on March 4, 2010 at age 58)[2], William "Wee Gee" Howard (who died of a heart attack on February 22, 2000 at age 49), Elbert Wilkins (who died of a heart attack on December 13, 1992 at age 45), Willie Ford, Larry Demps and keyboardist James Mack Brown (who died on November 28, 2008 at age 58). Shortly after the success of their first album, Howard and Wilkins left the group. They were replaced by L.J. Reynolds and Leonard "Lenny" Mayes. Through the 1970s, the group appeared on Soul Train and continued to have hits, including the #1 R&B hit, "In the Rain", "Toast to the Fool", "Me and Mrs. Jones" (originally by Billy Paul), "I'm Going By The Stars In Your Eyes" and "Be My Girl." In the meantime, Howard and Wilkins formed a Dramatics splinter group, and came up with a minor R&B hit, "No Rebate on Love." To distinguish themselves from this group, the core group temporarily dubbed themselves 'Ron Banks and The Dramatics'. Howard eventually returned to the group for two albums, Somewhere in Time: A Dramatic Reunion and Positive State Of Mind, before departing again.

The Dramatics also were guests on the Snoop Doggy Dogg song, "Doggy Dogg World". The song appeared on Snoop's 1993 debut album, Doggystyle.[citation needed]

The group continues to tour and presently consists of Reynolds, Ford, Winzell Kelly and Michael Brock, who replaced Mayes (who died of lung cancer on November 8, 2004 at age 53). It is not known who the group will find to replace Banks, who died recently on March 4, 2010.

The Dramatics were also mentioned in the novel The Algiers Motel Incident by John Hersey (ISBN 0-8018-5777-5). They were staying at the Algiers Motel, following a performance at Detroit's Fox Theatre, during an alleged murder by members of the Detroit Police Department, which was one of the incidents which sparked the Detroit Riots of 1967.

The Dramatics "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" appeared in the 2005 documentary Sunday Driver, as well as the movies, Wattstax and Darktown Strutters, and the 2007 Petey Greene biopic, Talk To Me.

Lead singer Ron Banks died at his Prest Street home in northwest Detroit on Thursday morning, March 4, 2010. Banks was born in Detroit on May 10, 1951. He was 58 years old.


Studio albums

Year Album Chart positions[3] US
Record label
1972 Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get 20 5 Volt (Stax)
1973 A Dramatic Experience 86 11
1974 Dramatically Yours A 36
1975 The Dramatic Jackpot A 31 9 ABC
Drama V 93 10
1976 Joy Ride 103 11
1977 Shake It Well 60 10
1978 Do What You Wanna Do 44 6 Gold
1979 Anytime, Anyplace 15
1980 10½ 61 14 MCA
The Dramatic Way 38
1982 New Dimension 40 Capitol
1986 Somewhere in Time (A Dramatic Reunion) Fantasy
1989 Positive State of Mind 80 Volt (Stax)
1990 Stone Cold
1994 Mellow Drama Groovesville
1999 If You Come Back to Me Volt (Stax)
"—" denotes the album failed to chart or was not certified
  • A Credited to Ron Banks & the Dramatics.

Other albums

Year Album Chart positions[3] Record label
1974 The Dells vs. The Dramatics 156 15 Cadet
1988 Live Stax
1997 A Dramatic Christmas: The Very Best Christmas of All Fantasy
2002 Greatest Hits Live Stax
"—" denotes the album failed to chart

Compilation albums

Year Album Chart positions Record label
1974 The Best of the Dramatics Volt (Stax)
1998 Be My Girl: Their Greatest Love Songs Hip-O
Shake It Well: The Best of the Dramatics 1974-1980 MCA
1999 Say the Word: Their Greatest Love Songs, Vol. 2 Hip-O
2000 Ultimate Collection
2005 The Millennium Collection: The Best of the Dramatics
2007 The Very Best of the Dramatics Stax
"—" denotes the album failed to chart


Year Single Chart positions[5]
1967 "All Because of You" 43
1971 "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" 9 3
"Get Up and Get Down" 78 16
1972 "In the Rain" 5 1
"Toast to the Fool" 67 18
1973 "Hey You! Get Off My Mountain" 43 5
"Fell for You" 45 12
1974 "And I Panicked" 49
"Choosing Up on You" (A-side) 30
"Door to Your Heart" (B-side) 62 25
"Don't Make Me No Promises" (A-side) 63
1975 "Tune Up" (B-Side) 74
"Me and Mrs. Jones" A 47 4
"Love Is Missing From Our Lives" (with The Dells) 46
"(I'm Going by) The Stars in Your Eyes" A 81 22
"You're Fooling You" 87 10
1976 "Treat Me Like a Man" 49
"Finger Fever" 23
"Be My Girl" 53 3
1977 "I Can't Get Over You" 101 9
"Shake It Well" 76 4
1978 "Ocean of Thoughts and Dreams" 106 17
"Stop Your Weeping" 22
"Do What You Want to Do" 56
1979 "I Just Wanna Dance with You" 35
"That's My Favorite Song" 40
1980 "Welcome Back Home" 9
"Be with the One You Love" 79
"Get It" 59
"You're the Best Thing in My Life" 26
1982 "Live It Up" 40
"Treat Me Right" 62
1986 "One Love Ago" 61
1989 "Bridge Over Troubled Water" 93
1996 "Try Love Again 82
"—" denotes the single failed to chart
  • A Credited to Ron Banks & the Dramatics.


  1. ^ a b c Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 312. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  2. ^ McCollum, Brian (2010-03-04). "Dramatics founder Ron Banks dead at 58". Retrieved 4 March 2010. 
  3. ^ a b "The Dramatics US albums chart history". Retrieved 2010-01-03. 
  4. ^ "The Dramatics US certification history". Retrieved 2010-01-03. 
  5. ^ "The Dramatics US singles chart history". Retrieved 2010-01-03. 

External links

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