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THE DRAMATICS: SHAKE IT WELL EXPANDED EDITION (CAROLINE/SOULMUSIC RECORDS)
Formed in Detroit and probably best known for “Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get” – which instantly sprang to mind when this CD arrived – I was nicely surprised to hear this collection of tracks. Originally known as The Dynamics, the name change took them to Stax, later Volt. This re-issue, however, is the group’s first outing via ABC Records during 1977, and houses a pair of hit R&B singles: it’s title track and “Ocean Of Thoughts And Dreams”. Hah, they’re as different as chalk and cheese. The first is taken at a funky pace, while the second is pure mellow soul, like butter melting on hot toast.

“Come Inside” is an easy, chugging track with spoken lyrics against group vocals blending together in the background. The tempo then changes to take on a more beatier stance. Interesting combination. “Spaced Out Over You” arrives; rather confusing as the song seems to drift along, while “That Heaven Kind Of Feeling” raises the standard again as it transforms itself into a melodic few minutes. Again, it’s the song’s hook line that attracts most interest. Even more low keyed is “(I Like) Makin’ You So Happy”, laid back and dreamy. With Ray Parker Jr, James Jamerson Snr and Dennis Coffey listed among the musicians, The Dramatics weren’t messing about!

Rating: 7


About the Writer
Sharon Davis ran the Four Tops fan club before spearheading Motown Ad Astra, catering for all the Motown acts, where she edited the in-house magazine TCB. Was publicist for Fantasy, Stax and Salsoul before joining Motown Records in London. Formed her own press/promotion company Eyes & Ears, worked for Blues & Soul magazine and website, and became a full time author and researcher. To date Sharon has written eleven books (her last A Girl Called Dusty published by Carlton Books) and she’s working on her next - Divas Of Motown. As a researcher, Sharon assisted Diana Ross with her autobiography Secrets Of A Sparrow, and is now in constant demand for her knowledge about Motown and its artists.
  
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