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The Ebonys

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Album Review

Even though their vocal ability was as good as many, if not supreme, this Camden, NJ-based vocal quartet did not threaten the chart action of any of their competitors. This album is, however, home to the Ebonys' most popular single, "It's Forever." With its serene intro, the foursome harmonize their way to the verse where the lead vocals, both baritone and falsetto, bring enhancing deliveries to an already outstanding track. The single peaked at number 14 on the R&B charts after 13 weeks. The second single was "I Believe." Originally a pop hit for Frankie Laine in 1953, the Ebonys' version retains some of that pop texture. However, the group's vocal explosiveness leaves a lasting R&B impression. After 13 weeks, the song reached number 34 on the charts. "Life in the Country" was the third single — a moderately paced ballad reminiscent of early Stylistics, who were emerging around the same time this album was released. While this album is balanced with moderate grooves, the aforementioned ballads, and the unreleased "I'll Try," stand out. The production work of Kenneth Gamble, Leon Huff and their colleagues is outstanding.

Biography

Formed: 1967 in Camden, NJ

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '70s

Another '70s soul group whose commercial track record doesn't do its music justice, the Ebonys made gripping, dramatic ballads that no soul fan undervalues. On the Philadelphia International label during an era when they routinely cranked out transcendent, genre-smashing hits, this New Jersey vocal group started in 1968. Jenny Holmes, David Beasley, James Tuten, and Clarence Vaughan formed the lineup, and Leon Huff discovered them. They scored their first hit with "You're the Reason Why," a number...
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The Ebonys, The Ebonys
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