Five Part Harmony With Class and Sex Appeal Sept 15, 2005 14:33:42 GMT -5
Post by Motorcity on Sept 15, 2005 14:33:42 GMT -5
Clockwise from left: Kendrick, Bryant, Franklin (center), O. Williams, P. Williams
The Temptations began with members from groups around Detroit.
Paul Williams and Eddie Kendrick of the Primes were joined by Elbridge Bryant and Otis Williams with Melvin Franklin making the group a quintet reportedly known as the Elgins. Paul developed their image and was their first choreogrpaher. He designed their shows while Eddie designed their style and harmonies. Paul and Eddie shared leads on their early recordings with Motown. Early songs included future gems, "Your Wonderful Love", "Paradise" and the duo of Paul and Eddie, "Farewell My Love".
This lineup saw some success with "I Want A Love I Can See" locally, and "Dream Come True" nationally.
Clockwise from left: Ruffin, Franklin, Kendrick (center), P. Williams, O. Williams
Known as the hitless Temptations following limited or no charting, Elbridge quit the group and David Ruffin was recommended and joined the group.
This grouping produced their first hit in "The Way You Do The Things You Do".
With this line-up you got the alltime love song "My Girl" led by David. They contiued with hits penned by Smokey Robinson and Norman Whitfield and became the most successful male group. They outdressed, outdanced and outsang any competition. Following the success of "Ain't Too Proud To Beg", David had become the lead singer of the group although Eddie and Paul sang lead on album songs, live shows and television performances.
Clockwise from center: O. Williams Kendrick, Edwards, P. Williams, Franklin
By 1968, David was no longer a Temptation. His replacement was Dennis Edwards, of the Contours.
With Dennis Edwards, the group received Motown's first grammy award with "Cloud Nine" and ushered in the wave of socially-driven songs that began their psychedelic era. They performed in fashion shows, in Las Vegas and on television specials with the Supremes. They also received their own special called the "Temptation Show".
From left: O. Williams, Franklin, Owens, Street, Edwards
In 1971, Eddie quit the Temptations for various reasons and began a solo career. His initial replacement was RichardRicky Owens. Due to failing health, Paul retired from performing with the group but remained as a consultant and advisor. Richard Street was brought in from the Monitors and Motown's Q&A department. Damon Harris became the second replacemnent for Eddie after Ricky was no longer a member.
Clockwise from left: O. Williams, Harris, Edwards, Franklin, Street
After various label and member rotations, some form of the Temptations continue to perform their major hits, including "Papa Was A Rolling Stone".