The Stylistics

Biographie The Stylistics

The Stylistics
The Stylistics
were an American soul group from Philadelphia, formed in 1966. The group released seven albums on Avco between 1971 and 1975, followed by five albums on H&L during the second half of the decade.

The Stylistics formed through the merger of two Philadelphia groups, The Percussions and The Monarchs. Singers Russell Thompkins Jr., James Smith, and Airrion Love hailed from the Monarchs; James Dunn and Herb Murrell came from the Percussions.

In 1970, The Stylistics debuted with the single “You’re a Big Girl Now” (b/w “Let the Junkie Bust the Pusher”) on local-press Sebring. Both sides were co-written by Marty Bryant, their road manager, and Robert Douglas, who played in their backing band Slim & the Boys. After some regional airplay, the single was picked up by Avco Records, which signed the group in 1971.

Avco linked The Stylistics with producer Thom Bell, who’d generated a string of hits with The Delfonics. Bell, in his first act of creative control with the new signing, assigned lead-vocal duties to the group’s high-tenor, Russell Thompkins Jr.

Members: Airrion Love (tenor vocals, lead vocals), Herbert “Herbie” Murrell (baritone vocals, lead vocals), Russell Thompkins Jr. (lead vocals, 1966-2000), James Dunn (baritone vocals, 1966-80), James Smith (bass vocals, 1966-80)

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