The Detroit Spinners – It’s A Shame

18th February 2024 · Uncategorised

It’s a shame… but after 70 years together, The Detroit Spinners are finally no more. Henry Fambrough was the last surviving original member of the group who were born in the Motor City but came to define the lush Philly sound.

His death this week brought an end to a successful career that spanned doo-wop, Motown and Philly soul.

In the Seventies the pop charts were rarely without one of The Detroit Spinners and The Detroit Emeralds – and sometimes both at the same time.

The Spinners (as they are known in the US) had to add ‘Detroit’ to their name in the UK to avoid confusion with a Liverpool folk group in yellow uniforms.

Fambrough was one of five childhood friends from the projects in Detroit who formed a doo-wop group called The Domingoes way back in 1954.

They changed their name to The Spinners in 1961 but it was not until 1970 that they had their first UK hit with this song, written by Stevie Wonder and released by Motown.

Two years later they moved to Atlantic and moved south – and east – to team up with Thom Bell and enjoyed their most successful period recording at Philadelphia’s Sigma Sound studio.