Ron and Bill (Ronnie White and Smokey Robinson)

Ron & Bill was a short-lived incarnation of Ronnie White and Smokey Robinson from the early days of the Motown organization -- the credit appeared on one record, the single "It" b/w "Don't Say Bye Bye," released on the Tamla label, which was the label's attempt at charting with a novelty tune.

Actually, the A-side is very pretty, with superb singing and exquisite choruses, and if the effort here was to imitate "The Purple People Eater" or "The Flying Saucer," as suggested by Bill Dahl in his notes for The Complete Motown Singles, Vol. 1 1959-1961, then the label ended up with something smoother and more sophisticated than either of those sides, and one well worth hearing as straight R&B.

The record constitutes an understandably obscure event in the life of the singer and the history of the Miracles.

Ron and Bill Don't Say Bye Bye

Ron and Bill It

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Comment by Shelley "SoleMann" King on December 3, 2008 at 7:17pm
I had completely forgot about this, but i remember reading it in his book.....

"“More Love” was written in 1967 following the premature birth and death of the Robinson's twin daughters. He actually has three children, two sons Berry & Tre and daughter Tamla."
Comment by Shelley "SoleMann" King on December 3, 2008 at 7:00pm

The special highlight of the evening, themed “One Motown, One Family, One Legacy,” was a reunion performance by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles (Bobby Rogers, Claudette Robinson and Pete Moore). They, too, are celebrating a 50th anniversary. During the ceremony, the late Ronnie White was represented by his wife and daughter. At one point , Robinson brought his granddaughter on stage. He informed the audience that he had been given the privilege of chosing her name — which is “Lyric.”


Comment by Edie Antoinette on December 3, 2008 at 5:05pm
Bobby looks good too.
Comment by Edie Antoinette on December 3, 2008 at 5:01pm
Still beautiful!!!! Wow!
Comment by Shelley "SoleMann" King on December 3, 2008 at 5:00pm

Comment by Shelley "SoleMann" King on December 3, 2008 at 4:49pm

Comment by Edie Antoinette on December 3, 2008 at 4:04pm
*ker plunk* You are too much...!!!!! Bwaaaah!!!! C'mere so I can pinch them cheeks!! stop that running!!! LOL
Comment by Shelley "SoleMann" King on December 3, 2008 at 3:46pm
You wanna bet? here he is....

Waldo Geraldo Faldo from Family Matters

waldo Pictures, Images and Photos

Comment by Edie Antoinette on December 3, 2008 at 3:38pm
That's cause he's my cyberbaby guys! Best finder of stuff that I know!!! But he ain't found Waldo yet...LOL
Comment by Shelley "SoleMann" King on December 3, 2008 at 3:13pm
Brother William, i actually got the idea to do this blog while at work, finding and uploading the music to youtube was the icing on the cake and then finding all those pics....WHOAAAA/LOL

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  1. play Norman Brown — Night Drive
  2. play Norman Brown — Feeling
  3. play Norman Brown — Still
  4. play Miles Davis — miles 1
  5. play miles 2
  6. play miles 3
  7. play miles 4
  8. play miles 5
  9. play Marvin Gaye — I Met A Little Girl
  10. play Santana — 01 Singing Winds, Crying Beasts
  11. play Santana — 02 Black Magic Woman-Gypsy Queen
  12. play Mongo — 02. Afro Blue

The history of the Butlers/Raw Soul is dense, but for all of us music nerds, that's normal. It is not totally clear what year the Butlers actually formed but they released their first single in 1963 on Liberty Records. That single was "She Tried To Kiss Me" and another single followed on Guyden entitled "Lovable Girl." After the Guyden single the Butlers took a break not recording another record until the single "Laugh, Laugh, Laugh" was released on the Phila label in 1966. The group also backed Charles Earland and Jean Wells on one Phila single ("I Know She Loves Me"). 

As you might be noticing, the Butlers were doing a fair amount of recording but not achieving much success. The group's recordings sold regionally but never had the promotion to make an impact on the national scene. After the single with Phila, the Butlers moved to the Fairmount label (part of the Cameo-Parkway family) and released a handful of singles, some being reissued singles of the past. The Butlers were with Fairmount for 1966-67 and then moved to Sassy Records. Sassy released the group's greatest single (in my opinion) "Love (Your Pain Goes Deep)" b/w "If That's What You Wanted." A copy of that 45 sold for just under $500 last summer on eBay. Even though that isn't that much in the world of record collecting--it's still a hefty sum. The Butlers released another single on Sassy ("She's Gone" b/w "Love Is Good") that appears to be even 
harder to come by then the "Love (Your Pain Goes Deep)" single.


The true history become a bit blurred here as the AMG biography states that the Butlers last record was released on C.R.S. in 1974 (". However, between 1971 and that single, Frankie Beverly formed a group called Raw Soul and released a number of singles. Some of the songs recorded by Beverly during this period are "While I'm Alone," "Open Up Your Heart," (both on the Gregor label) and "Color Blind." "Color Blind" was released by the Eldorado label and rerecorded by Maze. Beverly's big break came when Marvin Gaye asked Raw Soul to back him on a tour. Gaye helped Beverly/Raw Soul get a contract at Capitol. Beverly decided to take the group in a different direction, a name change occurred, and Maze was created. 

The above isn't the most complete history of Beverly but hopefully someone will know a way to get in touch with the man or his management because a comprehensive pre-Maze history needs to be done on Frankie Beverly (his real name is Howard, by the way). Below you'll find every Frankie Beverly (pre-Maze) song available to me right now ("Color Blind" will be up soon). 

If you have a song that is not included below, shoot it over to funkinsoulman (at) and it will go up in the next Frankie Beverly post (later this week--highlighting Maze). Also, if you have any more information please share your knowledge. The Butlers material has been comp-ed sporadically (usually imports) but the entire Maze catalog has been reissued and is available. 

Enjoy.  "She Kissed Me" (Fairmount, 1966 or 1967) 
 "I Want To Feel I'm Wanted" (not sure which label or year) "Laugh, Laugh, Laugh" (Phila, 1966) "Because Of My Heart" (Fairmount, 1966 or 1967)
 "Love (Your Pain Goes Deep)" (Sassy, 1967)
 "If That's What You Wanted" (Sassy, 1967)

Frankie Beverly is one of those cats that has lasting power. He started in the music business doing a tour with doo wop group the Silhouettes and then formed his own group called the Blenders. The Blenders never recorded a single, Beverly wouldn't appear on wax until forming the Butlers a few years later. Along with Beverly, the Butlers included Jack "Sonny" Nicholson, Joe Collins, John Fitch, and Talmadge Conway.

Beverly would later enjoy great success fronting Maze and Conway would become a
well-known penning Double Exposure's
"Ten Percent" and the Intruders' "Memories Are Here To Stay." 
 While Maze is a phenomenal group, Beverly's work before that group will always stand out as his best (imo).

The Butlers produced tunes that most Northern Soul fans would kill for and Raw Soul gave the funksters something to pursue. If, by chance, you know of a way to get in touch with Frankie Beverly or his management, please drop me an e-mail. It would be absolutely great to do an interview with him about his pre-Maze work. He's still playing out, most recently doing a New Year's Eve show in Atlanta.
:: Funkinsoulman ::

Power...Through Simplicity ♪♫♪



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