Fascinations, The

Also known as Fascinations, Fasinations, The
Members of Fascinations, The: Bernadine Boswell, Martha Reeves, Shirley Lawson

Discography of Fascinations, The:

# Release title Total tracks Type of release is Imprint date Label
1 Girls Are Out To Get You 2 Audio 1967 Mayfield Records
2 I'm In Love / I Can't Stay Away From You 2 Audio 1967 Mayfield Records
3 Mama Didn't Lie / Someone Like You 2 Audio 1962 ABC-Paramount
4 I'm In Love / I Can't Stay Away From You 2 Audio 1967 Mayfield Records
5 Just Another Reason / O.K. For You 2 Audio 1968 Mayfield Records
6 ...Out To Getcha! 23 Audio 1997 Sequel Records
7 Girls Are Out To Get You / You Be Sorry 2 Audio 1968 Sue Records
8 Girls Are Out To Get You / Crazy 2 Audio 2011 Outta Sight
9 Hold On / Such A Fool 2 Audio 1968 Mayfield Records
10 Tears In My Eyes / You Gonna Be Sorry 2 Audio ABC-Paramount
11 Just Another Reason / O.K. For You 2 Audio 1968 Mayfield Records
12 Girls Are Out To Get You 4 Audio 1976 Mayfield Records (4)
13 Hold On / Such A Fool 2 Audio 1968 Mayfield Records
14 Girls Are Out To Get You 2 Audio 1967 Quality

Soul girl group from Detroit.

They never made it in America, but sold lots of records in England.

Started as the Sabre-ettes.

Two co-founders, [b]Shirley Walker[/b] (aka [a=Shirley Lawson]) and [a=Martha Reeves], were doing the auditions, and they brought gospel singers Joanne and [a=Bernadine Boswell] into the line-up, which quickly expanded by one more slot with the addition of [b]Fern Bledsoe.[/b]

The resulting quintet was rechristened the Fascinations. Martha Reeves left the group in 1960 for her own path to stardom, and the Fascinations were permanently a quartet. Two years later, they made the acquaintance of [a=Fred Cash (2)] and [a=Sam Gooden], two members of the [a=Impressions, The]. They, in turn, introduced the Fascinations to [a=Curtis Mayfield], who got the group signed to ABC-Paramount, where they released a trio of singles (written and/or produced by Mayfield) over the next year that failed to sell in significant numbers.

ABC-Paramount lost interest in the Fascinations, but Mayfield never did-his success in 1966 with the Windy C label enabled him to start the Mayfield label, and to sign the Fascinations.

The group's first Mayfield release, "Say It Isn't So," only got to number 47 on the R&B charts, but their second, "Girls Are out to Get You," did crack the lower reaches of the pop charts, while ascending to number 13 as an R&B hit. It also became the group's first release in England, on EMI's Stateside label (ironically, also the company's outlet for Motown). The quartet never scored very high in America, despite a switch to ballads, with which they were far more comfortable -- it seemed as though they were never there with the right song at the right time. By 1969, they'd decided to call it quits as far as recording, and their history on vinyl came to an end.

The irony was that, in England, their records continued to sell. "Girls Are Out To Get You" became immensely popular in British dance clubs, and was reissued by the Sue Records label, for which it sold steadily. In 1971, the song charted in the UK when it was reissued yet again, this time on the Mojo imprint of British Polydor -- the No.32 placement, with heavy airplay, even led to a reunion and a British tour by the quartet -- it was a brief, welcomed moment in the spotlight, before thousands of adoring fans from one corner of the globe, even if it wasn't their corner, and made the nine or ten years of work seem sweeter. Unfortunately, Mojo's efforts to coax similar sales out of their other Mayfield releases came to nothing, and the members soon returned to their post-career activities.

The Fascinations weren't much more than an odd footnote in the history of Detroit-based R&B, in terms of their sales impact and their early history as [a=Martha Reeves]' first group. They never recorded steadily or successfully enough to justify an album release during the time they were together, but they turned in some delightful and intensely passionate (and playful, in the case of "Girls Are Out To Get You") soul performances. They deserved (and, for a moment in England, got) the kind of recognition and treatment that seemed to come easily to a lot of Motown-signed girl groups of the period.

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