If you are a Dramatics fan, like me, then surely you have found yourself playing constantly playing those Dramatics songs and singing along. But do you really know the meaning of those songs? If not, you might want to read this page.
The songs from the new album, "Look Inside", have been added!
Songs rated on a scale of 1-10
1- Horrible! I can't stand to even hear this song!
2-It's so boring, it puts me to sleep.
3-Poorly written and sloppy.
4-Could use some improvement.
6-I guess it isn't bad, but I've never paid much attention to this song.
7-I kinda-sorta like it.
9-I love this song so much! Can't get enough of it.
10-Brilliant beyond brilliant. Can't get any better.
"Can you show me the roads we must follow...we must follow...can you tell me who will stand as our guide? Where is the hope for tomorrow? I gotta tell you, tell you, gotta tell you right now, we've got to LOOK INSIDE." The Dramatics make their comeback in the 21st century with this right-on-target message song, reminiscent of the psychedelic-era and the Norman Whitfield-penned Temptations tunes such as "Ball Of Confusion". Only "Look Inside" has a "hip" flavor. There is even a rap dialogue in the middle of the song. A song that people of all generations can enjoy!
Looks Like Rain
"Love was my umbrella, and I thought it would last forever. But the clouds keep on growing, growing...I can see love leaving all on your face...your face. LOOKS LIKE RAIN just keeps on falling. Little drops of pain...falling down on me, yeah. LOOKS LIKE RAIN just keeps on falling...telling me that you're not the one for me." Like the Dramatics' other three "rain" songs, ("In the Rain", "She's A Rainmaker", and "It Ain't Raining [On Nobody's House But Mine]), the song begins with rain sound effects. Winzell leads the first verse, then passes the lead onto L.J., who passes it onto Ron, then L.J. leads most of the song from there. "Looks Like Rain" is a perfectly orchestrated "traditional" Dramatics song.
Got My Pride
"I don't know what's going on in the world today; I can't believe that you'd say the things you say. The people, they've all been talking...they're telling you've been walking with somebody else when you know that I've GOT MY PRIDE." Basically, the story is that L.J.'s girl is cheating on him and everyone knows about it, but he's got his pride! A "classic-style" 21st century Dramatics song at its best. Led, written, and produced by L.J., "Got My Pride" is a swingy mid-pacer with a keyboard solo by L.J. himself near the bridge of the song. It may be one of the most overlooked songs on the album, but it happens to be very uplifting and my favorite song on "Look Inside".
Pushin' Up On Ya
"I might not treat ya like a Sunday school teacher, but I'll give you everything that you want..." What does the lady want? According to Ron, it is the pleasure of being made love to. This has to be by far the raciest song the Dramatics have ever sang. It's written by Ron and for the most part, led by him, although L.J. does lead one verse. There's also a rap dialogue sung by a guest rapper. The song has a hip-hop beat and feel, but I think the lyrics are a bit too suggestive.
Rating: 4 (Sorry)
What Must I Do
"If I could have my way...I would build you a fortress and surround you with riches, yeah...the tender things you say make me feel so much pleasure, girl you are my treasure. I'm the one who really wants you (yes I do), I'm the one who really cares. I really care, don't be no fool. I can do most anything you want me to. So baybay, WHAT MUST I DO to get into you?" The lead is split by Ron and Winzell, with Ron singing in his natural tenor. They sing about the love they are willing to give to their lady, and asking what they must to to make her fall for them. A beautiful love song.
"I get Dramatic widchoo, 'cuz i'm your BABY BOO. You know I get Dramatic widchoo...'cuz i'm your baby boo...I'll do what you need me to do. I wanna do whatchoo want me to, do all the things your need your BABY BOO to do, for you, for you. that's if you want me to." Written by Winzell, who also leads this modern love song, "Baby Boo" may not be a traditional Drams song, but it once again proves just how versatile these guys truly are.
Right in the Middle Of Heaven
"Baby let me touch you, RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF HEAVEN. You're all I need, all I want on this earth." L.J. takes the lead in this song, with Lenny shadowing him. The song has a great concept (the raspy baritone-tenor lead with the breathy baritone-tenor shadowing), but the music is a little whack and the lyrics do not have a clear message.
Rating: 3 (Sorry again)
"Always got the right recipe (right recipe) to do all the things that pleases me, yes. A love that I never dreamed would be the right girl for me. Until she came into my life, love never smiled on me. All it took is just one bite, to let me know that's she my kid of lady. SPECIAL LADY, she's the kind of girl that makes me wanna sing my, my, my, my." Lenny and L.J. lead this funky uptempo tune, where they praise a lady who deserves to be loved. The sonis very well-composed. Winzell is also one of the co-writers.
I'm So Alone
"Standing here all alone. Wishing you were here with me. Love is gone away, never to return again. Ooh, I'm a lonely man, so sad, so sad, I'M SO ALL ALONE...Baby, since you left me...don't know what to do." "I'm So Alone" opens with a classic Willie Ford dialogue, L.J. Reynolds "crying and begging" lead, and Ron Banks' soaring falsetto shadowing throughout the song. Reminscent of "I Can't Get Over You", "I'm So Alone" practically defines "soul music".
Better Love As Friends
"You knew right from the start, just how hard my life was gonna be. But as soon as I learned to love ya, worship and adore you, you started saying that we...we'll make BETTER LOVE AS FRIENDS, should it happen all over again." This whole soulful, beautiful song is led by Lenny, and the way he interprets it, you would think that Lenny had written the song himself! He sings about how he and his woman aren't getting along, and how they've separated many times, and that he and her both decide that they will get along better as friends. "Better Love" is one of the best Lenny Mayes leads ever!
Whatcha See is Whatcha Get
"Some people are made of plastic. And you know some people are made of wood. Some people have hearts of stone. Some people are up to no good. But baby, I'm for real, I'm as real as real can get. If what you're looking for is real loving, then what you see is what you get." In this song, the Dramatics each say that some people are fake, then Wee Gee Howard says that he is for real, and that the love he is giving his girl is the real thing. The Dramatics had their very first hit with this song. It's latin-flavor, multi lead vocals, and Ron's tongue rolling add the final touch.
In the Rain
The Dramatic who is leading this song feels like crying and he wants to go outside in the rain because he doesn't want his girl to see him cry. The rain will wash away his teardrops, and his girl will never know that he has been crying. This song is simply beautiful, with its amazing strings arrangement and rain and thunder effects. Once again, Wee Gee's soulful second tenor-baritone carries the song, while Willie Ford's bass provides the foundation. No wonder it sold over two million copies for the Dramatics!
Fall In Love, Lady Love
"Could you hear me if I called your name out loud? Could you see me, with your head stuck in a cloud? How can you see that I'm in love with you, if you just walk on by? Head up high! Hung up on yourself! Oh! FALL IN LOVE, LADY LOVE, be my lady, please Lady Love." Obviously, the Dramatics are saying, "I'm in love with this girl, but she won't give me the time of the day." This is a jammin' ballad with classy harmonies and so sentimentally beautiful, that how can anyone leave if off their "Greatest Love Songs" list?
The Devil Is Dope
The songs starts off with the sound of a crackling, burning flame, Willie saying, "Hey, I smell fire!" then the other guys echoing "Fire! Fire!" and "It's getting hot!" Then Ron does a sarcastic laugh, and Willie an even scarier one. Finally, Wee Gee sings "Satan is his name, from hell he came, some call him Lucifer. But he hides his horns in many different forms, but stays Lucifer. THE DEVIL IS DOPE, out of control. THE DEVIL IS DOPE, out to get your soul." All of the Dramatics lead this one. It's basically a sermon, and serves a double purpose: It warns listeners about drugs and about Devil worship. The funk-inspired music, screams, and scary laughter make it an ideal Halloween song. Brothers and sisters, you better beware!
Fell For You
"Like a star...slipping out of place, sliding from the sky, tumbling through space. When you touch my hand, I swear I feel like I'm falling, falling, falling. Falling, falling, falling. Like a wheel whirling round and round, rolling down the hill, spinning on the ground. Your kisses make my dizzy in the head....and I'm falling, falling, falling. Falling, falling, falling. Uh-oh girl, I think that I have FELL FOR YOU." Another beautiful song. On this one, Ron, singing in his natural tenor, tells the girl that he loves he has fell for her, using lots of descriptive metaphors. This is the first Dramatics song that L.J. Reynolds and Lenny Mayes sing on.
You Could Become the Very Heart of Me
"Haven't I seen your face before? Hey girly girl whoevah you are. Maybe in a dream, or on a motion picture screen? Cause girl you are sho'nuff a star. Something you've got brings out the man in me. And if-ah you stick around, girl, YOU COULD BECOME THE VERY HEART OF ME, the stop and go, the start of me." L.J. is falling for a complete DRAMATIC DIVA, a girl that is so beautiful and has star potential. A completely playful, catchy midtempo. L.J.'s amazing lead voice in this song is unusually soft and raspy at the same time, and Willie does a little "burp-growl" at the end. This song is undoubtedly on my favorites list. It's as if L.J. is actually singing to me!
Now You Got Me Loving You
Another masterpiece with Ron singing in his natural tenor. "You interrupted my life, little girl. Came into my heart, came into my world. Now you're telling me you gotta go. It would have been alright about 1,000 kisses ago." He sings about this girl that got him to love her, and now she is going to leave him, but it is impossible for him to let her go now that he has fallen for her. The guitar solo at the end with the Drams singing "That's all it took, baby....a little bit of your love and 1,000 kisses" wraps up the song. One of the most sensual songs the Dramatics ever recorded. A song that doesn't have to be sensual by containing sexy lyrics, it is sensual just by the musical arrangement and the singing alone!
Toast To the Fool
L.J. and Ron share the lead on this one. L.J. sings that the girl he loves was true to her old boyfriend, but he jived, connived, and cheated on her. But that disadvantage is somehow an advantage, because now the girl has L.J...and he wants to toast to that fool for letting the girl go. Had he not shown his true colors, the girl would still be with him. "Let's give a toast, give a toast, give a toast, give a TOAST TO THE FOOL (to the foo-oo-ool) who let you go, who let you go, he can't hurt you no more. No, no. Three cheers to the fool who let you go, who let you go, he can't hurt you no more." The flute intro is simply beautiful, and Ron's soaring falsetto gives the song a light, airy touch. Classic Dramatics at their best.
I Made Myself Lonely
L.J.'s woman's best friend lived in their neighborhood, and L.J. says that he would have eventually met her, because they were neighbors. One day, while L.J.'s woman is not home, the neighborhood friend comes to visit, and tries to put the move on L.J. He sings that he "held back until he couldn't hold back anymore." Then, when his woman walks through the front door, she catches them in the act. She packs her things and leaves, and L.J. shows no remorse, thinking "I have the other girl." but the neighborhood girl comes back a few days later and tells L.J. that she can't see him anymore, because her man is back. "Look what I've done to you and me, I put two lives in misery. I MADE MYSELF LONELY." A classic love song with that Dramatic touch. (Thank you BAD *A* DRAMA for your interpretation of the meaning of this song on the Dramatics bulletin board.)
Love Is Missing From Our Lives
This is one of the two songs on the "Dramatics vs. Dells" albums where the Drams and the Dells share a lead. The lyrics are simply beautiful. ("But you can't see the forest, if you're looking at the trees") The theme of the song is pretty basic, a couple who are still together, but there is something missing in their relationship, and that's TRUE LOVE.
Don't Make Me No Promises
"DON'T MAKE ME NO PROMISES. Don't make me no deals. Don't tell me no little white lies. Just be for real. You say you're gonna do right by me, and stop your messing around. You build my hopes up to the sky and then you let me down. If you don't love me baby then spare me the pain...of wanting you, not having you, and hanging on in vain. Love is love, there are no in betweens. You've got to mean what you say, you've got to sayt what you mean." In this Ron-lead song, Ron's lady promises him the world and leads him on until he trusts her, only to break her promise time after time. A fast-paced dance song with some outstanding lyrics (Love is love, there are no in betweens) and the smooth singing evenly balances this upbeat song.
Door To Your Heart
"In the corridor, on the wall. Underneath the staircase, in the hall. On a hook, behind the door. In the basement, on the floor." Is there a place for L.J. in his lady's heart? Well, there better be, because he's been waiting for that DOOR TO HER HEART to swing open so that he can come on in! The strings,horns, and violins in this song cannot be bettered.
I'm Going By (The Stars In Your Eyes)
So, what's your sign? "Sagittarius, Virgo? Maybe Scorpio? I wouldn't care if you were Aquarius, cause I'm still in love with you. As sure as you were born, you could be...Gemini. Or even if you were a Capricorn, I could never let you go. Cause I ain't goin' by the stars in the sky. I'M GOING BY THE STARS IN YOUR EYES. And I love you." In the seventies, a popular pick up line was "What's your sign?" But Lenny and L.J. tell the love of their life that they don't care what sign she is. It's the stars that are in her eyes that count. If this song isn't a classic Dramatics love song, then what is? Lenny's breathy lead kicks the song off, then L.J.'s powerful second tenor-baritone takes it away.
Me and Mrs. Jones
"ME AND MRS. JONES...we've got a thing going on. Now we both know that it's wrong, but it's much too strong to let it go now," sings Willie in his heavy bass. The meaning of the song is pretty simple: Guy falls for married woman, they both know their relationship is wrong, but they are much too in love. "We meet every day, at the same cafe, six thirty, and no one knows we'll be there." This smooth and mellow jam was a hit for the Dramatics as well as Billy Paul. In fact, the Dramatics' hit, with its ultra-smooth multi-lead, may have been just as big a hit as Billy Paul's! And why shouldn't it be? Willie's basso profundo opens the song, then he subtly passes the lead to Lenny, and the other guys pick up the lead from there. A perfect example of the Dramatic Multi-Lead System at its best!
Me, Myself, and I
"I don't have no one, but ME, MYSELF, AND I. Listen! Loneliness, don't bother me. I have plenty of....company. I'm surrounded by love and affection. And I'm the center of the attraction. So WHY, all these tears in my eyes! Proud men should never cry! I hide myself behind a lie....all my smiles are just pretend...cause my one and only friends are...ME, MYSELF, AND I!" Apparently, L.J. is lonely and the only person to entertain him is...himself! When he's around others, he hides behind a smile,but when alone, he throws away his masquerade and all his poor tears go on parade. When the Drams sang this song on soul train, L.J. appeared so happy singing this song, and the other Dramatics did some cute choreography. "Me, Myself, And, I" has a good rhythm, a single lead, and an addictive melody that will keep this song on "repeat" on ayone's CD player!
You're Fooling You
"Tell me who's fooling who? You ain't fooling me (naw you ain't!), you're fooling you!" It's 1975, and the Dramatics are doing disco with this charting single. "You're Fooling You" is about a girl who acts needy, loves money, is greedy, crazy, and a fake. She's not fooling the Dramatics---she's fooling herself! Dance floor lovers, watch out for this single. It will get you moving and shaking!
She's A Rainmaker
"Oh, she's a rainmaker...and she has no heart at all. A real-life, genuine, heart breaker. First there was sunshine, then came the storm. She gave me love at first, so tender and warm. Now here comes the rain (here comes the rain) pouring all around, falling from my eyes, splashing on the ground." One of the most beautiful songs in the Dramatics' repertoire, right up there with "Toast To the Fool". Ron's high falsetto gives it a soft touch, and L.J.'s raspy voice gives it power. The instrumental arrangement is gorgeous. Flutes and violins are heard in the background as the Dramatics tell the story of a cold, heartless girl who makes them cry enough tears to start a storm. They perfectly use the analogy of rain to describe their teardrops. The lyrics in this song are more beautiful than any 16th century poem could ever be.
I Was the Life of the Party
"Tonight is the night when I'll see her again. And she'll be with...another man. Will I be strong? Will I go on when I see them holding hands? It's just a party, I keep telling myself. And so, if she's with someone else. I'll put on my best smile, and clown for awhile, and no one will know the sadness in my heart. I WAS THE LIFE OF THE PARTY (tried to have some fun), I laughed loud and hearty (I was the lonely one), I told all my best jokes." The lyrics of "I Was the Life Of the Party" strongly suggest that he was anything but. Ron sings that he put on his best smile and tried to pretend that everything was alright, but inside, he was crying. "I laughed so hard I almost cried." An excellent example of a "pity-party" song.
Just Shopping, Not Buying Anything
The song starts off with a slow and mellow instrumental, and L.J. saying "Ooh baby" and the Dramatics saying "Just shopping, Not buying anything" a few times. Then, after about one minute and a half, the tempo speeds up, and Ron comes in, singing "I'd like to make you...queen of my castle. Yeah, baby. And give you all the things that your heart desires. But you said you were just shopping, not buying anything. Oh you said you was just shopping, not buying anything." By the third verse, L.J. takes over the lead, singing "Ohhhhhhhh, you're looking so good to me...all I can do is tremble. Still I'm in love with you, even though I can't get your number. But you said you were JUST SHOPPING, NOT BUYING ANYTHING..." In other words, he wants to give the lady he loves anything she wants, but she doesn't want to get serious with him. In fact, she doesn't want a relationship at all. She wants to date different guys. The Drams use the shopping analogy ever so subtly. "Just Shopping" is dangerously well-written and put together. The Drams, the writers, the producers, and the musicians completely outdid themselves on this song and the album it comes from, "Drama 5". Not surprisingly, it makes my top ten Dramatics songs of all time list!
Richest Man Alive
Lenny represents himself in this song as a guy who isn't materialistic and that all he needs to satisfy him is one minute of his lady's love. "I don't need the fancy things money can buy (money can buy), cause money don't always make everything alright...I'm not trying to take too much of your time...cause money and time don't express my mind (don't express my mind) Naw, naw, naw, oh naw! All I need is just one minute of your love...to be the RICHEST MAN ALIVE in this universe." This three-minute catchy uptempo is without a doubt one of the finest uptempo tunes that the Dramatics ever cut. The title is catchy, the lyrics are so realistic, and the singing is effortless. Lenny wraps his breathy vocals around this one without putting too much strain on his voice, giving it a soft touch and letting the music do it's work. The softness of his voice in this song are made for a love ballad, but the music and background vocals add spice to this catchy uptempo. This song has been on my Top Five favorites list since the moment I heard it!
Be My Girl
"You know, girl, sometimes you make me want to scream." That's Willie doing the intro, then Ron comes in and screams. Lenny's soft, breathy voice sings on the first verse, "All is not lost today. Your brown eyes converted me. And let me know, that you're the right girl for me." Larry Demps sings the next line, "You don't need two of the same love I offer you. It would be a shame to let someone else take my place." A classic seventies love song, the theme being something that any man can relate to: Being in love with a woman and wanting to give her love. The Dramatics evenly split the lead between the five of them on this love ballad.
After this Dance
The Dramatics, in their quintessential multi-lead, each sing that after the dance is over, they won't be alone anymore. But the girl that they want to be with really works them hard on the dance floor, and makes them lose a pound. She's a complete dance-floor damsel, a disco dance lover. The song changes tempo more than once, from normal to fast, to normal again. After this song is over, you, like the Drams, will have had an amazing dance floor workout.
I Can't Get Over You
"Hello? This is 'J'. L.J., baby. No...please, don't hang up on me. You see, I know you've been going through some changes, but I've been going through some changes myself. I've been walking the floors, can't sleep, been slamming doors darling, I mean it's just a drag, and it's all because I CAN'T GET OVER YOU. I've tried, and tried, but I can't get you off of my mind. This feeling I have for you is strong indeed...with a flame I can't put it out." From the intro of the song, it is pretty obvious as to who leads it. L.J. describes what he is going through trying to get over the one he loves, putting his best effort into the song. He wows listeners with his descriptiveness, not to mention the beautiful background vocals provided by the other four Dramatics.
Sundown Is Coming (Hold Back the Night)
"I don't mean to tell a sad story, but deep down inside, it's killing me. My baby ran away with my best friend, and you oughta know how sad that feeling can be. You might as well take the sun and the moon from the sky because the light of my life, my life, my life was in my baby's hands. As long as the sun shines, I can make it alright...But I just can't make it through the night." L.J. and Willie share the lead on this funky, rock-inspired, fast-paced song. L.J. sings that his life has become dark ever since his baby left him for his best friend. It's gotten to the point where he's afraid of the dark. He can only make it when the sun is up, but when the sun goes down, the pain begins to start. It has that "angry song" feel, but with meaninful lyrics, unlike most of the angsty songs of today. Brilliant piece of work.
Shake It Well
The song opens up with a strong bassline, then Squirrel comes in, singing, "My name is Squirrel, the best shaker in the world. Shake it on down, shake it down to the ground." The Dramatics' message is that dancing is the best remedy to all of your problems. Written in the style of the OJays' "Money, money, money", "Shake It Well" is one of the few leads that Squirrel Demps had with the Dramatics, even though he does have lines on many songs. This six minute uptempo is an ideal workout for anyone, not to mention a great party song.
Ocean Of Thoughts And Dreams
"When I'm by myself sometimes, a million thoughts run across my mind. And when I try to do without you, all I do is dream about you. And my mind (mind) just drifts (drifts) awayyyyyyy...right into an OCEAN OF THOUGHTS AND DREAMS." Ron wraps his beautiful vocals on this dreamy tranquility song. Ron's mind is always on his lady, and whenever he tries to think about anything else, his mind drifts away. Yes, right into an OCEAN OF THOUGHTS AND DREAMS. The ideal song to take on a trip to the sea.
Stop Your Weeping
"Girl,the old saying says that good things come to those who wait. And I've been standing here for a mighty long time. To make you mine. STOP YOUR WEEPING, stop your crying." "Stop Your Weeping" opens up with a piano scale intro, a girl crying, and Willie talking. L.J. follows, singing, "When I heard he told you he didn't love you. And I heard he said he never ever cared. Ooh, baby. So he walked right out your life, now you've got to pay the price. So let me come into your life and let me love you tonight. Oh girl, stop your weeping. And girl, stop your weeping. So girl, stop your weeping. Your love I'll be keeping from now on. And I will love you...like no other love has loved you before." L.J. Reynolds himself wrote and produced this gorgeous ballad. Hence the beauty of the song, the lyrics, and the vocals. L.J. is nothing less than a musical genius, and he has really shown his talent on this song.
Welcome Back Home
"Welcome back home. WELCOME BACK HOME. Welcome back home. How long has it been since you've had a friend who loves you? Who really, who really loves you? It's such a sad affair when your lover doesn't care about you. Not really, not really about you. Since you've been away, every day seems to be a restless day. What more, what more can I say? Welcome back home, where you belong. I'm the one who loves (I'm your friend) who really, really loves you. I love you, I love you. Love, love, love you." A Ron Banks love song cut in the Classic Dramatics love song style. He wrote and produced this soul jam, as well as lead it. That explains that fact that it's got soul just oozing out of it!