Brenda Payton, Eddie L. Jackson, Maurice Coates, and Jerry Jones formed Brenda and the Tabulations in Philidelphia in 1966. They began recording for the Dionn record label the next year. Their first single was Dry Your Eyes, a song that sounded like a throwback to the doo-wop sounds of the early sixties that reminds me a lot of It’s Gonna Take A Miracle by the Royalettes. The record reached #20 on the Hot 100 but got as high as #2 on the R&B chart.
The group had five more top forty singles on the R&B chart in the next four years, but none of them reached any higher than #50 on the Hot 100.
The group’s manager was songwriter and producer Gilda C. Woods. She created the Top & Bottom Record label as a subsidiary of the Jamie record label and started producing Brenda and the Tabulations on her new label.
By 1970 the group had all but disbanded as the male singers had all left the group. They were replaced by two female singers, Pat Mercer and Deborah Martin. The new group signed began working with Van McCoy and recorded a song he had co-written, Right On The Tip Of My Tongue. The song had a solid Philidelphia sound and reached #23 on the Hot 100 and the top ten on the R&B chart.
The group’s next single barely reached #14 on the R&B chart and they had one more top forty single on the R&B chart, but never got into the Hot 100 again after that.
The singer and studio musicians who gave us the Ohio Express and other bubblegum hits in the late sixties recorded the novelty record Life Is a Rock (But the Radio Rolled Me) in 1974. The song lists artists, songs, and disk jockeys from the early rock era, and just past the one minute mark, one of the groups mentioned is Brenda and the Tabulations.
Brenda died in 1992.