Where Are They Now: The Whispers

The Whispers will go down in history as one of R&B music’s most beloved vocal groups. The Whispers began their infamous and timeless career in 1963. Nicholas Caldwell, Marcus Hutson, Gordy Harmon, and Twin brothers Walter and Wallace Scott joined forces to form a singing group. They began singing together, calling themselves, “the Eden trio” created by Marcus Hutson and Nicholas Caldwell. Later on the band was renamed The Whispers by Lou Bedell of Dore Records. Between 1964 and 1967 the group recorded nine singles for the Doré label. Their fame began to grow in the Bay Area due to their performances in a series known as “The Battle of the Bands.” In 1969 the group released “The Time Will Come” for an L.A. based label, Soul Clock Records. This ended up being their first Top 10 R&B hit. In 1970 the group switched over to Janus Records and in 1971 Gordy Harmon left the group. He was soon replaced by the talented, Leaveil Degree. With their new group in tact, the next two decades for The Whispers were filled with a string of hits.

They became one of the best groups of romantic singers of their generation. Throughout the 70s and 80s the R&B group received one gold album after another. The Whispers began to gain national attention with their seventies albums Open Up Your Love, One For The Money, and Headlights. They produced two singles that hit Billboard’s Top 20 R&B Charts, called “(Olivia) Lost and Turned Out” and “(Let’s Go) All the Way.”

The Band received their first platinum gold album with their 1980 album The Whispers. Featured on the track was their biggest hit “And The Beat Goes On.” This album turned out to be their most successful selling album going double platinum. In 1987 they created the album, “Just Gets Better with Time.” The album went platinum and featured the R&B number 1 and US Top 10 pop song “Rock Steady,” which they collaborated with Kenneth Edmonds.

By the 1990s, the group teamed up with Capitol Records, releasing even more classic hits. Twin brothers Scotty and Walter created the album My Brothers Keeper. In 1993 it became a critically acclaimed duet album. In 1995 The Whispers released, Toast to the Ladies. This album included a collection of love songs that were dedicated to the women of the world. The Whispers changed record labels again in 1997 to Interscope Records. The band featured work by Babyface with their new album, Songbook, Vol. 1: The Songs of Babyface. Unfortunately in 1989 the group lost the talented Marcus, who had to stop performing due to health concerns. In the year 2000, Marcus passed away due to health complications and the group decided to never replace him.

The Whispers’ were the recipients of a huge award on September 23, 2003 when four decades of their accomplishments were celebrated. The Drifters’ own Charlie Thomas inducted the band into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame. On June 12, 2005, The San Francisco Chapter of the Grammy Awards presented The Whispers with the prestigious Governors Award.The Whispers have had over 40 successful years in the Industry. They have an enormous worldwide fan base and will remain a classic and influential group for years to come.

Listen to the Secret Spot Boston’s home for R&B, soul, and slow jams every weekend from eight to midnight to hear more of the music from the artist we highlight on our Where Are They Now? feature.

By Samantha Wagner

If you liked this, check out:
Where Are They Now: The Temptations
Where Are They Now: Charlie Wilson

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