The Fantastic Four's
first recording hit the streets in December
1966. It was Gene Redd's "Girl Have Pity" which,
although an excellent song, did poorly in the charts.
At that time the
group consisted of Sweet James Epps (lead), Joseph and Ralph
Pruitt and William Hunter. Hunter was soon replaced by Wallace
The follow-up came
in February 1967 with "Can't Stop Looking for my
Baby" c/w the beautiful "Just the Lonely".
They were on the
right track and chart action soon followed when the classic
"The whole world is a stage" c/w "Ain't
Love Wonderful" hit Pop #63 and R&B #6.
This is the chart
detail that I am aware of :
world is a stage
||Pop #63 :
|You gave me
||Pop #55 :
|As long as I
||Pop #68 :
|As long as
the feeling is there
|I've got to
Their final recording for Ric-Tic was the
fabulous "I Love You Madly".
Ken Sands recalls that the session took place at Magic City
Studios. The song was recorded on a four
track machine by Ken and second engineer Steve
Smith. Ken later
transferred the song on to 8 track at United Sound. There he
also did the overdubs and remixing.
the Fantastic Four became Ric Tic's most
successful act, out-selling even Edwin Starr and J.J. Barnes.
When Motown bought
out the rest of the company's assets, the Fantastic Four
moved to Motown's Soul label. Sadly
they felt that it was a wasted spell there although three
singles did see the light of day, plus an album of their
mainly Ric-Tic work.
In 1970 they went
Several years later
Armen Boladian persuaded them to sign with his
Eastbound label, although most of their product would appear on
the sister label, Westbound.
Cleveland Horne and
Ernest Newsome had now replaced Wallace Childs and Ralph