Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

The Exciters

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Also known as  The Masterettes
Years active  1961–1974 (as group)
Instruments  Vocals
Active until  1974
The Exciters httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsaa
Origin  Queens, New York City, United States
Past members  Brenda Reid Carolyn Johnson Lillian Walker Sylvia Wilbur Penny Carter Herb Rooney Ronnie Pace Skip McPhee
Albums  Human Contradictions, Caviar and Chitlins
Members  Brenda Reid, Herb Rooney, Lillian Walker, Sylvia Wilbur, Penny Carter, Skip McPhee, Carolyn Johnson, Ronnie Pace
Genres  Rhythm and blues, Pop music
Record labels  United Artists Records, RCA Records
Similar  Bert Berns, The Chiffons, The Shirelles, Ellie Greenwich, The Crystals

Tell him the exciters

The Exciters were an American pop music group of the 1960s. They were originally a girl group, with one male member being added afterwards. At the height of their popularity the group consisted of lead singer Brenda Reid, her husband Herb Rooney, Carolyn Johnson and Lillian Walker.


The Exciters the exciters The Flower and the Vine


The Exciters Exciters

Brenda Reid, Carolyn (Carol) Johnson, Lillian Walker, and Sylvia Wilbur formed the group while at high school together in Queens, New York City, in 1961. They were originally called the Masterettes, as a sister group to another group called the Masters, and released their first recording, "Follow the Leader", in early 1962. Wilbur then left the group to be replaced by Penny Carter, and they auditioned for Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, winning a recording contract. Penny Carter then left, and was replaced by Herb Rooney, a member of the Masters; Reid and Rooney later married.

The Exciters The Exciters WXRT

The group's name was changed to the Exciters, and their first hit record, arranged by George "Teacho" Wiltshire and produced by Leiber and Stoller for United Artists Records, was "Tell Him", which reached no. 4 on the U.S. pop chart in early 1963. The song had previously been released unsuccessfully, as "Tell Her", by Gil Hamilton later known as Johnny Thunder. According to Jason Ankeny at AllMusic, the Exciters' version of "Tell Him" "...boasted an intensity that signified a sea change in the presentation and perception of femininity in popular music, paving the way for such tough, sexy acts as the Shangri-Las and the Ronettes."

The Exciters The Exciters Biography amp History AllMusic

Dusty Springfield was on a stop-over in New York City en route to Nashville to make a country music album with the Springfields in 1962, when she heard the Exciters' "Tell Him" playing while taking a late-night walk by the Colony Record Store on Broadway. The song helped Springfield decide to embark on a solo career with a pop/soul direction. She'd recall: "The Exciters sort of got you by the throat...out of the blue comes blasting at you “I know something about love”, and that’s it. That’s what I wanna do."

The Exciters The Exciters Free listening videos concerts stats and photos at

Other songs by the group included "He's Got the Power" (written by Ellie Greenwich and Tony Powers), "Get Him", and Northern Soul classic "Blowing Up My Mind". The Exciters also recorded "Do-Wah-Diddy", written by Greenwich and Jeff Barry, in 1963; with a revised title of "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" it was covered shortly after by Manfred Mann, for whom it was an international hit.

The Exciters James Barry covers quotTell Himquot by The Exciters YouTube

In 1965, the Exciters left the Leiber-Stoller management team, and the United Artists label, for Roulette Records. There they issued a remake (with revised lyrics) of the Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers' song "I Want You to Be My Boy". They continued to record through the 1960s for Bert Berns' labels Bang and Shout, and later for RCA, but with little success. Ronnie Pace and Skip McPhee replaced Johnson and Walker. The group broke up in 1974.

In 1975, Brenda and Herb Rooney, credited as the Exciters, enjoyed a hit single in the UK with "Reaching for the Best", produced by Rooney and young newcomer producer Ian Levine. The song was aimed at the British Northern soul scene but crossed over to the UK Singles Chart where it peaked at No. 31. As Brenda & Herb, Reid and Rooney had a final R&B chart hit in 1978 with "Tonight I'm Gonna Make You A Star". The pair later separated, and Reid later launched a new version of the Exciters with members of her family. Brenda Reid and Lillian Walker still occasionally perform together as The Exciters.

Herb Rooney died in the early 1990s. Brenda and Herb Rooney's son, Mark Cory Rooney, is a music business executive. Carolyn 'Carol' Johnson died on 7 May 2007, aged 62.


  • Tell Him (United Artists, 1963)
  • The Exciters (Roulette, 1965)
  • Caviar And Chitlins (1969)
  • Black Beauty (1971)
  • Heaven Is Where You Are (1976)
  • The Exciters (1977)
  • Songs

    Tell HimThe Big Chill · 1983
    He's Got the PowerThe Exciters · 2017
    Reaching for the BestThe Exciters · 2017


    The Exciters Wikipedia