Thursday Throwback: Ecstasy, Passion & Pain

The group Ecstasy, Passion & Pain, sometimes simply known as EP&P, hit the music scene in 1972, during the disco era.  A year later, they had a Top 40 hit with their single “One Beautiful Day.”  The group consistently pumped out danceable hits like “Good Things Don’t Last Forever,” “Ask Me,” and “Touch and Go,” all of which spent time on the Billboard R&B, pop and dance charts.  The unique thing about EP&P was the band itself, consisting of eight members with a young lady, Althea Smith, on drums, and lead singer and main songwriter Barbara Roy, who not only had an incredible voice, but played a mean lead guitar–not exactly the common line up for most groups of that genre.  As a result, EP&P developed a following and toured extensively, performing at venues such as Madison Square Garden and the Apollo Theater, as well as appearing on television shows like The Mike Douglas Show, American Bandstand and of course, Soul Train.  The group had a good five-year run and disbanded in the late 1970s.  While the wheels of disco came to a screeching halt, Roy’s music career didn’t.  She remained in demand as a session vocalist and in 1986, she went on to score another dance hit, “Gotta See You Tonight,” which spent two weeks at the top of the dance chart.  These days, Barbara Roy continues to record and perform as a gospel artist.  In 2002 she released a gospel album entitled Climbing.  Fun Fact: Roy is the aunt of Jocelyn Brown, the artist who sang the number one dance hit “Love’s Gonna Get You” and the R&B hit “Somebody Else’s Guy.”

–Montrose Cunningham

Montrose Cunningham is an independent funk/rock/soul artist and devoted music aficionado residing in Dallas, Texas. When he isn’t digging through the crates–digital and analog–he’s jamming with his band or hanging with his daughters, sometimes at the same time. Purchase his latest release “Inertia” at, visit him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter @MontroseC.


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