The Scribes

Updated June 1, 2010

I knew hardly anything about The Scribes until I was put in touch with their lead guitarist Danny Brewer. Danny kindly answered my questions over the phone this last Sunday.

As it turns out, the band was from Rock Hill, South Carolina. Besides Danny, their members were Ray Howison guitar and keyboards, Darryl Whitington bass and Steve White on drums.

Danny and Ray formed the band in 10th grade in high school, initially playing local skating rinks, private parties and a bowling alley. Their main competition was a group called the Open Roads.

The Scribes recorded this 45 at Arthur Smith Studios in Charlotte, North Carolina, just 25 miles from Rock Hill. The band was about 16 years old at the time. This studio, owned by Arthur “Guitar Boogie” Smith, was also the one used by the Paragons on their classic punker “Abba”, not to mention where James Brown recorded “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag”.

Lively guitar work and good singing distinguish “Just Last Night”, written by Danny Brewer and Steve White. Danny told me he used a different guitar tuning for this song, tuning the high E string down to a B.

The A-side “Wishes” is more conventional, but enjoyable nonetheless, it was written by Brewer and Howison.

The Okay label was named after the OKay Boys and Mens shop, whose owners helped the band get their record produced. The band pressed up several hundred copies which they sold to friends in high school. The photo was taken with a friend’s car on the campus of Winthrop University.

For decades this record was unknown outside the area, but a number of unplayed copies with the sleeve turned up a few years ago and started trading for a lot of money. I saved myself close to $200 by buying a used copy of the 45 without the sleeve.

After high school the band added horns, becoming the Scribes Revue, specializing in soul music and playing clubs and colleges around the area. Eventually Danny was the only original member left in the group.

After the Scribes Revue, Danny joined Billy Scott and the Georgia Prophets. Danny played guitar on the Three Prophets’ modern soul 45 from 1971, “I Think I Really Love You” on the Together label.

Thanks to Danny Brewer and to Mike Cobb for putting us in touch.

17 thoughts on “The Scribes”

  1. I have this also and would like to know about them. There is a rebel flag draped over the cars rumble seat, and the license plate has two words at the top so it’s either North or South Carolina.

  2. My guitar teacher, Danny Brewer, is an amazing guy. He is an excellent guitarist and I wasn’t suprised when one of his records turned out to be a several hundred dollar collector’s item. Me being 12 years old, I’m nowhere near his skill but I hope to be as good as him one day.

  3. I would like to know where to get that album so my guitar teacher and lead guitarist of the Scribes, Danny Brewer, can teach me how to play lead on “Just Last Night”

  4. Danny isn’t a great guitarist because some people say so. Just because he can play any song in any style and is considered one of the best guitar teachers within 50 miles of Rock Hill, SC, doesn’t make him great. Just because he writes his own music and songs and knows all that music theory and such doesn’t make him great. Just because he can play and teach a bass guitar just as good as anyone else doesn’t make him great. Just because he wrote and recorded a record at age 16 doesn’t make him great either. What makes Danny great is he is just an ordinary guy who happens to be a great person and a great friend to those that know him. Danny has done more in the music world than most people would ever dream about doing. He has a lot of patience as ateacher. He has to or he would have thrown me out many years ago. Danny great? I don’t think so. Danny is FANTASTIC. He also plays the guitar pretty well too.

  5. Being from Rock Hill what wonderful news. After I read this I dug deeper and I didn’t realize that the Georgia Prophets made “California.” Would you know if Danny preformed or was a part of that track? Cheers!

  6. Danny Brewer added horns to the group in about 1969. Two trumpets and a sax. I was one of the trumpets.
    Danny was the heart and soul of the group. He is an amazing performer. He still performs on occasion, and I recommend seeing him if you can.

  7. I’ve got one of these records for sale. Can anyone recommend the best place to sell to a music lover or collector for $200 or more?

  8. Danny teaches the whole person, not just the fingers. He is an excellent teacher, player, and person. I feel blessed to know him.

  9. Danny Brewer is an awesome person and guitar player. I have one of those records and the sleeve as well, but I am not selling it for any price. Danny deserves all the praise he gets. I have not heard him play in a very long time, but I am sure he has not lost his touch.

  10. I have the 45. Does anyone know how or where I can get a digital copy. I grew up in Rock Hill and remember listening to this song over and over. I was nine years old at the time and me and my friends considered these guys rock stars.

  11. Contemporaries of this group: : “THE CASANOVAS” …
    I was drummer and lead singer
    Larry Ferguson, Roddy Proctor, Jimmy Proctor, Billy McPherson, Judi Dozier, Danny Dozier

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.