Perennial favorites of beach music fans, the Tams were a group who knew how to balance the sweet, smooth sounds of their harmonies and (mostly) upbeat material with the passionate grit of Joseph Pope's vocals, who had a knack for sounding emphatic without overstating the case. Masters of sweet soul with a Southern sense of laid-back enthusiasm, the Tams have been a phenomenon in Georgia and the Carolinas since the early '60s, and Dancing Mood pulls together a whopping 30 of their classic tracks, most of them dating from their early days with Arlen Records, but also including some important later material cut for ABC-Paramount and 1-2-3. While this collection suffers from less-than-attractive packaging, inadequate liner notes, and skimpy information on the where-and-when of the individual tracks, as a collection of the Tams at their best, Dancing Mood does the job quite well, chronicling both Pope's often lovelorn vocals as well as the sharp songwriting (often from Joe South) and imaginative arrangements that make these sides memorable. Sound quality varies from cut to cut, though most of it's quite good. The packing prevents this from being the definitive Tams disc, but Dancing Mood is still a far better-than-average summary of this classic group's big hits and worthy lesser-knowns.
AllMusic Review by Mark Deming