The group evolved from a four-piece instrumental group called the Fydallions, which formed in 1964 in Sacramento, California, for an Air Force talent contest. After leaving the Air Force, the band went on the road, playing five hour lounge jobs on the Las Vegas circuit. The Fydallions, now a quintet consisting of Dick Lopes (saxophone), Bobby Raymond (bass guitar), Harvey Kaye (keyboards), Vinnie Parello (drums), and Pat Upton (guitar and lead vocals), were noticed by the A&R representative for Columbia Records, Gary Usher, while they were working in El Monte, California. Columbia signed the band, but insisted that they change their name. "They loved our work" said Upton, "but they hated the name and they didn’t like the way we dressed. This was in the late sixties when all the musicians were wearing long hair. We looked very square!" The band was renamed after the movie The Spiral Staircase, but with a deliberate misspelling.
Their first two singles, produced by Gary Usher, were regional successes in markets like Phoenix, Arizona. At this time, Sonny Knight was brought in to produce their first album. Usher had encouraged Upton to write original material for the group, and Upton had written "More Today Than Yesterday," while the band was working the Flamingo Sky Room in Las Vegas.
Another single that did well in the 1968 period was a song called "Baby What I Mean". It, along with the two hits mentioned above, are on the CD "The Very Best Of The Spiral Starecase".
In 1969, "More Today Than Yesterday" charted #12 in the Billboard Hot 100, (in Cash Box, it reached #7) but sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. About 18 months after the single's release, after releasing one album and a couple more singles, the group disbanded due to poor management and squabbles over finances.
Upton went back to Los Angeles to work as a session musician, eventually working with Ricky Nelson.
Kaye returned to Las Vegas where he re-formed the band. That line-up featured Mike Caschera (aka. Michael Anthony) (lead vocals), Al Sebay (guitar), Gene Austin (electric bass), Mark Barrett (drums), The band toured extensively and played every major venue in the United States, Canada, and Mexico in the late 1970s through the mid 1980s with a full horn section to replicate the trademark sound of their biggest hits.