August 14, at pm. Would you class the Motown Yesteryear Series as being the standard Motown imprint with a different label? You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email.
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Like this: Like Loading Like Like Reply. The shop closed two years later after going bust. Between and , Smokey Robinson was one of the major songwriters and producers for Motown, penning many hit singles for Mary Wells, the Temptations, Marvin Gaye and the Marvelettes. Stevie Wonder was born six weeks early.
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The stunted growth of blood vessels in the back of his eyes caused his retinas to detach, and the oxygen pumped into his incubator made the condition worse, leaving him permanently blind. The Funk Brothers were a group of Detroit-based session musicians who performed the backing to most Motown recordings from until the company moved to Los Angeles in She died on March 16 from complications from brain cancer, a month shy of her 25th birthday. American bass player James Jamerson was the uncredited bassist on most of the Motown Records hits in the s and early s.
As a session musician he played on 30 Billboard number 1 hits. Motown was the first commercial US record label to be owned by an African American.
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Between and , Motown produced US top 10 hits. Before they were The Temptations, the members were in two different groups; the Primes and the Distants. The two groups were based out of Detroit, and they joined together when the Distants lost some of its members. Berry Gordy briefly worked on the assembly line at a Ford car plant.
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It is rumoured that Gordy based his hit factory after the Detroit car assembly line that he knew so well: Make a good product, then make something similar, and make it quick. Stevie Wonder became the first Motown artist to negotiate a contract that allowed for complete artistic control of his music.
The Temptations have thirty-seven top 40 hits to their credit, and they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Throughout the Sixties, Motown produced a catalogue of songs that cannot be rivalled. That was not part of the culture. Lead and backing vocals were recorded in separate sessions, after the band had laid down the track — the artists propelled to fame by these records were rare sightings.
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And Gladys Knight was in there once, trying to produce. She only tried that once.
When the Funk Brothers emerged from a session on the evening of 23 July , they found the streets engulfed in violence and rioting. The black musicians shepherded their white counterparts to safety. The genius in the room, everyone agreed, was James Jamerson, whose funky one-fingered bass playing became the standard for a new generation. A bottle of Metaxa, a brand of Greek spirit, resided permanently in his instrument case, although Coffey claims Jamerson never let anyone see him drinking it on the job.
It was like moonshine.
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Most searched for gigs as the doors closed at smaller studios and publishing houses that had supported the Motown behemoth. But his friend Jamerson, who had also moved to LA, struggled to find work and sank into alcoholism. It killed him by the age of
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