The Second Heaven of ’67: 42 Gems from the Sunset of the 60’s

It’s complete. With this particular mix, I can call conclusion to a journey that started 4 years ago. Yes, oddly, 1967 is the hole in a series of not so much hits for those Misses of Soul Music (here’s 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968 & 1969 for reference). As we head into…

More Gems From The Jewelbox: Forgotten Kisses From The Many Mrs. of Motown

Motown was a house built on the labor of Women. Particularly Black Women There’s no way to really debate this. It started with the labor of understanding music, publicity, marketing and legal concerns Berry Gordy picked up from his sisters, Anna, Gwen, Esther and Loucye. It continued with the financial success that women like Mary…

Everybody Sings Smokey: Motown’s Poet Laureate 50 times Over

It wouldn’t be Motown’s 60th Anniversary without visiting their premiere singer, songwriter and producer. As legend goes, Smokey Robinson met Berry Gordy with a notebook of songs, of which maybe one or two Gordy considered viable, yet he was impressed with the teenager’s moxie. So goes the template of who Gordy accepted into the fold,…

Spring Fling – A Playlist For Frisky, Frolicsome Fun

Welcome to the heart of Spring and Taurus Season! It’s rare that these playlists have a simple objective these days. This one, however, sort of arrived out of my own aroused interest in Springtime. Ready to hit the garden, plow some fields and plant some seeds, I thought of some of the most fun, coy…

Forgotten Pearls, Unpanned Gold: Even More Motown Lady Tunes

They say Atlantic Records was The House That Ruth (Brown) Built. We never ever really give credit to the women who built an empire for Berry Gordy in the conjoined houses at 2648 West Grand Boulevard in Detroit. He Started with the business savvy of his sisters Anna, Gwen, Loucye and Esther. Early signings like Claudette…

Heaven Must Have Sent You: Your Holland-Dozier-Holland History Lesson

I’ve been prone to these songwriter series playlists moreso. This time we make a visit to our first team. While Burt Bacharach’s mix featured him not exclusively tethered to Hal David, and Sylvia Moy found herself working with a round robin of partners, this one solely focuses on Holland-Dozier-Holland. Brothers Eddie and Brian Holland and…

Unpolished Diamonds, Unused Jewels: More Motown Femme Marvels 1964-69

As we wind down Women’s History Month we head back to Detroit. While we worship at the temples of Marvin, Stevie and The Temptations, The Sound Of Young America was built on the clicking of high heels. Not only was it the matriarchy of The Gordy Family that had Berry’s Back, early acts such as Mable John…