motown http://michiganradio.org en Don Davis, musician, producer and composer, dies http://michiganradio.org/post/don-davis-musician-producer-and-composer-dies <p>DETROIT (AP) - A family spokeswoman says Don Davis, a longtime Detroit musician, composer and recording executive, has died at 75.</p> Sat, 07 Jun 2014 16:48:00 +0000 The Associated Press 17904 at http://michiganradio.org Don Davis, musician, producer and composer, dies The economic impact of Michigan's music scene http://michiganradio.org/post/economic-impact-michigans-music-scene <p>From Motown to Madonna, techno to gospel, jazz and blues, from Eminem to Kid Rock to Aretha, and much more, the Detroit area has been, and continues to be, a music powerhouse.</p><p>In fact, at least 38 Grammy Award winners and nominees from the past five years have a Detroit connection.</p><p>A recent study from the Anderson Economic Group takes a deep dive into the business of the Detroit-area music scene.</p><p>Alex Rosaen, the principal author of the study for the Anderson Economic Group, joined us today.</p><p> Mon, 20 Jan 2014 22:05:45 +0000 Stateside Staff 16100 at http://michiganradio.org The economic impact of Michigan's music scene Stateside for Monday, August 26th, 2013 http://michiganradio.org/post/stateside-monday-august-26th-2013 <p>If there's one song that captures the feel of Motown, Detroit, and America in the 1960s, it's Martha Reeves singing "Dancing in the Streets." On today's show we talked about the historical importance of this Motown classic.</p><p>And, we explored the concept behind community cafes, how they work and where you can find one near you.</p><p>Also, Ontario Power Generation is proposing to build a nuclear waste dump site on the shore of Lake Huron. How will this affect the drinking water?</p><p>First on the show, t<span style="line-height: 1.5;">his promises to be an important week for the State Senate. This could be the week the Senate decides whether or not to expand Medicaid to more low-income adults in Michigan.</span></p><p>You may recall, the Senate broke off for its summer break in June without taking a vote on Medicaid, something that so incensed Governor Snyder that he came home early from a trade trip to Israel in order to publicly scold the Senate.</p><p>So, two months later, it appears a vote is at hand.</p><p>Rick Pluta, the Lansing Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network, joined us today.</p><p> Tue, 27 Aug 2013 11:03:44 +0000 Stateside Staff 14140 at http://michiganradio.org Stateside for Monday, August 26th, 2013 New book explores how one Motown song embodied the spirit of revolution http://michiganradio.org/post/new-book-explores-how-one-motown-song-embodied-spirit-revolution <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">“Dancing in the Street,” written by Mickey Stevenson, Ivy Jo Hunter and Marvin Gaye, and recorded in two takes, less than 10 minutes, by Martha Reeves. For many, that song is Motown.</span></p><p>Little did they know after slapping down Martha’s vocals in that studio in Hitsville on West Grand Boulevard, they had created a song that would come to represent a watershed moment in history--Motown’s history, Detroit’s history, and America’s history.</p><p>Writer Mark Kurlansky&nbsp;talks about the story of how this hit Motown song became the rallying point for these important moments in history in his newest book, “Ready For A Brand New Beat: How ‘Dancing in the Street’ Became the Anthem for a Changing America.”</p><p> Mon, 26 Aug 2013 17:25:46 +0000 Stateside Staff 14135 at http://michiganradio.org New book explores how one Motown song embodied the spirit of revolution George Clinton's 'Mothership' will land at the Smithsonian http://michiganradio.org/post/george-clintons-mothership-will-land-smithsonian <p>Some serious learning is about to happen.</p><p>Parliament-Funkadelic's "Mothership" will land at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C.</p><p>Here's the Mothership&nbsp;landing in its heyday:</p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="270" src="http://www.dailymotion.com/embed/video/xj497" width="480"></iframe><br><a href="http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xj497_george-clinton-dr-funkenstein-mothe_music" target="_blank">George Clinton Dr Funkenstein Mothership</a> <i>by <a href="http://www.dailymotion.com/oublierleracismeskyblog" target="_blank">oublierleracismeskyblog</a></i></p> Fri, 16 Aug 2013 16:18:45 +0000 Mark Brush 14025 at http://michiganradio.org George Clinton's 'Mothership' will land at the Smithsonian Motown 'Funk Brothers' get star on Hollywood Walk of Fame http://michiganradio.org/post/motown-funk-brothers-get-star-hollywood-walk-fame <p>Detroit musicians who had to wait decades for recognition are getting some high-profile attention lately.</p><p>The long-awaited discovery of Detroit musician Rodriguez was highlighted last month, when the documentary about him, “Searching for Sugar Man," won an Oscar.</p><p>This month, the once nearly forgotten session musicians for Motown Records will get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.</p><p>As it turns out, two of those Funk Brothers played a role in Rodriguez' 1970 debut album, "Cold Fact."</p><p>Funk Brothers guitarist Dennis Coffey co-produced "Cold Fact," played guitar on it, and wrote the liner notes for it; the late Funk Brother Bob Babbitt played bass on the album.</p><p>But as the <a href="http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130306/ENT04/303060345#ixzz2MmuXGvSY">Detroit News</a> notes, many of those Motown musicians have not lived to see this new accolade: Wed, 06 Mar 2013 19:10:24 +0000 Mike Perini 11554 at http://michiganradio.org Motown 'Funk Brothers' get star on Hollywood Walk of Fame Motown's Marvelettes nominated for spot in Rock and Roll Hall of Fame http://michiganradio.org/post/motowns-marvelettes-nominated-spot-rock-and-roll-hall-fame <p>Motown favorites, the Marvelettes, have been nominated for a spot in <a href="http://rockhall.com/inductees/nominees/the-marvelettes/">the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame</a>.</p><p>Starting out as a group of high school students in Inkster, the Marvelettes went on to give Motown its first number one single—the 1961 hit, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=425GpjTSlS4">“Please Mr. Postman.”</a></p><p>From the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame:</p> Thu, 04 Oct 2012 16:42:59 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 9361 at http://michiganradio.org Motown's Marvelettes nominated for spot in Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Stateside: Sir Paul McCartney restores historic, Motown piano http://michiganradio.org/post/stateside-sir-paul-mccartney-restores-historic-motown-piano <p>It's called "Hitsville USA": the little house on West Grand Boulevard in Detroit that Berry Gordy, Jr. bought as a home for the fledgling record company that grew up to become the legendary Motown.</p><p>These days, Hitsville is a museum dedicated to sharing the Motown experience with fans that come from around the world.</p><p>One such fan was in Detroit on a Sunday in July 2011. And before he performed for 37, 854 fans at Comerica Park, Sir Paul McCartney had one request: to visit Hitsville.</p> Thu, 13 Sep 2012 18:13:26 +0000 Stateside Staff 9067 at http://michiganradio.org Stateside: Sir Paul McCartney restores historic, Motown piano Funk Brothers bass player Bob Babbitt dead at 74 http://michiganradio.org/post/funk-brothers-bass-player-bob-babbitt-dead-74 <p>DETROIT (AP) - Prominent Motown studio musician and Funk Brothers member Bob Babbitt has died. He was 74.<br /><br />Motown Museum chief curator Lina Stephens says the bassist died Monday in Nashville, Tenn.<br /><br />Babbitt&#39;s son Joe Kreinar tells The Detroit News his father had been in a hospice and had brain cancer.<br /><br />Babbitt was born Robert Kreinar in Pittsburgh. He and the Funk Brothers provided a rhythmically and melodically rich background for many Motown hits.<br /><br />Babbitt laid down bass lines on Stevie Wonder&#39;s &quot;Signed, Sealed, Delivered,&quot; the Temptations&#39; &quot;Ball of Confusion,&quot; &quot;Inner City Blues&quot; by Marvin Gaye and Edwin Starr&#39;s &quot;War.&quot;<br /><br />Well-known for decades among musicians, Babbitt gained wider public recognition through the 2002 film about the Funk Brothers, &quot;Standing in the Shadows of Motown.&quot; Mon, 16 Jul 2012 21:21:39 +0000 The Associated Press 8297 at http://michiganradio.org Funk Brothers bass player Bob Babbitt dead at 74 Soul Train creator, Don Cornelius, dies of apparent suicide http://michiganradio.org/post/soul-train-creator-don-cornelius-dies-apparent-suicide <p>Don Cornelius, the smooth talking creator of the popular dance television show Soul Train, died today at the age of 75.</p><p>From the <a href="http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/02/soul-train-creator-don-cornelius-dead-in-apparent-suicide.html">Los Angeles Times</a>:</p><blockquote><p>&quot;Soul Train&quot; creator Don Cornelius was found dead at his Sherman Oaks home Wednesday morning.</p><p>Law enforcement sources said police arrived at Cornelius&#39; home around 4 a.m. He apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case was ongoing.</p><p>The sources said there was no sign of foul play, but the Los Angeles Police Department was investigating.</p></blockquote><p>Soul Train was a springboard for new Motown artists in the 1970s.</p><p>NPR&#39;s Michele Norris tweets, &quot;Soul Train showed us what to listen to, what to wear, how to dance, how to VIBE, how to be unapologetically fabulous. RIP Don Cornelius.&quot;</p><p>Cornelius hosted the show from 1971-1993 and coined the show&#39;s famous introduction:</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFRy4f73HTg Wed, 01 Feb 2012 15:47:35 +0000 Mark Brush 6040 at http://michiganradio.org Soul Train creator, Don Cornelius, dies of apparent suicide Motown's first #1 single happened 50 years ago, this week http://michiganradio.org/post/motowns-first-1-single-happened-50-years-ago-week <p>&quot;Please Mister Postman&quot; by The Marvelettes hit number one on Billboard Magazine&#39;s Hot 100 the week of December 11th, 1961. The group was formed by five high school students in the Detroit suburb of Inkster, originally going by the name The Casinyets (short for &ldquo;Can&rsquo;t Sing Yet&quot;).</p> Sun, 11 Dec 2011 18:13:54 +0000 Kyle Norris 5337 at http://michiganradio.org Motown's first #1 single happened 50 years ago, this week Aretha Franklin wants to find the next great opera star http://michiganradio.org/post/aretha-franklin-wants-find-next-great-opera-star <p>Calling all opera singers: <a href="http://www.aretha-franklin.com/">Aretha Franklin</a> wants to hear from you.</p><p>The Queen of Soul says she wants to find the next <a href="http://www.kennedy-center.org/explorer/artists/?entity_id=3781">Jessye Norman</a> or <a href="http://www.barbarahendricks.com/home.htm">Barbara Hendricks</a>:</p><p>&quot;Some of the older classical singers have retired and they&rsquo;re not singing anymore, and I&rsquo;d like to see some younger singers come along and take their place.&quot;</p> Mon, 05 Dec 2011 21:55:40 +0000 Jennifer Guerra 5256 at http://michiganradio.org Aretha Franklin wants to find the next great opera star Remembering a Motown founder: Esther Gordy Edwards' funeral today http://michiganradio.org/post/remembering-motown-founder-esther-gordy-edwards-funeral-today <p>Esther Gordy Edwards gave her brother, Berry Gordy Jr., <a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2011/aug/30/esther-gordy-edwards-obituary">an $800 loan</a> to start Motown Records back in 1959. She went on to become an integral part of her brother&#39;s company and started the Motown Museum back in 1985.</p><p>Edwards <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/pillar-motown-esther-gordy-edwards-dies-91">died last week</a> at the age of 91. Today is her funeral.</p><p>From the <a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20110831/NEWS01/110831013/1001/news">Detroit Free Press</a>:</p><blockquote><p>Hundreds are expected to say good-bye to Esther Gordy Edwards, the sister of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy Jr. who helped him build the company and led efforts to turn its original Detroit headquarters into a museum.</p><p><br />The funeral for Edwards is 11 a.m. today at Bethel AME Church in Detroit. She died last week at age 91. Wed, 31 Aug 2011 14:50:34 +0000 Mark Brush 3976 at http://michiganradio.org Remembering a Motown founder: Esther Gordy Edwards' funeral today "Pillar of Motown" Esther Gordy Edwards dies at 91 http://michiganradio.org/post/pillar-motown-esther-gordy-edwards-dies-91 <p><strong>Update 2:49 p.m.</strong></p><p>Michigan Radio&#39;s <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/people/sarah-hulett">Sarah Hulett</a> spoke with Motown Museum CEO Audley Smith.</p><p>Smith said Edwards was instrumental in starting Motown. From Hulett&#39;s report:</p><blockquote><p>Edwards served as the label&rsquo;s vice president, its corporate secretary, and its director of international operations.</p><p>But Motown Museum CEO Audley Smith says even before that, she established a &quot;savings club&quot; for her family&rsquo;s entrepreneurial pursuits.</p><p>&quot;And that fund was where Berry Gordy got the first $800 to start his record company,&quot; said Smith.</p></blockquote><p>Smith also said that Edwards was a mother figure to many of the Motown artists who became stars.</p><blockquote><p>&quot;She felt that by sharing her love and her wisdom and her guidance and her time and her resources and her tough love, that she could make a difference in the lives of young people,&quot; said Smith.</p></blockquote><p>Hulett reports that Edwards stayed in Detroit after her brother moved the Motown label to Los Angeles in the early 1970s. She started the Motown Museum in 1985, which sees 60,000 visitors a year.</p><p><strong>1:05 p.m.</strong></p><p>Esther Gordy Edwards, the elder sister of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy Jr., died last night at the age of 91.</p><p>From the Associated Press.</p><blockquote><p>The <a href="http://www.motownmuseum.com/">Motown Museum</a> made the announcement Thursday. The museum, which Edwards founded, says she died Wednesday night in Detroit surrounded by family and friends. Edwards was a Motown executive for nearly three decades.</p><p>She served as senior vice president, corporate secretary and director of Motown International Operations, where she was charged with exposing the famed &quot;Motown sound&quot; to international<br />audiences.</p></blockquote><p>Berry Gordy Jr. released <a href="http://www.wxyz.com/dpp/news/region/detroit/motown-executive-and-museum-founder-esther-gordy-dies-at-91">a statement</a> today saying his sister was &quot;was the most educated in our family and was the go-to person for wisdom in business.&quot; Berry Gordy Jr. praised her for preserving Motown&#39;s history after he sold the company 1988:</p><blockquote><div style="border-bottom: medium none; text-align: left; border-left: medium none; background-color: transparent; color: rgb(0,0,0); overflow: hidden; border-top: medium none; border-right: medium none; text-decoration: none"><em>Esther turned the so-called trash left behind after I sold the company in 1988 into a phenomenal world-class monument where Hitsville started&mdash;The <a href="http://www.motownmuseum.com/">Motown Museum</a>.</em></div><div style="border-bottom: medium none; text-align: left; border-left: medium none; background-color: transparent; color: rgb(0,0,0); overflow: hidden; border-top: medium none; border-right: medium none; text-decoration: none"><em>She preserved Motown memorabilia before it was memorabilia, collecting our history long before we knew we were making it. She nurtured and held it together through the years, protecting the Motown legacy for generations to come&mdash;which is only one of the reasons people all over the world will remember and celebrate Esther Gordy Edwards. </em><em>Despite my sorrow, I will proudly continue to honor and celebrate her. She will always be my big sister and she will forever live in my heart.</em></div></blockquote><p><a href="http://www.billboard.com/news/esther-gordy-edwards-motown-exec-and-museum-1005329162.story#/news/esther-gordy-edwards-motown-exec-and-museum-1005329162.story">Billboard</a> Magazine writes that this is the second loss Motown has suffered this week &quot;following the <a href="http://www.billboard.com/news/news/motown-legend-nick-ashford-dies-at-70-1005324572.story">death Tuesday</a> of legendary Ashford &amp; Simpson songwriter, <a href="http://www.billboard.com/news/artist/nick-ashford/39547">Nick Ashford</a>.&quot;</p><p>The <a href="http://www.daahp.wayne.edu/biographiesDisplay.php?id=73|">Detroit African American History</a> project writes that Esther Gordy Edwards was born in Oconee, Georgia and moved to Detroit as a child. She&#39;s a graduate of <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/remembering-old-cass-tech-high-school-detroit-video">Cass Technical High School</a> and attended Howard University and the University of Michigan. She was married to former Michigan State Representative George Edwards.</p><p> Thu, 25 Aug 2011 18:49:37 +0000 Mark Brush & Sarah Hulett 3914 at http://michiganradio.org "Pillar of Motown" Esther Gordy Edwards dies at 91 Motown film remake brings jobs to Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/motown-film-remake-brings-jobs-michigan <p>A remake of the seventies Motown-inspired movie <a href="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0075249/">Sparkle</a> will be filmed in metro Detroit and employ 266 people. The state approved a three-million-dollar film incentive for the seven-million-dollar project. Sparkle tells the story of three&nbsp; sisters&rsquo; journey to musical fame during the height of the Motown era in Detroit.</p><p>Michelle Begnoche is with the <a href="http://www.michiganfilmoffice.org/Default.aspx">Michigan Film Office</a>. She says the film will stimulate Michigan&rsquo;s economy.</p><blockquote><p>&quot;This is a project that&rsquo;s focused really a lot on hiring Michigan workers for its crew so we will see the economic benefit from that &ndash; hiring our workforce &ndash; and then obviously it&rsquo;s something that we can use on the backend after it comes out to kind of help promote tourism in the Detroit area,&quot; Begnoche said.</p></blockquote><p>Producers hope to release Sparkle in 2014.</p><p><em>- Amelia Carpenter - Michigan Radio Newsroom</em> Mon, 18 Jul 2011 16:24:25 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 3355 at http://michiganradio.org Motown film remake brings jobs to Michigan The Strange Sound Of Motown's Early Hollywood Years http://michiganradio.org/post/strange-sound-motowns-early-hollywood-years Everyone has heard of Motown Records, but few probably remember its Los Angeles offshoot, MoWest. It didn't last long — only two years — but during its life span, MoWest allowed Motown to try out new styles and genres and create one of the most eclectic rosters in the label's long history. Most of MoWest's releases have been out of print the past 40 years, but a new anthology called <em>Our Lives Are Shaped By What We Love: Motown's MoWest Story 1971-1973</em> finally highlights the label's life and legacy.<p>The early 1970s found Berry Gordy and Motown Records in transition. Fri, 15 Jul 2011 03:03:11 +0000 Oliver Wang 3326 at http://michiganradio.org The Strange Sound Of Motown's Early Hollywood Years White House pays musical tribute to Motown http://michiganradio.org/post/white-house-pays-musical-tribute-motown <p>The <a href="http://www.motown.com/">Motown sound</a> will take center stage at the White House tonight.</p><p>More than 100 students will be at the special musical event, including several from the record label&rsquo;s hometown of Detroit.</p><p>Detroit-native Augustine Cox loves music. The 17-year old says she&#39;s known she wants to go into the music business since she was in second grade; she wants to be a performer or a music producer.</p><p>When Cox, who goes to <a href="http://www.birchrun.k12.mi.us/education/school/school.php?sectionid=10">Birch Run High School</a>, found out she was picked to go to Washington, D.C. for a Motown tribute concert at the White House, she was thrilled. She grew up listening to &quot;the Jackson 5, <a href="http://www.michaeljackson.com/us/home">Michael Jackson</a>, <a href="http://www.biography.com/articles/Stevie-Wonder-9536078">Stevie Wonder</a>, <a href="http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/gladys-horton-of-the-marvelettes-dies-at-66-20110127">the Marvelettes</a>, <a href="http://smokeyrobinson.com/">Smokey Robinson</a>.&quot; Cox says she listens to today&#39;s music, too, &quot;but when I want to hear real music and real passion, I throw on a Motown CD.&quot;</p><p>Her current <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Best-Michael-Jackson-Anthology/dp/B000001A8C">fave</a>? The Best of Michael Jackson. Thu, 24 Feb 2011 17:33:33 +0000 Jennifer Guerra 1411 at http://michiganradio.org White House pays musical tribute to Motown Aretha Franklin planning a return to the concert stage http://michiganradio.org/post/aretha-franklin-planning-return-concert-stage <p>The Queen of Soul&#39;s health has been of much concern of late.&nbsp;&nbsp; But, after making a pre-taped appearence on the Grammy Awards, <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aretha_Franklin">Aretha Franklin&#39;s </a>health looked much improved.</p><p>The Associated Press reports Franklin will return to the concert stage this Spring:</p> Wed, 16 Feb 2011 21:51:16 +0000 Steve Carmody 1315 at http://michiganradio.org Aretha Franklin planning a return to the concert stage Marcus Belgrave's Sounds of Detroit http://michiganradio.org/post/marcus-belgraves-sounds-detroit <p>Ann Arbor, MI Aretha Franklin, Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye. Those are some of the big names of Detroit music. But another name worthy of top billing is trumpeter Marcus Belgrave. He's been a fixture in the Detroit scene for decades, and has covered everything from avant-garde to jazz standards. He even played on some of Motown's greatest hits.<br><br>Belgrave was recently honored by the Kresge Foundation as their Detroit Eminent Artist of the year. We sat down with the jazz trumpeter to talk about his life in music.<br><br>"This is Marcus Belgrave, eminent artist award for the year. I'm very excited about this award because it chronicles my life in Detroit for the last 40 years. Fri, 11 Jun 2010 20:43:39 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 11181 at http://michiganradio.org Marcus Belgrave's Sounds of Detroit