Sample The Music of Detroit-Motown of the 60s (Grades 6-8) Worksheet
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The Music of Detroit-Motown of the 60s
By Tammy Scarbrough
1 If you are standing in Detroit, you are standing in the home of rhythm and blues (R&B). Berry Gordy, Jr. established Motown records in 1960. He quit his job at the Lincoln Mercury plant in Detroit, where he was making $85 a week to cut upholstery for the vehicles. With a staff of dedicated songwriters, singers, and producers, this record label became the largest in the country by 1964.
2 In 1959, Gordy began Tamla Recording Company with its first release, "Come to Me" by Marv Johnson. It climbed the charts to a top 30 song. Gordy changed the name of his recording company to "Motown Record Corporation." With all the automobile factories in Detroit, the city was nicknamed "Motor Town." This could be where he got the name of Motown.
3 In 1960, Motown bought its first headquarter building in Detroit. Much of the success of Motown came when Gordy signed the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and the Temptations all within one year – 1961. You can still hear these people on some radio stations today. In fact, Stevie Wonder is still producing new songs.
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