The stretch of West Grand Boulevard where Motown built its empire has been renamed Berry Gordy Jr. Boulevard by Detroit’s city council.
Gordy (shown in the photo with Marvin Gaye) founded his Hitsville, U.S.A., headquarters there in 1959 in a humble bungalow, steadily expanding to encompass most of the block. The Motown Historical Museum now stands in the label’s original headquarters.
Philly soul singer Bunny Sigler, who scored a Top 20 R&B entry in 1967 with his medley of “Let the Good Times Roll & Feel So Good” and had several ‘70s hits for Philadelphia International, is cutting a gospel CD.
“It’s really funky,” says Sigler, now with Earl Young’s Trammps. “We put some funk into this thing, like Kirk Franklin-type of funk, and put some originality.”
Chicago soul great Otis Clay recently went the same sanctified route with a new album on his own Echo label, Walk a Mile in My Shoes.
Capitol/EMI has assembled a cross-section of Ricky Nelson’s dreamiest 1957-1962 Imperial hits for its 22-song Greatest Love Songs collection.
Along with “Never Be Anyone Else But You,” “Poor Little Fool,” and “It’s Up To You” are the rocking “Hello Mary Lou” and two tracks from his final comeback campaign.
After a studio hiatus of nearly four decades, soul chanteuse Betty Harris returns with a new album, Intuition, for Evidence Music.
Best known for her magnificent 1963 uptown soul hit “Cry To Me” and a string of splendid sides helmed by Allen Toussaint in New Orleans later in the decade, Harris has updated her sound markedly.
In what threatens to be the most egregious musical movie miscasting since Dennis Quaid reduced Jerry Lee Lewis to a cartoon character in “Great Balls of Fire,” Matt Dillon’s name has been bandied about as a contender to portray Chess label founder Leonard Chess in “Cadillac Records,” a film purporting to tell the story of the Chicago firm that launched the careers of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley.