Happy Thursday! One more day to grind and shine!!
Gladys Knight & The Pips were an R&B/soul family musical act from Atlanta, Georgia, active from 1953 to 1989. The group was best known for their string of hit singles on Motown’s “Soul” record label and Buddah Records from 1967 to 1975, including “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” (1967) and “Midnight Train to Georgia” (1973). The longest-lived incarnation of the act featured Gladys Knight on lead vocals, with The Pips, who included her brother Merald “Bubba” Knight and their cousins Edward Patten and William Guest, as backup singers.
Gladys Knight & The Pips are multiple Grammy and American Music Award winners,and are inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and The Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1996 and 2001 respectively.
The Supremes were the most commercially successful of Motown’s acts. They toured the world, becoming almost as popular as they were in the U.S. By 1965, they were international stars. You can watch a fun video of The Supremes (trying to avoid traffic) singing “Where Did Our Love Go?” in the streets of Paris (circa 1965) here.
By 1967, Berry Gordy renamed the group “Diana Ross & The Supremes” and in 1968, they went on a record-breaking European tour and taped a television special for France’s M6 that was solely for French audiences. Highlights included a rocking medley of their hits that opened the show. (There’s even a part of the interview when the girls tell the host their ages – only 23 years old at the time – and Ross responds to the host in French.)
The Isley Brothers are an American musical group originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, originally a vocal trio consisting of brothers O’Kelly Isley, Jr., Rudolph Isley and Ronald Isley.
The group has been cited as having enjoyed one of the “longest, most influential, and most diverse careers in the pantheon of popular music”. Alongside a fourth brother, Vernon, the group originally performed gospel music until Vernon’s death a couple years after its original formation. After moving to the New York City area in the late 1950s, the group had modest chart successes during their early years, first coming to prominence in 1959 with their fourth single, “Shout”, written by the three brothers. Initially a modest charted single, the song eventually sold over a million copies.
Afterwards the group recorded modestly successful works for a variety of labels, including the top 20 single, “Twist & Shout” and the Motown single, “This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)” before recording and issuing the Grammy Award-winning hit, “It’s Your Thing” on their own label, T-Neck Records. Initially influenced by gospel and doo-wop music, the group began experimenting with different musical styles incorporating elements of rock and funk music as well as pop balladry. The inclusion of younger brothers Ernie Isley (lead guitar, drums) and Marvin Isley (bass guitar), and Rudolph’s brother-in-law Chris Jasper (keyboards, synthesizers) in 1973 turned the original vocal trio into a self-contained musical band. Credit: Wikipedia
The Isley Brothers won me over with their albums: “Go For Your Guns” and “The Heat Is On”, featuring “For the Love of You”,”Make Me Say It Again, Girl” and “Voyage to Atlantis.” Here is one of my favorite versions of the song “Caravan of Love.”