Motown (The company) is on the verge of it’s 50th anniversary, and they are planning a two year celebration beginning this weekend.

Hitsville U.S.A.

Though Motown is far from what it used to be both in talent and influence, it still has a legacy that is unmatched in the music world. The Detroit News has a good article about the company and the upcoming celebration HERE.

Seeing those old familiar names and faces made me think of some of the other famous labels from that era, do you remember any of these? (not the songs so much as the labels themselves)

Here’s some information about the labels in the above slideshow:

Invictus Records – was a record label created by Eddie Holland, Lamont Dozier and Brian Holland (known collectively and informally as H-D-H). Until 1967 H-D-H were the top composer/ producer team for Motown Records, but for better control and greater rewards they launched Invictus along with Hot Wax Records in 1968. Their most successful acts were Freda Payne and Chairmen of the Board; they also released Parliament’s first album, Osmium. The label was distributed by Capitol Records from 1969 to 1972, and then by Columbia Records.

V.I.P. Records – Part of Motown Records – Established 1964, V.I.P. was a secondary R&B/soul subsidiary. Notable artists included Shorty Long, The Velvelettes, The Spinners, The Elgins and Chris Clark. The label was dissolved in 1974.

Atlantic Records – is an American record label best known for its many recordings of rhythm & blues, rock and roll, and jazz. Long one of the most important American independent labels, Atlantic now operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of Warner Music Group.

Chisa Records – Motown released output for Chisa, a label owned by Hugh Masekela, from 1969 to 1972.

D-Town Records – Formed by Mike Harris in 1963. Interesting story HERE.

Golden World – was a record label owned by Ed Wingate and Joanne Bratton (nee Jackson, widow of boxing champion Johnny Bratton). The recording studio was located in Detroit, MI., first on 11801 12th Street (Rosa Parks), and then on 3246 West Davison, within the area of the present-day Davison Freeway. A business office on some of the labels reads 4039 Buena Vista. The studio’s national hits included “Cool Jerk” by the Capitols from Detroit and “Oh How Happy” by Livonia, Michigan’s Shades of Blue. The early, pre-Motown songs by Edwin Starr (War! What is it Good For?) such as “Double-O Soul” were recorded in the Golden World studio.
Golden World operated from 1962 to 1968.

Gordy – Established 1961, Gordy was also a primary subsidiary for mainstream R&B/soul music. Originally known as Miracle Records (slogan: “If It’s a Hit, It’s a Miracle”), the name was changed in 1962 to avoid confusion with the Miracles singing group. The label’s numbering system was combined with those of Motown and Tamla in 1982, and the label was merged with Motown in 1988. Notable Gordy artists included The Temptations, Martha Reeves & the Vandellas, Rick James, and DeBarge. Gordy Records slogan: “It’s What’s in the Grooves that Counts”

Hot Wax Records – was a Detroit, Michigan-based record label, created by Eddie Holland, Jr., Lamont Dozier and Brian Holland in 1968 when they left Motown Records. Hot Wax Records recorded female vocal groups such as The Honey Cone and The Flaming Ember, as well as soul singers like rhythm and blues artist, Freda Payne. Their records were distributed by Buddah Records.

Motown Records – The grandfather of them all.

Since Berry Gordy himself is supposed to be in town Friday, I just might do what I used to do when I was a kid – go stand on the steps of Hitsville….

See ya.

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