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  1. #1

    Anyone Know What Diana Ross or Supremes Record Album Has Harpist Dorothy Ashby On It?

    Does Anyone Know Which Diana Ross or "The Supremes" Record Album Included Dorothy Ashby? Online articles including Wikipedia refer to a Dorothy Ashby appearance on a Diana Ross LP but I don't know which one. Maybe it was a Diana Ross concert? Any information regarding this would be greatly appreciated. Is anyone working on a comprehensive list of the names of all musicians that played on all Motown record releases? That would be a nice book to have!!!

  2. #2
    Dorothy Ashby was a harpist with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Motown arranger Paul Riser would use string players from the DSO and a harpist can be clearly heard on some Motown tracks.

    Here is some info on Dorothy that you might find interesting.


  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by theboyfromxtown View Post
    Dorothy Ashby was a harpist with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Motown arranger Paul Riser would use string players from the DSO and a harpist can be clearly heard on some Motown tracks.
    Dorothy is credited on Gordon Staples' Strung Out album, MS 722. A CD release from 2009 is going for $ 50, while the MP3 format is selling for $ 9.00.

  4. #4
    http://books.google.com/books?id=XpA...20ross&f=falseNot recording together, but at the same event. There is also a March 26 (Diana's 70th birthday) post at the Dorothy Ashby: Jazz Harp Genius and More Facebook Page that says that "Details on this collaboration (between Diana & Dorothy) will be revealed later. I suspect that nothing of substance has turned up. Perhaps Diana's name was put into a write-up (and subsequently picked up by others) of Dorothy's accomplishments by a publicist to add a little spice and greater credibility to her career. Dorothy did record for (and is credited by) Motown and appears on albums by Stevie Wonder, Syreeta , Billy Preston, Jean Carn, Thomas McClary, and Rick James. She also appears on Post-Motown albums by Martha Reeves, The Miracles, and Gladys Knight & The Pips.

  5. #5
    I wrote the comments at the Dorothy Ashby: Jazz Harp Genius and More! (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dorot...82104178547123 ) Facebook page that carole refers to because I could not find the album or event at which Dorothy Ashby played with Diana Ross. There is also a reference to Dorothy having played with Barry Manilow that I have not tracked down the specifics on yet. I think that both are probably true, I am just trying to research and verify as many of Dorothy Ashby's professional associations as I can and discover all the ones not yet documented.

    Carole, do you happen to know which post-Motown Gladys Knight and the Pips record album Dorothy Ashby appears on? Thank you for your response.

  6. #6
    Nabob, I looked Gordon Staples' "Strung Out" record album up on Discogs.com and Dorothy Ashby was not credited. Are you sure that Dorothy Ashby is on that album? Thank you.

  7. #7
    According to http://www.discogs.com/artist/91960-...Credits&page=3Dorothy plays on the live version of "I Will Survive" , the last track on the Touch album. The short sample here http://www.cduniverse.com/productinf...sic&fulldesc=Tfeatures a harp.

  8. #8
    Thanks carole. Do you happen to know if Dorothy Ashby played on the 1970 Motown record album by Gordon Staples' known as Strung Out?

  9. #9
    The "Strung Out" credits list 2 harpists: Carole Crosby and Pat TerryThe liner notes state: "This version ('The Look Of Love') was a further adaptation of of that ( Paul's arrangement of the song on Gladys Knight & the Pips 'Silk & Soul' album) , prominently featuring the harp of Pat Terry, the only African American among the multi-cultural aggregation at that time. Mentored by the great Dorothy Ashby, Pat (today Pat Terry-Ross) used to visit Ashby in the summer and practice on one of the harps in her possession. 'When Paul Riser & I were in Cass Technical School , she recalled, he knew me as a tympanist and pianist. I started harp at Cass Tech because they had one of the oldest programs for the instrument in the country......Paul graduated a couple of years before me. When he bumped into me years later, he was shocked to learn that I had switched to harp. Motown happened to be in need of a harpist, so he brought me in and I took part in many, many classic sessions there. " In the Soulful Detroit Forum Archives, I have seen a post by Kamasu who knew Carole Crosby by another (likely her maiden) name and a post by Davie Gordon that stated that while Dorothy Ashby was utilized by Motown it was very infrequently.

  10. #10
    She was such a brilliant musician. When I was growing up, my parents used to go see her in Detroit. My father especially loved Jazz and she was very well known in Detroit.

    I believe she was also at times a member of The Soulful Strings, which I didn't see referred to in any of the above posts. I think the SS were usually uncredited studio musicians, so she may not have played with them all the time, but according to this article she was definitely on their (fantastic) Christmas LP:


    Here's their brilliant version of "Merry Christmas Baby" with a vocalist who evokes what seems to me a combination of BB and Albert King!

    Last edited by kenneth; 06-24-2014 at 12:16 PM.

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