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  1. #1

    Comprehensive List of Motown Alumni!

    Check out the following link for a comprehensive list of The many wonderful Motown Artists and Employees who have contributed to the success of Motown.

    https://www.motownmuseum.org/motown-...motown-alumni/

  2. #2
    I like the website for The Motown Museum not to mention the Alumni list. Great find; thanks again Marv2.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    I like the website for The Motown Museum not to mention the Alumni list. Great find; thanks again Marv2.
    It's a great site. They put a lot of effort into it. You're most welcome Motown Eddie

  4. #4
    Great list!!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    Check out the following link for a comprehensive list of The many wonderful Motown Artists and Employees who have contributed to the success of Motown.

    https://www.motownmuseum.org/motown-...motown-alumni/
    Thanks Marv! Quite a list! I appr. your contributions to this site.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by detmotownguy View Post
    Thanks Marv! Quite a list! I appr. your contributions to this site.
    Hey, thank you DET! Hope all is well.

  7. #7
    I didn't see Charlene Oliver's name on the list. It wasn't under Duncan or DeAngelo, either.

  8. #8
    Thanks Marv, I see Minnie Ripperton, what is/was her connection with Motown ? And... Neil Young ???

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by phil View Post
    Thanks Marv, I see Minnie Ripperton, what is/was her connection with Motown ? And... Neil Young ???
    You're welcome Phil.

    Minnie was a member of Stevie Wonder's "Wonderlove" in the early 70's. She appears on some of his albums singing background. Neil Young and Rick James were in a group out of Canada called the "Mynah Birds" before coming to Motown in the 60s principally as staff songwriters.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by mike_sku View Post
    I didn't see Charlene Oliver's name on the list. It wasn't under Duncan or DeAngelo, either.
    Yes she's there as "D’Angelo, Charlene". Check again.

  11. #11
    I am happy to see they list individual names rather than names of groups.

  12. #12
    I remember they had the micro machines guy read the names of every artist signed to Motown during the Motown 25 special. The roster is quite a list.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by jboy88 View Post
    I remember they had the micro machines guy read the names of every artist signed to Motown during the Motown 25 special. The roster is quite a list.
    You mean "Motor Mouth John Usheeda" back in 80s right? Remember his TV commercials? LOL!!!

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    Yes she's there as "D’Angelo, Charlene". Check again.
    Thank you, Marv. I don't know how I missed it.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by mike_sku View Post
    Thank you, Marv. I don't know how I missed it.
    You're most welcome Mike. It could have easily been overlooked because of the way her name is spelled with the "D'" instead of the "De" in front of Angelo.

  16. #16
    Can anyone think of someone they missed for the list?

  17. #17
    A great thread Marv, and indeed a very comprehensive list.


    Did I miss the following...or perhaps they are listed under slightly different names...?


    Beatrice Verdi (songwriter)
    Johnny Gittens (keyboardist)
    Clarence Isabell (bassist)
    Eddie Watkins (bassist)

    Marvin Kaye (pianist)
    Michael Henderson (bassist)
    Joe Williams (bassist)
    Leroy Taylor (bassist)

    Joe James (bassist)
    Eli Fontaine (saxophonist)
    Melvin Miller (guitarist)
    James Gittens (vibes)

    Jimmy Wilkins (trombonist)
    Ed Gooch (trombonist)
    Ronald Odmark (oboist)
    Charles Sirard (bassoonist)

    and, as a further addition, there was a Danny Stevenson, who played harmonica....
    and an Eddie Jones who was a percussionist, vibes....
    Last edited by westgrandboulevard; 08-04-2018 at 04:45 PM.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by westgrandboulevard View Post
    A great thread Marv, and indeed a very comprehensive list.


    Did I miss the following...or perhaps they are listed under slightly different names...?


    Beatrice Verdi
    Johnny Gittens
    Clarence Isabell
    Eddie Watkins

    Marvin Kaye
    Michael Henderson
    Joe Williams
    Leroy Taylor

    Joe James
    Eli Fontaine
    Melvin Miller
    James Gittens

    Jimmy Wilkins
    Ed Gooch
    Ronald Odmark
    Charles Sirard
    That's a good and hefty list, but can I ask. Is the Michael Henderson you are referring to, the singer/songwriter from Detroit that had some great hits with Norman Connors and solo?

  19. #19
    I wasn't there, of course...but yes, I believe it is indeed the same Michael Henderson.

    If correctly reported, he started playing bass in Detroit for Motown acts when in his early teens.

    Toured with Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin, then joined Miles Davis, before going on to Norman Connors...

  20. #20
    I checked them against the list. The "n" designates that they are not on the list, at least not under these exact names. There were however, several with the same last names. Could those be their legal names vs nicknames? I don't know, but the Museum ask that if there have been any omissions to please alert them. I am sorry but I do not know who these folks are or what roles they played at Motown. I noticed a few names not included that I have spoken to in Motown's old LA offices.

    Beatrice Verdi n
    Johnny Gittens n
    Clarence Isabell n
    Eddie Watkins n

    Marvin Kaye n
    Michael Henderson n
    Joe Williams n
    Leroy Taylor n

    Joe James n
    Eli Fontaine n
    Melvin Miller n
    James Gittens n

    Jimmy Wilkins n
    Ed Gooch n
    Ronald Odmark n
    Charles Sirard n

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by westgrandboulevard View Post
    I wasn't there, of course...but yes, I believe it is indeed the same Michael Henderson.

    If correctly reported, he started playing bass in Detroit for Motown acts when in his early teens.

    Toured with Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin, then joined Miles Davis, before going on to Norman Connors...
    Cool, I loved Michael Henderson's recordings.

  22. #22
    It's good, Marv, that we seem to agree that those names are not on the list....but yes, it is quite possible that at least some were known by different names.

    Except that I can't help noticing that many of the names listed do, for example, include their nicknames.

    I wonder if you have any contacts at the Museum, Marv?

    Maybe you would care to enquire on our behalf, and let us have an update sometime?

    There must be many members on the forum, or reading the posts as guests, who would be interested...or may even have some connection with those named.

    And I expect there are other names not listed, and other members will chip in.

    I don't see some of the DSO string players named....and at least some of the musicians who recorded for Motown on the West Coast (for example, Dorothy Ashby, or Carol Kaye)...but I can understand why the Motown Museum may perhaps only have wanted the Detroit names to be included.....
    Last edited by westgrandboulevard; 08-04-2018 at 04:05 PM.

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by westgrandboulevard View Post
    It's good, Marv, that we seem to agree that those names are not on the list....but yes, it is quite possible that at least some were known by different names.

    Except that I can't help noticing that many of the names listed do, for example, include their nicknames.

    I wonder if you have any contacts at the Museum, Marv?

    Maybe you would care to enquire on our behalf, and let us have an update sometime?

    There must be many members on the forum, or reading the posts as guests, who would be interested...or may even have some connection with those named.

    And I expect there are other names not listed, and other members will chip in.

    I don't see some of the DSO string players named....and at least some of the musicians who recorded for Motown on the West Coast (for example, Dorothy Ashby, or Carol Kaye)...but I can understand why the Motown Museum may perhaps only have wanted the Detroit names to be included.....
    Westgrandboulevard, I may get around to doing that, but just not right now. When things slow down a bit for me. I also noticed these names, although their roles were pretty minor for Motown were omitted from. One is even Berry Gordy's step son:

    Benny Medina
    Cliff Liles
    Lenny Greene
    Larry Robinson

    These guys were in the group "Apollo" along with Kerry Gordy, Berry's son.
    Last edited by marv2; 08-04-2018 at 04:12 PM.

  24. #24
    Comedian Willie "Winehead Willie" Vinson is not on the list. He use to be a warm up act for the Motown musical artists on the Motortown Revue.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by westgrandboulevard View Post
    It's good, Marv, that we seem to agree that those names are not on the list....but yes, it is quite possible that at least some were known by different names.

    Except that I can't help noticing that many of the names listed do, for example, include their nicknames.

    I wonder if you have any contacts at the Museum, Marv?

    Maybe you would care to enquire on our behalf, and let us have an update sometime?

    There must be many members on the forum, or reading the posts as guests, who would be interested...or may even have some connection with those named.

    And I expect there are other names not listed, and other members will chip in.

    I don't see some of the DSO string players named....and at least some of the musicians who recorded for Motown on the West Coast (for example, Dorothy Ashby, or Carol Kaye)...but I can understand why the Motown Museum may perhaps only have wanted the Detroit names to be included.....
    WestgrandBoulevard, I can also anticipate the Museum wanting to know the roles, jobs the individuals on your list held while at Motown.

  26. #26
    OK Marv, I can understand that.

    I can't absolutely guarantee all the information is entirely correct, but will now edit my earlier post, and enter why each name would seem worthy of inclusion.

  27. #27
    Thanks Westgrandboulevard, that would be great and helpful.

  28. #28
    Already done

  29. #29
    Missing

    Valerie Simpson
    Pam Sawyer
    Patty Jerome (PJ)
    LaBrenda Ben
    Oma Heard/Page (I get these confused)
    Mike Varo
    Little Miss Soul (whoever she is)
    Robert Dobyne

    BTW my beloved BLINKY is so good she's listed twice

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by copley View Post
    Missing

    Valerie Simpson
    Pam Sawyer
    Patty Jerome (PJ)
    LaBrenda Ben
    Oma Heard/Page (I get these confused)
    Mike Varo
    Little Miss Soul (whoever she is)
    Robert Dobyne

    BTW my beloved BLINKY is so good she's listed twice
    Very interesting about
    Val since they did list Nick Ashford. Pam Sawyer too is a glaring omission.

  31. #31
    More Missing

    Bob Andy
    Marcia Griffith
    Bobby Nunn
    Carl Bean
    Carolyn Majors
    Leonard Caston
    Kathy Wakefield
    Diahann Carroll
    Elaine Brown
    Franki Kah'rl
    Jean Carn
    José Feliciano
    Kathe Green
    Letta
    Juanita Cowart
    Michelle Aller
    Mira Waters
    Monalisa Young
    Stephanie Mills
    Stu Gardner
    Denise Matthews (Vanity)
    Jonah Jones
    King Floyd
    Leon Ware
    Leslie Uggams
    Paula Greer
    Pepper Adams


    Corrections

    Ann Bogan (Not Anne)
    Georgia Dobbins (Not Gerorgeanna)

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by westgrandboulevard View Post
    A great thread Marv, and indeed a very comprehensive list.


    Did I miss the following...or perhaps they are listed under slightly different names...?


    Beatrice Verdi (songwriter)
    Johnny Gittens (keyboardist)
    Clarence Isabell (bassist)
    Eddie Watkins (bassist)

    Marvin Kaye (pianist)
    Michael Henderson (bassist)
    Joe Williams (bassist)
    Leroy Taylor (bassist)

    Joe James (bassist)
    Eli Fontaine (saxophonist)
    Melvin Miller (guitarist)
    James Gittens (vibes)

    Jimmy Wilkins (trombonist)
    Ed Gooch (trombonist)
    Ronald Odmark (oboist)
    Charles Sirard (bassoonist)

    and, as a further addition, there was a Danny Stevenson, who played harmonica....
    and an Eddie Jones who was a percussionist, vibes....
    This is great WestgrandBoulevard . May I call you WGB? We have a great list of additions started here. I will get them to Hitsville for inclusion. I just came across another omission. A musician that had a pretty popular record especially in Detroit in 1979. He is Michael Andre Lewis, aka Mandré.

  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by copley View Post
    More Missing

    Bob Andy
    Marcia Griffith
    Bobby Nunn
    Carl Bean
    Carolyn Majors
    Leonard Caston
    Kathy Wakefield
    Diahann Carroll
    Elaine Brown
    Franki Kah'rl
    Jean Carn
    José Feliciano
    Kathe Green
    Letta
    Juanita Cowart
    Michelle Aller
    Mira Waters
    Monalisa Young
    Stephanie Mills
    Stu Gardner
    Denise Matthews (Vanity)
    Jonah Jones
    King Floyd
    Leon Ware
    Leslie Uggams
    Paula Greer
    Pepper Adams


    Corrections

    Ann Bogan (Not Anne)
    Georgia Dobbins (Not Gerorgeanna)
    Wow! How did they miss all of them? Now I am wondering if they used some sort of criteria? Doesn't matter because I'm sending them all in! LOL!!!! Vanity? Really? She was like the female star at Motown for one quick year.

  34. #34
    Uh oh. I also just noticed they missed Pete Rivera, lead singer for Rare Earth! I cannot believe this. They have some work to do.

  35. #35
    I am going to wait and let others get a chance to include some additions here in this thread before I compile the list and send it in. So anyone else you guys can think of, please post them!

  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    Uh oh. I also just noticed they missed Pete Rivera, lead singer for Rare Earth! I cannot believe this. They have some work to do.
    Peter Rivera is there as Pete Hoorelbeke, his real name.

  37. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by johnny_raven View Post
    Peter Rivera is there as Pete Hoorelbeke, his real name.
    Ok thanks Johnny Raven. I was about to blow a gasket here. LOL!

  38. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    Vanity? Really? She was like the female star at Motown for one quick year.
    Vanity had given Motown at least two albums that provided at least one hit - Wild Animal's "A Pretty Mess" and Skin on Skin's "Under The Influence" - as well as the Motown production The Last Dragon.

    I notice some DeBarge names, so there goes the 1959-1972-3 Detroit years only kinda thing, Rick James would have still been included either way, as a Mynah Bird.
    Last edited by Ngroove; 08-06-2018 at 10:03 PM.

  39. #39
    Question: what would be the Motown Alumni's qualifications of inclusion on songwriters / producers, who pretty much does work for any label, but has still made quite the mark on major Motown hitting, such as, Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, whose Motown contributions includes the Boys' "Dial My Heart" and "Lucky Charm"; Johnny Gill's "My, My, My", and "Fairweather Friend"; and Boyz II Men's "End Of The Road" and "I'll Make Love To You"?

  40. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    You're welcome Phil.

    Minnie was a member of Stevie Wonder's "Wonderlove" in the early 70's. She appears on some of his albums singing background.
    Michael Sembello is not present on the list.

  41. #41
    Quote Originally Posted by Ngroove View Post
    Michael Sembello is not present on the list.
    Thanks Ngroove.

  42. #42
    Should Lynda Carter be on the list? I'm not sure of the status of "The Last Song".

  43. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by Ngroove View Post
    Vanity had given Motown at least two albums that provided at least one hit - Wild Animal's "A Pretty Mess" and Skin on Skin's "Under The Influence" - as well as the Motown production The Last Dragon.

    I notice some DeBarge names, so there goes the 1959-1972-3 Detroit years only kinda thing, Rick James would have still been included either way, as a Mynah Bird.
    Yes Vanity was a glaring omission. I like "Under the Influence" a lot.

  44. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    Should Lynda Carter be on the list? I'm not sure of the status of "The Last Song".
    She did record for Motown, so she should be there. Now I want to check for the Boone Sisters and T.G. Shepard. LOL!

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