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  1. #1

    Here It Is... Hitsville...The Making of Motown...Showtime Official Trailer


  2. #2
    It is too bad that it will not be seen by a wide range of people just for the fact that it will only be shown on Showtime.

  3. #3
    Typical. Hope they have four tops clips. The real Motown needs focused on like Shorty Long, Jimmy Ruffin. All people mention is the overrated Jackson 5, Diana Ross and Stevie Wonder. This better get a DVD release.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Soulmusic4life View Post
    Typical. Hope they have four tops clips. The real Motown needs focused on like Shorty Long, Jimmy Ruffin. All people mention is the overrated Jackson 5, Diana Ross and Stevie Wonder. This better get a DVD release.
    I know what you mean. This so far seems like a rehashing of the Motown 40 Special that aired in two parts on ABC back in 1998. They NEVER cover certain Motown artists. It would make the program more interesting if they did.

  5. #5
    Let’s hope for the best, but it does seem like there’s some great footage. I’m sure Showtime is looking for the broader audience rather than specialist or fans like us who know a lot of the background already. I also hope that we get to see it (soon!) in the UK. With any luck maybe on BBC2 as it seems like it’ll have the more general appeal than for BBC4. Or maybe Sky Arts, although Sky seems to have more of an association with HBO than Showtime.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by alanh View Post
    Let’s hope for the best, but it does seem like there’s some great footage. I’m sure Showtime is looking for the broader audience rather than specialist or fans like us who know a lot of the background already. I also hope that we get to see it (soon!) in the UK. With any luck maybe on BBC2 as it seems like it’ll have the more general appeal than for BBC4. Or maybe Sky Arts, although Sky seems to have more of an association with HBO than Showtime.
    The problem is this. Back in 1986, Showtime produced and aired a series of Motown Specials each focusing on an group or artists. I saw them, but most people did not because they were not subscribers to Showtime. I have to believe that there are even fewer Showtime subscribers today than even then because of all the different streaming choices we now have.

  7. #7

  8. #8
    Berry probably just suiting the truth to fit his view of the truth. He's not going to give us the real truth. What a con artist.

  9. If this is what I think it's going to end up being, point me to the nearest Vomitorium.

    Please.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by WaitingWatchingLookingForAChance View Post
    If this is what I think it's going to end up being, point me to the nearest Vomitorium.

    Please.
    I mean John Legend? Jamie Foxx? Please.............

  11. Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    I mean John Legend? Jamie Foxx? Please.............
    It wouldn't be so bad if they'd at least keep the focus on the actual Motowners who made Motown what it was. And not just the same 3 or 4 main artists.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    The problem is this. Back in 1986, Showtime produced and aired a series of Motown Specials each focusing on an group or artists. I saw them, but most people did not because they were not subscribers to Showtime. I have to believe that there are even fewer Showtime subscribers today than even then because of all the different streaming choices we now have.
    Marv: I did not see these Motown Specials. Do you recall the group or artists that were featured? How many were there? Never heard about them either.
    Thanks.

  13. #13
    I wish someone like Ken Burns did a Motown documentary. You know it would have told the truth, the full story from all perspectives, and would have been a 4-part series 2 hours each.

    While I am looking forward to this special, I know it’s going to have a Gordy spin on it and will shy away from anything controversial or anything that makes him look bad.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by woodward View Post
    Marv: I did not see these Motown Specials. Do you recall the group or artists that were featured? How many were there? Never heard about them either.
    Thanks.
    Yes. They did hour long specials on The Temptations, Four Tops , Stevie Wonder hosted. I can't remember if they did others that year.
    Last edited by marv2; 07-19-2019 at 12:05 PM.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    I wish someone like Ken Burns did a Motown documentary. You know it would have told the truth, the full story from all perspectives, and would have been a 4-part series 2 hours each.

    While I am looking forward to this special, I know it’s going to have a Gordy spin on it and will shy away from anything controversial or anything that makes him look bad.
    You are so right! Ken Burns would have been my choice to produce as well. Instead, you are going to get what we've always gotten. I highly doubt those artists that have never been mentioned on a special to get a mention on this one.

  16. #16
    Woodward they did one on Marvin Gaye too as a part of that Showtime series:

    Last edited by marv2; 07-19-2019 at 07:41 PM.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by StuBass1 View Post
    Thanks for the news Stubass. I've been looking forward to the Motown Documentary on Showtime & put it on my calendar for next month.

  18. #18
    I'm tired of them getting non Motown related people talking. Then leaving the legends out in the cold.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Soulmusic4life View Post
    I'm tired of them getting non Motown related people talking. Then leaving the legends out in the cold.
    Again...the producers and Showtime are not making a documentary for a limited select group of Motown aficionados, but the larger audience, many of whom are not familiar with Mickey Stevenson, or even Berry Gordy. Thus, using contemporary artists that many more people recognize and are familiar with ( Legend is quite well known just on his involvement with The Voice), or Foxx whose readily recognizable for his television and film work, or Dr Dre, and featuring them in the promos too to attract viewers who might not otherwise tune in...the intended goal being building an audience for the Documentary NOT familiar with everything Motown as those who participate in this site are...and isn't that the entire purpose...to expose Motown and tell the story to those not previously very familiar with the legacy and tell the story of the legacy ???...Those here already know what happened there... Sometimes, we tend to look at these things through a very narrow lens...

  20. #20
    Subscriber stations like Showtime and HBO have huge international influence..can we say for instance "Game of Thrones"?

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by StuBass1 View Post
    Again...the producers and Showtime are not making a documentary for a limited select group of Motown aficionados, but the larger audience, many of whom are not familiar with Mickey Stevenson, or even Berry Gordy. Thus, using contemporary artists that many more people recognize and are familiar with ( Legend is quite well known just on his involvement with The Voice), or Foxx whose readily recognizable for his television and film work, or Dr Dre, and featuring them in the promos too to attract viewers who might not otherwise tune in...the intended goal being building an audience for the Documentary NOT familiar with everything Motown as those who participate in this site are...and isn't that the entire purpose...to expose Motown and tell the story to those not previously very familiar with the legacy and tell the story of the legacy ???...Those here already know what happened there... Sometimes, we tend to look at these things through a very narrow lens...
    Good! Because I'm not watching! If they can't make a program for the people that supported them all these years, then and now, then screw it! Have fun.

  22. #22
    The quality of some of those clips are exceptional.

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    I wish someone like Ken Burns did a Motown documentary. You know it would have told the truth, the full story from all perspectives, and would have been a 4-part series 2 hours each.

    While I am looking forward to this special, I know it’s going to have a Gordy spin on it and will shy away from anything controversial or anything that makes him look bad.
    I doubt there will be any new info. They need memories from ALL those that were there ie. Brenda Holloway, Kim Weston, arrangers, road mgrs. and musicians etc. But who is going to dish the dirt on controversial issues - nobody. I will pass. Smokey, Diana, Berry blah blah blah. They def will not discuss Raynoma's involvement in setting up the company!

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by detmotownguy View Post
    I doubt there will be any new info. They need memories from ALL those that were there ie. Brenda Holloway, Kim Weston, arrangers, road mgrs. and musicians etc. But who is going to dish the dirt on controversial issues - nobody. I will pass. Smokey, Diana, Berry blah blah blah. They def will not discuss Raynoma's involvement in setting up the company!
    The reason the public at large don't know Miss Ray is because Motown producers of specials never talk about her. They don't even talk about Esther Gordy Edwards. What's wrong with educating people on who and how these people were important to making Motown a success? I will promise you again that the name "Jean Terrell" will not be mentioned!

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by StuBass1 View Post
    Again...the producers and Showtime are not making a documentary for a limited select group of Motown aficionados, but the larger audience, many of whom are not familiar with Mickey Stevenson, or even Berry Gordy. Thus, using contemporary artists that many more people recognize and are familiar with ( Legend is quite well known just on his involvement with The Voice), or Foxx whose readily recognizable for his television and film work, or Dr Dre, and featuring them in the promos too to attract viewers who might not otherwise tune in...the intended goal being building an audience for the Documentary NOT familiar with everything Motown as those who participate in this site are...and isn't that the entire purpose...to expose Motown and tell the story to those not previously very familiar with the legacy and tell the story of the legacy ???...Those here already know what happened there... Sometimes, we tend to look at these things through a very narrow lens...
    I agree 120% and im looking forward to this special. You cant please everybody but if millions see this more people get to enjoy Motown music then thats a real good thing imo.

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Roberta75 View Post
    I agree 120% and im looking forward to this special. You cant please everybody but if millions see this more people get to enjoy Motown music then thats a real good thing imo.
    Absolutely... Those who produced this special need to focus the story assuming those who are watching it have NO knowledge of Motown, other than the records they have enjoyed and the artists they are familiar with...and even younger viewers who know virtually NOHING about Motown and it's significance. I'm quite certain this will not be a way to recognize people long forgotten from an historical perspective that most people who participate here would perhaps like to see. That's what 200 page books are for, or a continuing series...not a documentary with strict content limitations that will NEVER be able to tell the ENTIRE story of the dozens, if not hundreds of artists executives, and others that all made a contribution to the Motown legacy... Just not enough time and not really the story most of the uninitiated will be tuning in to see...

  27. #27
    I was interviewed for the movie.Wonder if I ended up as an edit on the floor.

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Roberta75 View Post
    I agree 120% and im looking forward to this special. You cant please everybody but if millions see this more people get to enjoy Motown music then thats a real good thing imo.
    Right. The vitriol here aimed at a film that has not been seen is ... unfortunate. One poster early on expressed disdain and yet demanded a DVD release! Watch. Or not. The world will go on regardless. UNLESS Irene 'Granny' Ryan's undeniable contribution to Motown and popular music are not given at least 30 minutes. THEN we can riot in the streets.

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by ralpht View Post
    I was interviewed for the movie.Wonder if I ended up as an edit on the floor.
    I would hope not since you are of the original Detroit Motown personnel.

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    The reason the public at large don't know Miss Ray is because Motown producers of specials never talk about her. They don't even talk about Esther Gordy Edwards. What's wrong with educating people on who and how these people were important to making Motown a success? I will promise you again that the name "Jean Terrell" will not be mentioned!
    I guess Marv I would like to see more of how Motown was built from scratch. Great to see that Ralph was interviewed. That is what I am talking about. I learned a lot from Esther Gordy Edwards in the early days @ the museum when I would bring my out of town clients there. They still talk about those conversations!

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by ralpht View Post
    I was interviewed for the movie.Wonder if I ended up as an edit on the floor.
    Im hoping and praying that we see you in the documentery Ralph.

    Fondly,

    Roberta

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by StuBass1 View Post
    Absolutely... Those who produced this special need to focus the story assuming those who are watching it have NO knowledge of Motown, other than the records they have enjoyed and the artists they are familiar with...and even younger viewers who know virtually NOHING about Motown and it's significance. I'm quite certain this will not be a way to recognize people long forgotten from an historical perspective that most people who participate here would perhaps like to see. That's what 200 page books are for, or a continuing series...not a documentary with strict content limitations that will NEVER be able to tell the ENTIRE story of the dozens, if not hundreds of artists executives, and others that all made a contribution to the Motown legacy... Just not enough time and not really the story most of the uninitiated will be tuning in to see...
    Exactly and this is a 2 hour show not a three week miniseries. This is probably for mainstream audience not for die hard fans and if it brings Motown music to millions of new folks then thats a real good thing imo.

  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Jimi LaLumia View Post
    Subscriber stations like Showtime and HBO have huge international influence..can we say for instance "Game of Thrones"?


    Game of thrones had 17 million viewers.

    https://mashable.com/article/game-of...atings-record/

  34. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by ralpht View Post
    I was interviewed for the movie.Wonder if I ended up as an edit on the floor.
    Hope you made the cut Ralph...

  35. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by PeaceNHarmony View Post
    Right. The vitriol here aimed at a film that has not been seen is ... unfortunate. One poster early on expressed disdain and yet demanded a DVD release! Watch. Or not. The world will go on regardless. UNLESS Irene 'Granny' Ryan's undeniable contribution to Motown and popular music are not given at least 30 minutes. THEN we can riot in the streets.
    That's funny...

  36. #36
    I always thought it would have been good if Motown would have set up some sort of retirement account when the guys were making long bread.

  37. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by ralpht View Post
    I always thought it would have been good if Motown would have set up some sort of retirement account when the guys were making long bread.
    That would have been the right thing to do!

  38. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by detmotownguy View Post
    I guess Marv I would like to see more of how Motown was built from scratch. Great to see that Ralph was interviewed. That is what I am talking about. I learned a lot from Esther Gordy Edwards in the early days @ the museum when I would bring my out of town clients there. They still talk about those conversations!
    Mrs Edwards had great talking genes! LOL! She and Mom could stand for what it seemed like hours and just gossip, talk and gossip! hehehehehehe!

  39. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by ralpht View Post
    I always thought it would have been good if Motown would have set up some sort of retirement account when the guys were making long bread.
    Would have been nice, but of course, but there were no such things as 401K's in those days...and the entertainment business was not like working for General Motors and retiring in 30 years with a pension plan, and the record industry was just not structured that way, nor were long term employees the rule of the day with artists jumping from label to label, producer to producer in most cases.... And I guarantee you...the lifestyle of entertainers as they were accustomed to was not conducive to taking some of their money and investing it. Can you imagine telling David Ruffin that he might not be able to buy that Rolls Royce because his money was being invested in a pension plan???... Unfortunately, most of the artists found it preferable to buy Cadillacs and other luxury cars to line up along West Grand Blvd and other flashy luxury items than to wisely invest their money as a few did but not most... Edwin Starr reportedly didn't even want to go to Motown after being used to going to Ed Wingates home at all hours of day and night to be handed cash from shoeboxes Wingate kept hidden in his house...Such was the life of most performers in those days before the megabucks became the norm...much the same as professional sports at the time before the huge contracts, agents, and financial managers got involved...Berry Gordy appreciated those artists who did choose to use their money more wisely. Nobody had to teach Berry (or Smokey who actually listened to Gordy) to be smart with their money as Berry learned that at home by the way he was raised and taught by his entrepreneurial parents...and he actually congratulated James Jamerson and told him he was happy to pay him a nice salary when James chose to use his newfound money to actually buy his own house...a somewhat rarity for musicians in those days...
    Last edited by StuBass1; 07-20-2019 at 05:06 PM.

  40. #40
    The reason for Ken Burns documentaries and many others is to go behind the scenes and uncover or discuss things in depth the public may not be aware of to understand what contributed to the issues/success etc. I hope this will be in depth or what’s the point? Brenda Holloway, Shorty Long, Raynoma, Pam Sawyer etc ...all important.

  41. #41
    Ralph, I hope you dont end up on the cutting room floor. You were there. Was Russ interviewed for this?
    He was the recording engineer for 20 plus years, and has loads of insight and information.

  42. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by luke View Post
    The reason for Ken Burns documentaries and many others is to go behind the scenes and uncover or discuss things in depth the public may not be aware of to understand what contributed to the issues/success etc. I hope this will be in depth or what’s the point? Brenda Holloway, Shorty Long, Raynoma, Pam Sawyer etc ...all important.
    In the trailer I saw, they had John Legend, Jamie Foxx and Dr. Dre talking about Motown.. That should give you a big indication of what this is going to be like. It will not be much different than Motown 40 that aired on ABC. That was nice for it's time, but now we're looking at 60 years and Motown has enough stories and living witnesses to tell them but they never use them on these types of shows.

  43. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    Yes. They did hour long specials on The Temptations, Four Tops , Stevie Wonder hosted. I can't remember if they did others that year.
    I've got this on VHS.... it has Aretha and the Four Tops singing with Aretha playing piano... the video ends with the tops and tempts battle on Motown 25....

    I've got another presented by Smokey but cant remember who.. need to dig out my attic.

  44. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by alexstassi View Post
    I've got this on VHS.... it has Aretha and the Four Tops singing with Aretha playing piano... the video ends with the tops and tempts battle on Motown 25....

    I've got another presented by Smokey but cant remember who.. need to dig out my attic.
    Just remembered its Marvin Gaye

  45. #45
    Mickey....They asked Russ for an interview but wanted him to come down from Santa Cruz to LA for the deal. Too far to drive. They didnt have time to come to him.

  46. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by alanh View Post
    Let’s hope for the best, but it does seem like there’s some great footage. I’m sure Showtime is looking for the broader audience rather than specialist or fans like us who know a lot of the background already. I also hope that we get to see it (soon!) in the UK. With any luck maybe on BBC2 as it seems like it’ll have the more general appeal than for BBC4. Or maybe Sky Arts, although Sky seems to have more of an association with HBO than Showtime.
    Sky have a contract with Showtime as well as HBO so it is likely to be shown on Sky Atlantic and perhaps on Sky Arts at a later date

  47. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    Sky have a contract with Showtime as well as HBO so it is likely to be shown on Sky Atlantic and perhaps on Sky Arts at a later date
    Altitude Films have distribution rights for the UK and Ireland for cinema release. I suspect it’ll be one of those situations where a few specialist cinemas will show it on a limited run before it gets to TV and or DVD. It then may well depend on which TV company Altitude deals with rather than Showtime doing the negotiations.

  48. #48
    so it's worldwide..fabulous..

  49. #49
    Altitude Films have announced they will be releasing the documentary for one night only on 30 September in the UK, following a general release starting 4 October.....although I'm not sure what that actually means in practice. I'm sure the general release won't be too widespread so I hope, as we've said, some TV deal can be arranged.


    The stars of Motown were out in full force at the West Coast premiere of Hitsville: The Making of Motown in Los Angeles on Thursday evening, 8 August.

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    The evening was a star-studded affair, featuring the original icons of Motown alongside its current roster. As the two figureheads of the upcoming documentary, label founder Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson were holding court as a who’s who of Motown and beyond walked the red carpet.

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    Smokey Robinson posed with his wife, Frances Glandney, while Stevie Wonder was also in attendance with his wife Tomeeka Robyn Bracy.

    Diana Ross’ daughter, Rhonda Ross and her son Raif-Henok Emmanuel Kendrick were also on hand, along with Diana’s son Evan Ross at the premiere and after party.

    Original Miracles member and one earliest Motown talents Claudette Robinson also made an appearance, along with other iconic talents representing the historic label including Thelma Houston, Mary Wilson of The Supremes, legendary songwriter Janie Bradford, original Vandellas member Betty Kelly, longtime Temptations manager Shelly Berger, head of the Motown Museum Robin Terry and the current president of Motown Records, Ethiopia Habtemariam.

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    Motown royalty weren’t the only stars to attend the Hitsville premiere and after party. The Late Late Show host James Corden also made an appearance, along with writer-director Kevin Smith, legendary production duo Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, the “Black Godfather” himself, Clarence Avant, Kevin “Coach K” Lee of Quality Control Music and singer-songwriter Tank.

    President and CEO of Universal Music Enterprises Bruce Resnikoff was also at the premiere, just one day after presenting the Icon Award to Mr Gordy at Capitol Congress.

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    Hitsville was directed by award-winning British brothers Gabe and Ben Turner and chronicles the historic label’s creation starting in 1958, through the trailblazing 60s and its relocation to Los Angeles in the early 1970s.

  50. #50
    It's interesting to see who has their loyalties when it comes to these Motown events , and who doesn't.

    I'm looking at these pictures , and I must be in a certain mood today , but here it goes:

    Smokey and wife : What happened to couples dressing to project they are a couple, dressed to compliment each other?
    Berry Gordy: This is at least the third time in a row he's appeared publicly with that three-day white stubble look. Can't a millionaire find a good barber to get himself nice and cleaned up before stepping out. You've got the nice suit , why not complete the look?
    Evan Ross : Can't the son of a millionaire find a jacket that's not too big, or if not, get it fitted?
    (And is it now time to retire the diving "ostrich neck" look?)
    Stevie: Oh well.
    Also , not pictured , but mentioned: watch for the Raif-Henok big push, now in fool swing.
    Last edited by Boogiedown; 08-12-2019 at 03:53 PM.

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