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  1. #1

    1970 New Line-up?

    I always wondered why didn't Motown help Florence Ballard rejoin The Supremes in 1970? When Diana Ross left The Supremes, a spot was open. Was it ever considered? Flo had the vocal power to lead the group. Maybe, with corporate encouragement and training, Motown could have brought Flo back into the group. It is good to look back as a learning experience.

  2. #2
    Unfortunately Flo burned her bridges with Motown long before she actually left the group.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by TNSUN View Post
    I always wondered why didn't Motown help Florence Ballard rejoin The Supremes in 1970? When Diana Ross left The Supremes, a spot was open. Was it ever considered? Flo had the vocal power to lead the group. Maybe, with corporate encouragement and training, Motown could have brought Flo back into the group. It is good to look back as a learning experience.
    TSUN from what I remember there was no way Flo was going back to Motown because of her hurt feeling's toward Gordy. I don't believe Flo and Gordy ever made up even though he paid for her funeral.

  4. #4
    Flo's exit from the group was a very contentious situation. IMO the flagrantly disruptive behavior she exhibited in 67 was a serious problem.

    she was so drunk in Jan in New Orleans and couldn't go on stage

    she was drunk on stage in Vegas at a super high-profile gig

    Imagine if you were school teacher and arrived drunk at school. imagine if you were in a big sales department and arrived drunk or high at an important sales meeting with a client. you get the picture

    on top of this there was the strained day to day situation with the fighting, arguing, dark moods, etc.

    so what of all of this would ever prompt an executive to say "hey let's do all of this again?"

  5. #5
    also given Flo's solo album for ABC, i do not think your comment about "flo having the vocal ability" to lead the group is correct. the material on her solo album was certainly sub par but her vocals are, frankly, lackluster.

    Flo had a nice voice. there are some moments where you get a peak at what MIGHT have been. But she needed much more training and direction to become a strong lead singer

    Jean had a level of vocal talent that simply was beyond many of the other women in the group. this isn't saying they had bad voices. but jean was special. she didn't have extensive training prior to joining. don't know if she had any actual singing lessons even. but her very first vocals at Motown are lightyears ahead of pretty much anything flo recorded.

  6. #6
    Besides the bad feelings between Flo and Gordy, Flo was under contract to ABC so that was a factor. Also at issue was Flo's weight fluctuations, which was now heavier than ever and Florence's temper tantrums and various depressions. When Jean left, a fan club newsletter asked Mary if there was a chance that Flo could come back then and Mary dismissed the idea. That was in 1974

  7. #7
    Florence was still considered a liability...political issues aside. I enjoy her on some cuts [[Good News) but find her lead vocals a bit piercing at times...she has volume, but tone control issues...there are cuts on the solo LP I enjoy.
    She looked wonderful in the Magic Mountain pics....gotta give Mary thumbs up for giving Flo a chance to see if a welcoming crowd could boost Florence's interest in returning to performing. Perhaps if time had been kinder, she eventually would have done some gigs as a solo and worked on reintroducing herself to the public...she would have been a great sit com guest.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by gman View Post
    Florence was still considered a liability...political issues aside. I enjoy her on some cuts [[Good News) but find her lead vocals a bit piercing at times...she has volume, but tone control issues...there are cuts on the solo LP I enjoy.
    She looked wonderful in the Magic Mountain pics....gotta give Mary thumbs up for giving Flo a chance to see if a welcoming crowd could boost Florence's interest in returning to performing. Perhaps if time had been kinder, she eventually would have done some gigs as a solo and worked on reintroducing herself to the public...she would have been a great sit com guest.
    agreed. Good News is simply fantastic. but others like Silent Night and O Holy Night are [[much) less so. part of the problem is the fact that both songs are dirge slow. I realize no one wants a pounding dance-track version of Silent Night but come on!! So Flo's pitch suffers at spots. She also needed more time working with the producers to experiment, test, learn. like on the end of Silent Night and she does that crazy "nuh" at the end of "Born' i get it that she was young and green. perfectly understandable. but coaching and training with the producers would have smoothed these techniques out

  9. #9
    Very rarely will a company rehire an employee with so many "issues"; lawsuits against them being just one of many reasons.

    Three backup singers would have never made a solid group. Plus, do you think Flo was going to sing lead on all the hits that Diana made famous?

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