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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenneth View Post

    But "Reflections" has a lot of great vocals on it. I like all three singles. I also like the way they cover "Love [[Makes Me Do Foolish Things)" and the absurdly titled "Bah Bah Bah" [[by Brenda Holloway as writer!) and I think Ross does a good job with "Ode to Billie Joe" [[although I like Martha's version better). Overall, it's my favorite DRATS album after "Love Child."
    I like "Love" also, and I love "Bah", an excellent deep cut that should be more popular. Diana's "Ode" is cool, it's listenable, but I wish she had been allowed to use her lower register. She sounds a bit too peppy for such a somber song. [[I always figure that with the name change, it makes sense to have Diana sing lead on every cut on the album, but quite honestly, Mary was the better fit for "Ode". Sucks that she wasn't given that opportunity.) I love Martha's version, btw.

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    H-D-H's complaints with the company were two fold; they wanted more money and they wanted their own label within Motown. When Gordy did not give them those things, that's when they decided leave Motown to start up their own company Invictus/Hot Wax.
    I don't know how much more money HDH deserved, considering they had to be making an enviable sum off of the massive hits they wrote and produced, but I think it was a bit stingy of Gordy not to compromise by giving them their own label under the Motown umbrella based off of just how much HDH's personal success elevated Motown's, and by extension, Gordy.

  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    you’re absolutely right, if you take away the hits you have a failure. And it’s a shame that they had such a tough act to follow with the original group because it’s never been bettered: 10 number ones +2 more top tens in less than three years…… only the Beatles have done that to this very day. It was a great time to be a Supremes fan.

    as far as the 70s Supremes go, if they were a new group beginning with up the latter, they would be totally forgotten today. They needed that big hit that they never got, and it certainly was not their fault. The 3° made a career off of one number one record and a smash club hit. They were out drying the Supremes at the Copa with no hits at all yet. The Honey Cone, With their number Want Ads, and the tepid, rumored gold follow up Stick Up made a name for themselves. I imagine more people remember One monkey don’t stop no show, than they do Nathan Jones or Floy Joy. Considering that Motown had a dearth of material, I think they did very well, but the fact is, outside of die hard die Hards, there was very little interest in the group as a group.

    I don’t know if you are familiar with this that came out in 1974, But this record was a game changer and it didn’t even chart. That’s what they needed, a big hit and a total makeover. They had the talent, but they didn’t have a fresh sound, like below: A fresh sound, the perfect vocal for radio and a full-blown production. If they had had the distribution this would’ve been a top-five or number one record.

    https://youtu.be/kuY0zOVj5-s
    I'm a huge 3 Degrees fan and have remarked in the forum previously my thoughts on their lack of success here in the States. The 70s Supremes' failures have been beaten to death. I was merely pointing out that, yes, in comparison to most other acts, what DRATS did in singles and album numbers was killer. But for them- competing against self, one might say- they just barely scrapped by "irrelevance". Likewise, the 70s Supremes did the same. Single for single, the 70s Supremes bested every other female group of the decade. Unfortunately they failed to score that massive "When Will I See You Again", "Lady Marmalade", "Best of My Love" mega hit. But on paper the 70s Supremes did fairly well, considering how dismal female groups often performed in the 70s for some extremely odd reason.

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by jobeterob View Post
    Only in Rossland would Reflections be a failure

    It’s listed here at sales of 750000 -not too shabby

    https://www.greasylake.org/the-circu...a-album-sales/
    Of course we have to take online reports of record sales with a grain of salt.

    Not just Rossland, any major artist that is holding steady in the top 10 consecutively will see anything that fails to reach the top 10 labeled as a "failure". I've seen million selling albums considered failures because their predecessors sold multi millions and then said album only sells one million. That's just the business. Diana isn't special in this.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    I consider the “Reflections” album a reasonably good one that might have been so much better.
    Three songs that definitely don’t belong on the album are “”What The World Needs Now”, “Up Up And Away” and “Love Makes Me Do Foolish Things”. They just don’t match the vibe of the “Reflections” single.
    I would have replaced them with “I Can’t Shake It Loose”, “John Henry” And “The Beginning Of The End Of Love” for a more contemporary sound.
    “I Can’t Shake It Loose” in particular would have made for a more radio friendly single then the rather grandiose “FCT”.
    I used to hate their "Up, Up and Away", but it's grown on me over the years. I'm with you on "World", which is one of the worst, most uninspired, lackluster vocal performances from the original Supremes ever. And as much as I dig the cover of "Love Makes", I would've scrapped it too, along with "Misery" and "Then". I love "John Henry" but I don't think I would include it.

    I like the idea of going a bit darker in mood, similar to "Reflections". I might would've produced it this way:

    Reflections
    I'm Gonna Make It
    Forever Came Today
    I Can't Make It Alone
    In and Out of Love
    Bah Bah Bah

    Are You Sure Love Is the Name of This Game
    Up, Up and Away
    Ode To Billie Joe [[with Mary on lead, or as is)
    The Nitty Gritty
    Stay In My Lonely Arms
    The Look of Love

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by jobucats View Post
    As much as I loved the group the Supremes, I also believe Diana should have left even earlier than Florence since, apparently to the haters, Diana was the reason for all of the discourse going on in the group. If Mary and Florence were indeed jealous and unhappy with how Diana was being put out front, they should have taken it upon themselves to "fire" her and see just how much more successful they could have become. Although I also liked the album "Reflections", it is a rather abrupt and stale production compared to the previous studio album, Supremes Sing HDH.
    Diana would've fallen on her face, and so would the other Supremes. There's a reason why Diana left when she did and not a minute before: she wasn't ready. If Gordy had thought Diana was ready for prime time alone:

    a) He would've signed her as a solo artist and told the other Primettes to hit the door.

    b) He wouldn't have bothered keeping the Supremes around for eight or so flops. He would've shown Flo and Mary the door and kept Diana when he made the official announcement that she was the lead singer.

    c) He wouldn't have put up with a moment of the circumstances surrounding Flo's issues with the group. He would've pulled Diana out right then and there.

    He didn't. He couldn't. And the story of Diana Ross is the better for it.

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post

    so here's another question - when did the "decline" with the albums really start? what was their high-water mark?

    so you could say that Reflections is a continuation of the decline started with A Go Go?
    I don't think the group ever made a truly bad album. There are just some that I like more than others.

    For me, the classic period was from 1964-1967. In that era, I think WDOLG, MHBTS, AGG, and HDH are classic albums. I like IHAS as well, but to a lesser degree, probably because of the mix of standards and Motown material.

    Beginning with the 1968-1969 period, I find that while I enjoy the albums, I don't think any of them measures up to the earlier albums, with the exception of LOVE CHILD, which I find to be a great album.

    With the rest of the albums, R, LTSI, and COTC, each has many songs that I enjoy but for a lack of a better word, I think they are missing the "sparkle" that the earlier albums had.

    Note: I also enjoy the Supremes/Tempts duet albums very much.

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    so here's another question - when did the "decline" with the albums really start? what was their high-water mark?

    WDOLG and More Hits both were exceptional albums. some might argue that More Hits is the ultimate Sup album since it is nearly all new material, great harmonies by the girls, each song is a winner, and all HDH. WDOLG is very very good, although a bit more patchwork but holds together well

    Symphony was a strong attempt to continue bridging the generation gap between teens and parents. well done although not a polished of productions as what HDH would do later on the Broadway to Hollywood. just as it is enjoyable to hear DMF grow and develop, this is a great example of how HDH grew

    A Go Go gets the historic importance of the first lp by girls to go #1. and when reading the song listing, it's easy to see why. but do all of the productions stand up to the "supremes" level? some of the LA tunes just don't have the necessary punch. i wonder how many fans, after buying, sort of felt "hmmm i like but had hoped it would be a bit better"

    HDH - IMO this album further adds to the disappointment felt by fans on A go Go. some superb songs here but some turds too. Always In My Heart is one of the worst things the original group recorded. one fan described it as the "march to the guillotine" song. so this lp is definitely uneven. and didn't match A Go Go sales

    Reflections - and here we are with this patchwork set


    so you could say that Reflections is a continuation of the decline started with A Go Go?
    For me the decline started with HDH. I thought it came too soon after A’ Go-Go and paled in comparison. A’ Go-Go was extremely popular. Radio stations played the whole album, similar to what they did with More Hits the previous year, and had contests to win the album. It was a fun album to play for friends and at parties.

    I played A’ Go-Go regularly for many years. Three of my favorites were LA cuts. In subsequent years I don’t recall conversations with friends and other Supremes fans about differences in quality of certain songs, except comparisons to the originals, until discussions here on SD. A’ Go-Go was also a more teen-oriented album than was Symphony which contained standards.

    HDH on the other hand seemed like A’ Go-Go Volume 2 but not nearly as good. The songs weren’t ordered in a manner that sustained a mood. Having You’re Gone right after Hangin’ On was a real mood killer. I would have put the stronger songs on Side 1: YKMHO, Going Down, Stone, Always Love You, LIHANYG, Doubt. It should have attempted a similar vibe as AGG which was still in the Top 20 when HDH was released. I’m not implying that the vocals aren’t good, it’s just a lackluster compilation, imo.

    Reflections was a better listening experience for me. It was Motown lite but enjoyable. I was aware that Motown was steering Diana in a new direction. I was okay with that but noticed my peers were moving towards other artists and records. Once the Love Child album was released I realized Reflections could have been so much more. Of course things went downhill with Sunshine and Crop. Fine songs taken individually but not great albums. Motown wasn't even trying.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    I don't know how much more money HDH deserved, considering they had to be making an enviable sum off of the massive hits they wrote and produced, but I think it was a bit stingy of Gordy not to compromise by giving them their own label under the Motown umbrella based off of just how much HDH's personal success elevated Motown's, and by extension, Gordy.
    I suspect that Gordy might have thought if he gave HDH their own imprint, he would be opening himself up to similar demands from Norman Whitfield, Ashford and Simpson, and other successful writers and producers.

  10. #60
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    Has it ever been discussed who exactly compiled the track lists for the albums? I don't think any of the songwriters/producers supervised what songs went on each album - they were responsible for just the song's productions. I know a specialty project like Sing Rodgers & Hart were overseen by Berry and Gil Askey, but did they select what songs were made the cut and the track order? I always assumed it was someone in Quality Control who selected the tracks, but I never knew who that individual/s were or who gave the thumbs up on an album's approval. Maybe Ralph would know. I think it would explain why some albums were excellent like More Hits and Love Child and why others were sub-par like Let The Sunshine In.

  11. #61
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    great question brad - i always assumed it was the executive producer. or the primary producer. and of course berry surely had a say in it. but did the lp go before QC?

    after Where, BL and Come, I'd almost assume HDH were given free reign to do whatever they wanted, especially considering Stop and Back added to the #1. they were so on fire i could see Berry saying you guys put out an album - go for it however you want.

    when HDH came up with the song IHAS, that so perfectly paired with the whole "cross-over" effort that the album almost planned itself. they had the material for There's A Place for Us but odds are it would have sold similarly to Sam Cooke or CWP. by taking their next reg studio album and building this mature concept, you would hit a much much larger audience. and while there are a few "adult" songs on the lp, much of it is still quite relevant to teens. Johnny Mathis was hugely popular and his Wonderful Wonderful would absolutely been played at a prom or something like that. same with Stranger. again a huge pop hit in the 50s - while not a fast paced teen dance number, it was certainly played as a romantic slow dance at prom.

    but with later albums like Reflections, there isn't 1 primary producer handling most of it. didn't someone say with Right On Frank Wilson was the exec/primary producer and he was the one that selected the various songs? even the ones he didn't produce in the studio?

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    Has it ever been discussed who exactly compiled the track lists for the albums? I don't think any of the songwriters/producers supervised what songs went on each album - they were responsible for just the song's productions. I know a specialty project like Sing Rodgers & Hart were overseen by Berry and Gil Askey, but did they select what songs were made the cut and the track order? I always assumed it was someone in Quality Control who selected the tracks, but I never knew who that individual/s were or who gave the thumbs up on an album's approval. Maybe Ralph would know. I think it would explain why some albums were excellent like More Hits and Love Child and why others were sub-par like Let The Sunshine In.
    I think Billie Jean Brown's department was in charge of compiling the albums.
    Last edited by reese; 05-12-2022 at 12:33 PM.

  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    Diana would've fallen on her face, and so would the other Supremes. There's a reason why Diana left when she did and not a minute before: she wasn't ready. If Gordy had thought Diana was ready for prime time alone:

    a) He would've signed her as a solo artist and told the other Primettes to hit the door.

    b) He wouldn't have bothered keeping the Supremes around for eight or so flops. He would've shown Flo and Mary the door and kept Diana when he made the official announcement that she was the lead singer.

    c) He wouldn't have put up with a moment of the circumstances surrounding Flo's issues with the group. He would've pulled Diana out right then and there.

    He didn't. He couldn't. And the story of Diana Ross is the better for it.
    I absolutely agree in that the timing was perfect. By 1970, Diana had come along way vocally. There was a newfound strength and maturity to her voice when compared to Supremes recordings.

  14. #64
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    TheMotownManiac


    I don’t know if you are familiar with this that came out in 1974, But this record was a game changer and it didn’t even chart. That’s what they needed, a big hit and a total makeover. They had the talent, but they didn’t have a fresh sound, like below: A fresh sound, the perfect vocal for radio and a full-blown production. If they had had the distribution this would’ve been a top-five or number one record.

    https://youtu.be/kuY0zOVj5-s
    but it was distributed by CBS , how do you top that ....

    while I agree the sound is a pretty good representation of the developing TSOP sound, I suspect the main crowd that found the lyrical content entertaining was snot-nosed twinks convening in hot-spot bars that were turned off by being hit on by anyone over thirty [sugar daddies the exception], with not much appeal to an audience beyond that.


    How about this one instead from the same LP:



    Last edited by Boogiedown; 05-13-2022 at 12:38 AM.

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    so here's another question - when did the "decline" with the albums really start? what was their high-water mark?

    WDOLG and More Hits both were exceptional albums. some might argue that More Hits is the ultimate Sup album since it is nearly all new material, great harmonies by the girls, each song is a winner, and all HDH. WDOLG is very very good, although a bit more patchwork but holds together well

    Symphony was a strong attempt to continue bridging the generation gap between teens and parents. well done although not a polished of productions as what HDH would do later on the Broadway to Hollywood. just as it is enjoyable to hear DMF grow and develop, this is a great example of how HDH grew

    A Go Go gets the historic importance of the first lp by girls to go #1. and when reading the song listing, it's easy to see why. but do all of the productions stand up to the "supremes" level? some of the LA tunes just don't have the necessary punch. i wonder how many fans, after buying, sort of felt "hmmm i like but had hoped it would be a bit better"

    HDH - IMO this album further adds to the disappointment felt by fans on A go Go. some superb songs here but some turds too. Always In My Heart is one of the worst things the original group recorded. one fan described it as the "march to the guillotine" song. so this lp is definitely uneven. and didn't match A Go Go sales

    Reflections - and here we are with this patchwork set


    so you could say that Reflections is a continuation of the decline started with A Go Go?
    I think this goes back to my question about who selected the tracks for the albums. Were things really in decline for the girls or was it just Quality Control throwing tracks together and calling it an album? I think it’s the later. At this time the music industry was really focused in on singles and getting a hit record. Attention to making great albums didn’t come until the late 60s and early 70s although the Beatles were ahead of the curve by focusing on their albums much earlier. We all have created our own Supremes albums and swapping in vaulted material to make them more cohesive and stronger. Motown certainly did pay attention to albums, but when you look at Let The Sunshine In and see tracks going back to Florence’s time while “Stormy,” “A Little Breeze,” and “Am I Asking Too Much” are sitting in the vaults, you have to wonder if these albums were thrown together in a day and not much attention was paid to them.

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    I think this goes back to my question about who selected the tracks for the albums. Were things really in decline for the girls or was it just Quality Control throwing tracks together and calling it an album? I think it’s the later. At this time the music industry was really focused in on singles and getting a hit record. Attention to making great albums didn’t come until the late 60s and early 70s although the Beatles were ahead of the curve by focusing on their albums much earlier. We all have created our own Supremes albums and swapping in vaulted material to make them more cohesive and stronger. Motown certainly did pay attention to albums, but when you look at Let The Sunshine In and see tracks going back to Florence’s time while “Stormy,” “A Little Breeze,” and “Am I Asking Too Much” are sitting in the vaults, you have to wonder if these albums were thrown together in a day and not much attention was paid to them.
    completely agree. especially on Sunshine and Cream. you could have gone through the vault inventory and carefully selected songs that appeared to have some sort of stylistic or commonality. something that sort of ties the lp together

    but from what i've collected, that wasn't exactly the case with Reflections. now i'm sure there are songs that i don't know about or haven't come across [[come on EE!! lol) but based on the info i have, by late Feb 68, there wasn't a gigantic inventory of quality, appropriate tracks to fill out an album. at least assuming you're trying to work off of this new psychedelic soul sound of the title track. yes there are lots of canned "pop" songs and many were lined up for potential use on the canned Some Things You Never Get Used To. If Reflections [[the song) didn't exist and, perhaps, In and out Of Love was the follow up to Happening, you could have easily assembled a very upbeat and pop album:

    In and out
    all i know
    going all the way
    then
    happening
    misery makes
    heaven must have sent you
    up up and away
    can't shake it loose
    a little breeze
    stay in my lonely arms
    treat me nice

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    I don't think creating excellent albums was a priority of Motown, just solid enough, commercial product.

    One of the ironies is that while the quality of Supremes albums from 66 to 69 were merely alright, The Marvelettes, hardly a priority of Motown, turned out two excellent albums, Pink album and Sophisticated Soul, during this time.

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    "Always in My Heart" is a great song with tender vocals. Actually, it is the gold standard type of song for infatuation exercises.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    It wasn’t like Republicans today who won’t let their kids watch Snow White anymore, all the scintilla of the Fanbase would buy any music they wanted to hear regardless of billing.
    .
    Ah you're just hooked on the kinky fantasy of some pretty young thing shacking up with seven unmarried dwarfs deep in the forest

    https://www.hollywoodintoto.com/7-fi...azing-saddles/
    Last edited by Boogiedown; 05-13-2022 at 01:46 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TNSUN View Post
    "Always in My Heart" is a great song with tender vocals. Actually, it is the gold standard type of song for infatuation exercises.
    Always In My Heart is a funeral dirge. lol I can literally hear it being played in the background [[especially that death knell of a drum beat) as Marie Antionette's ramshackle cart creaked up to the base of the guillotine and she ascended the steps lol

    i'm shocked that it was picked as the flip for Come See. It's All Your Fault could have been a perfectly fine backing track

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    I absolutely agree in that the timing was perfect. By 1970, Diana had come along way vocally. There was a newfound strength and maturity to her voice when compared to Supremes recordings.
    Yeah. Prior to the name change, Diana was the something extra in an exciting singing group. Once the name changed, and there was a clear plan on the table, Diana started to ramp up the extra, which included stretching her wings vocally, visibly, and just all around honing the magic that would make her one of the greatest stars of all time. Had she left prematurely...yikes. Hell, even after she did leave, until Lady Sings, it was kind of up in the air about how well this thing was going to take off. Thank God it did, for us fans.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TNSUN View Post
    "Always in My Heart" is a great song with tender vocals.
    I agree that it's a great song. Diana's lead, coupled with the lyrics and the track make for a beautifully somber cut. Horrible fit on the album though. While there are other songs on HDH that I dislike, "Always In My Heart" is the song I feel is the least representative of what the tracklist should have been. The album version of "Heat Wave" is so dull in comparison to the original that I think it should have stayed in the vault, but at least it does kind of fit with every thing else.

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    I'm on the negative side of the "Always In My Heart" argument. It is so relentlessly dull.

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    I really like side 1
    Side 2 , has to many covers

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    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    I really like side 1
    Side 2 , has to many covers
    I'm not really a fan of the outside-Motown covers ... there are a few gems, but very few.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    I'm on the negative side of the "Always In My Heart" argument. It is so relentlessly dull.
    Tell me about it lol. A little goes a long way is how i would summarise the song.

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    These are worldwide sales that include re-issues and such. At the time of it's release I don't think Reflections hit the 200K sales mark. More like 125K to 150K. Still a good seller just not what the group was used to.

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    what if side 2 had the Flo left overs,
    the Happening
    let the music play
    beginnin of the end
    love makes me do foolish things
    misery in my heart
    what becomes of the broken hearted ,
    and leave off the covers

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    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    I don't know how much more money HDH deserved, considering they had to be making an enviable sum off of the massive hits they wrote and produced, but I think it was a bit stingy of Gordy not to compromise by giving them their own label under the Motown umbrella based off of just how much HDH's personal success elevated Motown's, and by extension, Gordy.
    That's just the thing, Gordy knew more success of their HDH imprint meant more money demands and less control he would have over them. Gordy was no fool. One of the guys had been needling Gordy for a couple years with continued demands for more money. And of course other labels were courting HDH with big promises and this was always thrown in Gordy's face as well. But he learned from Mary Wells and their contracts were iron clad. Ironically in the 70s and part of the 80s the guys did work at other labels with little success.

    HDH signed a contract and were held to that. Instead of just upping the contract they now wanted more perks such as their own label which, more than likely, Gordy would have bankrolled for them to get started and then they would have left him anyway. It was a tense situation in 67-68 for all concerned.

    HDH made a lot of money, it is debatable if it was compensatory to the success they had with Motown. I think they went through most of it at Invictus. From what I gather all three struggled financially for years with Eddie Holland's condo in danger of foreclosure in the last few years. I think it also a matter of not knowing how to handle one's finances.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BayouMotownMan View Post
    These are worldwide sales that include re-issues and such. At the time of it's release I don't think Reflections hit the 200K sales mark. More like 125K to 150K. Still a good seller just not what the group was used to.
    yeah and that's sort of the curious point here. 1967 had built on an equally strong 1966. 66 had 2 top 10 singles and 2 #1 plus the first #1 album. 67 had 2 #1 and 2 top 10s plus a top 10 album and Greatest Hits which was massive.

    Reflections certainly performed well enough. it performed great compared to albums by other groups. but after these great sales in 66 and 67, it was a let down i'm sure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    yeah and that's sort of the curious point here. 1967 had built on an equally strong 1966. 66 had 2 top 10 singles and 2 #1 plus the first #1 album. 67 had 2 #1 and 2 top 10s plus a top 10 album and Greatest Hits which was massive.

    Reflections certainly performed well enough. it performed great compared to albums by other groups. but after these great sales in 66 and 67, it was a let down i'm sure.
    Like someone mentioned earlier, Motown waited too long to issue the Reflections album. The trip-up was that Motown originally intended "Reflections" to be issued on Greatest Hits. With it being pulled and held over for an album of its own, Motown released Greatest Hits in August 1967 and it dominated in sales and charts - staying in the top 10 for 24 weeks and well into the spring of 1968. Motown issuing another Supremes album to compete too soon would have hurt sales for both. They did wait too long though. A December/January release may have been the better option, but many tracks like "Forever Came Today" and "Bah-Bah-Bah" weren't complete. Motown could have easily substituted them with "Heaven Must Have Sent You" or "Stay In My Lonely Arms" if they were looking for other completed HDH tracks. But then you have to factor in Florence and HDH's departures. They really were in a damned if you do or damned if you don't situation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    Like someone mentioned earlier, Motown waited too long to issue the Reflections album. The trip-up was that Motown originally intended "Reflections" to be issued on Greatest Hits. With it being pulled and held over for an album of its own, Motown released Greatest Hits in August 1967 and it dominated in sales and charts - staying in the top 10 for 24 weeks and well into the spring of 1968. Motown issuing another Supremes album to compete too soon would have hurt sales for both. They did wait too long though. A December/January release may have been the better option, but many tracks like "Forever Came Today" and "Bah-Bah-Bah" weren't complete. Motown could have easily substituted them with "Heaven Must Have Sent You" or "Stay In My Lonely Arms" if they were looking for other completed HDH tracks. But then you have to factor in Florence and HDH's departures. They really were in a damned if you do or damned if you don't situation.
    good point - GH was released in August and hit #1 in late Oct. was at 1 for 5 weeks and in the top 10 for 22 weeks. it was clearly THE motown album for the holiday season. I can only imagine how many teens and kids and fans found it under the tree that year. That puts it at March 68 when it was finally starting to creep out of the top 10. and given that it was 2 discs, the price was much higher than the 1 disc for Reflections. so the $ was really coming in from that release.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    Like someone mentioned earlier, Motown waited too long to issue the Reflections album. The trip-up was that Motown originally intended "Reflections" to be issued on Greatest Hits. With it being pulled and held over for an album of its own, Motown released Greatest Hits in August 1967 and it dominated in sales and charts - staying in the top 10 for 24 weeks and well into the spring of 1968. Motown issuing another Supremes album to compete too soon would have hurt sales for both. They did wait too long though. A December/January release may have been the better option, but many tracks like "Forever Came Today" and "Bah-Bah-Bah" weren't complete. Motown could have easily substituted them with "Heaven Must Have Sent You" or "Stay In My Lonely Arms" if they were looking for other completed HDH tracks. But then you have to factor in Florence and HDH's departures. They really were in a damned if you do or damned if you don't situation.
    Good points, though a Reflections album minus “Bah Bah Bah” is unthinkable. One of my faves on the album.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Good points, though a Reflections album minus “Bah Bah Bah” is unthinkable. One of my faves on the album.
    Mine too. Great and very forward-looking track.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    Ah you're just hooked on the kinky fantasy of some pretty young thing shacking up with seven unmarried dwarfs deep in the forest

    https://www.hollywoodintoto.com/7-fi...azing-saddles/
    After I got the chance to actually try that, I was disappointed. I went back to Prince Charming in a heartbeat and put up with his antics for the next 30 years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    but it was distributed by CBS , how do you top that ....

    while I agree the sound is a pretty good representation of the developing TSOP sound, I suspect the main crowd that found the lyrical content entertaining was snot-nosed twinks convening in hot-spot bars that were turned off by being hit on by anyone over thirty [sugar daddies the exception], with not much appeal to an audience beyond that.


    How about this one instead from the same LP:



    I like it very much, but I think dirty old man is brilliant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    I'm a huge 3 Degrees fan and have remarked in the forum previously my thoughts on their lack of success here in the States. The 70s Supremes' failures have been beaten to death. I was merely pointing out that, yes, in comparison to most other acts, what DRATS did in singles and album numbers was killer. But for them- competing against self, one might say- they just barely scrapped by "irrelevance". Likewise, the 70s Supremes did the same. Single for single, the 70s Supremes bested every other female group of the decade. Unfortunately they failed to score that massive "When Will I See You Again", "Lady Marmalade", "Best of My Love" mega hit. But on paper the 70s Supremes did fairly well, considering how dismal female groups often performed in the 70s for some extremely odd reason.
    I think you are younger than I am, so you might not have been around for this. By 1969 and certainly into the 70s, the women’s movement was in full swing. Glitzing around in sequin dresses, or parading around in hot pants or other ways to lure customers was a turn off to a large segment of the population. There were women who stop shaving their legs and pits, the organic granola Carole King/Helen Reddy music was very very popular. Even Karen Carpenter wore granny dresses and played the drums and I don’t think girl groups knew how to present themselves anymore. Labelle wisely embraced the rockstar persona, but they couldn’t get the material to sustain. The Pointer Sisters finally came up with a formula that worked.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    I think you are younger than I am, so you might not have been around for this. By 1969 and certainly into the 70s, the women’s movement was in full swing. Glitzing around in sequin dresses, or parading around in hot pants or other ways to lure customers was a turn off to a large segment of the population. There were women who stop shaving their legs and pits, the organic granola Carole King/Helen Reddy music was very very popular. Even Karen Carpenter wore granny dresses and played the drums and I don’t think girl groups knew how to present themselves anymore. Labelle wisely embraced the rockstar persona, but they couldn’t get the material to sustain. The Pointer Sisters finally came up with a formula that worked.
    in general there was a shift away from the formality and glamour of the earlier 60s. gone were the more formal dresses, suits and ties. pop artists were getting more casual, grungier, long hair, ditch formal social norms.

    The sups had sort of held on with their sophisticated look into the late 60s but it was already being viewed as "too much"

    in the early 70s, the group did well enough with some of their pop singles but the image of the group will adrift. it wasn't until the disco era took off that sequins and flashiness returned

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    i still think there was an opportunity for the Sups to do their version of "women's lib." of course they were never going to be wildly militant and all. but Pam Sawyer had worked heavily with Frank Wilson on many of the groups and other's hits and recordings. in addition, two of the "Promises Kept" tracks were by/involved Pam. Ohh My Poor Baby, I'll Have To Let Him Know - both of which are among the strongest tracks from this period IMO

    after Touch, what if motown paired it's top girl group with some of the labels top female producers/writers? that could have generated quite some PR interest and helped advance their public image? given them something new, significant and interesting?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    After I got the chance to actually try that, I was disappointed. I went back to Prince Charming in a heartbeat and put up with his antics for the next 30 years.


    you should've known that a guy who takes advantage of a passed out woman is no Prince Charming.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    I like it very much, but I think dirty old man is brilliant.
    I'll respect your conclusion

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    personally i thought A GO GO was the weak album and SING HDH was the better of the 2.
    i would have combined the two of them

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    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    personally i thought A GO GO was the weak album and SING HDH was the better of the 2.
    i would have combined the two of them
    I agree although I would not have combined them

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    I might be in the minority here, but I think even if Florence and HDH had stayed and the name hadn't been changed, there would have been a natural "slow down." How many really maintain the kind of white hot streak The Supremes enjoyed in the first few years? It might not have been what they were used to but six top 10 singles [[Four of them being #1 or #2) in less than two and a half years is pretty good by any standards. I guess I'm looking at the glass as half full.

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    Quote Originally Posted by George Solomon View Post
    I might be in the minority here, but I think even if Florence and HDH had stayed and the name hadn't been changed, there would have been a natural "slow down." How many really maintain the kind of white hot streak The Supremes enjoyed in the first few years? It might not have been what they were used to but six top 10 singles [[Four of them being #1 or #2) in less than two and a half years is pretty good by any standards. I guess I'm looking at the glass as half full.
    Absolutely, with 3 of those over the 2 Million mark - my guess is that only the Beatles and the monkeys had a better track record in the US at that time. And as you said, no group keeps up that pace indefinitely, especially a history making run of hits. That being said, the groups style and image was causing some fans to bail, their album sales are indicative of that, but that’s not the only reason of course because the albums were not as commercially accessible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jobeterob View Post
    I agree although I would not have combined them
    there were strong songs on side 1 to Go Go but the rest seemed just ok, while Sing HDH seemed like a better album
    on HDH i would replace the 2 covers , heatwave and Same Old Song with This Old heart of Mine ,Shake Me Wake Me and maybe one other

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    Quote Originally Posted by George Solomon View Post
    I might be in the minority here, but I think even if Florence and HDH had stayed and the name hadn't been changed, there would have been a natural "slow down." How many really maintain the kind of white hot streak The Supremes enjoyed in the first few years? It might not have been what they were used to but six top 10 singles [[Four of them being #1 or #2) in less than two and a half years is pretty good by any standards. I guess I'm looking at the glass as half full.
    totally agree, every groups has it slow down,and the Supremes actually stayed top ten way into 1971

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    I have said this as well many times, while losing Flo and HDH had its impacts, the group was heading for a slow down. While Forever Came Today is a complex production it seems to show that the producers were becoming less inventive and therefore went over the top with the orchestration. It was just too busy of a recording. If memory serves me this was the first Supremes song not played on Bandstand. It just wasn't danceable.

    I feel strongly by mid 1968 Gordy would have experimented with different producers even if HDH had remained. Had Some Things You Never Get Used To done better, Ashford and Simpson could likely have inherited them just based on their string of hits with Gaye/Terrell. And who knows what would have happened if Johnny Bristol had gotten control of the group sooner.

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    completely agree this is all relative. just like the 70s sups had 4 gold records, lots of top tv appearances, strong chart action. if it was any other group, including any other motown group, that would be considered a great run.

    but these big periods of change made for interesting and engaging "what if" discussions.

    Bayou - you comment about Some Things is dead right. and i think Some Things was one of the weakest of tracks A&S did at the time. Destination Anywhere could have been a huge hit for the Supremes. I'm A Winner [[which Diana later covered) could have worked too. Some Thing would have worked as an album track. but not a single

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    Quote Originally Posted by BayouMotownMan View Post
    I have said this as well many times, while losing Flo and HDH had its impacts, the group was heading for a slow down. While Forever Came Today is a complex production it seems to show that the producers were becoming less inventive and therefore went over the top with the orchestration. It was just too busy of a recording. If memory serves me this was the first Supremes song not played on Bandstand. It just wasn't danceable.
    question is did HDH intend it for a single? and same with In and Out? were they still actively involved in this or were they already MIA to some degree?

    in 65 [[other than the specialty projects like Xmas, Tribute to the girls, Sam Cooke, etc) nearly everything is HDH. Smokey got a production in with Take Me Where You Go and Too Much A Little too soon, Clarence Paul did Slow Down

    in 66, they opened the group up a bit more to others. Frank and Hal did those cover tunes with all of the A Go Go sessions. Smokey and Frank did Misery Makes Its Home. then in July you have more Frank and Clarence and others doing more covers - Misunderstanding, come on and see me, etc. henry Cosby doing With A Child's Heart

    67 still sees mostly HDH but a few here and there with Deke, Smokey, and a couple others. Don't Forget Motor City still lists things in Oct, Nov and Dec 67 as being completed by HDH. but were they? or were others stepping in during the absence?

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