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  1. #1
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    Lynda Laurence-What if?

    What if Lynda had stayed with the Supremes instead of leaving when Jean did? Do you think the Supremes story would have been different? I Know Jean and Lynda were trying to get Mary to leave Motown and change the name to something else. Lynda did sing lead on her first tour when Jean was ill in Hawaii. Lynda certainly had a good voice but she wasn't as distinctive a vocalist as Diana or Jean or even to a lesser extent Mary or Scherrie. I read Mary's book and Lynda wanted a full third of everything as well as special compensation for solos which Mary said was unrealistic. I am guessing Mary got more but was pumping money into the act and the group. With Jean gone, do you think Lynda would have been a hit as lead singer? Do you think Cindy would have returned when Jean left to be with Mary and Lynda? Do you think that Scherrie would then never been a Supreme since they wouldn't need to look for a new lead singer? How successful do you think a Lynda led group would have been? I liked her and she did fine for the 18 months she was there but I don't see her leading the group to more success than the Scherrie, Mary, Cindy and Susaye groupings. Lynda was willing to leave the name in 1973 but in 1986 on she used the name in the FLOs with no problem. I also read that some at Motown warned Mary to look out for Lynda because she was too bossy. What if?....

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    I thought the original plan was that Mary and Lynda would split the lead and Cindy would rejoin

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    i don't know that things would have been drastically different. it would still have been a personnel change and the group was beginning to be known as a revolving door. but maybe a bit less dramatic than the move to MSC.

    I can hear Lynda doing many of the leads on Sup 75 so i think that would have worked

    also since they weren't bringing in a totally new singer [[Scherrie) they might not have had quite the problem with getting contracts signed. this whole period is a bit murky regarding timing of things, what was causing the delays, etc. Some say it was cuz motown didn't really want the group to continue or the bring in a totally new member so they weren't very active in getting Scherrie's contract. some say it was mary trying to get the copywrite ownership and wouldn't sign.

    so with Lynda staying, we might have gotten more recordings during that 18 months or so

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    the Supremes became a revolving door. Susie Smith or Connie Jones would also have come and gone almost unnoticed.

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    The MCL lineup would have been like three bottoms at a menage a trois, lol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    The MCL lineup would have been like three bottoms at a menage a trois, lol.
    Can I ask who was on top?
    Do you have any videos? Lol
    Last edited by Circa 1824; 07-28-2022 at 11:10 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    The MCL lineup would have been like three bottoms at a menage a trois, lol.
    oh miss mary - i could really lob back some zingers on this one!! lololol But being a classy lady, i'll refrain of course maybe if the group was renamed Daisy Chain lolol

    I think Lynda more than had the capabilities to lead the group. obviously she did it in Hawaii and i think her personality was quite outgoing. we didn't get to see it much [[like in that recent Dick Caveat interview) but as she established herself, i think she would have shined brightly.

    she has a more forward voice with some nasality to it. although a very different voice from D or J or Scherrie, it shares being a voice that can penetrate through an orchestra and not get lost. plus M and C were always just perfect at blending. so they would provide the gorgeous backdrop for a unique voice to shine

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    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post

    I think Lynda more than had the capabilities to lead the group. obviously she did it in Hawaii and i think her personality was quite outgoing. we didn't get to see it much [[like in that recent Dick Caveat interview) but as she established herself, i think she would have shined brightly.

    she has a more forward voice with some nasality to it. although a very different voice from D or J or Scherrie, it shares being a voice that can penetrate through an orchestra and not get lost. plus M and C were always just perfect at blending. so they would provide the gorgeous backdrop for a unique voice to shine
    Well here's one for the handful of times this has occurred: I actually agree 100 percent with this Sup. Had Lynda stayed and Cindy came back, I think the Supremes' story may have had a bigger chance of returning to and maintaining some real relevancy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jim aka jtigre99 View Post
    What if Lynda had stayed with the Supremes instead of leaving when Jean did? Do you think the Supremes story would have been different? I Know Jean and Lynda were trying to get Mary to leave Motown and change the name to something else. Lynda did sing lead on her first tour when Jean was ill in Hawaii. Lynda certainly had a good voice but she wasn't as distinctive a vocalist as Diana or Jean or even to a lesser extent Mary or Scherrie. I read Mary's book and Lynda wanted a full third of everything as well as special compensation for solos which Mary said was unrealistic. I am guessing Mary got more but was pumping money into the act and the group. With Jean gone, do you think Lynda would have been a hit as lead singer? Do you think Cindy would have returned when Jean left to be with Mary and Lynda? Do you think that Scherrie would then never been a Supreme since they wouldn't need to look for a new lead singer? How successful do you think a Lynda led group would have been? I liked her and she did fine for the 18 months she was there but I don't see her leading the group to more success than the Scherrie, Mary, Cindy and Susaye groupings. Lynda was willing to leave the name in 1973 but in 1986 on she used the name in the FLOs with no problem. I also read that some at Motown warned Mary to look out for Lynda because she was too bossy. What if?....
    it is my personal belief that Cindy would not have come back to the group because Scherrie would have joined Mary and Lynda. I suspect the reason why Cindy was invited to return was out of desperation as Mary knew that Cindy had some limitations vocally and personality wise making her less fun on stage. She was perfectly fine and had a sweetness, but I don’t think she was ever that much of an asset other than she was the perfect replacement for Florence at that time. Marry knew this. For all her talk about it being a group again and everything being equal, nothing was equal. Cindy was throwing an occasional bone but that was it. Her treatment at Motown 50 was an insult and she said so. Mary would’ve been looking for a lead singer and so she would’ve contacted Scherrie who we know said yes and it would’ve been MLS. Lynda brought a lot to the table to handle herself better than any of the Supremes in interviews and when given lines and shows, plus she could handle lead duties. The three strong singers together might’ve been quite dynamic. It’s possible we never even would’ve heard of Susaye. I don’t think that, ultimately, she was much of an asset to the group. She certainly has a voice, but I think that her negatives outweighed to her positives.

    Lynda also brings record industry savvy, business sense, a lifetime of connections and a forward thinking, can-do attitude. Someone in the group needed to have that. Additionally, if Lynda stayed and Scherrie stayed, that would be two less group changes in that very short period of time which I believe would’ve helped.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    The three strong singers together might’ve been quite dynamic. It’s possible we never even would’ve heard of Susaye. I don’t think that, ultimately, she was much of an asset to the group. She certainly has a voice, but I think that her negatives outweighed to her positives.
    I respectfully disagree. Vocally Susaye was a shot in the arm and helped to reenergise the group. The contrast in her voice and Mary’s on “Closer Together” is stunning. She also sounds terrific on “Come Into My Life” and “High Energy”. Lynda and Scherrie share a similar vocal style and sound that while powerful, would have been lacking in contrast.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    it is my personal belief that Cindy would not have come back to the group because Scherrie would have joined Mary and Lynda. I suspect the reason why Cindy was invited to return was out of desperation as Mary knew that Cindy had some limitations vocally and personality wise making her less fun on stage. She was perfectly fine and had a sweetness, but I don’t think she was ever that much of an asset other than she was the perfect replacement for Florence at that time. Marry knew this. For all her talk about it being a group again and everything being equal, nothing was equal. Cindy was throwing an occasional bone but that was it. Her treatment at Motown 50 was an insult and she said so. Mary would’ve been looking for a lead singer and so she would’ve contacted Scherrie who we know said yes and it would’ve been MLS. Lynda brought a lot to the table to handle herself better than any of the Supremes in interviews and when given lines and shows, plus she could handle lead duties. The three strong singers together might’ve been quite dynamic. It’s possible we never even would’ve heard of Susaye. I don’t think that, ultimately, she was much of an asset to the group. She certainly has a voice, but I think that her negatives outweighed to her positives.

    Lynda also brings record industry savvy, business sense, a lifetime of connections and a forward thinking, can-do attitude. Someone in the group needed to have that. Additionally, if Lynda stayed and Scherrie stayed, that would be two less group changes in that very short period of time which I believe would’ve helped.
    What was Motown 50?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    I respectfully disagree. Vocally Susaye was a shot in the arm and helped to reenergise the group. The contrast in her voice and Mary’s on “Closer Together” is stunning. She also sounds terrific on “Come Into My Life” and “High Energy”. Lynda and Scherrie share a similar vocal style and sound that while powerful, would have been lacking in contrast.
    i agree that Come Into My Life is a sensational song. probably not a single but a perfect album track and a perfect song for Miss Greene

    also i'd venture to say that We Should Be Closer Together is a shared lead between Mary and Susaye. the parts that Susaye sings IMO are the natural direction for the melody. she isn't simply doing an echo effect. if anything mary is doing that. mary does her solo parts but when Susaye comes in, she's singing the lead melody lines.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    it is my personal belief that Cindy would not have come back to the group because Scherrie would have joined Mary and Lynda. I suspect the reason why Cindy was invited to return was out of desperation as Mary knew that Cindy had some limitations vocally and personality wise making her less fun on stage. She was perfectly fine and had a sweetness, but I don’t think she was ever that much of an asset other than she was the perfect replacement for Florence at that time. Marry knew this. For all her talk about it being a group again and everything being equal, nothing was equal. Cindy was throwing an occasional bone but that was it. Her treatment at Motown 50 was an insult and she said so. Mary would’ve been looking for a lead singer and so she would’ve contacted Scherrie who we know said yes and it would’ve been MLS. Lynda brought a lot to the table to handle herself better than any of the Supremes in interviews and when given lines and shows, plus she could handle lead duties. The three strong singers together might’ve been quite dynamic. It’s possible we never even would’ve heard of Susaye. I don’t think that, ultimately, she was much of an asset to the group. She certainly has a voice, but I think that her negatives outweighed to her positives.

    Lynda also brings record industry savvy, business sense, a lifetime of connections and a forward thinking, can-do attitude. Someone in the group needed to have that. Additionally, if Lynda stayed and Scherrie stayed, that would be two less group changes in that very short period of time which I believe would’ve helped.
    my understanding if the departures of L and J were actually separate events, although they happened to occur closely together. Bayou on here has mentioned that jean was pretty much done with the group after the poor performance of the JW album in late 72. the group was really wanting to leave motown but seems to have said "ok - let's try one more time. lynda knows Stevie, he's super hot right now. let's do a project with him and if that doesn't work, we're done"

    BW was released in late March. in late April the group appeared at The Fairmont in San Fran and got terrible reviews. it was also clear by this time that BW wasn't going to be a hit. according to Bayou, jean was pretty much done and agree to finish out the dates through Aug.

    meanwhile, mary is trying to figure out what to do. Lynda was still a member, had handled lead during those initial dates. mary was also wanting to increase her role in the group. so if they could find a new singer to be the 3rd, it would be all set. M and L sharing leads and so Cindy was being asked to come back.

    according to Bayou and others, there was a meeting with M, Cindy, Pedro and Lynda where mary was laying out the ideas for going forward and how Pedro was going to be helping run things, etc. I don't think it was that Pedro is THE manager but sounds like he was definitely highly involved in the plans and discussion. apparently Lynda left thinking, this is doomed. plus she was pregnant. when she was out, that's when the additional search began and they found scherrie

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    it is my personal belief that Cindy would not have come back to the group because Scherrie would have joined Mary and Lynda. I suspect the reason why Cindy was invited to return was out of desperation as Mary knew that Cindy had some limitations vocally and personality wise making her less fun on stage.
    I believe it has been mentioned on here previously but the plan was Lynda was going to stay and Cindy was going to come back. If Lynda stayed on, Scherrie would have never brought in. This whole period has been murky as most of us had been under the assumption that Lynda and Jean left at the same time and for the same reasons but recently we're learning more about what really happened. Lynda's departure wasn't necessarily because Jean left. Each had their own reasons although some of it was the same. I'm not entirely sure myself how long after Jean left did Lynda decided to leave but I know it wasn't at the same time.

    August - Jean leaves the group.

    August thru October - Mary asks Cindy to return. She does. Lynda is going to take on lead duties. Things fall through as she cannot come to agreement on a deal. I believe she asked for a share in the Supremes stake and more money if she was going to be doing lead duties plus Mary was beginning to bring Pedro into the picture - I don't know the details at the moment on what went down but she decides to leave. In this time, Mary auditions several ladies - Shelly Clark and Leola Jiles being two we know. Jiles claims she got the spot but her manager at the time, Dick Glasser, made all sorts of demands from Motown including percentage of cut of the deal and production responsibilities which effectively ended her chances of becoming a Supreme as Mary and Motown were not going for any of it. Out of desperation, Mary calls Lamont Dozier for suggestions and he mentions Scherrie. We know the story from here...

    October - Scherrie is hired, learns the live show within a week and the new lineup does their first gig at the Arizona State Fair in Phoenix on October 31st.
    Last edited by bradsupremes; 07-29-2022 at 10:56 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Circa 1824 View Post
    the Supremes became a revolving door. Susie Smith or Connie Jones would also have come and gone almost unnoticed.
    For all the talk of the Supremes being a revolving door, the Temptations doors was spinning at high speed. In 1971 alone, they had FIVE different lineups.

    Otis, Dennis, Melvin, Paul, Eddie
    Otis, Dennis, Melvin, Paul
    Otis, Dennis, Melvin, Paul, Ricky
    Otis, Dennis, Melvin, Richard, Ricky
    Otis, Dennis, Melvin, Richard, Damon

    And this doesn't include the rest of the Seventies. Overall I believe there were 8 different lineups during that decade. The Supremes had 7 different lineups in their entire 18 year run [[excluding Betty/Primettes) and yet it's the Supremes who are a revolving door.

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    Love these time line reviews . Much appreciated.

    /also factor in five members vs. three in those logistics/

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    I wouldn’t call it a shared lead. More like susaye doing the harmony and background y herself
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    i agree that Come Into My Life is a sensational song. probably not a single but a perfect album track and a perfect song for Miss Greene

    also i'd venture to say that We Should Be Closer Together is a shared lead between Mary and Susaye. the parts that Susaye sings IMO are the natural direction for the melody. she isn't simply doing an echo effect. if anything mary is doing that. mary does her solo parts but when Susaye comes in, she's singing the lead melody lines.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    Love these time line reviews . Much appreciated.

    /also factor in five members vs. three in those logistics/
    I'm not trying to derail this topic - but you had 5 guys in and out of the Temptations within a year. That's what I call a group in turmoil. The worst for the Supremes was having the JML lineup last a year and a half and then Jean and Lynda leaving. At least one of the replacements, Cindy, was a familiar face fans and the public knew so it wasn't like two brand new people in the group. In many ways, Cindy returning brought back legitimacy and connection to the 60s era. Yes, the Supremes were changing lineups every few years but so were many other bands and groups of that time, many like the Temptations were doing it far more often than the ladies were and yet no one says a thing about those groups/bands.
    Last edited by bradsupremes; 07-29-2022 at 01:38 PM.

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    I don't think Mary Cindy with Lynda as lead or co-lead would have last. I think Lynda would have tried to take over the group. Remember Mary was warned about Lynda early on. I don't think a Mary Scherrie and Lynda would have would have worked, it would have been the battle of the voices. I feel Lynda has a very good voice but seems to have to always prove herself vocally that don't always pan out. When I listen to many of the FLos live performances with Lynda, her leads sound OFF. When she stick to the melody she sounds good but she has a tendency to stray and at times sounds awful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    I'm not trying to derail this topic - but you had 5 guys in and out of the Temptations within a year. That's what I call a group in turmoil. The worst for the Supremes was having the JML lineup last a year and a half and then Jean and Lynda leaving. At least one of the replacements, Cindy, was a familiar face fans and the public knew so it wasn't like two brand new people in the group. In many ways, Cindy returning brought back legitimacy and connection to the 60s era. Yes, the Supremes were changing lineups every few years but so were many other bands and groups of that time, many like the Temptations were doing it far more often than the ladies were and yet no one says a thing about those groups/bands.
    I agree with you, Brad. The Temptations were definitely more of a revolving door than the Supremes ever were. I think that perception was a lot of Motown's doing because originally the group were 3 identifiable personalities with Diana, Mary and Flo. When it became DRATS, Cindy replaced Flo and the group really was just a launching pad for Diana's inevitable solo career. When the Supremes rebranded with Jean, Mary and Cindy it no longer became 3 identifiable personalities. It became more of who are these Supremes and where is Diana? Motown played a big part of just making the Supremes all about Diana and it made the general public feel "who are these 3 girls?". That was never the way Motown handled the Temps. You had more shared leads and when David left it didn't become who are they because he was not pushed as the identity of the Temps. The Supremes really did not have that much of a personnel change as the Temps did. I agree Cindy returning when Lynda left should have made it easier because she, like Mary-the Original- were identifiable and well known. The perception of a revolving door of unknown singers lies with Motown and their inability to turn the focus away from that perception.

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    i think things turned out they way they should have really
    i read many reviews that praised the new girl, Scherrie Payne but the show itself was falling apart.i listened to a recent concert on line, the fast paced medleys and broadway songs were not working but they kept straight ahead with the same old same. nobody seem to get it.
    the Supremes were a pop group and needed to regain their status but couldnt. whos to blame? fans wanted the hits,not the way we were.
    note the Jean,Lynda and Mary line up was strong with great harmony. i wasnt aware the reviews were not good but maybe the same thing. fans wanted hits and album cuts and they were still singing Somewhere?????

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    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    i think things turned out they way they should have really
    i read many reviews that praised the new girl, Scherrie Payne but the show itself was falling apart.i listened to a recent concert on line, the fast paced medleys and broadway songs were not working but they kept straight ahead with the same old same. nobody seem to get it.
    the Supremes were a pop group and needed to regain their status but couldnt. whos to blame? fans wanted the hits,not the way we were.
    note the Jean,Lynda and Mary line up was strong with great harmony. i wasnt aware the reviews were not good but maybe the same thing. fans wanted hits and album cuts and they were still singing Somewhere?????
    Yes, the reviews were that they were a parody of a former time and that they should give up giggling and act naturally. JML went back to the DRATS show at the time. When Scherrie joined they had more glamour and pizzaz than the JML line up and the reviews noted their harmony and complimented both Scherrie and Mary. Still, the shows were just not the right ones to move them forward. They had made their name in clubs and doing standards, so they were somewhat stuck with what was expected and wanting to move forward. With right guidance like they had from Motown in the 60's, the last 2 groupings had huge potential to explode once again.

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    I think the reason the temps lineup changes weren’t [[at least until the 70s) as a revolving door is:

    It was a quintet and so there are simply more people. So that helps conceal the changes more

    Personalities - very good point. DFM were hugely identifiable and that grew into Diana being brought forward in the billing. At which point M and C become less identifiable. Then that big name leaves. The temps never had anything near as the individual recognition of DMF. Nor did they have a DIANA ROSS

    Multi leads

    Major hits. Papa and Imagination were so huge. That can help smooth over whatever personnel issues and public perceptions of the changes

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradsupremes View Post
    I'm not trying to derail this topic - but you had 5 guys in and out of the Temptations within a year. That's what I call a group in turmoil. The worst for the Supremes was having the JML lineup last a year and a half and then Jean and Lynda leaving. At least one of the replacements, Cindy, was a familiar face fans and the public knew so it wasn't like two brand new people in the group. In many ways, Cindy returning brought back legitimacy and connection to the 60s era. Yes, the Supremes were changing lineups every few years but so were many other bands and groups of that time, many like the Temptations were doing it far more often than the ladies were and yet no one says a thing about those groups/bands.
    To add to your mix Brad, it's always interesting to me how fans will discredit Lynda for being a Supreme for such a short period of time, when Susaye was a Supreme for the same amount, if not less. That's not to say their circumstances were the same, but it is what it is. Much how Flo is revered as an original, yet Cindy was a Supreme longer than her.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    To add to your mix Brad, it's always interesting to me how fans will discredit Lynda for being a Supreme for such a short period of time, when Susaye was a Supreme for the same amount, if not less. That's not to say their circumstances were the same, but it is what it is. Much how Flo is revered as an original, yet Cindy was a Supreme longer than her.
    I think some of the negativity towards Lynda was because of her not really singing a lead on record and then the negative thoughts because she tried to up her financial percentages in the group. Once she was in the FLOs, she would try to make herself as the one who was carrying on the legacy of the Supremes. I think those kind of negative word of mouth things probably led some fans to feel negatively towards her. She did bring a youthful energy to the group in 1972-3. Susaye on the other hand sang a number of leads which Lynda did not. Many fans revere only the originals but since I didn't start following them until 1970, Mary and Cindy were the Supremes to me with leads like Jean and Scherrie. Cindy may have been replaced twice but both times it wasn't for a huge amount of time. I never really knew Flo until I saw her on the internet and I was a Diana Ross fan when she left the group, not before that time when she was in DRATS as I hadn't really been really big into music until 1970. It is just different perceptions from the times you followed them. At, this point I do love them all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    To add to your mix Brad, it's always interesting to me how fans will discredit Lynda for being a Supreme for such a short period of time, when Susaye was a Supreme for the same amount, if not less. That's not to say their circumstances were the same, but it is what it is. Much how Flo is revered as an original, yet Cindy was a Supreme longer than her.

    Flo is not revered as an original as much as she is for what she brought to the group which is light years beyond what anyone ever else brought to the group except for Diana. Florence was extremely popular when she was with the group, very unusual for a background singer. I think this explains everything better than I ever could

    https://youtu.be/gj3JeVo39Xc

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    Flo is not revered as an original as much as she is for what she brought to the group which is light years beyond what anyone ever else brought to the group except for Diana. Florence was extremely popular when she was with the group, very unusual for a background singer. I think this explains everything better than I ever could

    https://youtu.be/gj3JeVo39Xc
    No, I get your point, and a great clip.

    Totally unrelated: I've seen that "hits medley" 1000 times and caught something new today; just before Diana says "Go on boy, get out of my life", she starts to say "Set me free", but catches herself. 😉

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    To add to your mix Brad, it's always interesting to me how fans will discredit Lynda for being a Supreme for such a short period of time, when Susaye was a Supreme for the same amount, if not less. That's not to say their circumstances were the same, but it is what it is. Much how Flo is revered as an original, yet Cindy was a Supreme longer than her.
    i agree that it's very unfortunate that fans tend to dismiss Lynda. my guess is that 1) she tenure was short and 2) her vocals are not highly present on the handful of recordings she did, other than the ad libs on BW. but that isn't her fault. the JW debacle should have been a gorgeous showcase for her and the group so that would have made all the difference. Plus she helped bring Stevie into the mix and who knows how he might have utilized her voice on the full project.

    It is an undisputed fact that there were 9 official women as part of the Supremes. each of them is part of the history.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jim aka jtigre99 View Post
    I think some of the negativity towards Lynda was because of her not really singing a lead on record and then the negative thoughts because she tried to up her financial percentages in the group. Once she was in the FLOs, she would try to make herself as the one who was carrying on the legacy of the Supremes. I think those kind of negative word of mouth things probably led some fans to feel negatively towards her. She did bring a youthful energy to the group in 1972-3. Susaye on the other hand sang a number of leads which Lynda did not. Many fans revere only the originals but since I didn't start following them until 1970, Mary and Cindy were the Supremes to me with leads like Jean and Scherrie. Cindy may have been replaced twice but both times it wasn't for a huge amount of time. I never really knew Flo until I saw her on the internet and I was a Diana Ross fan when she left the group, not before that time when she was in DRATS as I hadn't really been really big into music until 1970. It is just different perceptions from the times you followed them. At, this point I do love them all.
    Susaye and Lynda provide an excellent counterpoint to one another, in terms of integrating a new member into the group

    when Lynda joined, she was pretty much stuck in the background. she didn't do any leads, few standout parts or moments on record. of course the irony is her first live date was as THE lead singer.

    When Susaye joined, the producers immediately explored ways to use her unique vocal talents to enhance the records. given her talent and capabilities, they rightfully tested her lead on HE and Walking. and then they had the brilliance of taking her ad libs and leads from her Walking lead and layering them on top of Scherrie's lead version. which just took the song to a whole new level. Then with the MSS project, they played with her whistle tones in her upper register with Come Into My Life, blending her vocals seamlessly into the synthesizer. i don't know if CIML was written specifically for her or not but it's clearly a perfect fit. another reviewer describes her vocals as kittenish sulky and how that's a perfect contrast to the frank and mature lyrics. almost a playful poutiness. had Scherrie or mary sung the song and sang it more "straight" it would probably have been a hot mess.

    IMO the management of the supremes fucked up with both L and S. when you bring on board a new singer with incredible talents, and is also radically different from their predecessor, you should embrace that new sound/talent and leverage it. use it to inject new life and excitement into the group. they did that much better with S, although even there they could have done more

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    Flo is not revered as an original as much as she is for what she brought to the group which is light years beyond what anyone ever else brought to the group except for Diana. Florence was extremely popular when she was with the group, very unusual for a background singer. I think this explains everything better than I ever could

    https://youtu.be/gj3JeVo39Xc
    when i clicked the link, i was wondering if we'd go to the Hullaballoo episode with BIMAA and You're Nobody.

    IMO that show was the epitome of what made the Supremes amazing. at the time, most pop acts were rather generic. not everyone of course but quite a few. they sang nicely, the music was good. but there wasn't any real fire or connection with an audience during a live performance. some of that can be attributed to age - many of the performers were young and so just didn't know. many of them probably enjoyed what they were doing well enough but didn't have deep-rooted passion for it. so you had lots of groups come and go in a blink of an eye. also the sexism of the era had prevented widespread participating in and acceptance of female groups and singers. as RnR became viewed as a bit less subversive by the overall population, you have the girl groups finally emerge. but again, mostly nameless, generic singers

    with the supremes you have something totally different. 3 singers who are not only talented and sing great songs but are so identifiable as personalities. fans could esaily identify with one member or another. or when watching the group, you keep looking from one to another because all 3 are so animated and engaging. that was totally new and motown capitalized on it immediately. with More Hits you have each girls name on the cover!!! that sounds so insignificant but how many album covers ever did that? sure in the liner notes on the back you could read the groups names. but that wouldn't have really shown you who was who.

    also the group could easily and seamlessly switch between their pop hits and other genres. they were doing People, I Am Woman, Anyone with a Heart and others well before their big tv performances. this versatility was their key to opening up tv spots and then getting a chance to briefly chat with the host and introduce themselves.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    The MCL lineup would have been like three bottoms at a menage a trois, lol.
    How vulgar.

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    Quote Originally Posted by REYnoldo Chavez View Post
    How vulgar.
    Vulgar? This coming from someone who lives in P-Town, where there's 1 gay bar per every 300 residents? I bet I sound like a nun compared to what you'd hear on Commercial Street on a Saturday night.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    Vulgar? This coming from someone who lives in P-Town, where there's 1 gay bar per every 300 residents? I bet I sound like a nun compared to what you'd hear on Commercial Street on a Saturday night.
    Sister Mary Brewster.....I kinda like that. It has a nice ring! Vulgar has a whole new meaning on Commercial Street! LOL!

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    Quote Originally Posted by lakeside View Post
    Sister Mary Brewster.....I kinda like that. It has a nice ring! Vulgar has a whole new meaning on Commercial Street! LOL!
    Lol lakeside.

    Just wanted to give a visual to the point I was trying to make: Mary, Lynda, and Cindy would have made a stunning trio visually, but there's nothing about that lineup that suggests a lead, a new direction, or success. I would have liked to have seen another release by Jean, Mary, and Lynda. I think Jean had the goods, and Mary and Lynda had a good blend. A "Stevie" LP might have been the ticket.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    Lol lakeside.

    Just wanted to give a visual to the point I was trying to make: Mary, Lynda, and Cindy would have made a stunning trio visually, but there's nothing about that lineup that suggests a lead, a new direction, or success. I would have liked to have seen another release by Jean, Mary, and Lynda. I think Jean had the goods, and Mary and Lynda had a good blend. A "Stevie" LP might have been the ticket.
    unfortunately we have such limited glimpses as to what a Lynda lead could have been like. there are a few bootlegs of a couple tunes from the Hawaii shows, her doing You're Nobody on a bootleg or two. then the ad libs on BW.

    I think she could have done it vocally. I wonder what her presence would have been like on stage. singing lead on a song or two is very different from being the lead singer of the group and essentially running the live stage act. Mary both mentions this point of fact in her books and demonstrated this in her so/so attempts to lead the act during the Scherrie years

    a bigger question is, regardless of the members, what should the girls have been doing in 73 and 74, musically and stylistically?

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    I think the problem with Lynda as lead is, unlike Diana that had a "pop" voice, and Jean that had a "soul" voice, Lynda had no identity or definition. Diana was a good singer. She gave it to you straight forward. Hearing Diana in concert was just like hearing her on record. With Jean, you had a vocalist. Someone that could interpret a line, and give you riffs.

    With Lynda, I'm not sure what she could have done to make the group stand out again. It was a few years away, but listen to the Emotions "Rejoice" LP. Maybe something like "A Feeling Is" might have worked for the MJC lineup, had it ever come to fruition.

    https://youtu.be/CfLeTc8wESo

    None of this is to say Lynda couldn't sing. I just don't think she had the right SOUND.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    a bigger question is, regardless of the members, what should the girls have been doing in 73 and 74, musically and stylistically?
    Sophisticated soul. Think the Spinners around the same time. Thom Bell producing them was probably the best case scenario, even better than Stevie. Perhaps they needed Frank Wilson again. He had a good vision for them musically, it's just such a shame none of the FW albums took off the way they should. If the girls had lucked up with Bell, they probably would have just fallen into the current trend of the Bell sound. Under Frank, the girls may have been able to chart some new territory and start a trend of their own. Either way, JML had so much potential and it's a travesty that the bulk of their work together was wasted on the JW album, which was not going to put the ladies back on top under any circumstance.

    If I had to give this version of the Supremes a musical counterpart, it would be the Spinners. That's the type of stuff I would have loved to have heard them do. And the style of the sound at that time would have allowed each lady to benefit from lead singing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    I think the problem with Lynda as lead is, unlike Diana that had a "pop" voice, and Jean that had a "soul" voice, Lynda had no identity or definition. Diana was a good singer. She gave it to you straight forward. Hearing Diana in concert was just like hearing her on record. With Jean, you had a vocalist. Someone that could interpret a line, and give you riffs.

    With Lynda, I'm not sure what she could have done to make the group stand out again. It was a few years away, but listen to the Emotions "Rejoice" LP. Maybe something like "A Feeling Is" might have worked for the MJC lineup, had it ever come to fruition.

    https://youtu.be/CfLeTc8wESo

    None of this is to say Lynda couldn't sing. I just don't think she had the right SOUND.
    IMO Jean was as much a pop singer as she was a soul singer. She and Diana had obvious differences vocally, but that fact made Jean perfect to take over Diana's spot. Diana is often classified as either a pop singer or a soul singer, and while some folks take exception to Diana being labeled "soul", to my ears she was as much that as she was any other type of singer. It's hard to categorize Diana because she was so adept at being able to sing a wide variety of music. But she honed her early skills in R&B. She couldn't lose that no matter how much pop and MOR singing she did.

    That being said, while Jean had the pop/soul thing down, I think Lynda was all soul. By this point the Supremes didn't need one main lead singer. Jean had already proven herself, and Mary was an original and the one who kept the group THE SUPREMES. Lynda would have had her place. Jean could have done the more pop/soul stuff, Mary the ballads or sexy mellow cuts, and some pop stuff too. Lynda could've handled the more rockin' soul and gospel type numbers, definitely more dance tunes.

    To me this was the best all around trio since the original trio: three more than capable lead singers, each with her own lane, strengths, and weaknesses. I don't think the original trio needed one lead singer, but understand why that decision was made. By the time of Lynda, the need for that was gone and with all three ladies having the ability to get the job done- and visually were gorgeous and right on with the times- I think the public would have eaten up if the music was as good as the ladies looked.

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    No matter how good all these ladies are, no one takes a 3rd, 4th or 5th incarnation of any group seriously. Of course the Temptations are the exception. The group should have disbanded after 2/3 of the original trio left. As good as Jean may have been, she should have just been a solo act.

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    Quote Originally Posted by khansperac View Post
    No matter how good all these ladies are, no one takes a 3rd, 4th or 5th incarnation of any group seriously. Of course the Temptations are the exception. The group should have disbanded after 2/3 of the original trio left. As good as Jean may have been, she should have just been a solo act.
    i don't necessarily agree. but lord knows i'm biased lol

    i think there was significant interest in the group through 1970. ticket sales and record sales support this. but the freshness the group enjoyed in Jan 70 needed to be continually updated and no one did that. and then stylistically, things changed. pop music in 72 and 73 was definitely different from what it had been in 70. i think the group would have run into headwinds regardless.

    but in 75 you have a strong return to pop tunes on the charts. the Ivey Woodford tunes on Sup 75 could have been ideal with this. and the image of MSC could have fit this perfectly.

    and then in 76 and 77 with the advent of disco, you have the opportunity for the brand to be re-established yet again. sophistication and glamour were hallmarks of the disco era and look. these words were synonymous with The Supremes so they should have been able to come back with MSS as a trio of sequined sirens belting out disco hits.

    so the potential was there. opportunities were missed and poor decisions held them back

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    Okay, I'm just going to throw this out there [[and wait for the boos!): with all this talk about who should have been lead, and what they should have recorded, maybe the answer us: they SHOULDN'T have recorded. From. 1970-1972, the group released EIGHT albums [[nine if you include Promises Kept). Then you have one in 1975, and two more in 1976. That's UNHEARD OF today. Of course we're not going by today's standards, but would there have been anything wrong with taking a break? Or just touring? What about revamping the entire show and the entire image? A break would have allowed the group to delve into other possibilities, maybe acting as has been suggested. Or waiting for the trend of music to change.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    Okay, I'm just going to throw this out there [[and wait for the boos!): with all this talk about who should have been lead, and what they should have recorded, maybe the answer us: they SHOULDN'T have recorded. From. 1970-1972, the group released EIGHT albums [[nine if you include Promises Kept). Then you have one in 1975, and two more in 1976. That's UNHEARD OF today. Of course we're not going by today's standards, but would there have been anything wrong with taking a break? Or just touring? What about revamping the entire show and the entire image? A break would have allowed the group to delve into other possibilities, maybe acting as has been suggested. Or waiting for the trend of music to change.
    i completely agree that the duet albums were useless. had they not been released [[or perhaps 1 album AFTER the Touch project had had it's run) things might have been better.

    I also think the label would sometimes immediately jump to the next project. sometimes this was ok - with HE, Walking was such a knockout song and [[somewhat) hit. and while the rest of the album is great, there's nothing else really on it that is a real follow up. something that builds immediately on the sound and style of the first hit. like how Berry immediately pulled HDH off other projects when WDOLG hit to guarantee an immediate follow up. Let Yourself Go should have been that follow up and that would have led to the MS&S album.

    on the flip side, when SL was a smash there were other tunes on the album that could have been a follow up. Together, Thank Him, maybe saved Shine On Me as a future A Side and not use as the flip to SL. but IMO they had been working on Nathan in the studios and were so excited about it that they wanted it as the f/u to SL. so in this example they moved onto the next project too quickly

    with the poor lp sales and the lack of strategic direction for the group, djs and fans drifted away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    I think the problem with Lynda as lead is, unlike Diana that had a "pop" voice, and Jean that had a "soul" voice, Lynda had no identity or definition. Diana was a good singer. She gave it to you straight forward. Hearing Diana in concert was just like hearing her on record. With Jean, you had a vocalist. Someone that could interpret a line, and give you riffs.

    With Lynda, I'm not sure what she could have done to make the group stand out again. It was a few years away, but listen to the Emotions "Rejoice" LP. Maybe something like "A Feeling Is" might have worked for the MJC lineup, had it ever come to fruition.

    https://youtu.be/CfLeTc8wESo

    None of this is to say Lynda couldn't sing. I just don't think she had the right SOUND.
    you mention how beautiful the lineup could have been with MLC. that seems like they would have worked perfectly with the emerging Quiet Storm. that actually might have fit the girls better than the funkiness of Stevie. there's more of an elegance associated with QS and of course elegance was a hallmark of the Supremes' music.

    it's a shame there wasn't a follow up album to Floy Joy. Smokey's last show with the Miracles was in July 72. i know some fans feel FJ was too light weight, especially with Jean's more soulful singing. although i think she sounds amazing on the album. i think of Gladys Knight when i think of "soul" whereas jean is a mix of pop and more traditional r&b.

    anyway, whereas FJ was like cotton candy, the music on Smokey's early solo albums would have worked perfectly. Imagine the girls doing Just My Soul Responding or Family Song. there's more substance to these tunes that the FJ album and the productions have a touch of funk but not to the level Stevie would have done. it's still very polished


    or what about Marvin doing something lush and romantic, similar to the Lets Get It On vibe. obviously would have to be more PG for the girls lol. but imagine what Marvin could have done - make them Motown's answer to Love Unlimited and the lush, gorgeous arrangments they had

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    I think to your point, you've got the Supremes.....then you've got Quiet Elegance, Love Unlimited, the Three Degrees, the Emotions, the Pointer Sisters....all of which might have been around as long as the Supremes, yet seemed new and fresh. By 1973, the Supremes look and image was tired. Look at the Three Degrees 1973 LP; you've got the group in see-through nighties with their nipples hanging out. What did the Supremes give you in 1973? Photos in a 6 year old TCB swirl gown and an LP with a dandelion on the cover.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    I think to your point, you've got the Supremes.....then you've got Quiet Elegance, Love Unlimited, the Three Degrees, the Emotions, the Pointer Sisters....all of which might have been around as long as the Supremes, yet seemed new and fresh. By 1973, the Supremes look and image was tired. Look at the Three Degrees 1973 LP; you've got the group in see-through nighties with their nipples hanging out. What did the Supremes give you in 1973? Photos in a 6 year old TCB swirl gown and an LP with a dandelion on the cover.
    I don’t disagree with you point, Mare… however I will add that whereas the Supremes had an established look of elegance and subtle sexiness from the height of their success that they perpetuated throughout the rest of the group’s existence. They set that bar in the 60s and [[as you pointed out) never quite reached beyond it. Other groups—such as the Three Degrees carefully followed that look in the 60s and very early ‘70s as best they could and then in what could only be considered an attempt to find success by riding the cutting edge they did a photo shoot where nipples were visible. Nothing wrong with it, but I get why the 3Ds did it…and why the Sups didn’t. While I think the 70s Sups did try to show sexier looks with their NEW dress designs, their reliance on the old [[expensive) gowns meant they weren’t able to make them sexier unless they’d cut them apart. I think the tropical designs [[cream, pink and purple) show boobs for days, those short white Central Park stretch dresses were pretty daring and contemporary, as well as the hot pants in red and blue they are seen wearing in concert in 1971-72… the Sups were occasionally showing a sexier image in the 70s. Would I have wanted to see JMC OR JML with nipples visible through gauzy negligées? That’s tough. I can appreciate a woman being sexy… but as fan who is also a gay man, I have never sexualized any of the Supremes as I can understand a straight fan might. I think the 3Ds has nothing to lose and could only benefit from having shown nips on an album back cover photo. *Had the Supremes done it, I’d bet there would’ve been some brouhaha over “why?!” the girls did something “beneath” them by possibly posing with visible nips. All the “girl groups” gaining popularity in the 70s had nothing to lose by going super-sexy like that 3D photo. Perhaps the Supremes would’ve always had critics basically asking why they weren’t maintaining their established elegant image?
    Last edited by danman869; 08-11-2022 at 03:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danman869 View Post
    I don’t disagree with you point, Mare… however I will add that whereas the Supremes had an established look of elegance and subtle sexiness from the height of their success that they perpetuated throughout the rest of the group’s existence. They set that bar in the 60s and [[as you pointed out) never quite reached beyond it. Other groups—such as the Three Degrees carefully followed that look in the 60s and very early ‘70s as best they could and then in what could only be considered an attempt to find success by riding the cutting edge they did a photo shoot where nipples were visible. Nothing wrong with it, but I get why the 3Ds did it…and why the Sups didn’t. While I think the 70s Sups did try to show sexier looks with their NEW dress designs, their reliance on the old [[expensive) gowns meant they weren’t able to make them sexier unless they’d cut them apart. I think the tropical designs [[cream, pink and purple) show boobs for days, those short white Central Park stretch dresses were pretty daring and contemporary, as well as the hot pants in red and blue they are seen wearing in concert in 1971-72… the Sups were occasionally showing a sexier image in the 70s. Would I have wanted to see JMC OR JML with nipples visible through gauzy negligées? That’s tough. I can appreciate a woman being sexy… but as fan who is also a gay man, I have never sexualized any of the Supremes as I can understand a straight fan might. I think the 3Ds has nothing to lose and could only benefit from having shown nips on an album back cover photo. *Had the Supremes done it, I’d bet there would’ve been some brouhaha over “why?!” the girls did something “beneath” them by possibly posing with visible nips. All the “girl groups” gaining popularity in the 70s had nothing to lose by going super-sexy like that 3D photo. Perhaps the Supremes would’ve always had critics basically asking why they weren’t maintaining their established elegant image?
    I think one valid point also is, groups like 3D had "nothing to lose" by showing a titty, whereas the Supremes had this class and elegance that worked against them in the 70's. The USA hotpantsuits were daring.....but didn't look Supreme. Mary always said that "the fans" wanted the wigs and sequins. That might have appeased the old fans, but perhaps didn't help gaining new fans.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    I think one valid point also is, groups like 3D had "nothing to lose" by showing a titty, whereas the Supremes had this class and elegance that worked against them in the 70's. The USA hotpantsuits were daring.....but didn't look Supreme. Mary always said that "the fans" wanted the wigs and sequins. That might have appeased the old fans, but perhaps didn't help gaining new fans.
    This is just a question. Was it that the late 60's gowns outdated or was it that they were old Supreme gowns from the 60's? If you go back and look at the gowns the groups were wearing during that time period the were either street clothes or Supreme type gowns and pants suits. That gown gown that Cindy wore doing Marilyn Monroe was sexy as hell
    Last edited by rod_rick; 08-11-2022 at 03:26 PM.

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    if mary really did say that they kept the wigs and sequins cuz the fans demanded it, that's a cop out excuse. the group almost always looked classy and the public was always wondering "what will they wear next" and throughout the 60s they continually showed up on tv in new and fantastic things.

    I'll admit that the early 70s were a challenge, at least in terms of how to continually redefine or update the supremes. while the early and mid 60s enjoyed the high fashion, by the late 60s and into the early 70s the public look was much more casual. it wasn't until the later 70s that glamour really came back hard. some of their looks during the early 70s were excellent. those green fringe pantsuits from tom jones were hot as hell. the white mini dresses from C Park too.

    it wasn't the fans though that were picking the designs. during the scherrie years, it was mary who selected the looks. and as we've discussed before, full huge chiffon ball gowns were not current. so at that point, you had mary and the designers simply not tapping into the most latest trends or trying to be ahead of the trends.

    it's been mentioned that Diana was totally addicted to mags like Vogue and all. that she was totally focused on fashion and trends. i have no idea if mary was that involved in fashion. it seems as if in her personal looks, she was. but there's a difference between simply dressing yourself stylishly and leading an entire strategy for the group's fashion appearance and looks. maybe that had really been Diana's forte and not mary's. and when diana was gone, they lost that.

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    there certainly was room for the Sups to do some more risque fashions without totally showing nips. and in the Scherrie years, mary was pretty close to showing not just nips but total books lol

    the green chiffon dresses - mary's is strapless, while cindy's was a halter and scherrie's originally had that snake coiling around her neck. especially after having Turquessa, i always prayed that mary was using some strong tape in that bodice cuz there were times her boobs were right at the margin of popping out

    the red mini dresses from S&C debut - again, mary's is strapless

    the tonight show gowns for HMM - mary's originally was spaghetti strap while S and C had sleeve

    bandstand doing This Is Why - they're in the lavender sequin tops and black pants from the back cover of Touch. mary recently had had her baby and she is definitely NOT wearing a bra. the choreography was super fast and her titties were flyin around fast enough to be turbo props on an airplane and just lift her right off the stage

    that all said, they could have done more cut outs on the pantsuits, some tasteful mid-drifts. more slits in the gowns.

    they did do the red sequin wrap dresses during the Scherrie years and that look was quite contemporary. Diane Von Furstenberg introduced the wrap dress in 74. the look is sleek, shows some leg. definitely worked well with the disco dance moves. they should have done a couple more styles like this

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