Papa's Got a Brand New Bag
"Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" is a song written and recorded by James Brown. Released as a two-part single in 1965, it was Brown's first song to reach the Billboard Hot 100 Top Ten, peaking at number eight, was a number-one R&B hit, topping the charts for eight weeks, it won Brown his first Grammy Award, for Best Rhythm & Blues Recording. Consolidating the rhythmic innovations of earlier James Brown recordings such as "I've Got Money" and "Out of Sight", "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" is considered seminal in the emergence of funk music as a distinct style; as Brown sings the praises of an old man brave enough to get out on the dance floor of a nightclub, his band provides a horn-heavy backdrop with a prominent rhythm and an electric guitar riff for a hook. Both singer and musicians place overwhelming emphasis on the first beat of each measure; the song is Brown's first recording to feature Jimmy Nolen on guitar. The taped recording of "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" was edited and sped up for its single release, increasing the tempo and raising the pitch by a half step.
In 1991 the recording was released in unedited form at its original speed on the box set Star Time. The track includes lead-in studio chatter, with Brown throatily shouting "This is a hit!" just before the drum and horn intro. In 2004, "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" was ranked number 72 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest songs of all time; the song is ranked as the 80th greatest song of all time, as well as the sixth best song of 1965, by Acclaimed Music. An instrumental version of "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" was released as the B-side of Brown's 1965 Smash single "Try Me", he recorded a big band jazz arrangement of the song with the Louie Bellson Orchestra for his 1970 album Soul on Top. Live performances of "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" appear on the albums Hot on the One, Live in New York, Soul Session Live, Live at the Apollo 1995, the 2009 Expanded Edition of Live at the Garden, it is featured in medleys on Love Power Peace and Say It Live and Loud. In 1965, The Fabulous Echoes covered the song on their album Lovin' Feeling.
In 1965, Buddy Guy played the song participating in the European tour American Folk Blues Festival. The song is not on the record but in the movie, made of the tour. In 1965, The McCoys released a version of the song on Hang on Sloopy. In 1968, Atco Records released a single by Otis Redding, from the posthumously released LP In Person at the Whisky a Go Go. In 1968, The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band released a version of the song on their album, Together. In 1971, Fadoul, a Moroccan musician, covered the song in Arabic. In 1987, Roger Troutman covered the song on his album Unlimited!. In 1995, Jimmy Smith recorded an instrumental version on his album Damn! In 1999, The Sugarman 3 covered the song on Sugar's Boogaloo. In 2006, Bebi Dol covered the song on her album Čovek rado izvan sebe živi. James Brown - lead vocalswith the James Brown Band: Joe Dupars - trumpet Ron Tooley - trumpet Levi Rasbury - trombone Wilmer Milton - trombone Nat Jones - alto saxophone Maceo Parker - tenor and baritone saxophones St. Clair Pinckney - tenor saxophone Eldee Williams - tenor saxophone Al "Brisco" Clark - tenor saxophone Nat Jones - organ Jimmy Nolen - guitar Sam Thomas or Bernard Odum - bass Melvin Parker - drums An instrumental recorded by the band Pigbag, "Papa's Got a Brand New Pigbag", was a worldwide hit in 1981.
In 1995 Paul Oakenfold's Perfecto Allstarz project recorded "Reach Up", which peaked at #6 in the UK Singles Chart. The Capitol Steps recorded the parody "Papa's Got A Brand New Baghdad" for their 2004 album of the same name. "Lil Poppa Got A Brand New Bag" by rapper Young Bleed released on January 20, 1998 "Papa's Got a Brand New Excuse," an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, was named for the song. The song's title was played on for The Simpsons episode "Poppa's Got a Brand New Badge". 2013 musical Kinky Boots contains the line "Papa's got a brand new shoe" in the song "Everybody Say Yeah". Towards the end of one of the mixes of Public Enemy's 1994 song Give it up, Flavor Flav is heard to say "Papa's got a brand new bag." The same line is heard in the rap part of Color Me Badd's 1991 single Color Me Badd and Big Daddy Kane's 1989 song Warm It Up, Kane. AllMusic review
1965 in music
List of notable events in music that took place in the year 1965. 1965 in British music 1965 in Norwegian music 1965 in country music 1965 in jazz January 4 – Fender Musical Instruments Corporation is sold to CBS for $13 million. January 12 – Hullabaloo premieres on NBC; the first show included performances by The New Christy Minstrels, comedian Woody Allen, actress Joey Heatherton and a segment from London in which Brian Epstein introduces The Zombies and Gerry & the Pacemakers. January 17 – The Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts' book Ode to a High Flying Bird, a tribute to jazz great Charlie Parker, is published. January 21 The Animals' show at New York's Apollo Theater is canceled after the U. S. Immigration Department forces the group to leave the theater; the Rolling Stones and Roy Orbison travel to Sydney to begin their Australian tour. January 23 – "Downtown" hits #1 in the US singles chart, making Petula Clark the first British female vocalist to reach the coveted position since the arrival of The Beatles.
January 24 – The Animals appear a second time on The Ed Sullivan Show. January 27 – Paul Simon broadcasts on BBC'Five to Ten show and playing 13 songs, 12 of which would appear on his May-recorded and August-released UK-only solo album, The Paul Simon Song Book. February 6 – Donovan performs the first of three performances on the British television program Ready, Steady, Go! This presents him to a widespread audience for the first time. February 12 – NME reports the Beatles will star in a film adaptation of Richard Condon's novel A Talent for Loving; the story is about a 2,253-kilometer horse race. The film is never made. February 24 – The Beatles begin filming their second film, Help! March 6 – The Temptations' "My Girl", written by Smokey Robinson and Ronald White, from Motown Records, reaches number 1. March 18 – The Rolling Stones members Mick Jagger, Brian Jones, Bill Wyman are fined five pounds for urinating on the wall of a London petrol station; the band had asked to use the restroom. March 20 – The 10th Eurovision Song Contest in Naples, Italy, is won by 17-year-old France Gall, representing Luxembourg, with the Serge Gainsbourg-composed "Poupée de cire, poupée de son".
March 21 – The Supremes have their fourth number-one single, "Stop! In The Name Of Love", written by H-D-H. April 11 – The New Musical Express poll winners' concert takes place featuring performances by The Beatles, The Animals, The Rolling Stones and the Dreamers, the Kinks, the Searchers, Herman's Hermits, The Anita Kerr Singers, The Moody Blues, Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders, Them, Cilla Black, Dusty Springfield and Tom Jones. April 21 – The Beach Boys appear on Shindig! Performing their most recent hit, "Do You Wanna Dance?" April 26 – Leopold Stokowski conducts the first complete performance of Charles Ives' Symphony No. 4, more than ten years after the composer's death. May 5 – Alan Price leaves The Animals, to be replaced temporarily by Mick Gallagher and permanently by Dave Rowberry. May 6 Keith Richards and Mick Jagger begin work on "Satisfaction" in their Clearwater, hotel room. Richards comes up with the classic guitar riff while playing around with his brand new Gibson "Fuzz box".
The Symphony of the New World, the first racially integrated orchestra in the United States, plays its first concert, under its founding conductor Benjamin Steinberg in Carnegie Hall, New York City. May 8 – The British Commonwealth comes closer than it has, or will, to a clean sweep of the US Hot 100's top 10, lacking only a hit at number 2 instead of "Count Me In" by the American group Gary Lewis & The Playboys. May 9 – Bob Dylan performs the first of two concerts at London's Royal Albert Hall, concluding his tour of Europe. Audience members include The Beatles, Donovan. May 30 – The Animals appear a third time on The Ed Sullivan Show. June Producer Tom Wilson, records a heavy backing band onto the song "The Sound of Silence", without the knowledge of Paul Simon, for release on a 45 rpm single, the B-side, "We've Got A Groovey Thing Goin'"; the single will reach number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 on New Year's Day 1966. The US music press popularize the term "folk rock", in print at least since the November 2, 1963, issue of Billboard magazine, in which "Devil's Waitin'" by the Glencoves was said to have a "wide open folk-rock sound."
The term was used of "Twins" by Kingtones, the Men, of Hoyt Axton. People outside the trade begin to take notice of the term in June, 1965. June 6 – The Supremes have their fifth consecutive number-one single, "Back in My Arms Again, written by H-D-H, from Motown Records. July 5 – Maria Callas gives her last operatic performance, as Tosca at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. July 9 – The release of the Tamil musical film Aayirathil Oruvan marks the end of the composing partnership between T. K. Ramamoorthy and M. S. Viswanathan. July 25 – Bob Dylan plays the Newport Folk Festival, is booed for playing electric set with The Paul Butterfield Blues Band. Joan Baez and Donovan play sets. August 6 The Small Faces release "Whatcha Gonna Do About It", their first single; the Beatles release the soundtrack to their second movie Help! August 14 – The husband-and-wife American pop duo Sonny & Cher earn their first number one hit I Got You Babe, it peaks at that position in the United States, United Kingdom and New Zealand.
August 15 – The Beatles play at Shea Stadium, the first rock concert to be held in a venue of this size. The concert set new world records for attendance and for revenue. August 27 – The Beatles visit Elvis Presley at his home in Bel-Air, it is the only time the singer meet. September 30 – Donovan appears on Shin
Fontella Marie Bass was an American R&B and soul singer and songwriter best known for her 1965 hit, "Rescue Me." Fontella Bass was born in Missouri. She was the daughter of gospel singer Martha Bass, a member of the Clara Ward Singers, the older sister of R&B singer David Peaston. At an early age, Fontella showed great musical talent. At the age of five, she provided the piano accompaniment for her grandmother's singing at funeral services, she sang in her church's choir at six, by the time she was nine, she had accompanied her mother on tours throughout the South and Southwest America. Bass continued touring with her mother until age of sixteen; as a teenager, Bass was attracted by more secular music. She began singing R&B songs at local contests and fairs while attending Soldan High School from which she graduated in 1958. At 17, she started her professional career working at the Showboat Club near Chain of Rocks, Missouri. In 1961, she auditioned on a dare for the Leon Claxton carnival show and was hired to play piano and sing in the chorus for two weeks, making $175 per week for the two weeks it was in town.
She wanted to go on tour with Claxton but her mother refused and according to Bass "... she dragged me off the train". It was during this brief stint with Claxton that she was heard by vocalist Little Milton and his bandleader Oliver Sain who hired her to back Little Milton on piano for concerts and recording. Bass only played piano with the band, but one night Milton didn't show up on time so Sain asked her to sing and she was soon given her own featured vocal spot in the show. Milton and Sain split up and Bass went with Sain. With the support of Bob Lyons, the manager of St. Louis station KATZ, Bass recorded several songs released through Bobbin Records and produced by Ike Turner, she saw no notable success outside her home town. It was during this period she met and subsequently married the noted jazz trumpeter Lester Bowie. Two years she quit the Milton band and moved to Chicago after a dispute with Oliver Sain, she auditioned for Chess Records, who signed her as a recording artist. Her first works with the label were several duets with Bobby McClure, signed to the label.
Released early in 1965, their recording "Don't Mess Up a Good Thing" found immediate success, reaching the top five at R&B radio and peaking at #33 at pop. In 1979 the song was covered by Ry Cooder with Chaka Khan on Cooder's album Bop'Til You Drop. Bass and McClure followed their early success with "You'll Miss Me" that summer, a song that had mild success, reaching the Top 30 on the R&B chart, although it made no significant impression on the pop chart. After a brief tour, Bass returned to the studio; the result was an original composition with an aggressive rhythm section. The song, "Rescue Me", shot up the charts in the fall and winter of 1965. After a month-long run at the top of the R&B charts, the song reached #4 on the US pop charts and #11 in the UK, gave Chess its first million-selling single since Chuck Berry a decade earlier, it sold over one million copies, was awarded a gold disc. Bass followed with "Recovery," which did moderately well, peaking at #13 and #37 in early 1966; the same year brought two more R&B hits, "I Can't Rest"" and "You'll Never Know."
Her only album with Chess Records, The New Look, sold reasonably well, but Bass soon became disillusioned with Chess and decided to leave the label after only two years, in 1967. Bass claimed that, although the credited co-writers Carl Smith and Raynard Miner, record producer Billy Davis, had assured her that her contribution to co-writing the lyrics of "Rescue Me" would be acknowledged, this was never done. I had the first million seller for Chess since Chuck Berry about 10 years before. Things were riding high for them, but when it came time to collect my first royalty check, I looked at it, saw how little it was, tore it up and threw it back across the desk. Bass demanded artistic control; when the record came out and her name was still not on it she was told it would be on the legal documents, but this never happened. She continued to agitate about the matter for a couple of years but recalled: "It side-stepped me in the business because I got a reputation of being a trouble maker."Tiring of the mainstream music scene and husband Lester Bowie left America and moved to Paris in 1969, where she recorded two albums with the Art Ensemble of Chicago – Art Ensemble of Chicago with Fontella Bass and Les Stances a Sophie.
The latter was the soundtrack from the French movie of the same title. Bass's vocals, backed by the powerful, pulsating push of the band, have allowed the "Theme De YoYo" to remain an underground cult classic since, she appeared on Bowie's The Great Pretender and All the Magic. With the success of "Rescue Me" it was many years and much litigation before Bass would be credited with her share of the songwriting and the royalties. In 1993 Bass sued American Express and Ogilvy & Mather for the unauthorized use of the song in a commercial for the credit card giant; the next few years found Bass at a number of labels, but saw no notable succe
I'll Be Doggone
"I'll Be Doggone" is a 1965 song recorded by American soul singer Marvin Gaye and released on the Tamla label. The song talks about how a man tells his woman that he'll be "doggone" about simple things but if she did him wrong that he'd be "long gone", it became his first million-selling record and his first number-one single on the R&B chart, staying there for two weeks, was the first song Gaye recorded with Smokey Robinson as one of the songwriters of the record. The song was co-written by Robinson's fellow Miracles members Pete Marv Tarplin; the Miracles sang background on this recording,along with Motown's long-standing female back-up group, The Andantes,and Miracle Marv Tarplin played lead guitar. "I'll Be Doggone" gave Marvin his third top-ten pop hit, where it peaked at number eight on the Billboard Hot 100, with that number matched by his follow-up record, "Ain't That Peculiar". Lead vocals by Marvin Gaye Background vocals by The Miracles & The Andantes Guitar by Marv Tarplin of The Miracles Other instrumentation by The Funk Brothers Paul Revere & the Raiders covered the song in their 1966 studio album Just Like Us!.
In 1973, Penny DeHaven released a Country version on a single only. Albert King covered the song on his 1972 album I'll Play the Blues for You. Twiggy covered it in her album Please Get My Name Right. Bob Weir covered, he performed it live with his band during that time. List of number-one R&B singles of 1965 Lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics To improve this article, add in what hit it was preceded and followed by
The Four Tops are a vocal quartet from Detroit, Michigan, USA, who helped to define the city's Motown sound of the 1960s. The group's repertoire has included soul music, R&B, adult contemporary, doo-wop and show tunes. Founded as the Four Aims, lead singer Levi Stubbs, Abdul "Duke" Fakir, Renaldo "Obie" Benson and Lawrence Payton remained together for over four decades, performing from 1953 until 1997 without a change in personnel; the Four Tops were among a number of groups, including the Miracles, the Marvelettes and the Vandellas, the Temptations, the Supremes, who established the Motown Sound heard around the world during the 1960s. They were notable for having Stubbs, a baritone, as their lead singer, whereas most male and mixed vocal groups of the time were fronted by a tenor; the group was the main male vocal group for the successful songwriting and production team of Holland–Dozier–Holland, who crafted a stream of hit singles for Motown. These included two Billboard Hot 100 number-one hits for the Tops: "I Can't Help Myself" in 1965 and "Reach Out I'll Be There" in 1966.
After Holland-Dozier-Holland left Motown in 1967, the Four Tops were assigned to a number of producers Frank Wilson, but with less success. When Motown left Detroit in 1972 to move to Los Angeles, the Tops stayed in Detroit but signed a new recording deal with ABC Records' Dunhill imprint. Recording in Los Angeles, they continued to have chart singles into the late 1970s, including the million-seller "Ain't No Woman", their second release on Dunhill, produced by Steve Barri and the composers Dennis Lambert and Brian Potter. In the 1980s, the Four Tops recorded for Casablanca Records, Arista Records and Motown, returning to that label on two occasions for brief stays. Apart from their album Indestructible, Universal Music Group controls the rights to their entire post-1963 catalog and their 1956 single, "Could It Be You". A change of lineup was forced on the group when Lawrence Payton died on June 20, 1997; the group continued as a three-piece under the name the Tops, before Theo Peoples was recruited as the new fourth member.
Peoples took over the role of lead singer when Stubbs suffered a stroke in 2000, with Ronnie McNeir joining the group. On July 1, 2005, Benson died of lung cancer. Payton's son Roquel Payton replaced him. Levi Stubbs died on October 17, 2008. Fakir, McNeir, Roquel Payton, Harold "Spike" Bonhart, who replaced Peoples in 2011, are still performing together as the Four Tops. Fakir is the only surviving founding member of the group; as of January 1st, 2019 Harold Spike Deleon Bonhart was replaced by Alexander Morris. Morris a pastor in the city of Detroit was born into a musical family, his mother Betty L. Morris-January was lead singer of the 50’s gospel group The January Sisters, his father, the Late Reverend Joseph A. Morris was a prominent pastor in the city of Detroit, but in his early years was a jazz musician, playing for Gene Calloway, older sister of Cab Calloway. Morris known for his songwriting and production, has worked with many artist throughout the music industry, as of January 1st 2019 has taken the lead vocal position once held by Levi Stubbs.
All four members of the group began their careers together while they were high-school students in Detroit. At the insistence of their friends, Pershing High students Levi Stubbs and Abdul "Duke" Fakir performed with Renaldo "Obie" Benson and Lawrence Payton from Northern High at a local birthday party; the quartet named the group the Four Aims. With the help of Payton's songwriter cousin Roquel Davis, the Aims signed to Chess Records in 1956, changing their name to the Four Tops to avoid confusion with the Ames Brothers. Over the next seven years, the Tops had unsuccessful tenures at Chess, Red Top, Riverside Records and Columbia Records. Without any hit records to their name, they toured developing a polished stage presence and an experienced supper club act, as well as supporting Billy Eckstine. In 1963, Berry Gordy, Jr. who had worked with Roquel Davis as a songwriter in the late 1950s, convinced the Tops to join the roster of his growing Motown record company. During their early Motown years, the Four Tops recorded jazz standards for the company's Workshop label.
In addition, they sang backup on Motown singles by the Supremes and the Vandellas and others. In 1964, Motown's main songwriting and production team, Holland–Dozier–Holland, created a complete instrumental track without any idea of what to do with it, they decided to craft the song as a more mainstream pop song for the Four Tops and proceeded to create "Baby I Need Your Loving" from the instrumental track. On its release in mid-1964, "Baby I Need Your Loving" made it to number 11 on the Billboard pop chart. However, the song proved to be much more popular on trend-setting radio stations in key U. S. has since grown in popularity over the years to be one of the group's classic tracks. After the single's success, the Tops were pulled away from their jazz material and began recording more material in the vein of "Baby I Need Your Loving"; the first follow-up single, "Without the One You Love", just missed both the pop and R&B Top 40 charts, but "Ask the Lonely", written and produced by Motown A&R head Mickey Stevenson with Ivy Hunter, was a Top 30 pop hit and a Top 10 R&B hit in early 1965.
From there, the group began to make its mark. After their first number 1 hit, "I Can't Help Myself" in June 1965, the Four Tops released a long series of successful hit
Motown Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group. It was founded by Berry Gordy Jr. as Tamla Records on January 12, 1959, was incorporated as Motown Record Corporation on April 14, 1960. Its name, a portmanteau of motor and town, has become a nickname for Detroit, where the label was headquartered. Motown played an important role in the racial integration of popular music as an African American–owned label that achieved significant crossover success. In the 1960s, Motown and its subsidiary labels were the most successful proponents of what came to be known as the Motown Sound, a style of soul music with a distinct pop influence. Motown was the most successful record label of soul music, with a net worth totaling $61 million. During the 1960s, Motown achieved spectacular success for a small label: 79 records in the top-ten of the Billboard Hot 100 between 1960 and 1969. Following the events of the Detroit Riots of 1967 and the loss of key songwriting/production team Holland-Dozier-Holland the same year over pay disputes, Gordy began relocating Motown to Los Angeles, California.
The move was completed in 1972, Motown expanded into film and television production, remaining an independent company until 1994, when it was sold to PolyGram before being sold again to MCA Records' successor Universal Music Group when it acquired PolyGram in 1999. Motown spent much of the 2000s headquartered in New York City as a part of the UMG subsidiaries Universal Motown and Universal Motown Republic Group. From 2011 to 2014, it was a part of The Island Def Jam Music Group division of Universal Music. In 2014, however, UMG announced the dissolution of Island Def Jam, Motown relocated back to Los Angeles to operate under the Capitol Music Group, now operating out of the landmark Capitol Tower. In 2018, Motown was inducted into Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame class at the Charles H. Wright Museum, Motown legend Martha Reeves received the award for the label. Berry Gordy got his start as a songwriter for local Detroit acts such as Jackie Wilson and the Matadors. Wilson's single "Lonely Teardrops", written by Gordy, became a huge success, but Gordy did not feel he made as much money as he deserved from this and other singles he wrote for Wilson.
He realized that the more lucrative end of the business was in producing records and owning the publishing. In 1959, Billy Davis and Berry Gordy's sisters Gwen and Anna started Anna Records. Davis and Gwen Gordy wanted Berry to be the company president, but Berry wanted to strike out on his own. On January 12, 1959, he started Tamla Records, with an $800 loan from his family and royalties earned writing for Jackie Wilson. Gordy wanted to name the label Tammy Records, after the hit song popularized by Debbie Reynolds from the 1957 film Tammy and the Bachelor, in which Reynolds starred; when he found the name was in use, Berry decided on Tamla instead. Tamla's first release, in the Detroit area, was Marv Johnson's "Come to Me" in 1959, its first hit was Barrett Strong's "Money". Gordy's first signed act was the Matadors, who changed their name to the Miracles in order to avoid confusion with the Matadors who recorded for Sue, their first release, "Got a Job", was an answer record to the Silhouettes' "Get a Job".
The Miracles' first, minor hit was their fourth single, 1959's "Bad Girl", released in Detroit as the debut record on the Motown imprint, nationally on the Chess label. Miracles lead. Several of Gordy's family members, including his father Berry Sr. brothers Robert and George, sister Esther, were given key roles in the company. By the middle of the decade and Anna Gordy had joined the label in administrative positions as well. Gordy's partner at the time, Raynoma Liles played a key role in the early days of Motown, leading the company's first session group, The Rayber Voices, overseeing the label's publishing arm, Jobete. In 1959, Gordy purchased the property that would become Motown's Hitsville U. S. A. studio. The photography studio located in the back of the property was modified into a small recording studio, the Gordys moved into the second-floor living quarters. Within seven years, Motown would occupy seven additional neighboring houses: Hitsville U. S. A. 1959 – administrative office, tape library, control room, Studio A.
Early Tamla/Motown artists included Eddie Holland and Mary Wells. "Shop Around", the Miracles
The Supremes were an American female singing group and the premier act of Motown Records during the 1960s. Founded as The Primettes in Detroit, Michigan, in 1959, the Supremes were the most commercially successful of Motown's acts and are, to date, America's most successful vocal group with 12 number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100. Most of these hits were written and produced by Motown's main songwriting and production team, Holland–Dozier–Holland. At their peak in the mid-1960s, the Supremes rivaled the Beatles in worldwide popularity, it is said that their success made it possible for future African American R&B and soul musicians to find mainstream success. Florence Ballard, Mary Wilson, Diana Ross, Betty McGlown, the original group, are all from the Brewster-Douglass public housing project in Detroit, they formed the Primettes as the sister act to the Primes. Barbara Martin replaced McGlown in 1960, the group signed with Motown the following year as the Supremes. Martin left the act in early 1962, Ross and Wilson carried on as a trio.
During the mid-1960s, the Supremes achieved mainstream success with Ross as lead singer and Holland-Dozier-Holland as its songwriting and production team. In 1967, Motown president Berry Gordy renamed the group Diana Ross & the Supremes, replaced Ballard with Cindy Birdsong. Ross left to pursue a solo career in 1970 and was replaced by Jean Terrell, so the group's name reverted to The Supremes. During the mid-1970s, the lineup changed with Lynda Laurence, Scherrie Payne and Susaye Greene joining the group until, after 18 years, The Supremes disbanded in 1977. In Detroit in 1958, Florence Ballard, a junior high school student living in the Brewster-Douglass Housing Projects, met Paul Williams and Eddie Kendricks, who were two members of a Detroit singing group known as the Primes. Ballard sang, as did Paul Williams' girlfriend Betty McGlown, so Milton Jenkins, the Primes's manager, decided to create a sister group to be called the Primettes. Ballard recruited her best friend Mary Wilson. Mentored and funded by Jenkins, the Primettes began by performing hit songs of artists such as Ray Charles and the Drifters at sock hops, social clubs and talent shows around the Detroit area.
Receiving additional guidance from group friend and established songwriter Jesse Greer, the quartet earned a local fan following. The girls crafted an age-appropriate style, inspired by the collegiate dress of popular doo-wop group Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers. Within a few months, guitarist Marvin Tarplin was added to the Primettes' lineup— a move that helped distinguish the group from Detroit's many other aspiring acts by allowing the girls to sing live instead of lip-synching. After winning a prestigious local talent contest, the Primettes' sights were set on making a record. In hopes of getting the group signed to the local upstart Motown label, in 1960 Ross asked an old neighbor, Miracles lead singer Smokey Robinson, to help the group land an audition for Motown executive Berry Gordy, who had proven himself a capable songwriter. Robinson liked "the girls" and agreed to help, but he liked their guitarist more. Robinson arranged for the Primettes to audition a cappella for Gordy—but Gordy, feeling the girls too young and inexperienced to be recording artists, encouraged them to return when they had graduated from high school.
Undaunted that year the Primettes recorded a single for Lu Pine Records, a label created just for them, titled "Tears of Sorrow", backed with "Pretty Baby". The single failed to find an audience, however. Shortly thereafter, McGlown became left the group. Local girl Barbara Martin was McGlown's prompt replacement. Determined to leave an impression on Gordy and join the stable of rising Motown stars, the Primettes frequented his Hitsville U. S. A. recording studio every day after school. They convinced Gordy to allow them to contribute hand claps and background vocals for the songs of other Motown artists including Marvin Gaye and Mary Wells. In January 1961, Gordy relented and agreed to sign the girls to his label – but under the condition that they change the name of their group; the Primes had by this time combined with Otis Williams & the Distants and would soon sign to Motown as the Temptations. Gordy gave Ballard a list of names to choose from that included suggestions such as "the Darleens", "the Sweet Ps", "the Melodees", "the Royaltones" and "the Jewelettes".
Ballard chose "the Supremes", a name that Ross disliked as she felt it too masculine. On January 15 the group signed with Motown as the Supremes. In the spring of 1962, Martin left the group to start a family. Thus, the newly named Supremes continued as a trio. Between 1961 and 1963, the Supremes released six singles, none of which charted in the Top 40 positions of the Billboard Hot 100. Jokingly referred to as the "no-hit Supremes" around Motown's Hitsville U. S. A. offices, the group attempted to compensate for their lack of hits by taking on any work available at the studio, including providing hand claps and singing backup for Motown artists such as Marvin Gaye and the Temptations. During these years, all three members took turns singing lead: Wilson favored soft ballads, Ballard favored soulful, hard-driving songs, Ross favored mainstream pop songs. Most of their early material was produced by Berry Gordy or Smokey Robinson. In December 1963, the single "When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes" peaked at number 2