| Apr 15, 2013
| 7:20 AM
"Motown: The Musical" -- the new Broadway jukebox musical that resurrects the Temptations, the Four Tops, Martha and the Vandellas and many more -- opened at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in New York on Sunday.
The production, directed by Charles Randolph-...
| Nov 26, 2012
| 9:54 AM
Andre Williams w/ Barrence Whitfield & the Savages and Bronson Rock. $15. 9 p.m., Dec. 1. Cafe Nine, 250 State St., New Haven, cafenine.com.
As of November 1, Andre Williams has officially spent 76 years on Earth, and that cautionary proverb about...
| May 15, 2012
As the bass player on dozens of the most soulful hits in the history of pop music, Donald "Duck" Dunn often found himself out on the road playing to fans who had assumed he was black like the stars he supported, notably Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett and...
| Aug 28, 2011
When Berry Gordy Jr. wanted to borrow $800 from his family to found Motown Records in 1959, he knew that the most formidable resistance would come from his oldest sister, Esther.
"You're 29 years old and what have you done with your life?" his sister...
| Jan 28, 2011
When a record label's female vocal groups include the Supremes and Martha and the Vandellas, it's easy to see why the Marvelettes are often relegated to footnote status. But the Detroit group has a unique distinction in the saga of Motown Records —...
| Feb 1, 2012
| 6:58 PM
Don Cornelius, who died Wednesday at 75, was a civil rights pioneer disguised as a dance-music-show host. He used to sign off the “Soul Train” show he founded in Chicago by wishing his viewers “love, peace and soul,” and devoted...
| Aug 23, 2011
| 12:13 PM
The songwriting world lost two titans Monday when Nick Ashford and Jerry Leiber died within hours of each other.
Ashford, 70, cowrote a string of hits with his wife, Valerie Simpson, that helped define soul, R&B and funk in the ‘60s, ‘70s and...
| May 21, 2012
| 2:58 PM
When Black Ensemble Theatre opened its beautiful new building in November, it did so with a show, "The Jackie Wilson Story," that not only was under-rehearsed but was merely a pro forma remount of a hit from the past. The second, far more successful...
| Jun 11, 2011
He's been called the godfather of Rodeo Drive. And it's not all hyperbole. Before Beverly Hills was the land of designer logos, before it was teeming with tourists and rolling with Rolls-Royces, the city was home to Fred Hayman, the proprietor of the...
| Dec 28, 2010
Long before she became an '80s funk-pop infanta, or Rick James' protégé and lover, Teena Marie was a Motown-enamored schoolgirl in one of L.A.'s last historic black enclaves.
The singer-songwriter, who died Sunday at her Pasadena home at age 54, grew...
| Dec 24, 2010
| 4:32 PM
The early returns are in, and "The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker," a Tchaikovsky-free original variation written, directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen and performed by her Debbie Allen Dance Academy, appears to have crowd-pleaser potential. It had its...
| Dec 30, 2010
| 4:32 PM
Back in the â70s, WOL-AM was the sound of soul in Washington, D.C., and I was a high school sophomore when I first heard the station spin a funky new cut over the airwaves. The duet, featuring Motownâs Rick James, was called “I'm Just a Suc...