“Takes you behind the scenes - into the halls of Hitsville and onto the factory floor where Berry Gordy and Barney Ales staged a revolution.”
Andrew Loog Oldham
For your chance to win a copy of Motown: The Sound Of Young America, the new incredible new book bought to you by Thames & Hudson, simply fill out the form at the bottom of this page. The winner will be selected on Tuesday 12th April and contacted via email or phone.
The music of Motown needs no introduction. Founded by Berry Gordy in Detroit in 1959, Motown Records became a style unto itself, inspiring a whole generation with its distinctive, sophisticated and irresistibly catchy music. The ultimate record label ‘indie’ and the first aspirational brand to fuse sound, style and success, Motown established and nurtured the careers of some of the most successful musicians in the world, creating hit after hit on both sides of the Atlantic. Incredibly, the label produced more US number-one hits than the Beatles, Elvis Presley, the Rolling Stones and the Beach Boys combined.
Motown: The Sound of Young America delves into Motown’s archives and the personal collections of the key players, creating an incredible visual narrative documenting the historic label and its momentous contribution to popular music.
Andrew Loog Oldham, former manager of the Rolling Stones and producer for Motown offshoot label Rare Earth, has contributed a savvy foreword that shows the huge impact the Motown sound had on British music and British youth in the 1960s, from the Beatles to Dusty Springfield and beyond.
An inspired collaboration between lifelong Motown obsessive Adam White, former editor-in-chief of Billboard, and Barney Ales, Berry Gordy’s right-hand man, Motown: The Sound of Young America is unprecedented in its visual richness. Ales’s extraordinary collection of memorabilia has been specially photographed for the book and sits alongside many previously unpublished images of Diana Ross, Jackson Five and the rest of the Motown family.
Motown captures the glamour and style of the stars on stage, the key players hard at work behind the scenes, as well as private, unguarded moments in the lives of Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder and more.
White’s erudite text draws on many years’ worth of interviews with Motown stars and personnel, including Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson, while encompassing the unique insights of Ales, whose association with Motown dates from 1960 and whose primary responsibility was to get the records played and the company paid. The narrative delves into the workings of the Motown machine and how a dedicated team of backroom believers turned a small family business into a popular music powerhouse. Moreover, the book contextualises the Motown story within the social history of the US at mid-century, from the boom and bust of the Motor City, to the harsh realities of segregation and the 1967 race riots, as well as the African-American civil rights movement.