Straight Outta Grand Blvd. West

Hello, kiddies.

The missus and I got to go to Detroit a few weeks ago… and you just know we went to the Motown Museum! It was an excellent experience to say the very least. I made sure that I was there for the first tour at ten in the morning… okay, we got there at 9:30, so who’s counting. It was a very small group tour, less than ten of us, and one cat all the way from the UK. The tour was amazing; it told a very interesting story of how Berry Gordy went from being a contractor’s apprentice to owning virtually every property on the block. I really wish I could share some photos of the inside with you, but as you may have guessed, there is a strict policy against taking pix. I shoulda brought my iPod in and used the video capture feature, but the last thing I needed was to get kicked out. After all, this is one of the many items that I can now check off the bucket list.

All the artifacts we got to see… nice clean OG copies of the rarest 45’s, on the walls and littered around the various rooms we got to walk through. You know I wanted to steal ’em, or at least try to strike a deal to buy em for dirt cheap… yeah, right! We stood under the world famous echo chamber; the one that produced those really warm finger snaps and handclaps. Trust me, they sounded exactly the same now as they do on the 45s, but more on that in a second. Down in Studio A (which incidentally was an actual garage), we got to see Earl Van Dyke’s original B3, James Jamerson’s amp and Jack Ashford’s vibraphone, among other things that were used to create those timeless hits we have all come to love. It was quite cold though, but the fact that I was there kept me warm. I could ramble on and on about the experience, but me telling you is nothing. You really should spend the nominal service charge of ten bucks and take the tour yourself. I promise you, you won’t regret it.

With all that in mind, I took it upon myself to round up a few of my all time favourite Motown goodies for shits and giggles when we got home. Yeah, we’ve all heard ’em before, but it’s just one of the few things that I got to do doing during my respite. I did a rather lengthy mix for the ol’ iPod, so it’s only natural that I share it with you kids. For the occasion, I just spun a bunch of 45’s… fifty sides total… all killer, no filler and absolutely no reissues! Enjoy.

The image was taken at the corner of West Grand Blvd and Holden and shows just a few of the properties that Gordy owned back in the day. In total, he owned eight homes within that one block. Four on this side of the street and four on the other… something like that.

This one is exclusively available on my Mixcloud page… you can listen on demand and get the complete playlist here.

Please read on to the next entry for a whole lot more, because I have been really negligent in posting. I’m making up for lost time now…

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