Diana Ross & The Supremes: Essential Diana Ross & The Supremes

Essential Diana Ross & The Supremes

Diana Ross & The Supremes

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  • Release Date 10 July 2020
  • Dispatched within 3-5 days
Product code
Triple CD Album
Number of Discs
The response to the news that Diana Ross was to play Glastonbury 2020 was unequivocal, people of all ages and from all walks of life were unanimous in their delight. That reaction highlighted that whilst she might represent different things to different people, she means much to many. Now well into her 70s it’s a testament to the impact the music she first made at Motown in the 60s with The Supremes and subsequently as a solo artist again with Motown and later RCA and Capitol/EMI. It’s that first period with The Supremes that this release celebrates and its one that made them until the mid-80s, the best-selling girl group in the UK. The crown would pass first to Bananarama who took more than a little inspiration from them and later The Spice Girls, yet 60 years on from their debut single they remain one of the top 10 best-selling girl groups in the world.

Originally called The Primettes, the group had all grown up in the Brewster-Douglas public Housing Projects in Detroit during the 50s. Signing to Motown in 1960 they were often the first choice for the label’s song writing team of Holland-Dozier-Holland and the pairing would help them secure a staggering 12 US Billboard No.1 singles during the decade. In 1967 with Ms Ross clearly the lead vocalist, Motown’s founder Berry Gordy renamed the group Diana Ross & The Supremes and the hits kept coming. Whilst she would leave in 1970 to pursue a solo career the group continued and again so did the hits. In all you’ll find 17 UK top 40 singles here including 10 UK top 10’s together with many more that were R&B and Billboard hits in the US, where they issued many more singles. Add to that key album tracks and you’ve got much more than a best of. Welcome to the world of Diana Ross & The Supremes.

Disc 1. Starts with Baby Love (UK No.1), a seductive bitter sweet tale of love and hurt that captured the nations hearts in 1964. It came hot on the heels of surely one of the best known intro’s in the history of popular music, the clapping, stomping of the similarly themed Where Did Our Love Go (UK No.3). You Can’t Hurry Love (UK No.3) is next and it’s easy to forget just how big a hit this was for them in the autumn of ’66 thanks to Phil Collins, who covered it and took it all the way to No.1 in 1982. It boasts another great intro too that would inspire Paul Weller whilst writing The Jam’s 1982 UK No.1 Town Called Malice. There must have been something in the water that year! The dreamy Come See About Me (UK No.27) and R&B favourite Back In My Arms Again (UK No.40), both from 1965 are next and the latter also struck a chord with the young Paul Weller and became a live staple of The Jam’s in ‘76 and ’77. The glorious Nothing But Heartaches and When The Lovelight Starts Shining In His Eyes and a slew of others including covers of Chain Gang, The Boy (Girl) From Ipanema, Heatwave and These Boots Are Made For Walking make up the rest of disc 1.

Disc 2. Begins with another glorious intro, this time to the aching, up-tempo You Keep Me Hangin’ On (UK No. 8). Ms Ross is clearly not happy and there’s no hiding it. Northern Soul favourite Love Is Like An Itching In My Heart, a US single is next and then it’s the epic, acid drenched Reflections (UK No.5) from 1967 and the first single credited to Diana Ross and The Supremes here in the UK. Perfect for the time, it’s a classic Holland-Dozier-Holland heart wrenching song that Ms Ross executes superbly. The Happening (UK No.6) is next, followed by the Smokey Robinson penned and cleverly sugar coated tale of embarrassment about roots and family that is I’m Livin’ In Shame (UK No.14). Hardy perennial Love Child (UK No.15), Someday We’ll Be Together (UK No. 13) and Forever Came Today (UK No.28) serve up a hattrick of heart on the sleeve classics, whilst covers including Everyday People (Sly & The Family Stone) and Ode To Billie Joe (Bobby Gentry) help complete the rest of this 2nd set.

Disc 3 starts with the sublime Stoned Love (UK No.3) and features Jean Terrell on lead vocals. Recorded after Ms Ross had left it was co-written and produced by Frank Wilson, the man responsible for the most expensive Northern Soul record in the history of the scene. Nathan Jones (UK No.5) is next and again boasts Terrell and the talents of Frank Wilson and was a top 20 hit in 1988 for the aforementioned Bananarama. Ditto Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye which follows. A hit for the fictious band Steam in 1969 it also gave Bananarama a UK top 5 in 1983. Up The Ladder To The Roof (UK No.6) is another rousing post Ms Ross Supremes classic again featuring Terrell and co-written and produced by Frank Wilson. Floy Joy (UK No.9) and Bad Weather (UK No.37) follow, the latter more recently finding favour on the Northern Soul scene. Amongst more album tracks US singles High Energy and You’re My Driving Wheel successfully navigate the stylistic changes of the 70s and welcome disco with open arms.

Glastonbury like so much else may have been postponed but the magic of Motown and in particular the music of Diana Ross & The Supremes keeps on enchanting us. Enjoy.

UK chart positions are shown in red below.

1 Baby Love  
2 Where Did Our Love Go  
3 You Can't Hurry Love  
4 Come See About Me  
5 Back In My Arms Again  
6 Nothing But Heartaches  
7 Your Heart Belongs To Me  
8 Let Me Go The Right Way  
9 A Breathtaking Guy  
10 Buttered Popcorn  
11 When The Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes  
12 You Can't Do That  
13 Baby Doll  
14 Chain Gang  
15 Beach Ball  
16 The Boy From Ipanema (Live)  
17 Unchained Melody  
18 These Boots Are Made For Walking  
19 Baby I Need Your Loving  
20 (Love Is Like A) Heatwave  
21 You Keep Me Hangin' On  
22 Love Is Like An Itching In My Heart  
23 Reflections  
24 The Happening  
25 I'm Livin' In Shame  
26 Love Child  
27 Someday We'll Be Together  
28 Stormy  
29 Forever Came Today  
30 Heaven Must Have Sent You  
31 Don't Rain On My Parade  
32 Going Down For The Third Time  
33 Does Your Mama Know About Me  
34 Honey Bee (Keep On Stinging Me)  
35 Everyday People  
36 Featuring [With] – Four Tops  
37 No Matter What Sign You Are  
38 This Old Heart Of Mine (Is Weak For You)  
39 Ode To Billie Joe  
40 The Young Folks  
41 Stoned Love  
42 Nathan Jones  
43 Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye  
44 Up The Ladder To The Roof  
45 Floy Joy  
46 Bad Weather  
47 Over And Over  
48 Johnny Raven  
49 I Got Hurt (Trying To Be The Only Girl In Your Life)  
50 I Keep It Hid  
51 5:30 Plane  
52 The Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss)  
53 Where Do I Go From Here  
54 Early Morning Love  
55 He's My Man  
56 I'm Gonna Let My Heart Do The Walking  
57 High Energy  
58 You're My Driving Wheel  
59 Let Yourself Go  
60 Love I Never Knew Could Feel So Good  

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