Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Happy Birthday, Mary Wilson!

More than 50 years ago three young women living in the Brewster Projects in Detroit, Michigan had a dream: they wanted to sing. They started out as The Primettes, the accompanying girl-group to The Primes, an all-male singing group.

The Primes turned into The Temptations, and The Primettes turned into The Supremes. Perhaps you've heard of them? Diana Ross, Florence Ballard, and Mary Wilson had ten #1 songs on the US charts in their heydey, 1964~1967. 

March 6, 1944 is founding member Mary Wilson's birthday. That means she was just 20 years old when The Supremes had their first hit, "Where Did Our Love Go?" in the fall of 1964.

Mary was a member of the group until she retired the name and the group in 1977.

I was lucky enough to see her in person while in college in Minneapolis-St. Paul. She performed at the Winter Carnival in January 1985, and a friend and I took the bus downtown to see her. After the show we met her quickly and told her how much we loved the show. It was awesome.

If you don't know the story of The Supremes, there are now atleast four different books that will tell it to you (in various degrees of detail and/or truth.) Over the years I have read all of these:

I can't actually recommend any of these, though, haha. Mary's autobiography is probably the best one; although she definitely has a feather-boa wrapped axe to grind, it's atleast her story to tell.

So here's to the greatest girl-group in Rock and Roll history....R&R Hall of Fame members.....the fabulous Supremes and the supremely talented Mary Wilson!

You know the song; don't pretend you don't.
Hate those wigs, though, haha!

"The Girls" singing in Motown's original recording studio...
which *I* have visited!! :-)

Later in their early career, sometime before 1967 

Mary and Cindy Birdsong ignoring Diana's ego on TCB TV special
The Primes meet The Primettes...five years later!?

 The Supremes in their casual clothes circa 1968

Mary Wilson at a recent Detroit Pistons Event

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