Personalities | The Marvelettes | Sixties | Rock
(Vocal group, 1961–71)
One of Motown’s first successful vocal groups comprised Gladys Horton, Georgeanna Tillman, Wanda Young, Katherine Anderson and Juanita Cowart (left 1962). Their first release, ‘Please Mr Postman’ (later covered by The Carpenters) was the label’s first US pop No. 1 in 1961. It led to a run of nearly 30 pop and R&B chart entries, from the label’s best writers and producers, including Holland-Dozier-Holland and Norman Whitfield.
They were country girls, not ghetto singers; by the mid-1960s they had been replaced in the affections of both Berry Gordy and the public by the label’s more polished groups. In 1964, The Marvelettes had turned down a new song ‘Where Did Our Love Go’, which instead became the first of The Supremes’ five No. 1s in a row. After a minor revival of fortune in the late 1960s championed by Smokey Robinson, they folded in 1971.
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