The history of Motown

By monicas
  • Berry Gordy is born

    Berry Gordy is born
    Berry Gordy, the founder of Motown Records was born today. He was the seventh child out of eight.
  • Period: to

    Motown Timespan

  • Career Starter

    Career Starter
    Berry started to find his interest in music when he opened a jazz-oriented record store called the 3-D Record Mart in Detroit.In the same year he also got married to his first wife and started a family. IMAGE: Berry Gordy's house in Detroit,it was known as The Motown Mansion.
  • Songwriting

    Berry started putting his talent of songwriting to good use. Berry begun writing for local Detroit music artists, but it was nothing major as of yet IMAGE: Berry Gordy
  • Songwriting

    The 3-D Record Mart store was unsusscesful and had been shut down. Berry was now working in the automobile industry but he was constantly writing songs and sending them to all types of media.
  • Success Begins

    Success Begins
    Berry was writing non-stop and his success as a songwriter came along in 1957 when an artist named Jackie Wilson recorded ‘Reet Petite’ a song Berry and his sister produced. IMAGE: Jacki Wilson's record of 'Reet Petite'
  • Success begins

    Success begins
    Berry attended a Detroit talent show where ‘the Miracles’ caught his attention,Berry decided to record them. Berry's first song for the Miracles was called "Got a Job," which he gave to End records to release but didn’t live up to the expectations. IMAGE: The Miracles' record for 'Got a job'
  • Berry the Producer

    Berry the Producer
    Throughout the year Berry co-wrote four more hits for Jackie Wilson, which lead to him being a successful song writer.Berry soon decided to produce his own songs. IMAGE: Jackie Wilson's music which was produced by Berry
  • Tamla Records

    Tamla Records
    Since deciding to produce Berry made a decision to start his own record label, called Tamla. He bought a 2 story building with the nickname Hitsville U.S.A and got to recording. The first relese from the record company was “Come to me” by Marv Johnson, it was a mid-sized hit. IMAGE: Berry outside Hitsville U.S.A
  • Motown

    Berry started a second small record company, Motown. There was only a few artists and it was nothing major at the time. IMAGE: Motown Records logo
  • #1 Hit

    #1 Hit
    The Miracles track "Shop Around" became the first #1 R&B hit for Tamla. IMAGE: The Miracles
  • Marvin Gaye

    Marvin Gaye
    Berry signed Marvin Gaye along with The Funk Brothers who played backing for almost every Motown track in the 60's. IMAGE: Marvin Gaye
  • Motown Records is founded

    Motown Records is founded
    Berry and his family combined Motown and Tamla Records into a complete new company called 'Motown Record Corporation' IMAGE: Motown Record Corporation Logo
  • Motown success

    Motown success
    A blind 11 yr old boy named steveland Morris (Stevie Wonder) became an attribute to Motown Records. An important step in Motown was made this year, Barrett Strong joined Motown as a staff songwriter. A local all girl singing group named The Supremes signed to Motown and their song “please mr postman” became Berry Gordons first production reaching #1 on the pop charts. IMAGE: The Supremes
  • Another Hit

    Another Hit
    Marvin Gaye had his very first hit called 'Stubborn Kinda of Fellow' IMAGE: 'Stubborn kinda fellow' by Marvin Gaye record
  • Motown at the top

    Motown at the top
    Stevie Wonder’s ‘Fingertips’ reached #1 on pop charts. The album ’12 year old genius’ was the first album from Motown to reach #1 spot on the pop album charts. Berry Met The four tops and immediately signed the group. Motown had 6 records in the top 10 by the end of the year. IMAGE: '12 Year old wonder' Album by Stevie Wonder IMAGE: '12 Year old Genius' Album by Stevie Wonder
  • Top selling album

    Top selling album
    In July The Supremes had 5 consecutive #1 hits, they became the 3rd largest selling artists ever in the history of recording! IMAGE: The Supremes
  • Four Tops at Number #1

    Four Tops at Number #1
    14 songs that Motown had produced were in the top 10 with one song by the four tops reaching #1 IMAGE: The Four Tops
  • The Supremes at No #1

    The Supremes at No #1
    13 of Motowns singles had been up high in the top 10 charts this year with The supremes reaching #1 IMAGE: The Supremes
  • Loss of Producers

    Loss of Producers
    Motown had 10 singles in the top 10 this year with Marvin gaye’s ‘I heard it through the grapevine’ reaching #1. A huge loss within Motown records occurred this year when 3 succesful producers left the company IMAGE: 'I heard it through the grape vine' By Marving gaye cover
  • The Jackson 5

    The Jackson 5
    The Jackson 5 were signed to Motown and 2 of their singles that were released went to #1 on the pop charts. IMAGE: The Jackson 5
  • Jackson 5 at number #1

    Jackson 5 at number #1
    6 Motown singles went to the top Top 10 charts. And Jackson 5 singles such as “ABC” reached #1 on the charts IMAGE: Jackson 5 'ABC' cover
  • TV Productions

    TV Productions
    11 singles reached the top 10 with one single in the #1 spot. Motown also started TV productions. Marvin Gaye had been given creative rights to his album 'What's Going On' and Gordy did not want to release the album but Marvin Gaye threatened to never make another record for Motown so the album was released and is now recognized as one of the greatest album ever made. IMAGE: Album cover of Marvin Gaye's 'Whats going on'
  • Motown slows down

    Motown slows down
    With only 4 singles reaching the pop Top 10 this year Motown was slowing down but Two of these singles went #1: "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" by the Temptations and "Ben" by Michael Jackson. IMAGE: The cover of 'Ben' by Michael Jackson
  • Moving to LA

    Moving to LA
    In June Motown announced they were closing it's Detroit headquarters tand move it to Los Angeles.The head quarters wa s in Detroit for 13 years from 1959 to1972. IMAGE: The front of the once known 'Motown Records Head Office'
  • Berry resigns

    Berry resigns
    The President of Motown Records, Berry Gordy, had resigned to become Chairman of the Board of Motown Industries. 5 Motown singles came in at #1 on the Pop chart throughout the year. IMAGE: Berry Gordy
  • A few in top #10

    A few in top #10
    Only four Motown singles made Top 10 along with Stevie Wonder's 'You Haven't Done Nothin' reaching the #1 spot. IMAGE: Cover of 'You Haven't Done Nothin'
  • A Bad year for Motown

    A Bad year for Motown
    A low point of Motown history came along, only one Motown record "Boogie On Reggae Woman" by Stevie Wonder was on the top 10 list. The Jackson 5 also left Motown for Epic records leaving Jeramine Jackson behind with Motown Records as he had married Berry’s daughter. IMAGE: Jeramine Jackson
  • 6 in the Top #10

    Six Motown recordings hit the Top 10 charts
  • 3 in the Top #10

    Motown had three hits that reached #1 on the pop chart list
  • 1 in the Top #10

    Only one single was on the chart for Motown this year, it was "Three Times a Lady" By The Commodores
  • 2 in the Top #10

    The Commodores "Still" was the only #1 pop hit for Motown this year and "Send One Your Love" by Stevie Wonder reached the Top 10 List.
  • Lionel Richie

    Lionel Richie
    Lionel Richie signed to Motown. Albums from Motown were selling high in the 80's IMAGE: Lionel Richie's single released through Motown
  • Motowns largest selling album

    Motowns largest selling album
    Lionel Richie’s ‘Cant Slow Down’ became Motowns largest selling album IMAGE: album cover of 'cant slow down'
  • Motown Sold

    Motown Sold
    In June Berry Gordy sold Motown records for $61million. IMAGE: berry Gordy