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Motown songwriting team receives star on Hollywood Walk of Fame

The Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting team composed more than 50 of Motown Records' most memorable songs. (Thinkstock)
The Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting team composed more than 50 of Motown Records’ most memorable songs. (Thinkstock)

The Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting team received the 2,543rd star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Friday for composing more than 50 of Motown Records’ most memorable songs.

Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, Mary Wilson of the Supremes and singer Ne-Yo were among those joining Lemont Dozier and brothers Brian and Eddie Holland at the ceremony on Hollywood Boulevard, near the Live Nation Building. The ceremony coincided with Black History Month.

The team wrote and produced such songs as “Stop! In the Name of Love,” and “You Can’t Hurry Love” for the Supremes; “Heat Wave” and “Jimmy Mack” for Martha and the Vandellas; “Reach Out I’ll Be There” and “Baby I Need Your Loving,” for the Four Tops; and “Can I Get a Witness” and “How Sweet It Is to Be Loved by You” for Marvin Gaye.

Holland, Dozier and Holland began their collaboration in 1962 with the single “Dearest One,” released under Dozier’s name on the Mel-O-Dy label, a Motown subsidiary.

In 1963, Holland-Dozier-Holland wrote and produced Martha and the Vandellas’ “Come and Get These Memories,” which went to No. 3 on the rhythm and blues chart; Marvin Gaye’s “Can I Get a Witness,” the Marvelettes’ “Locking Up My Heart” and “Forever”; the Miracles’ “I Gotta Dance to Keep from Crying” and “Mickey’s Monkey,” and Martha and the Vandellas’ “Heat Wave” and “Quicksand.”

In June 1964, “Where Did Our Love Go” became the first of six consecutive No. 1 singles for the Supremes and Holland, Dozier and Holland.

The trio left Motown in 1968 to found their own Invictus/Hot Wax label, where they continued their hit-making ways with Freda Payne’s “Band of Gold,” Chairmen of the Board’s “Give Me Just a Little More Time,” and the Honey Cones’ “Want Ads.”

When Invictus/Hot Wax folded in 1973, Dozier returned to his performing career, resulting in a string of solo records that continues to be sampled by artists ranging from Lil Wayne to Linkin Park.

In the 1970s, the Hollands wrote and produced for such artists as the Supremes and Michael Jackson. They formed the Holland Group production company in 1988 and revived their label Music Merchant and continue to release material from their classic catalog and new material.

Holland, Dozier and Holland were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1990 and the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1988.

Holland-Dozier-Holland have reunited for the first time in more than 30 years to write the score for the new musical version of “The First Wives Club,” based on the best-selling novel and the hit 1996 film. It begins its pre-Broadway world premiere run Tuesday at Chicago’s Oriental Theatre.

 

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