The Supremes Biography

The Supremes – As big as The Beatles

Biography and Guitar Lessons

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On the Ed Sullivan Show

The Supremes

The Supremes are America’s most successful vocal group with 12 number one singles. At there peak, The Supremes were as popular as The Beatles.

Most of their songs were written by Holland-Dozier-Holland, Motown’s main songwriting team. But it wasn’t an instant success for Diana Ross and her friends Florence Ballard and Mary Wilson.

During the first few years at Motown, nothing they released would chart. This made the other acts on Motown refer to them as the “No-hit Supremes’.

Berry Gordy was convinced The Supremes had something special, he just had to get it right, so in 1965 he named Diana as the lead singer. Up until then, they had all taken turns, with each singer offering something different.

In 1967, he even renamed them The Supremes with Diana Ross, only to change his mind again to Diana Ross & The Supremes, six months later.

Clearly putting Diana first, the tensions in the band rose along with their chart success.

During The Supremes most successful years they released hits like Where Did Our Love Go, Baby Love, Stop! In the Name of Love, You Can’t Hurry Love, You Keep Me Hangin’ On,

They also recorded many Beatles songs, Christmas classics, and covers Sam Cooke and other artists on Motown.

In 1970, Diana Ross left the band to pursue an extremely successful solo career.

The Supremes continued, now with a completely new lineup. It didn’t have any substantial success and wasn’t backed much by the Motown label. Berry was now busy with Diana’s new direction and relocation from Detroit to Los Angeles.

Guitar Lessons

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 1

Written in 1966 by Motown’s songwriting team Holland-Dozier-Holland, You Can’t Hurry Love went straight to #1 in the Billboard charts.

Sixteen years later, Phil Collins recorded it in a different key and again put it back at the #1 spot, this time in the U.K.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 1.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 2 (Free Preview)

I want you to be able to play the chorus progression anywhere on the neck as this will make it more enjoyable playing the song.

You could in this way keep changing it every time you play it.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 2.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 3

In this lesson, we take an in-depth look at the verse.

It is actually the same as the chorus you learned last time, just played with a different rhythm.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 3.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 4

In this lesson, we learn how to turn a major barre chord into a dom7 chord, no matter where we are on the neck.

We do this in preparation for playing the bridge in the next step.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 4.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 5

Today we take a look at the bridge section of You Can’t Hurry Love.

This section ends with that F to F7 movement you practiced last time.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 5.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 6

Today we recap all three sections by playing them one after another.

Following this, you will be well on your way to play the full song.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 6.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 7

To be as methodical as we have been really is a great idea when you learn any song.

It gives you the freedom to play around with the chords and rhythms, rather than having one set part.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 7.

You Can’t Hurry Love – Step 8

This is the last lesson in which we work on You Can’t Hurry Love.

Use what you’ve learned in previous steps to construct a part that you feel works for this song. Or, why not just improvise!

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love step 8.

Related Pages

Chords and Guitar Lessons

You Can’t Hurry Love has a great chord progression using only chords from the key of Bb.

By starting some of the chords earlier than expected, You Can’t Hurry Love gets its famous bouncy feel.

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love chords and guitar lessons.


I need love, love, to ease my mind
I need to find, find, someone to call mine
But mama said
You can’t hurry love, no you just have to wait

Go to You Can’t Hurry Love lyrics.

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