The greatest secret behind Motown’s success?
At the Motown hit factory, you’d find a house band, artists, engineers, and perhaps the biggest secret behind Motown’s success – The songwriters working for the label.
In the ’60s, the main team was Lamont Dozier and brothers Eddie and Brian Holland.
From 1962 to 1967, Holland-Dozier-Holland wrote and produced all Motown songs. Following the immense success during these years, H-D-H sued Motown which left them writing under pseudonyms. Dozier later said in 2008:
“The lawsuit was just our way of taking care of business that needed to be taken care of – just like Berry Gordy had to take care of his business which resulted in the lawsuit. Business is business, love is love.”
This would turn into one of the longest-running lawsuits, starting in 1967, it ended in 1977.
During their glory years, they wrote an immense amount of hits, including Baby Love, Band Of Gold, Can I Get A Witness, Heat Wave, How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You), I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch), Jimmy Mack, Nowhere To Run, Reach Out (I’ll be There), Stop! In The Name Of Love, You Can’t Hurry Love, and You Keep Me Hanging On.
In the subsequent decades, H-D-H has been inducted into most Hall Of Fames.
Also worth considering is how much the team must have influenced all other artists around Motown’s headquarters during those days.
Perhaps it is impossible to estimate how important Holland-Dozier-Holland has been to the modern pop song.
In 2018, Lamont Dozier released the album Reimagined where he sang most of his old hits himself, as well as with other singers as duets. After having a listen it is clear that it was teamwork that made the dream work back in the day!
Hollan Dozier Holland tunes | Related pages
You can learn how to play Baby Love by The Supremes using chords, lyrics, chord analysis, and the original recording.
| C | C7/Bb | A7 | Dm |
Baby love, my baby love, I need you, oh how I need you…
Band Of Gold
You can learn how to play Band Of Gold by Freda Payne using chords, chord analysis, lyrics, and the original recording.
| G | G | D/F# |
Now that you’re gone, all that’s left is a band of gold…
Can I Get A Witness
You can learn how to play Can I Get A Witness by Marvin Gaye using chords, lyrics, TAB, backing track, and Spytunes video guitar lessons.
| Eb Ab | Db Ab | Eb Ab | Db Ab |
Ah listen, everybody, especially you girls…
You can learn how to play Jimmy Mack by Martha and The Vandellas using chords, lyrics, TAB, backing track, and Spytunes video guitar lessons.
| Ebm | Gbmaj7 | Dbmaj7 | Gb |
Jimmy Mack, Jimmy. Oh, Jimmy Mack, when are you comin’ back…
Reach Out I’ll Be There
You can learn how to play Reach Out I’ll Be There by the Four Tops using chords, lyrics, chord analysis, TAB, and the original recording.
| Abm7 Gb/Bb | Db | Abm7 Gb/Bb | Db |
Now if you feel that you can’t go on, because all of your hope is gone…
You Can’t Hurry Love
You can learn how to play You Can’t Hurry Love by The Supremes using chords, lyrics, TAB, backing track, and Spytunes video guitar lessons.
| Bb | Bb | Eb Bb | Bb |
I need love, love, to ease my mind…