At the age of 82, Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr. has announced his latest project. He is writing a Broadway musical about his life and his founding of the Motown record label in 1959. Gordy has worked with every Motown artist including: Smokey Robinson, Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, and The Temptations. The new Broadway show must include a number of popular Motown hits, but critics wonder how much the sound will be changed to fit Broadway’s style. David Hinckley from the New York Daily News reports:
I feel like a cranky old guy by even thinking this, but when I read that Berry Gordy Jr. is writing a Broadway musical about his life, featuring songs from the Motown label he created, my first question is what we won’t get.
First, what we won’t get about the stories of the artists who made that music.
Second, what we won’t get of the music itself — the gap between what Motown classics sounded like on an AM radio in 1964 and how they will sound dolled up for Broadway.
What I should be thinking, of course, is that it’s great how Motown classics keep rolling on and don’t end up in the dustbin with so much of the rest of our pop culture.