The Originals Biography

Freddie Gorman (11 April 1939, Detroit, Michigan, USA, d. 13 June 2006, California, USA), Walter Gaines, C.P. Spencer (b. Crathman Plato Spencer, 13 January 1938, Detroit, Michigan, USA, d. 20 October 2004, Oak Park, Michigan, USA), Henry ‘Hank’ Dixon and Joe Stubbs first recorded as the Originals in 1966. Several members were already an integral part of Detroit’s music history. Gorman, who released several solo singles, also co-wrote ‘Please Mr. Postman’ for the Marvelettes, while Stubbs was a former singer with both the Falcons and the Contours. Between 1965 and 1969, the quintet was used primarily as a backing group before their career blossomed with ‘Baby I’m For Real’, a number 1 R&B single co-written and produced by Marvin Gaye. The singer’s involvement continued on two further releases, ‘The Bells’ and ‘We Can Make It Pretty Baby’, but despite several excellent records, including California Sunset, a collection of Lamont Dozier songs, the group was unable to sustain this momentum. Reduced to a quartet following Stubbs’ departure for 100 Proof Aged In Soul, the Originals underwent further changes prior to switching labels to Motown Records in 1978. By this point, Tyrone ‘Ty’ Hunter (b. 14 July 1940, USA, d. 24 February 1981), former singer with the Voice Masters and Glass House, had joined the line-up, but his death three years later effectively marked the end of this group. The original line-up teamed with the Supremes for ‘Back By Popular Demand’ on Ian Levine’s Motor City label in 1992. Former members Spencer, Gorman and Stubbs were also signed to Levine’s label.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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