The Contours Similar Artists

Kim Weston - 100% match to The Contours

Genres: R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1970s 1990s 2000s
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Agatha Natalie Weston, 20 December 1939, Detroit, Michigan, USA. Kim Weston received her musical education with the Wright Specials gospel group, an influence that survived throughout her subsequent career. Torn between pursuing music or acting, she was persuaded to join the Motown Records label in the early 60s by Johnny Thornton, the cousin of two of the label’s top Read more

The Velvelettes - 96% match to The Contours

Genres: Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1990s 2000s
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Two pairs of sisters, Millie and Cal Gill, and Bertha and Norma Barbee, formed the original Velvelettes line-up in 1961 at Western Michigan State University. After recording a one-off single, ‘There He Goes’, for IPG Records in 1963, they were signed to Motown Records, where they were placed in the hands of fledgling producer Norman Whitfield. This partnership spawned Read more

Brenda Holloway - 93% match to The Contours

Genres: Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1990s 2000s
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21 June 1946, Atascadero, California, USA. Holloway began her recording career with three small Los Angeles labels, Donna, Catch and Minasa, in the early 60s, recording under the aegis of producer Hal Davis. In 1964, Holloway made an impromptu performance at a disc jockeys’ convention in California, where she was spotted by a Motown Records talent scout. She signed to Read more

Eddie Holland - 89% match to The Contours

Decades Active: 1960s
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30 October 1939, Detroit, Michigan, USA. Like his brother Brian Holland, Eddie was active in the Detroit music scene from the mid-50s onwards, leading the Fidelatones vocal group, and producing demo recordings for Jackie Wilson. In 1958, he met Berry Gordy, who produced a series of solo singles for Holland on Mercury Records and United Artists Records. Gordy signed Holland t Read more

Jimmy Ruffin - 78% match to The Contours

Genres: R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
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7 May 1939, Collinsville, Mississippi, USA. The son of a minister, Ruffin was born into a musical family: his brother, David Ruffin, and cousin, Melvin Franklin, both became mainstays of the Temptations. Ruffin abandoned his gospel background to become a session singer in the early 60s, joining the Motown Records stable in 1961 for a one-off single before he was drafted for Read more

The Elgins - 76% match to The Contours

Genres: R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1990s
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US-born Johnny Dawson, Cleo Miller and Robert Fleming, later replaced by Norbert McClean, sang together in three Detroit vocal groups in the late 50s, the Sensations, the Five Emeralds and the Downbeats. Under the last of these names, they recorded two singles for Motown Records in 1959 and 1962. Also in 1962, Saundra Mallett (later Saundra Mallett Edwards) issued ‘Camel W Read more

Shorty Long - 73% match to The Contours

Decades Active: 1960s 1990s 2000s
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Frederick Earl Long, 20 May 1940, Birmingham, Alabama, USA, d. 29 June 1969, Detroit, Michigan, USA. Multi-instrumentalist Long received tutelage from W.C. Handy and Alvin Robinson before joining Harvey Fuqua’s Tri-Phi label in 1961. This Detroit-based company was later acquired by Motown Records and Long acted as master of ceremonies on his new outlet’s touring re Read more

The Miracles - 65% match to The Contours

Genres: Holiday & Seasonal Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
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Of all the R&B vocal groups formed in Detroit, Michigan, USA, in the mid-50s, the Miracles proved to be the most successful. They were founded at the city’s Northern High School in 1955 by Smokey Robinson (William Robinson, 19 February 1940, Detroit, Michigan, USA), Emerson Rogers, Bobby Rogers (b. 19 February 1940, Detroit, Michigan, USA), Ronnie White (b. 5 April Read more

The Marvelettes - 59% match to The Contours

Genres: Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
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The Marvelettes’ career epitomized the haphazard progress endured by many of the leading girl-groups of the early 60s. Despite enjoying several major US hits, they were unable to sustain a consistent line-up, and their constant shifts in personnel made it difficult to overcome their rather anonymous public image. The group was formed in the late 50s by five students at Ink Read more

R. Dean Taylor - 57% match to The Contours

Decades Active: 1970s 2000s
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Toronto, Canada. Taylor remains the most successful white artist to emerge from the Motown Records stable. The protégé of writer/producer Brian Holland, he worked on many of the mid-60s hits produced by the Holland / Dozier / Holland partnership, and later claimed to have helped to compose several songs credited to them. He began his recording career in 1965 wi Read more

Mary Wells - 55% match to The Contours

Genres: Music & Radio Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1980s 1990s 2000s
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13 May 1943, Detroit, Michigan, USA, d. 26 July 1992, Los Angeles, California, USA. At the age of 17, Mary Wells composed ‘Bye Bye Baby’, a song which she offered to R&B star Jackie Wilson. His producer, Berry Gordy, was sufficiently impressed to offer her a contract with the newly formed Motown Records label, and Wells’ rendition of her song became one of Read more

Edwin Starr - 52% match to The Contours

Genres: Music Videos & Concerts R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
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Charles Edwin Hatcher, 21 January 1942, Nashville, Tennessee, USA, d. 2 April 2003, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England. The brother of soul singers Roger and Willie Hatcher, Starr was raised in Cleveland, where he formed the Future Tones vocal group in 1957. They recorded one single for Tress, before Starr was drafted into the US Army for three years. After completing his Read more

Marv Johnson - 49% match to The Contours

Genres: Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1990s 2000s
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Marvin Earl Johnson, 15 October 1938, Detroit, Michigan, USA, d. 16 May 1993, Columbia, South Carolina, USA. The gospel training that Johnson received as a teenager in the Junior Serenaders was a major influence on his early R&B releases. In 1958, he formed a partnership with the young Berry Gordy, who was then working as a songwriter and producer for Jackie Wilson. Gord Read more

Carolyn Crawford - 46% match to The Contours

Genres: Pop / Rock R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1990s
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US-born soul singer Carolyn Crawford won a 1963 talent contest staged by radio station WCHB in Detroit, the prize being a contract with the city’s biggest label, Motown Records. Her debut single, ‘Forget About Me’, proved unsuccessful, but she had a minor US hit in 1964 with Smokey Robinson’s ‘My Smile Is Just A Frown (Turned Upside Down)’. Her thi Read more

The Originals - 45% match to The Contours

Genres: R&B / Soul
Decades Active: 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
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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 Read more


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