The Temptations, often referred to as “American Music Royalty,” are world-renowned superstars of entertainment, revered for their phenomenal catalog of music and prolific career. The group will be celebrating their 60th Anniversary in 2021. To mark this milestone, the Temptations are planning a brand-new album, a national concert tour across the country, and an international concert tour in the UK in fall 2021.
Named the “#1 R&B/Hip Hop Artists of All Time” and one of the “125 Greatest of All Time Artists” by Billboard magazine, as well as one of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time” by Rolling Stone Magazine, the group is truly a beloved national treasure.
The Temptations’ heritage, influence, and contributions to, not only American culture and African American communities but also to the global music landscape are monumental. The influence that the Temptations have had on mainstream and global artists is undeniable.
The group’s popularity is ever-increasing, and they are one of the most iconic, best selling brands in the entertainment world today. While the group has evolved over the years, Dr. Otis Williams has continued to lead the group and carry the torch forward for the next generation of Temptations’ fans.
THE FOUR TOPS
The quartet, originally called the Four Aims, made their first single for Chess in 1956, and spent seven years on the road and in nightclubs, singing pop, blues, Broadway, but mostly jazz—four-part harmony jazz. When Motown’s Berry Gordy Jr. found out they had hustled a national “Tonight Show” appearance, he signed them without an audition to be the marquee act for the company’s Workshop Jazz label. That proved short-lived, and Stubbs’ powerhouse baritone lead and the exquisite harmonies of Fakir, Benson, and Payton started making one smash after another with the writing-producing trio Holland-Dozier-Holland.
Their first Motown hit, “Baby I Need Your Loving” in 1964, made them stars and their sixties track record on the label is indispensable to any retrospective of the decade. Their songs, soulful and bittersweet, were across-the-board successes.
“I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch),” a no. 1 R&B and Pop smash in 1965, is one of Motown’s longest-running chart toppers; it was quickly followed by a longtime favorite, “It’s The Same Old Song” (no. 2 R&B/no. 5 pop).
Their commercial peak was highlighted by a romantic trilogy: the no. 1 “Reach Out I’ll Be There,” “Standing In The Shadows Of Love” (no. 2 R&B/no. 6 pop) and “Bernadette” (no. 3 R&B/no. 4 pop)—an extraordinary run of instant H-D-H classics.
Other Tops hits from the decade included “Ask The Lonely,” “Shake Me, Wake Me (When It’s Over),” “Something About You,” “You Keep Running Away,” “7-Rooms Of Gloom” and their covers of “Walk Away Renee” and “If I Were A Carpenter.” The group was also extraordinarily popular in the U.K.