Lamont Dozier and brothers Brian and Eddie Holland were songwriters who defined the Motown sound. They wrote over 200 songs together, mostly in the 1960’s and early 1970’s, for acts such as Martha and the Vandellas, Marvin Gaye, The Four Tops, and The Supremes, and their songs were covered by a number of non-Motown artists such as Vanilla Fudge, Rod Stewart, Linda Ronstadt, and James Taylor. Dozier left the team in 1973, and the Holland brothers continued to write hits through the 1970’s and 1980’s. They had 25 #1 singles, including ten of the twelve #1’s by The Supremes. They’re members of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, The Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the Soul Music Hall of Fame. Rolling Stone ranks them at #15 on their list of the 100 Best Songwriters of All Time.
A full list of the songs they wrote together is available on Wikipedia, but here are a couple of my favorites. First is “Bernadette,” a hit for The Four Tops in 1967. It reached #4 on the Hot 100 and #3 on the R&B chart that year.
Next is “Give Me Just A Little More Time,” which the Chairmen of the Board took to #3 on the Hot 100 and #8 on the R&B chart in 1970.
I hope you take some time to go through the list of songs and listen to a lot more of their music. That’s the songwriting team of Holland-Dozier-Holland, your Two for Tuesday, August 18, 2015.