Martha Reeves is the ultimate Motown diva with soul flowing from the tips of her toes to the last hair on her head. They don’t make ’em like that anymore.
It was 1962 when Motown’s Artist and Repertoire Director William “Mickey” Stevenson invited her to audition at the new Motown Records headquarters, “Hitsville USA. She watched, learned, and took advantage of every opportunity that presented itself. And when she did, everyone took notice. When Mary Wells couldn’t make a session, Martha was called to the mic. With her group, the Del Phi’s, she recorded “I’ll Have to Let Him Go,” and Martha and the Vandellas was born. followed by an enviable string of hits: “Heat Wave,” “Quicksand,” “In My Lonely Room,” “Nowhere to Run,” “Love Makes Me Do Foolish Things,” “I’m Ready for Love,” “Jimmy Mack” and of course the Motown anthem “Dancing in the Street.”
After leaving Motown in 1972, Martha continued to expand her musical horizons, establishing herself as a singer-songwriter with few limitations. She sang rock, jazz, country, gospel, blues and classical. Her singing companions included everyone from “The Godfather” (James Brown) and “The Boss” (Bruce Springsteen) to opera diva Beverly Sills and gospel king Rance Allen. She headlined a national touring company of the musical “Ain’t Misbehavin'” and for three years toured the UK in the musical review “Dancing in the Street.