My new website is up and running and I am so happy and excited! And here is the first of our “Happenings” – so much has happened in the first couple of months of 2015 and I am very happy about “the happenings.”. 2014 brought on so many changes and may I say most of them good. For a while there in 2013, I found myself wondering where did all the good times go, but with that behind us now, I see how our record “Time Changes Things” is really the truth.
This also reminds me of those early years when we were called the “No-Hit Supremes” before Mr. Berry Gordy put us with HDH. Yes, 1963 was the turning point for us. First with “When the Love Light Starts Shining in His Eyes”, then of course, came those five consecutive number ones. Boy that changed everything, so yes “time does change” things for those who wait. Thank you Berry Gordy and HDH, you truly changed our lives. I only wish our dear Florence was here to enjoy it and see all the love you still have for her. This is the 39th year since her passing and she would have been so pleased to know how much you care.
I had the opportunity to see many of you during my recent travels, here in the States and around the world. I listened to your stories of how we the Supremes, Flo, Diane and I, and of course, the later 70’s ladies have been a part of your lives throughout all these years. Forgive me for not mentioning all your names, but trust when I say you are all in my mind and thoughts always.
The past 12 months or so have seen me involved in many fundraisers. My favorite group of ladies, FSH, or “Figure Skaters of Harlem” did a skating tribute to the Supremes called “In the Name of Love.” The young ladies looked wonderful in their sexy Supreme-like costumes. I hosted the event in Harlem and boy, was it very cold, and I nearly slipped and fell on the ice.
Cirque du Soleil had its “One Drop” event earlier in the year, and I along with my four backing vocalists and dancers, were in attendance at their afterparty – and what a party!
I have now become involved with AARP and some of their events, as well as doing a few lectures and shows for the Ohio Cancer Group. These events are very rewarding for me as I have a number of personal friends who are going through this horrific disease. To hear their stories is heartbreaking.
I also attended the last “HAL AWARDS”, put on by my girl, Janie Bradford. It’s always a hit and the organization provides scholarships to deserving young adults each year. This year they gave a special tribute to the Motown artists who had hits 50 years ago, and of course, we The Supremes were at the top of that list.
Touring was also exciting in the past year. I did a few shows with my favorite groups, The Four Tops and The Temptations. While on one of the shows with them, I had the chance to spend some wonderful moments with my brother who lives in Seattle. My sister Kathy and I flew in and we all had a grand time together. The three of us spent the entire day reminiscing of our childhood days. It brought back so many great memories. It was very special to me as I have very little time to spend with family. And while we were in town, we had a sold out show with the Tops and Tempts.
Freda Payne and I have started doing shows together and had our first show in 2014 in Houston. Freda is just awesome and a terrific jazz singer and I love working with her. Her spirit is so positive and I feel as though she has always been like a sister to me. I am looking forward to working with her in the future.
I also did a few symphony shows, some big band and jazz orchestra shows. Working with Doc Severinson in LA and Vegas was a blast. He still has “it” and looks great.
I will have to write another “Happenings” column to talk about the last Bill Wyman European tour that was 28 dates long. It was so much fun and I got to see so many of our European fans. So much had happened in 2014, and it’s hard to remember it all. Hopefully you were able to catch some of the highlights of what I have done either on Facebook or the internet like You Tube. Now we are into 2015, and here are some of the year’s highlights thus far.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
I started out this year on a tour of Florida doing the Lena Horne Tribute Show. It was just so much fun. We sold out two shows at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach with over 1,500 seats each show. I saw some of my favorite friends while in Florida and I thank them for all their support. Talking about support, the shows I did with the Four Tops and the last two shows I did in Vegas at the Suncoast were all sold out and great.
February was really Motown month. On February 13th, Holland, Dozier and Holland finally got their Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. So many of you came out to the ceremony and the guys were so very appreciative. If you missed it, you can check it out on Facebook and the internet.
And on February 23rd, Stevie Wonder was given a televised Grammy salute. The stars really came out and performed for Stevie. Tony Bennett, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Gladys Knight, Usher, just to name a few. I was honored to say a few words of love to Stevie and then introduce three beautiful and talented young ladies, Jill Scott, India Arie and Janelle Monet.
And finally, February ended with the re-airing of the “Motown 25, Yesterday, Today and Forever” special from 30 years ago. The special was shown on PBS stations around the country presented by T.J. Lubinsky. Martha Reeves and I hosted the opening and closing of the show. I am hoping you were able to watch the special on your public television station in your area as it aired twice on February 28th. Hopefully you became a PBS subscriber and ordered the various compilations of Motown CDs and DVDs. I was at home watching the special – it was great to see again.
I will be performing at the prestigious Colony Hotel in Palm Beach, Florida from March 24-28 and looking forward to returning there. We will be posting other upcoming tour dates on the website soon. And don’t forget, I have an interview in the latest issue of “Closer” magazine.
We’re hoping to post a new “The Happenings” each month and Carl Feuerbacher will assist me in keeping you all up to date on a regular basis.