27 - Motown's Secret Weapon: The Funk Brothers

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Motown Records is one of the most successful and influential record labels in music history. Between 1961 to 1971, they produced a staggering 110 top 10 hits from artists like Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, The Temptations, the Four Tops, Gladys Knight and the Pips, and Martha Reeves and the Vandellas.

You know these songs, but do you know who played the music on them? Behind all of this amazing music and the Motown Sound was a relatively unknown group of studio musicians called The Funk Brothers who played on every single one of those hits. They’re the most successful group of studio musicians ever assembled...and almost no one knows their story.

On this episode of Prisoners of Rock and Roll, we’re taking a trip to Hitsville USA to tell the story of this forgotten group of artists. We’re going to honor the Funk Brothers, play some tunes, and dive into what they did to make that unforgettable Motown Sound.

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Part of Pantheon Podcasts.

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