August 1964: The Supremes Charm America with "Where Did Our Love Go"

The Supremes
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The Supremes were struggling to overcome to a dry spell in their first few years at Motown. When their first singles failed to bear any fruit, they infamously earned themselves the "No-Hit" Supremes at the label's HQ.

When The Marvllettes declined songwriting wizards Holland-Dozier-Holland's new project "Where Did Our Love Go," the tune was passed over to the Supremes, who didn't feel particularly strong towards the tune, but began toying with the vocal harmonies anyway.

Singing about "a burning love that stings like a bee," Diana Ross sang the tune with clean vocal poise while Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard further smoothed out the tune with their gentle murmurs of "baby, baby," in the background.

Despite all odds, the gentle heartbreaker "Where Did Our Love Go" helped propel The Supremes into the shimmering spotlight and cemented the trio's status as a Motown sensation. 

"Because at a time when it was an impossible dream for black people, we accomplished something," reminisced Wilson to Billboard. "It was a personal accomplishment, but also an accomplishment for others. We started touring the world and every country we went to, we were introduced as ‘Motown’s Supremes.’ We helped put Motown on the map.”

Released as a single in June of '64, the classic hit soared ahead to the No. 1 spot on Billboard's Hot 100 on August 21 that same year, marking the beginning of The Supremes' dazzling reign throughout the 60's. 

 

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