Motown: Holland–Dozier–Holland: selected songs, 1963


page originally published on 19 August 2012; latest edit: 20 August 2020


See also:


Selected HollandDozier–Holland biographies:


All songs featured in this page were written by Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, and Edward Holland, Jr. (Holland–Dozier–Holland), unless noted otherwise. Lyrics are by Edward Holland, Jr. (Eddie) unless otherwise indicated. All recordings featured in this page were produced by Brian Holland and Lamont Dozier.


Locking Up My Heart

The Marvelettes — issued 15 February 1963 on the single Tamla Records T-54077 (also catalog # TAMLA 54077), c/w “Forever”; featuring lead vocals by Gladys Horton and Wanda Young, and instrumentation by The Funk Brothers — According to Wikipedia, it was the “first charting single written and produced by Motown‘s main production team Holland–Dozier–Holland.” indicates that “Forever” is the A-side of Tamla T-54077, and “Locking Up My Heart” the B-side. However, and Wikipedia each have “Locking Up My Heart” as the A-side of Tamla T-54077, with “Forever” the B-side. Additionally, it’s not clear to me why each of several labels provided at have the length of “Locking Up My Heart” as 2:54, while all the videos containing “Locking Up My Heart” by the Marvelettes that I’ve found at YouTube are about a half minute shorter, and the first video that I’ve included below displays a label that gives the length as 2:24.


(below) label seems to give the length as 2:54, though the video is only 2:22 long


Forever (Holland–Gorman–Dozier)

The Marvelettes — issued 15 February 1963 on the single Tamla T-54077 (also TAMLA 54077), b/w “Locking Up My Heart”; drawn from the 1962 album Playboy


Martha and the Vandellas-01

Come and Get These Memories

Martha and The Vandellas — Recorded in 1962 at Motown’s Hitsville USA (Studio A) and released in February 1963 on the single Gordy 7014, b/w “Jealous Lover”

It was the second single released by the group under Motown’s Gordy Records subsidiary, and their first to break into the Billboard top forty charts, reaching #29 on the Hot 100 (pop) singles chart and #6 on the R&B singles chart.

Wikipedia says:

“Memories” is also notable as the first hit recording written and produced by the songwriting/production team of Holland-Dozier-Holland, who would become the top creative team at Motown by the end of 1965. The single was the first of several hits the Vandellas scored with the team, before Holland-Dozier-Holland began to focus more heavily on hits for The Supremes and the Four Tops. However, Holland–Dozier–Holland would continue to collaborate with the Vandellas until the songwriting team’s departure from Motown in 1967.


(Love is Like a) Heat Wave

Martha and The Vandellas — issued 9 July 1963 on the single Gordy G-7022, b/w “A Love Like Yours (Don’t Come Knocking Everyday)”

Wikipedia says:

The single was a breakthrough hit, peaking at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100, and at #1 on the Billboard R&B Singles Chart.[2] It also garnered the group’s only Grammy Award nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group for 1964,[3] making The Vandellas the first Motown group ever to receive a Grammy Award Nomination.


Miracles 2

Mickey’s Monkey (Holland–Dozier) Brian Holland and Lamont Dozier

The Miracles — single Tamla 54083, b/w “Whatever Makes You Happy” (Ronald White, Smokey Robinson); peak chart positions: #8 Hot 100, #3 R&B.

Wikipedia excerpts:

A comical story about “A cat named Mickey from out of town” who “spread his new dance all around”, this song helped popularize “The Monkey” as a national dance craze in the early 1960s. In the Motown DVD release, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles: The Definitive Performances, Smokey exclaimed that this song began when he spotted Lamont Dozier playing the song’s initial chords on the piano at the Motown studios one day.

“Mickey’s Monkey”, in addition to The Miracles, also featured background vocals by Mary Wilson of The Supremes, famed Detroit Dee Jay “Jockey Jack” Gibson, Martha & The Vandellas, and members of The Temptations and The Marvelettes. One of the most famous of the early Motown hits, The Miracles often used “Mickey’s Monkey” as their closing song on the legendary “Motortown Revue” touring shows in the early 1960s, a song that usually “brought the house down”.


A lip sync performance for Hollywood A Go-Go, season 2, episode 12, airdate: 20 November 1965


When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes

The Supremes — issued 31 October 1963 on the single Motown 1051, b/w “Standing at the Crossroads of Love” —  peak chart positions: #23 Billboard Hot 100, #2 Cashbox R&B

From Wikipedia:

It is notable as the Supremes’ first Billboard Hot 100 Top 40 recording, following seven previous singles between January 1961 and September 1963 which failed to enter the Top 40. The single is also notable as the first Supremes single written and produced by Holland–Dozier–Holland, who had previously created hits for Martha and the Vandellas and Mary Wells.




Martha & The Vandellas — issued 4 November 1963 on the single Gordy G 7025 (also catalog # GORDY 7025), b/w “Darling, I Hum Our Song” (B. Holland — L. Dozier)


Can I Get a Witness

Marvin Gaye — issued September 1963 on the single Tamla T-54087, b/w “I’m Crazy ‘Bout My Baby” (William Stevenson)

Wikipedia says:

The [recording] featured Gaye on piano, playing a boogie pattern, The Funk Brothers, and members of The Supremes in the background accompanying Gaye. The song became a hit in both the U.S. and the United Kingdom, and British musicians Lulu, Dusty Springfield, The Rolling Stones, Sam Brown and Steampacket (which featured a very young Rod Stewart) recorded cover versions of the song. Gaye’s version peaked at #22 on the Hot 100 chart and its title soon became a catchphrase.




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