A stellar line-up has been confirmed for the Recording Academy, AEG Ehrlich Ventures and CBS television special Motown 60: A GRAMMY Celebration. As reported earlier this month, the tribute will be taped before a live audience on 12 February at Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles and broadcast by CBS across the US on 21 April. It will be co-hosted by Cedric the Entertainer and one of Motown’s favourite sons as both an artist and songwriter, Smokey Robinson.
Two more of the artists who became worldwide superstars during their time at Motown, Diana Ross and Stevie Wonder, will take part in the tribute, as will their contemporary Martha Reeves. Also in the list of participants are some of the songwriters whose work helped shape the sound of Motown: Brian & Eddie Holland and Lamont Dozier, who made up the peerless Holland Dozier Holland writing and production team; Mickey Stevenson, composer of hits for Wonder, Martha Reeves & the Vandellas, Marvin Gaye and so many more; and Valerie Simpson, who wrote countless anthems for the label with her late husband Nick Ashford.
Hugely successful artists from later periods of Motown’s unique story will also be taking part, including Thelma Houston and Boyz II Men. Other R&B stars confirmed for the show include John Legend, Ciara, NE-YO, duo Chloe x Halle and Fantasia, while modern-day pop favourites Tori Kelly, Meghan Trainor and acappella group Pentatonix are also in the line-up. The country world will be represented by Little Big Town.
The filming of the special takes place two days after the 61st annual Grammy Awards, to be held at the STAPLES Centre in Los Angeles next Sunday (10), where Diana Ross will also perform. Tickets for Motown 60: A GRAMMY Celebration are now available at AXS.com. The show is produced by AEG Ehrlich Ventures and the writer/producer is David Wild.
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