Scherrie Payne and Susaye Greene, two of the final line-up of the Supremes, are to perform live together tomorrow night (Saturday July 5).
Payne joined the Supremes in 1973, while Greene became the last new member of the Motown singing legends in 1976. Both appeared with original member Mary Wilson on the group’s final two albums, ‘High Energy’ and ‘Mary, Scherrie & Susaye,’ both released in 1976.
The group disbanded the following year, when Greene (who had been in showbusiness since childhood and sung in Ray Charles’ Raelettes) pursued a highly successful songwriting career. She co-wrote Deniece Williams’ UK No. 1 hit ‘Free’ and, as a former member of Stevie Wonder’s Wonderlove, co wrote ‘I Can’t Help It’ with Stevie, for Michael Jackson’s ‘Off The Wall’ album.
Tomorrow night, at the Sheraton Gateway LAX Hotel in Los Angeles, Payne and Greene will perform songs from ‘Partners,’ the album they recorded as Scherrie & Susaye for Motown in 1979. That record featured a guest appearance by Greene’s old friend Ray Charles on the track ‘Love Bug.’
Speaking exclusively to uDiscover, Greene notes that the album has now been released by Universal Japan, “and it’s going around the world, and of course it’s the first time it was ever on CD. It’s really special to us. It’s like ‘That’s what happened then, and here it is.’ The fans have lobbied for it. It’s a really special moment.”
She adds that she’s been busy with new solo work. “I’ve been in the studio, writing some new things, working on some animation,” says Greene. “It’s very exciting, it’s just a really intense time for me. After the Partners show, I’ll go back into the studio and get some things out, on my own label, Dollface Records.”
Greene also spoke about her role in the Grammy-winning documentary film about backing singers, ’20 Feet From Stardom.’ “I’m only in it for a hot minute, but I’m so glad to have been part of it. We were all doubtful — a movie about background singers?!
“But what inspired all of us was Gil Friesen, who was the creator of it, he was [formerly] head of A&M. He was such a magical person with such charisma, and I’m so sad that he passed just before its tremendous Academy Award success.”