With support from the University of Richmond

History News Network

History News Network puts current events into historical perspective. Subscribe to our newsletter for new perspectives on the ways history continues to resonate in the present. Explore our archive of thousands of original op-eds and curated stories from around the web. Join us to learn more about the past, now.

Lamont Dozier, Part of Legendary Motown Songwriting Team, Dies at 81

Songwriter Lamont Dozier has died at age 81. Along with Brian and Eddie Holland, Dozier co-wrote dozens hits for The Supremes, Marvin Gaye, The Four Tops and others. His death was announced by his son on Instagram.

"Heat Wave," "How Sweet It Is," "Stop In The Name of Love," "You Keep Me Hangin' On," "Nowhere To Run," "Bernadette"... Holland-Dozier-Holland were talented, prolific songwriters who were instrumental in making Motown "the home of Hitsville, U.S.A."

His family released a statement saying the "devoted father and legendary songwriter, producer and recording artist, died peacefully in his home on Monday, August 8. ... We love him dearly and will miss him always."

Dozier grew up in Detroit. In 2004, he told NPR it was an elementary school teacher who liked his writing and encouraged him to keep at it. "She thought it was very astute of me to have such a feel for words and stuff," Dozier said, "So I started to put these words to music by the time I was, like, 12 or 13."

By the time he was 15, Dozier had his own doo-wop group called The Romeos.

In the 1960s, the Motor City's most talented artists soon found their way to Berry Gordy's Motown. Gordy modeled his record label after a Ford assembly line with Holland-Dozier-Holland quickly becoming one of its finest song designers.

Read entire article at NPR