Monday, 12 January 2009

I heard it on the grapevine....the Brits are coming

Today I'm going to combine two events, both worthy of congratulation, into one posting.

The first is to wish the revolutionary record label Motown a happy 50th birthday. It was half a century ago today that its founder, Berry Gordy, using an $800 loan from his family, launched the company that would bring black music to the masses in both America and the world. In an age of global communication and branding, it's easy to forget the racial segregation that split the USA up to and beyond the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Motown broke through the divide and found an audience, becoming in the process one of the great examples of how the media, when used effectively, can be a force for positive social change.

There's a BBC report here and you can visit the Classic  Motown website here. The site offers a great and free podcast subscription, enabling you to listen to the greats of Motown talking about their experiences, and playing some of their best known tracks. Find it here.

Motown launched the careers of Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, and Michael Jackson, amongst others. So congratulations and birthday greetings.

At the other end of the scale, yesterday saw a victorious night for the Brits at the American Golden Globes award ceremony. Kate Winslet suffered an overwhelming case of emotional overload, stuttering and blubbering her way through her acceptance speech. No matter, for her two wins - Best Supporting Actress in The Reader, and Best Actress in Revolutionary Road - were hard won and well deserved. 

Slumdog Millionaire picked up the Best Film award, and Best Director went to its visionary master, Danny Boyle.

Sally Hawkins won Best Actress for her role in Mike Leigh's film, Happy Go Lucky.

You can find the list of nominations and winners here. 

Watch the Brits blubbing and gushing here.


Brett said...

A well deserved winner

Dan Felstead said...


I lived through that era when Motown was King. I was at Purdue University from 1968 to 1972 and I spent many evenings into the early morning rockin and dancin to Percy Sledge, the Temps, Aretha, C. Berry, and BB King. Great memories in "The Midnight Hour". Happy bithday to the big MO and thanks for reminding us.