50 years ago in 1959 Berry Gordy, the founder of Tamla Records, signs an $800 loan agreement with Ber-Berry, the Gordy family co-op fund, to incorporate his Tamla Motown Record Company in Detroit, hitsville USA. Motown is the abbreviation of "Motor Town" a nickname for Detroit.
Motown played an important role in the racial integration of popular music, as it was the first record label owned by an African American to primarily feature African-American artists who achieved crossover success. In the 1960s, Motown and its soul-based subsidiaries were the most successful proponents of what came to be known as "The Motown Sound", a style of soul music with a distinct pop influence.
"The Motown Sound" was primarily made by the Funk Brothers for the most Motown Records recordings from 1959 until 1972.
Happy 50th Anniversary, Motown!