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Diana Ross

Wednesday

Jun 28, 2017 – 8:00 PM

1 Daily's Place
Jacksonville, FL 32202 Map

  • Diana Ross

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Diana Ross: Diana Ross is a global entertainment icon, a legendary musical treasure whose music has, for decades, inspired romance, happiness and joy. From her pioneering work with The Supremes and Motown, to numerous hits later in her solo career, Ross has been a legend and role model for women and African Americans in a time when neither were treated fairly in the music industry.

Ross was born and raised in Detroit, and was at one point neighbors with future Motown star Smokey Robinson. In high school, she took classes on design and seamstress skills, initially wanting to become a fashion designer. Around the same time, at the age of 15, she joined a female vocal group called the Primettes. Legend has it that, while auditioning at Motown Records, founder Berry Gordy was stopped in his tracks on the way to a meeting upon hearing Ross' voice coming from another room. Gordy suggested they come back after graduating from high school, and eventually signed the girls before changing their name and appointing Ross the lead singer.

Ross used her cosmetic and tailoring knowledge to do the group's hair, makeup, and costuming early in their career. After a few minor hits, The Supremes scored their first #1 single with "Where Did Our Love Go", followed by a string of ten more #1 hits. The group not only became a sensation in the US, but also the UK, where the music of The Supremes topped the charts. By 1967, their name had changed to Diana Ross & The Supremes and the very next year, Ross began performing as a solo artist.

In an effort to bolster her upcoming solo career, Motown records claimed that Ross had discovered the Jackson 5, and included her in many of their press events. Ross' solo work began with a bang; her 1970 self-titled album featured the legendary singles "Reach Out and Touch (Somebody's Hand)" and a cover of Gaye & Terrell's "Ain't No Mountain High Enough". In 1973, Ross became the first duet partner of Marvin Gaye following the death of Tammi Terrell, releasing the monumentally successful Diana & Marvin. The next year, she became the first African-American woman to co-host the Academy Awards.

Despite the overwhelming success and popularity she had experienced, Ross' most successful album was 1980's diana, which featured the hit singles "I'm Coming Out" and "Upside Down". The album showcased the singer's transition into disco and dance styles, attracting a new generation of fans despite the decline of disco's popularity. It would be her final album for Motown Records.

In 1983, Ross attempted to transition from soul to pop rock on her album Ross, but audiences failed to respond. She returned to her classic style on 1984's Swept Away, which quickly went gold and featured a hit duet with Julio Iglesias, "All of You". Though Berry Gordy sold Motown Records to MCA in 1988, Ross decided to return to the label not only as a performer, but also a co-owner. After a short lull in her career, Ross returned to UK and Japanese stardom with her double platinum album The Force Behind the Power in 1991.

In 2006, Ross returned to the public eye with her album of classic love songs, I Love You, which faired well on the charts. The next year, she was honored at the Kennedy Center Honors by George W. Bush. While her recording career has declined in recent years, she continues to tour and has taken limited residency at The Venetian Las Vegas. In 2016, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama.
 

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