Los Angeles , CA , Jan. 07, 2009 – The 50th anniversary of Motown Records, Berry Gordyâ€™s groundbreaking music company which he founded in Detroit in 1959 as â€œHitsville U.S.A. ,â€ will be celebrated in conjunction with Hallmark Gold Crown stores for Valentineâ€™s Day.
January 5 marked the release of a 10-song compilation CD, HEART & SOUL â€“ CELEBRATING 50 YEARS OF MOTOWN available for a limited time exclusively at 3,500 Hallmark Gold Crown stores nationwide. The collection, which features some of the labelâ€™s most beloved artists, is Hallmarkâ€™s 2009 Valentineâ€™s Day album
In addition, Recordable Cards with Sound, a variety of Motown related merchandise and gift wrap, and a â€œLove Machineâ€ techno plush will also be available.
â€œThis Motown partnership appeals to all generations because it features songs that are an integral part of so many of our lives,â€ says Hallmark retail merchandise manager Jay Quickel. â€œThese classic love songs reflect the essence of Valentineâ€™s Day and perfectly lend themselves to this most romantic of all occasions.â€
A collection of Recordable Cards with Sounds titled â€œMotown: Celebrating 50 Years,â€ incorporate lyrics and sound excerpts from some of the labelâ€™s most widely-known songs and allow the sender to record a 10-second personal message in the card. Some of the songs include the Jackson 5â€™s â€œDancing Machineâ€ and â€œIâ€™ll Be There,â€ the Temptationsâ€™ â€œAinâ€™t Too Proud To Beg,â€ â€œThe Way You Do The Things You Do,â€ â€œHappy Peopleâ€ and â€œGet Ready,â€ and Marvin Gayeâ€™s â€œI Heard It Through the Grapevine,â€ â€œHow Sweet It Is (to Be Loved By You)â€ and â€œGot to Give It Up.â€ These cards are available at Hallmark Gold Crown stores and other fine retailers where Hallmark product is sold.
Other Motown-related items include coffee-and-sound travel mugs featuring song lyrics and sound bites, â€œhit buttonsâ€ you press to hear excerpts of the labelâ€™s classic songs, as well as gift bags and Valentineâ€™s Day-themed gift wrap.
As part of Hallmarkâ€™s Valentineâ€™s Day promotion, a techno plush that dances and plays the Miraclesâ€™ â€œLove Machineâ€ will be available for $12.95 with a three-card purchase. In addition, the HEART & SOUL compilation music CD will be on sale at all Hallmark Gold Crown stores for $7.95, with each purchase of three greeting cards.
The HEART & SOUL album represents some of Motownâ€™s most enduring romantic songs, including tracks by the Supremes (â€œStop! In the Name of Loveâ€), Stevie Wonder (â€œSigned, Sealed, Delivered, Iâ€™m Yoursâ€), the Temptations (â€œMy Girlâ€), Martha & the Vandellas (â€œ[Love is Like a] Heat Waveâ€), Mary Wells (â€œMy Guyâ€), the Miracles (â€œLove Machineâ€) and Lionel Richie & Diana Ross (â€œEndless Loveâ€); eight of them were No. 1 songs.
Since starting Tamla Records and the â€œMotown Records Corporationâ€ on January 12, 19 59, with a loan of $800 from his family, the label group of one-time songwriter Berry Gordy continues to be a cultural phenomenon, making its mark not just on the music industry, but on society at large, with a sound that became one of the most significant musical accomplishments and inspirational success stories of the 20th century.
A man of vision, drive, talent and determination, Berry Gordy was not only a producer and innovative entrepreneur, but also a teacher. The phenomenal success of Motown Records on its 50th anniversary is a tribute to his vision. Under Gordyâ€™s leadership, and through the determination and support of the Motown family of artists, he forged new ground for minorities and made the â€œMotown Soundâ€ a worldwide phenomenon beloved by millions.
Today, Motown is part of the Universal Music Group, with its classic recorded music catalog managed by Universal Music Enterprises.