Brenda Holloway – 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection – The Best of Brenda Holloway

ARTIST: Brenda Holloway

TITLE: 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Brenda Holloway

YEAR RELEASED: Compilation brenda holloway


SINGLES: Charting: Every Little Bit Hurts (#13), I’ll Always Love You (#60), When I’m Gone (#25, #12 R&B), Operator (#78, #36 R&B), Just Look What You’ve Done (#69, #21 R&B), You Made Me So Very Happy (#39, #40 R&B)


LINEUP: Brenda Holloway and the Motown session dudes

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Motown’s replacement for Mary Wells didn’t have the career she should have, as she was seen as temperamental and ‘difficult’.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: One of the first West Coast Motown signings, Holloway’s first single was a big hit and quite memorable. But soon, the label stopped the ‘star making’ machine for her and she seemed to be forgotten for a few years.

Holloway recorded some perfectly fine tracks that went unreleased, or not pushed by Motown so they languished in the charts. She was popular with musicians such as the Beatles, and was good on TV. Still, the last recording success she had was from her own song (“You Made Me So Very Happy”) before she left the Motown circus.

There’s not a lot of Holloway material out there, so this is a good representation. She could have been a big star had Motown let her be as independent as she wanted to be.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: She had to sue Motown and Berry Gordy for royalties resulting from the Blood, Sweat, and Tears cover of “You Made Me So Very Happy”.


GRADE: B: A short but pleasant compilation that makes you wish Motown treated her better.

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