The legendary Temptations are almost as active as they were in the 1960s. One original member, 79-year-old Otis Williams, is still with them. The best part of the story is that they are coming to Europe.
Berlin, January 4th, 2021 (The Berlin Spectator) — Founded in 1960 in Detroit, The Temptations are the pioneers of Soul. For six decades, they have mesmerized their audiences and fans. And they delivered countless hits that are still known by people of several generations today.
In 1969, winning a Grammy award was still considered a mission impossible for a Black band. But they got one that year, for their tune ‘Cloud Nine’. They were the first Motown act to be honored this way. Countless awards later, eight years ago, in 2013, they also received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. It was about time for that one.
One of the first big hits The Temptations scored was ‘My Girl’ in 1965. Recorded in 1971, ‘Just My Imagination’ is another one absolutely everyone knows. These tunes are still being played on radio stations around the world today. In 1972, ‘Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone’ became yet another huge Temptations hit. This one has been covered by absolutely everyone since.
Easy to Identify
Phil Collins is among the artists who interpreted ‘Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone’. So are The Jackson Five, Was (Not Was), Living Colour, Precious Wilson and even George Michael. While their songs were borrowed by fellow artists, The Temptations never stopped touring or producing hits. And they tried to adapt to the times they were living in.
The year was 1984 when they came up with yet another hit. It was entitled ‘Treat Her Like a Lady’ and consisted of drum programing, exaggerated 1980s synths as well as other elements that were considered modern at the time. But it was still easy to identify The Temptations through their voices and general approach.
At the Top
In 1960, there were five founding members. Paul Williams died in 1973, Elbridge Bryant, who died in 1975, was thrown out of the group in 1963. Eddie Kendricks, who also had a good solo career, passed away in 1992. Melvin Franklin a.k.a. David English, who was part of The Temptations until 1994, died in 1995. The only original member who is still part of the endeavor today is the great Otis Williams who will turn 80 later this year.
The Temptations hit the top of the U.S. R&B Charts a million times. Some of their songs were even released in German, French, Spanish and Italian in the 1960s. From today’s perspective, that aspect is actually crazy. The band went from classic 1960s style Soul to Funk and Dance in the 1980s. The late Dennis Edwards helped them with that transition. Today, they are mostly back to the classic style, and they are still recording.
Corona Postpones Tour
“Give it up for The Temptations!” This is how Sindbad a.k.a David Adkins introduced The Temptations in 1997 at his Soul Festival in Aruba. What a funky intro they delivered! Counting the stages they have performed on until then or after that great performance is pretty much impossible.
Ready for the good news? Here we go: In October of 2021, they are coming to Europe as ‘The Temptations Review’. Originally, they were supposed to come in 2020, but then Corona hit.
U.K. and Germany
‘The Temptations Review – 60 Years of Motown Gold’ will be hitting the United Kingdom first. Starting on October 1st, 2021, they will be performing in Cardiff, Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham, Nottingham and London. Once they are done with that leg of the tour, they will come over to mainland Europe.
Hamburg is on the touring plan. None other than The Temptations will be there on October 7th, 2021. On the 17th, they are scheduled to play in Halle, and on the 19th in Dresden. Berlin is where they will raise the roof on October 20th, 2021. Chemnitz is next, on October 21st, and Leipzig is on the touring plan as well, namely on October 22nd, 2021.
There are also dates in Bremen (October 8th), Bochum (October 9th), Mannheim (October 11th), Ludwigsburg (October 12th), Aschaffenburg (October 13th), Fürth (October 15th) and Baunatal (October 16th). Tickets for all German gigs are available here.