*Award-winning author Andrea Davis Pinkney has penned a text-book-style story of the Motown phenomenon titled “Rhythm Ride: A Trip Through the Motown Sound” (Roaring Brook Press 2015). Many books have been written about the little company that songwriter Berry Gordy assembled with an 800.00 loan from his family in 1959, but Pinkney has refined the story through fire and removed the dross as one does gold and silver, for luster!
School libraries and other literary circles are embracing this well-crafted piece for not only the music and the people who made the music, but also the significant role it played during the civil rights struggle of the 1960’s.
From his experience working at Ford Motor Company, Gordy executed an assembly line formula and set out to make great music – not black music, put simply great music that had a universal appeal. Motown music exceeded expectations as Pinkney writes: “Race music had become a thing of the past. The Motown sound was no longer defined by race. As Berry cited in the liner notes of Greatest Hits (the Temptations Album), the Motown sound was now considered “The Sound of Young America.”
Written for middle school and older children, Rhythm Ride is sure to capture the interest of this and new generations to come as a text book staple.
By the way, it was my fifth grade school teacher, Sandy Schuckett, who sent me the book and it meets her approval too!
Larry Buford is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer. Author of “Things Are Gettin’ Outta Hand” (Steuben Pub) www.amazon.com. E-mail: [email protected] Visit the author at www.larrybuford.com. (213) 220-8101