New panels along Detroit riverfront pay tribute to Motown’s Motortown Revues

The first time Motown royalty Duke Fakir, the sole remaining original member of the Four Tops, saw a Motortown Revue in the early 1960s at New York’s Apollo Theater, he and the rest of the group thought the same thing: we should be up there on stage.

Eventually, they were. Totally the 1960s, Motown puts its biggest acts, everyone from Diana Ross and the Supremes and Marvin Gaye to Stevie Wonder and, yes, the Four Tops, on the road, sending them by bus from city to city as part of its Motortown Revues.

“There was nothing — nothing — like the Motortown Revue — the fun we had, the camaraderie we had, the family feeling we had, the things we shared together,” said Fakir, who noted that the Four Tops didn’t join the Motortown Revue until 1964.

Fakir was part of special media tour Tuesday as the Motown Museum unveiled a series of special outdoor panels along the Detroit Riverfront dubbed the “Motown Mile Experience” to mark the 60th anniversary of the Motortown Revues. The eight panels, designed to engage with Motown fans in a different way, are spread out over a half mile and include vintage photos, postcard images, QR codes that link to songs and other details. They’re funded by Sony Music.

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