Diana Ross & the Supremes

Live at London's Talk of the Town

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Even as they released a steady stream of pop/R&B classics in the 1960s, the Supremes tried as a live act to escape the chitlin circuit and the teen tours and graduate to the sophisticated supper clubs, a goal they achieved when they played the Copacabana. By the time the renamed Diana Ross and the Supremes played the Talk of the Town in London, they were backed by an orchestra and were presenting most of their material in abbreviated medley form. (This album contains no less than five medleys.) Ross was attempting jokes in the brief moments between musical sequences, and the song list was weighted as much with MOR standards like "Here" as it was with Supremes hits, an uneasy mixture. The live versions of the hits provided an object lesson in the importance of the Motown house band: Here, the tempos were rushed, the groove was gone, and Ross and co. were frantic to keep up. For all the razzle dazzle, though, the girls did manage to approximate a slick Las Vegas style, which makes the album a harbinger of the future. (Originally released on August 26, 1968, as Motown 676, 'Live' At London's Talk Of The Town was reissued in 1994 as part of the Motown Master Series as Motown 0328.)

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time
1 4:23
2 3:24
3 1:54
4 2:29
5 2:19
6 3:47
7 2:49
8 3:23
9 1:59
10 5:12
11 2:50
12 3:50
blue highlight denotes track pick