When in Motown: Rolling Stones Visit Hitsville USA in Detroit
What do rockers do on their day off? In town early for their Detroit concert, Ron Wood and members of the Rolling Stones entourage got a VIP tour of Motown.
In the middle of a massive $50M renovation and expansion project, the Motown Museum is currently closed. When the Rolling Stones come knockin' (can't you hear me?), you get the keys. Ron Wood and several members of the band and the crew that makes the rock and roll circus happen night after night enjoyed a day off hanging at Hitsville USA.
Like their one-time rivals in the Beatles, the Rolling Stones have always been big fans of the Sound of Young America created at Motown. The band faithfully covered "Can I Get A Witness" on their first album and later did Marvin Gaye's "Hitch Hike" (a favorite of Paul Mccartney). They brought that Stones swagger to the Miracles' "Going to a Go-Go" on the Still Life live album. A Stevie Wonder deep cut is in the catalog and the Rolling Stones covered no less than three songs by the Temptations alone: "My Girl," "Just My Imagination," and "Ain't Too Proud to Beg."
Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were missing in action, but Ron Wood and his wife were joined by a few of the other band members and an entourage for a look inside the museum where all of the classic Motown hit songs by the Supremes, the Four Tops, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson 5 and so many more were recorded. A Motown Museum executive told the Detroit Free Press,
He [Ron Wood] was just like a kid in the candy store. He had the biggest smile on his face the whole time...He wanted to immerse himself and make sense of his (Motown) knowledge. He did what a lot of visitors do — having through that ah-ha moment of ‘all of that really happened here.’
-Paul Barker, Motown Museum director of development and community activation
Check out the Motown Museum's photos they shared on Facebook below, and tap here for the story of Ron Wood's visit with Keith Richards to Gibson Guitars in Kalamazoo.
Inside Motown's Legendary Recording Studio
Homes and Mansions of some of Motown's elite (and others) on the East side of Detroit, Michigan