Rock, Soul, Motown, Classic Rock, Oldies, Pop, 1960s, 1970s
Probably the most pop-oriented of Motown's major female acts, the Marvelettes didn't project as strong an identity as the Supremes, Mary Wells, or Martha Reeves, but recorded quite a few hits, including Motown's first number one single, "Please Mr. Postman" (1961). "Postman," as well as other chirpy early '60s hits like "Playboy," "Twistin' Postman," and "Beechwood 4-5789," was the label's purest girl group efforts.
The Marvelettes occupy an esteemed place in the history of American popular music as the group that caused Motown, and most notably Berry Gordy to change the label's focus from single bluesy soul artists to a smooth orchestrated harmonic sound that transcended the prior racial limits of rhythm and blues.
With their first record, Please Mr. Postman hitting the top spot on the charts and selling three million records in a crossover market, Motown was to concentrate on The Marvelettes, The Supremes, The Temptations, The Four Tops and Martha & The Vandellas and create a new group pop-soul sound that totally dominated the music charts until the advent of The Beatles four years later. Interestingly enough, The Beatles covered "Please Mr. Postman!"
Their hit singles include Hit Singles "Please, Mr. Postman," "Playboy Beechwood 4-5789," "Don't Mess with Bill," "My Baby Must Be a Magician" and "Too Many Fish in the Sea."
Photo: Mark Sonder with The Marvelettes at The House of Blues, Orlando, Florida