Known as one of the music business’ most influential record executives, Berry Gordy will take a life-changing step away from the business. According to Detroit Free Press, the acclaimed entertainment figure said he plans to retire this year. The announcement was made at the 60th-year celebration of Motown.
“I have come full circle. It is only appropriate (to announce this) while here in Detroit, the city where my fairy tale happened with all of you,” he said. The 89-year-old continued to state that he’s “dreamed about it, talked about, threatened it,” for years concerning retirement.
In 1959, Gordy established Motown in Detroit, Mich., first promoting the sounds of R&B/soul figures like the Miracles, Mary Wells, the Supremes, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder and more. As a songwriter, Gordy was able to get his foot in the door and become a prominent being in showbiz. He was later inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2017.
“People always ask me ‘What does the legacy of Motown mean to you?'” Gordy said, per Billboard. “The answer is simply love. The Motown legacy remains the music we made for all people that reminds us that we are all the same, that music has no color. It gives voice to honest feelings and helps us understand each other.”