Having a title of Greatest Artists of All Time gets the attention of anyone who understands not only art and music, but also humanity. All Time. For most people, that dates back over 2022 years ago. Out of a list of 100, The Temptations ranked #68 as the Greatest Artists of All Time in Rolling Stone Magazine. What an honor!
The Temptations: Greatest Artists of All Time
The Temptations! Who were they? In the early 1960s, they were two (2) rival groups known as The Distants and The Primes. However, they set aside differences and became The Elgins. Otis Williams and Melvin Franklin represented The Distants and Eddie Kendricks and Paul Williams, The Primes. In 1964, David Ruffin was added to the group. Today, Otis Williams is the only surviving member of that original group.
In 1961, The Elgins auditioned for Motown and was eagerly accepted. However, because Berry Gordy, Founder of Motown, discovered another vocal group had the same name as The Elgins, the group changed its name to The Temptations.
My Introduction to The Temps
As a young mother of three trying to get that last year of college and secure a master’s degree, I had little time for music entertainment. Therefore, it was late 1960s before I spotted the singing group known as The Temptations! Three (3) things got my attention: Five good-looking guys, superb choreography and perfect harmonization! Overnight, I became a “life-committed fan!” Songs like My Girl, I Wish It Would Rain and Ain’t to Proud to Beg captured my heart and soul.
The Greatest Artists of All Time Tackled Social Issues
By the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Vietnam War, freedom of speech and civil rights played a role in American society. The Vietnam War was personal. My husband spent two (2) tours in Saigon. Laws governing civil rights were at the breaking point and black power was on the rise. So, songs like Cloud Nine, Psychedelic Shack and Runaway Child, Running Wild touched the inner core on many Americans.
Like others, my attention was also focused on social issues. Thus, the popularity of songs emphasizing or voicing societal opinions were popular. Cloud Nine got The Temptations a Grammy Award. College students across the country protested the Vietnam War. It was a wild time in America! But it was a rapid growth period for the Greatest Artists of All Time.
Today’s Greatest Artists of All Time
The Temptations are still performing today! Otis Williams (seen in the center) is entertaining his generation and many that have followed. Yours truly has CDs, videos and movies of the Temps of all time! While relaxing at my vacation home, their music gets my undivided attention! Otis may not have the same energy generating his choreography, but he has the same soul expressing his music! That is why they are known as the “Greatest Artists of all Time!”