Dancing in the Street with Mickey Stevenson

December 03, 2020


From Motor City to all around the world and back, music from the Mickey Stevenson catalog has made its way Downtown — and we're "dancing in the street" to a 70-song playlist of his classics in celebration.

Today, we announced our acquisition of the rights to music from the catalog of legendary songwriter and record producer William “Mickey” Stevenson. The former head of Motown A&R was not only responsible for signing talent like Martha Reeves, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder and The Four Tops, and recruiting the iconic label’s famed studio band after joining in 1959, but also penning classic songs for Eddie Holland, Gaye, Kim Weston, The Supremes, The Temptations, and many others.

Included in the acquired catalog is the enduring hit “Dancing In The Street,” co-written with Stevenson’s frequent collaborators Gaye and Ivy Jo Hunter. Originally released by Martha Reeves & The Vandellas, the song peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1964 and has become a protest anthem for many movements over the years. It has also been notably covered by artists across genres time and time again, including David Bowie and Mick Jagger, Donald Byrd, Grateful Dead, The Kinks, Little Richard, The Mamas & The Papas, Ramsey Lewis, Tages, Van Halen, and The Who.

Listen to all of the aforementioned renditions of "Dancing In The Street" as well as other Motown classics — like "Stubborn Kind Of Fellow," "Devil With The Blue Dress," and “Beechwood 4-5789” — recorded by Andre Williams, Carolyn Crawford, The Contours, Cornell Blakely, Debbie Dean, Don McKenzie, The Equadors, Gino Parks, Hattie Littles, Herman Griffin, Jimmy Ruffin, Lee & The Leopards, Mable John, The Marvelettes, Mary Wells, Mike & The Modifiers, The Miracles, The Morrocco Muzik Makers, The Mysterions, Sammy Ward, Shorty Long, The Spinners, Tommy Good, the Velvelettes, and more on our Dancing In The Street playlist.

Photo of Mickey Stevenson by Angela George, used under CC BY-SA 3.0. Modified from original.