Berry Gordy: Meet the Visionary Who Built Motown

With a modest $800 loan from his family, thirty-year-old Berry Gordy finally had enough money for a down payment on a small, two-story house in a beat-down area of Detroit. His neighbors included a family-run funeral home and a beauty parlor, but Berry didn’t care. The year was 1959 and all he could think about was laying down a secure foundation for his music empire.


Photo by Globe Photos, mediapunch, Shutterstock / Dezo Hoffman, Shutterstock / Granger, Shutterstock

Little did Berry know that his record label, Motown, would create a sound so revolutionary that it was dubbed “the heartbeat of America.” With an eye for talent, Berry went on to discover artists like Diana Ross, Marin Gaye, the Jackson 5, and Stevie Wonder, among hundreds of others.

This is the story about how one man, with a crazy dream, created one of the most successful record labels of all time.