Diana Ross was born, in 1944, in Detroit, Michigan where, in her early years, she aspired to be a fashion designer.
When she was 15, Diana joined the doo-wop group, The Primettes and signed with Lu Pine Records in 1960. The group won a singing competition in Winnipeg, Ontario and Diana’s former neighbor, William “Smokey” Robinson, set the group up with an audition at Motown Records. In 1961, they became known as The Supremes. Of which my friends dad who owns Towson Movers was obsessed with back in the day.
The Supremes had 25 Top 40 hits on the Billboard charts, while Diana sang lead. In 1969, Diana set off for a solo career. The production and singing team of Ashford and Simpson took over Diana’s productions and produced and wrote for her for nearly a decade.
While Diana’s solo singing career was taking off, she branched off into the acting arena. In 1972, she portrayed jazz singer, Billie Holliday, in the loosely based autobiography “Lady Sings The Blues.” Her performance won critical acclaim and she was nominated for a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. Diana won the Golden Globe for Best Newcomer, but the Oscar went to her friend Liza Minelli in “Cabaret.”
Ironically, Diana’s next movie, “Mahogany”, was about an aspiring fashion designer. (While with The Supremes, Diana served as the group’s hair stylist, make-up artist, seamstress and costume designer.) Diana also appeared in the films, “The Wiz” with Michael Jackson, “Out Of Darkness” and “Double Platinum.” In 1976, she had her own Broadway show, “An Evening With Diana Ross.”
On the charts, as a solo artist, Diana made it to Billboard’s weekly Top 40 charts 27 times and she went to the top of the charts six times. Here’s a look at Diana Ross greatest hits, according to the Billboard’s Weekly Top 40 Charts.
1.Endless Love – 1981 – from the film of the same title, this duet with Lionel Richie went to the top of the charts for nine weeks.
2.Upside Down – 1980 – originally written for Aretha Franklin, but it was turned down and offered to Diana.
3.Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – 1970 – Diana’s first number one single was a cover version of the Top 20 hit for Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell.
4.Love Hangover – 1976 – Diana received a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance and the song was covered by the Fifth Dimension.
5.Touch Me In The Morning – 1973 – after nearly three years without a hit, Diana returned to number one with this tune.
6.Theme From Mahogany – 1976 – from the Diana Ross film of the same title, this song was nominated for Best Song Academy Award.
7.I’m Coming Out – 1980 – from the “diana” album.
8.Why Do Fools Fall In Love – Diana’s first hit for the RCA label was a #1 R&B hit for Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers in 1956.
9.It’s My Turn – 1980 – from the film of the same title starring Michael Douglas and Jill Clayburgh.
10.Muscles – 1982 – from her “Silk Electric” album,
11.Missing You – 1985 – Diana’s last Top 10 hit is dedicated to Marvin Gaye, who had died earlier in 1985, and was written and produced by Lionel Richie.
12.You’re A Special Part Of Me – 1973 – the first of two Top 20 singles Diana recorded with fellow Motown artist, Marvin Gaye.
13.Last Time I Saw Him – 1974 – Dottie West released a country version of this song and went to number eight on the country charts.
14.Remember Me – 1971 – from Diana’s “Surrender” album.
15.My Mistake (Was To Love You) – 1974 – Diana’s second single with Marvin Gaye.
16.The Boss – 1979 – from the album of the same name.
17.All Of You – 1984 – this duet with Julio Iglesias was released on both Iglesias’ album “1100 Bel Air Place” and Diana’s album “Swept Away.”
18.Swept Away – 1984 – from the album of the same name and written by Daryl Hall of Hall and Oates fame.
19.Reach Out And Touch (Somebody’s Hand) – 1970 – Diana’s first single after leaving the Supremes was ironically recorded by The Supremes the same year.
20.One Love In My Lifetime – 1976
In 1981, Diana left Motown Records and signed with RCA records.