Former Temptations singer visits Lassen College for celebration
|Dr. Marlon Hall, left, stands with Louis Price. Hall knows Price from their boyhoods in Chicago. Photos by Jordan Clary||Louis Price was the headliner at Lassen Community College’s Black history celebration.|
March 12, 2013 — Few things unite people like music, and on Thursday, Feb. 28 Lassen Community College celebrated Black history month with Motown melodies, a little jazz and possibly one of the most rockin’ performances LCC has ever seen, with the headliner of the evening, Louis Price, former lead singer of both The Temptations and The Drifters.
“Music is very important,” said college superintendent/president Dr. Marlon Hall. “There are no barriers in music. It brings people together.”
More spirited than the blues, yet more bluesy than rock ‘n roll, Motown music burst on the scene at the height of the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s and has left its indelible mark on the music world.
|Louis Price, center, and members of the Clarity Jazz Combo, practice for the show Thursday, Feb. 28.|
Founded in Detroit by Berry Gordy in 1959, Motown Records soon began pumping out some of the most memorable hits of the era from bands like Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, The Four Tops and The Temptations.
Perhaps even more than catchy tunes and a handclapping beat, Motown music is marked by outstanding vocals with smooth interplay among the lead and backup singers.
Price, according to Hall is, “The only man living who was lead singer for both The Temptations and The Drifters.”
Price was the 12 Temptation and sang with them for three years from 1977 to 1980. Accompanying him in the performance were local band the Clarity Jazz Combo.
Hall said he knew Price from Chicago where he used to watch him play basketball. Previous to his singing career, Price worked as an elementary school teacher.
Hall said, “One thing about Louis is when he played basketball there was one move he had called the spin move. I used to watch him execute that spin move, and then I’d go home and work on it. Louis was a great basketball player. He’s a great singer and entertainer. He’s very educationally oriented. We’re happy to have Louis Price here in Susanville.”
Although music was the main attraction, the evening also included inspirational and informational speakers Pierce Leavell, Robert Bonds and Hall, keynote speaker. Hall also paid tribute to his wife, Mary, who helped with the luncheon and whose birthday was Feb. 28.
In his opening statement, Hall said Black history month was an opportunity to educate people on the vast contributions made by black men and women throughout history.
“I’ve learned a lot about different individuals, different cultures, which has been an experience for me,” he said. “Black history is important because we celebrate positive accomplishments, and we need to celebrate positive accomplishments by all of our people.”
Sponsors for Celebration of Black History month included Lassen College Foundation, Lassen Community College Associated Student Body, Lassen County Arts Council and Equal Opportunity Programs and Services. Lassen Community College graphic design students A.J. Chan and Jacob Brennan did the graphics.
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