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Dunbar - Wayne - Lamont Dozier Article

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Probably one for Ian Dewhirst...

The Guardian ran an interview with Lamont Dozier, and he intimated that HDH wrote "Band Of Gold" and many other Invictus/Hot wax tracks.

I've previously read that Edith Wayne was the "cleaner" and/or related to Eddie Holland. Ronald Dunbar was cited as "A&R" in the article ...but not a writer.

Basically the question is....are all tracks credited to Dunbar/  Wayne really HDH?

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I should have made my post clearer....sorry.

I thought that was the case. as in HDH not allowed to have writer credits due to law suits etc, but on playing the HDH box set, I thought I'd seen Dunbar/Wayne AFTER the ban had been lifted...I'll check the box set liner notes and dates. Confident that Edith Wayne was a "in Joke" but was Dunbar never involved in writing? And if his name appears after HDH started to have name credit, what was going on ?

I'll have a look

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When I had dinner with Lamont Dozier he told me that Edith Wayne was the cleaner in their building and Ronald Dunbar was the Janitor, but in reality HDH wrote anything that was credited to them. Also told me that The Originals asked for Lamont Dozieer to work with them on their California Sunset album which Berry Gordy reluctantly agreed to, he just didn't put any backing behind it so it never got the exposure it should have done.

Kev

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Stateside

Thank You for that....very interesting. Mind a bit foggy but was there a Detroit singer Ronnie Love? think that was Dunbar.....could be confused, often am.

"California Sunset" is one of my all time favourite albums....love LD 's work around that time.

 

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Wasn't Ronnie Love Ron Dunbar of The Peps (later, Fabulous Peps)?  Ron Dunbar was credited writer of Ronnie Love's D-Town songs in the early '60s.  So, that "janitor" could very well have been that same person.  Muddy Waters was one of the painters at Chess' office.  Lots of Motown artists and writers had menial "day jobs" at Motown.  I had heard, since the early '70s, that THE Ron Dunbar DID, indeed, do some of his own REAL songwriting at HDH Productions, ostensibly, at the very least, the songs that appeared after HDH were again allowed to have their credits listed.  Apparently, Dunbar WAS working with HDH all along, which is one of the reasons they used his name for a "front", as he had to pass the songwriting proceeds along to The Hollands and Lamont.  He hadn't been with The Peps for some years before 1969, so it is natural that they picked him up, along with other unaffiliated Detroit artists and songwriters when they left Motown.

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Her's an excerpt from an interview with Dunbar:

"They [Holland-Dozier-Holland] helped to develop, by coaching and by directing the writers and producers that they were "mentoring," and I was one of those people, so I helped in development. I was given certain projects to write. "Band of Gold" was one of those projects and I came up with the title "Band of Gold" first. I helped write the lyrics according to how the track was and used the melody structure that we got listening to the track.  I also co-wrote "Patches" with General Johnson, the lead singer of Chairmen of the Board.  I was part of the "in-house" team that was being developed at the time. It wound up being a heck of an opportunity for newer writers, like myself and to some other people in getting their careers developed. When I say "newer" I mean people that had some experience but nowhere near the success of the HDH team. It was a great treat to be under the umbrella of H-D-H."

I think he probably only helped Eddie Holland on the lyrics of "Band of Gold", and may have come up with the title.  But, maybe he did co-write "Patches" with General Johnson.  It seems a lot more likely that he worked in the creative side of HDH productions, rather than just being the janitor of their office building, as he'd been a songwriter previously with D-Town, and also was a songwriter/producer working with George Clinton, afterwards.

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During the brilliant 'meet the producers' last month in Liverpool Lamont Dozier stated he head hunted General Johnson possibly causing the break up of the Showmen, The foundations for Invictus were laid well before HDH left Motown.

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Her's an excerpt from an interview with Dunbar:

I think he probably only helped Eddie Holland on the lyrics of "Band of Gold", and may have come up with the title.  But, maybe he did co-write "Patches" with General Johnson.  It seems a lot more likely that he worked in the creative side of HDH productions, rather than just being the janitor of their office building, as he'd been a songwriter previously with D-Town, and also was a songwriter/producer working with George Clinton, afterwards.

Thanks Robb

I guess that was the way my thinking went...Dunbar was involved in A&R writing and production, to some extent. I was curious if any mention of Dunbar meant HDH.

I'm now thinking that if it says "Wayne" then it's HDH....anything later with Dunbar may be HDH/Dunbar or even Dunbar alone.

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When I had dinner with Lamont Dozier he told me that Edith Wayne was the cleaner in their building and Ronald Dunbar was the Janitor, but in reality HDH wrote anything that was credited to them. Also told me that The Originals asked for Lamont Dozieer to work with them on their California Sunset album which Berry Gordy reluctantly agreed to, he just didn't put any backing behind it so it never got the exposure it should have done.

Kev

Let's get things totally straight.  I too know Lamont and Ron. Make no mistake Dunbar/Wayne wrote Band of Gold and others they were credited too. 

The guvnor's H-D-H would have inevitably been involved in the overall finished product but Ron was absolutely one of the writers.  

The sources of my findings are my interviews with Ron Dubar( LA 2004), Greg Perry(2004) ,Edna Wright(2004), General Johnson(2002), Lamont Dozier(2003)

I will try and locate the full RD talky bit and turn it into a Mixcloud special at some stage. 

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Let's get things totally straight.  I too know Lamont and Ron. Make no mistake Dunbar/Wayne wrote Band of Gold and others they were credited too. 

The guvnor's H-D-H would have inevitably been involved in the overall finished product but Ron was absolutely one of the writers.  

The sources of my findings are my interviews with Ron Dubar( LA 2004), Greg Perry(2004) ,Edna Wright(2004), General Johnson(2002), Lamont Dozier(2003)

I will try and locate the full RD talky bit and turn it into a Mixcloud special at some stage. 

I don't doubt what you say Kev. I asked him about Dunbar and Wayne and that's what he said. I asked him a load of stuff like was he related to Gene Dozier?

Kev

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From what I've read, Edith Wayne was a friend of The Holland family,  She was just a name used for a money collection designation for The Hollands and Lamont, and she made no creative contribution to HDH Production's product.  Dunbar, on the other hand, was part of the creative staff.  He was likely involved every time his name was used.  HOWEVER, during the time that HDH still could not list their names, his part in the production or songwriting was likely to have been significantly less than that of The Hollands and Lamont.  WE can all hear it on "Band of Gold" and "Give Me Just A Little More Time" and The Honey Cone's hits.  On the songs after HDH were eligible to be listed, surely Dunbar stood for Ron Dunbar alone.  Wayne no longer was used at that point.  Dunbar was groomed by HDH as a "junior" A&R man and producer.  He proved that after HDH Productions stopped, by doing a creditable job on projects together with George Clinton, and a few other independent projects.

But, the story about HDH using Edith Wayne's and Ron Dunbar's to stand for credits that should have been theirs is true.  Wayne's name must have stood for the music writing, and Dunbar's, for the majority of the lyrics writing, with Dunbar as a junior writing "helper" until they were allowed to use their own names.  Dunbar acted as assistant producer to HDH, when they couldn't give themselves producer credit.  After they could take the credit, he must have been the sole producer for his name's portion of the credits. when he was given production credit (e.g. "Patches"?).

So, the rumours and story WAS true, and yet, Dunbar was also telling some truth about himself.  It was just a blending of the two.  But no one can convince me that Ron Dunbar, alone, wrote the music for those HDH Productions hits, or even that he was the lead writer on them.

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Really stunned to here that as Ron would be extremely embarrassed to hear it.  Dunbar and Wayne were prolific hit makers and I totally believe his version of events. He's remained a friend since 2004 and we hope to see him in 2018 at the next Soultripusa.  

 

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Regarding producer credits, Ron Dunbar got only one listing as producer(Honey Cone's 1st Hot Wax release) early in Invictus' and Hot Wax's operations, while HDH Productions' Staff and HDH Productions got the Invictus credits, and Gold Coach Productions got Hot Wax's.  After HDH returned he got a couple producer credits on Invictus and a few on Hot Wax.  Those certainly must have stood for him alone.  Lamont Dozier got a couple production credits on his own, otherwise, "HDH Productions" continued to be used to stand for The Holland Brothers and Lamont Dozier, together.

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From what I've read, Edith Wayne was a friend of The Holland family,  She was just a name used for a money collection designation for The Hollands and Lamont, and she made no creative contribution to HDH Production's product.  Dunbar, on the other hand, was part of the creative staff.  He was likely involved every time his name was used.  HOWEVER, during the time that HDH still could not list their names, his part in the production or songwriting was likely to have been significantly less than that of The Hollands and Lamont.  WE can all hear it on "Band of Gold" and "Give Me Just A Little More Time" and The Honey Cone's hits.  On the songs after HDH were eligible to be listed, surely Dunbar stood for Ron Dunbar alone.  Wayne no longer was used at that point.  Dunbar was groomed by HDH as a "junior" A&R man and producer.  He proved that after HDH Productions stopped, by doing a creditable job on projects together with George Clinton, and a few other independent projects.

But, the story about HDH using Edith Wayne's and Ron Dunbar's to stand for credits that should have been theirs is true.  Wayne's name must have stood for the music writing, and Dunbar's, for the majority of the lyrics writing, with Dunbar as a junior writing "helper" until they were allowed to use their own names.  Dunbar acted as assistant producer to HDH, when they couldn't give themselves producer credit.  After they could take the credit, he must have been the sole producer for his name's portion of the credits. when he was given production credit (e.g. "Patches"?).

So, the rumours and story WAS true, and yet, Dunbar was also telling some truth about himself.  It was just a blending of the two.  But no one can convince me that Ron Dunbar, alone, wrote the music for those HDH Productions hits, or even that he was the lead writer on them.

 

Well in my opinion that is not factually correct and if you see MY sources(which are HDH staff connections) that I have personally met and interviewed ie Dunbar, Dozier, Johnson, Wright and Perry they tell a different story. Ron Dunbar was a good pop songwriter who I genuinely believe wrote 'Band of Gold' and others. 

The fact that HDH dominated the production is correct but not before Dunbar and Wayne created the ingredients for a worldwide multi million selling smash. 

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Well in my opinion that is not factually correct and if you see MY sources(which are HDH staff concredible Wellat I have personally met and interviewed ie Dunbar, Dozier, Johnson, Wright and Perry they tell a different story. Ron Dunbar was a good pop songwriter who I genuinely believe wrote 'Band of Gold' and others. 

The fact that HDH dominated the production is correct but not before Dunbar and Wayne created the ingredients for a worldwide multi million selling smash. 

No mention of Edith Wayne in your interviews. Who was she in your opinion. Why would they have one credible contributer and not another!

Kev

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In the book "Detroit "67", the name Edith Wayne is said to come  from the following sources- Lamont Dozier took the name Edith from his teacher Edith 

Burke who was the 1st person to encourage his passion for music. While trying to come up with the last name,they spotted billboards for Wayne State 

University and took that.

    In the liner notes for "Heaven Must Have Sent You- The H-D-H Story", Eddie Holland singled out Ron Dunbar, Angelo Bond and Greg Perry for their 

contributions to Hot Wax and Invictus. I don't doubt he wrote and produced along with H-D-H.

     Ron was still active in the music business in the 2000's - here's a copy of his business card and a CD he worked on ...

 

dunbar.jpg

Edited by the yank

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In the book "Detroit "67", the name Edith Wayne is said to come  from the following sources- Lamont Dozier took the name Edith from his teacher Edith 

Burke who was the 1st person to encourage his passion for music. While trying to come up with the last name,they spotted billboards for Wayne State 

University and took that.

    In the liner notes for "Heaven Must Have Sent You- The H-D-H Story", Eddie Holland singled out Ron Dunbar, Angelo Bond and Greg Perry for their 

contributions to Hot Wax and Invictus. I don't doubt he wrote and produced along with H-D-H.

     Ron was still active in the music business in the 2000's - here's a copy of his business card and a CD he worked on ...

 

dunbar.jpg

I still go back to my question to him. Why would he lie. He said she was the cleaner in their building. Why put one ficticious name on the credits and one genuine name. Clearly they couldn't use their own names. Doesn't make sense.

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What if Edith Wayne = Holland, Dozier, Holland and Ron Dunbar was actually Ron Dunbar ?

Since they couldn't use their names because of the Motown lawsuit, they used Edith Wayne and gave Ron credit for his work ?

 

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  27 minutes ago, The Golden 101 said:

Well in my opinion that is not factually correct and if you see MY sources(which are HDH staff connections) that I have personally met and interviewed ie Dunbar, Dozier, Johnson, Wright and Perry they tell a different story. Ron Dunbar was a good pop songwriter who I genuinely believe wrote 'Band of Gold' and others. 

The fact that HDH dominated the production is correct but not before Dunbar and Wayne created the ingredients for a worldwide multi million selling smash. 

 

 

Given that Lamont Dozier, himself, told you that he and The Holland Brothers didn't write "Band of Gold", but Ron Dunbar and Edith Wayne wrote the song, I will defer to your information.  So, apparently, Ron Dunbar wrote the words to Band of Gold".  But Edith Wayne must, then, have written the music.  So, IF all that we've read and heard, that "Edith Wayne" was a placeholder for HDH is true, then The Holland Brothers and Lamont Dozier wrote the music to "Band of Gold" and those other Dunbar Wayne songs. 

That jibes with what Dunbar said in his interview, that he was given a tape of the music, and he wrote the lyrics to fit to the music.

So, I assume that either Ron Dunbar did (1),  ALL the lyric writing in all the Dunbar/Wayne songs, OR, (2), he, alone, wrote all the lyrics to "Band of Gold", and otherwise had participated to a varying degree in the lyric writing (and, possibly, the music writing) from writing all the lyrics, to co-writing them with HDH or one or more of that trio as an equal partner, or just played a minor role in the lyric writing.

I can believe that Ron Dunbar wrote all the lyrics to "Band of Gold".  I can even believe that he wrote all the lyrics to The Honey Cone's songs.  But, I couldn't possibly believe that HE or someone else wrote all the music to those songs, and that HDH did not have ALL, or the major portion of the writing contribution to the writing of the music.

 

 

Edited by RobbK

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What if Edith Wayne = Holland, Dozier, Holland and Ron Dunbar was actually Ron Dunbar ?

Since they couldn't use their names because of the Motown lawsuit, they used Edith Wayne and gave Ron credit for his work ?

 

You could be right. Potentially, could there be a law suit pending if they ever admitted publicly to being Edith Wayne. Good point

Kev

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Given that Lamont Dozier, himself, told you that he and The Holland Brothers didn't write "Band of Gold", but Ron Dunbar and Edith Wayne wrote the song, I will defer to your information.  So, apparently, Ron Dunbar wrote the words to Band of Gold".  But Edith Wayne must, then, have written the music.  So, IF all that we've read and heard, that "Edith Wayne" was a placeholder for HDH is true, then The Holland Brothers and Lamont Dozier wrote the music to "Band of Gold" and those other Dunbar Wayne songs.  So, I assume that either Ron Dunbar did (1),  ALL the lyric writing in all the Dunbar/Wayne songs, OR, (2), he, alone, wrote all the lyrics to "Band of Gold", and otherwise had participated to a varying degree in the lyric writing (and, possibly, the music writing) from writing all the lyrics, to co-writing them with HDH or one or more of that trio as an equal partner, or just played a minor role in the lyric writing.

 

 

I think this was dierected at Golden 101................different Kev

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What if Edith Wayne = Holland, Dozier, Holland and Ron Dunbar was actually Ron Dunbar ?

Since they couldn't use their names because of the Motown lawsuit, they used Edith Wayne and gave Ron credit for his work ?

 

That seems to be the case.  It seems that HDH always participated in the music writing in the Dunbar-Wayne songs, and the only questions are whether or not Dunbar participated in the music writing on some songs, and whether or not HDH participated in the songwriting in some or most of the songs (other than "Band of Gold".

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I think this was dierected at Golden 101................different Kev

Yes, I DID direct it towards Golden 101.  There was a defect in that post that made it appear that Stateside made that quote.  But, if you look closely, I placed "27 minutes ago, The Golden 101 said:"  above my response.

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What if Edith Wayne = Holland, Dozier, Holland and Ron Dunbar was actually Ron Dunbar ?

Since they couldn't use their names because of the Motown lawsuit, they used Edith Wayne and gave Ron credit for his work ?

 

I think this is the likely explanation , from the bits of information I've seen. Going back to my original post , Lamont Dozier , last week, intimated that HDH wrote all that stuff...but it seems Ron Dunbar was involved and I think that when his name appears after HDH were legal, it's genuinely him.

However, it seems to me that Edith Wayne , whatever the origin, was an in joke....either as a cleaner, relative or  ghost.

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That seems to be the case.  It seems that HDH always participated in the music writing in the Dunbar-Wayne songs, and the only questions are whether or not Dunbar participated in the music writing on some songs, and whether or not HDH participated in the songwriting in some or most of the songs (other than "Band of Gold".

There's a thread on soulful Detroit from 2003 which just reiterates what we already know.

http://soulfuldetroit.com/archives/1157/4841.html?1061365045

Kev

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I don't agree with the Soulful Detroit thread's conclusion that "Edith Wayne" represented only Eddie Holland.  That would mean that only Eddie Holland wrote ALL the music on ALL those Invictus and Hot Wax hits, and Eddie co-wrote the words with Ron Dunbar.  I rather believe that H-D-H wrote ALL the music, and Eddie Holland co-wrote most of the songs with Ron Dunbar  (and Lamont and Brian Holland probably participated in some of the lyrics writing.  Therefore, I believe that "Edith Wayne stood for Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Eddie Holland, and when Ron Dunbar was credited, he had participated in the lyrics writing.  If HDH had participated in BOTH music and lyrics writing, they wouldn't have gotten their names twice in the credits.  So, if their "pen name" (Edith Wayne) was in the credits, they surely wrote the music, and they may, or may not have participated in the lyrics writing.  Based on what was stated in the Soulful Detroit thread, I would guess that the most common situation was only Eddie Holland co-writing with Ron Dunbar, but on some songs, the other two did, as well.  Based on the wording and sound of the song, "Band of Gold", I believe that Eddie Holland participated in the lyrics writing with Ron Dunbar, either as a full co-writer, or only directing him from above (e.g. brainstorming with him, letting him run with it and come up with lyrics, then "editing" it - coming up with recommended changes and additions).  I am sure that Ron Dunbar didn't attempt to aggrandise himself to give a false impression that he wrote "Band of Gold" without ANY "guidance".  He just had to be careful; about how he worded his description of what happened, so that Universal or Berry Gordy wouldn't sue HDH again.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ron_Dunbar

 

more of the same confusion, selective memory etc

Dunbar HAD to use "selective memory", and refer to Edith Wayne as his partner, because of the potential legal ramifications to HDH.  If he mentioned that HDH wrote the music for that song("Band of Gold"), or, that Eddie Holland co-wrote the lyrics (IF he, indeed did), he'd have been out of a job.  So, there are no surprises there.

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You could be right. Potentially, could there be a law suit pending if they ever admitted publicly to being Edith Wayne. Good point

Kev

 

Dunbar HAD to use "selective memory", and refer to Edith Wayne as his partner, because of the potential legal ramifications to HDH.  If he mentioned that HDH wrote the music for that song("Band of Gold"), or, that Eddie Holland co-wrote the lyrics (IF he, indeed did), he'd have been out of a job.  So, there are no surprises there.

I think you're right Robb. I'm not sure what the limitation period is in the states, but could Berry Gordy still go after HDH if he could prove that at that time they were writing, they were still under contract to Motown and if so, would he be entitled to his loss, which would be a share of the profits made by Invictus. I know Invictus no longer exists, but HDH still exist, albeit as individuals. Im not a lawyer, but in the UK I think (not sure) it is 12 years after the point of knowledge.

I'll get my tin hat.

 

Kev

 

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I agree that he talks about Edith Wayne but it is code for HDH..all the talk of cleaner, relative  etc must be a smokescreen.

Yes, exactly.  That interview was some years ago.  It may well have been after the statute of limitations.  I'm sure Dunbar made a promise to HDH on what he'd say if asked.  So, I expect him to keep his word until HDH are deceased, or they admit, publicly, all the details.

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It must be frustrating for HDH , giving interviews on the same old soup, by journalists who barely know the Motown history ,and have their Invictus catalogue virtually ignored.

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