1964 was a tumultuous year politically, with the nation still recovering from the assassination of President John F. Kennedy the previous November. In June, “Freedom Summer” brought hundreds of young people to Mississippi to work for civil rights.
But musically, it was a landmark year. February brought the Beatles to America, and it was also the year that Motown broke through and crossed over decisively as a pop powerhouse, never to be seen as a regional R&B label again.
It was three young girls from Detroit, the “no-hit” Supremes, who sealed the deal, racking up five consecutive No. 1 pop records, starting in June.
The Supremes recorded the song “Where Did Our Love Go,” and it was released 50 years ago on June 17, 1964. The song reached No. 1 on Billboard’s pop charts on Aug. 16, 1964.
In the summer of 1964, the Supremes started an unprecedented run of five No. 1 consecutive releases — other No. 1s by the girl group would come later. The feat was all the more remarkable considering their lack of recording success up to June 1964, when “Where Did Our Love Go” was released.
Aug. 16-29, 1964 “Where Did Our Love Go”
Oct. 25-Nov. 21, 1964 “Baby Love”
Dec. 13-19, 1964, Jan. 10-16, 1965 “Come See About Me”
March 21-April 3, 1965 “Stop! In the Name of Love”
June 6-12, 1965 “Back in My Arms Again”
For the full article, see “50 years later, Supremes’ run atop pop chart goes largely uncelebrated”, Detroit News, June 28, 2014.