Is soul music still alive

"Soul music is my life"

MKM Music Schweinfurt conducted an interview with Glenn Leonard - the lead singer of the US soul legend The Temptations (an excerpt) on the occasion of the Motown Gold Concert on October 1st in the Schweinhalle town hall.

Hello Glenn, Frankens soul fans are already looking forward to the “Temptations” concert on October 1st in the Schweinfurt town hall. When did you start making music?

GL: I got my first guitar when I was 9 years old. When I was 13, I was lucky enough to get hired for some cash at a neighborhood party. That's how my career began, so to speak.

From 1975 "Papa was a Rolling Stone" shot into the top charts worldwide. What does it mean to you to be the lead singer of Temptations?

GL: My dream came true. I was overjoyed to be part of the "Temptations". At that time we were one of the supergroups in show business. It was just great, but also very hard work and I learned a lot from it.

You were also a member of the legendary "Temptations Reunion Tour 1982".

GL: Yes, that was a very great experience. I was very grateful for the opportunity to be on stage again with Eddie Kendricks, David Ruffin and Melvin Franklin, the co-founders of this band and Richard Street. Unfortunately, they died far too early.

How was it touring with other Motown acts like "The Jackson 5" or "Stevie Wonder"?

GL: That was a great time for us and the whole Motown family. We also had shows with “Marvin Gaye”, “The Miracles” or “Diana Ross”. During this time I have become what I am as an artist. It was really very exciting (laughs).

Over 50 years in the music business. Is there a special moment that you like to remember?

GL: I consider the "Temptations" to be the highlight of my life, I have received many awards and distinctions and in 2013 I was inducted into the "R&B Music Hall of Fame", which I am very proud of. But the feeling when the fans all over the world sing your songs with you, then that's just the greatest.

Many bands or musicians lose their “creative hunger” or become sluggish. How do you manage not to fall into a routine?

GL: Well, I always think about where I come from and I am grateful for the many little joys that I can experience. God gave me a talent and for me our hits are the best gift that we can give to our fans. That's why we give the best on stage every evening, I just love that sweet soul music.

Are there certain groups or music that you are currently working on?

GL: Oh, I love to hear a little bit of everything. I can relax with classical or jazz music. But my great love remains soul, funk, R&B and pop. I am curious and want to be at eye level with the music - that includes staying open to everything.

What are your future plans?

GL: As long as I'm fit and the fans come to the shows, we will continue to tour. We are in Paris in October, among other things. invited to France 2's biggest TV show, which is broadcast in all French-speaking countries and around 70 million viewers worldwide. Show business is my life and I plan to perform for a long time.

What can fans in Franconia expect at the concert?

GL: We are presenting our “Motown Gold Tour” with the biggest hits like “My Girl”, “Papa was a rolling stone” or “Treat here like a lady”. In addition, the group has grown into an all-star ensemble with other top singers and ex-members of "The Platters" or "The Miracles". The best thing to do is come by and let yourself be surprised, we are really looking forward to the fans.

Thank you for the interview.

The interview is conducted by Mike Klein from MKM Music Schweinfurt.

Tickets for the concert with the Tempations are available in advance at the Rhön- and Saalepost in Industriestraße 8 in Bad Neustadt.