Legends of Motown come alive through east coast tour

The legends of Motown performing in Halifax Nova Scotia, this past January 27th, 2023. (Submitted: Legends of Motown)

The works of well-known popular music greats like The Supremes, the Jackson 5, the Temptations and Marvin Gaye blend together to form the set list for The Legends of Motown, a 16-piece group of singers and musicians who host a tribute review to Motown.

David Callender founded the show back in 2010, which started as a tribute to The Supremes. Over the years, he has gone to great lengths to create the most accurate-looking and sounding show possible.

“I have spared no expense or exertion of energy to make sure I have details right down to shoes and jackets for them, so I hope people suspend their belief and come with us back to 1966,” said Callender.

Evan Carter joined the group in 2017 and was brought on as the master of ceremonies. He entertains the audience in between sets using his past experiences in standup. 

Carter also has experience working with Motown legends, such as Gladys Knight and Marvin Gaye. 

“Marvin Gaye was the first big one and after that it was the temptations. That was great to work with them and watch them because you’re watching people at the pinnacle of show business and that was cool,” said Carter. 

He said while they were great experiences, working on a tribute show is rewarding, as it transports people to a different time.

“The number of times people come up and say, ‘I remember where I was when I first heard Motown music’ … it takes them right back,” said Carter.

The group recently concluded its tour of the east coast, visiting Fredericton, Moncton, Halifax and Charlottetown. 

Callender said they were so warmly welcomed by audiences during their last east coast tour and they were eager to return. 

“We couldn’t get back there fast enough, quite frankly,” he said.

“We just want to know where we can get really great donairs.”

Callender said performing In Charlottetown is always exciting because it’s such a shift from the shows usually going on at the Confederation Centre.

“In Charlottetown they’re known for the Anne of Green Gables series and stage plays, and then these 16 crazy people take them back to 1955. It’s just a lot of fun,” said Callender.

The group has hopes to return to the east coast once again. 

Carter said they often joke with fans that the next time they tour, the group can stay with them in their houses.

“I get the feeling that people just go ‘okay, just let me know when you get there. And we’ll put the kettle on,’” said Carter.