For me the inevitable cancellation of Diana Ross’s UK tour was one of the big disappointments of Covid-year. Call Me Miss Ross was scheduled to headline at Glastonbury and sold out an extended summer run at the O2. I immediately got tickets – for a London show, of course.
Now a sadder opportunity arises to pay tribute to The Supremes: the sudden death of founding member Mary Wilson aged 76, just days after she put out a YouTube video announcing a new solo album and the re-release of some old work.
Wilson and Ross were the yin and yang of the three-girl group which began in high school in Detroit as the Primettes; always with the burning intention of going professional. With what Wilson called her “aggressive charm” Ross shouldered her way out of the group in 1969 to solo superstardom. To Wilson’s great satisfaction, the reconstituted Supremes out-sold Ross the year after she went on her own.