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mary wilson

Mary Wilson

b. Mary Wilson, 6th March 1944, Greenville, Mississippi, U.S.A.

d. 8th February 2021, Henderson, Nevada, U.S.A.

Mary Wilson is best remembered as one of he founding members of the Motown group, The Supremes.

Following the departure of Florence Ballard and Diana Ross of the group, Mary remained until the group disbanded in 1977.

Mary has released three solo albums, and has become an accomplished autobiographer.

Mary’s parents were Sam and Johnnie Mae Wilson.

She was born in Greenville, Mississippi and was the eldest of three children.

Mary lived with her parents who relocated to St. Louis, and again to Chicago, when she was a youngster.

She later went to live with her aunt Ivory ‘I.V.’ and uncle John L. Pippin in Detroit, returning to reside with her family when she was 9.

Mary Wilson

the supremes in 1965, strolling through the projects (demolished in late 2013)

The family resided in the Brewster-Douglass Housing Projects in Detroit at this time.

The Primettes

the primettes

At school she met Florence Ballard, going on to join the original line-up of The Supremes, in the form of the Primettes.

Mary later graduated from Detroit's Northeastern High School in 1962, choosing a career in music.

The career of the Primettes/Supremes can be picked up here:

Mary Wilson

After The Supremes disbanded in 1977, Mary became involved in a legal battle with Motown relating to the group.

Mary WilsonMary WilsonMary WilsonMary Wilson

mary wilson - 1979 / ooh child - 1989 (single) / walk the line - 1992 / i am changing - 2000

When the legal issues had been finalised, Mary remained at Motown as a solo artist, releasing a self-titled album in 1979.

She began work on a second solo album in 1980, however, Motown and Mary went their separate ways.

Mary began working on theatrical roles, which included parts in ‘Beehive’, ‘Dancing in the Streets’ and ‘Supreme Soul’.

She took time out to write her memoirs, which she entitled ‘Dreamgirl: My Life as a Supreme’ in 1986.

The book sold very well, inspiring her to write a second book entitled ‘Supreme Faith: Someday We'll Be Together’, which also sold very well.

Mary began to become a regular guest on television, being interviewed relating to her books and the career in The Supremes.

In 1987, Mary almost signed a deal to the Atlantic Records imprint.

In 1990 she teamed up with Ian Levine’s Motorcity imprint in the U.K., recording a cover version of ‘Ooh Child’.

In 1992 she released the album, ‘Walk the Line’, and began working on the legal usage of the Supremes name.

Mary took on a high profile role in lobbying for ‘Truth in Music’ legislation.

Mary Wilson

In 1995, she released a song entitled ‘U’, for the Contract Recording Company.

In 1996, she released the song, ‘Turn Around’ for the Da Bridge Records imprint.

In 2001, Mary starred in the national tour of ‘Leader of the Pack – The Ellie Greenwich Story’.

She was also appointed by Secretary of State Colin Powell as a ‘culture-connect ambassador’ for the U.S. State Department.

More recently, Mary is the creator of the Mary Wilson/The Supremes Gown Collection, an exhibition of the Supremes' former stage attire.

Along with the other members of The Supremes, Mary was enrolled into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.

Sadly, in February 2021, Mary passed away in Henderson, Nevada, in her sleeep, a few days after speaking with people, regarding the release of new material with the Universal imprint.

Mary Wilson

Real Player


Mary Wilson (Motown Records 1979)

Walk The Line (CEO Records 1992)

I Am Changing (Duryea Entertainment Records 2000)

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