(August 1943 - December 2021)
"Oh, death … the only conclusion. It always wins. And now, Wanda Young, whose yearning-for-what-cannot-be voice excited me at 9 years old, and even still, now, at 89 years. Along with Gladys Horton, the almost punishing excitement of the Marvelettes was so dramatic that even the hairstyles began to overact. I still listen whenever I want back the music of before. In one of my first ever radio interviews I requested "Strange, I Know" by the Marvelettes - a foreign language back then. All of their singles were signals
… "The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game", "Anything You Wanna Do", "He's A Good Guy, Yes He Is", "I Think I Can Change You", "Marionette", "Beechwood 4-5789", "Danger Heartbreak Dead Ahead" - curses more than songs, often. The voices of great singers say 'listen to me' before you even grasp their lyrics, and Wanda Young was there with Levi Stubbs, as godly as you could ever hope
for. It should cost something to sing, and this is why most 2021 pop music resembles Soviet Union state authorized entertainment. The Marvelettes were a part of those who came before, but don't overlook them because of that. Shadowed, of course, by the
Supremes, and even by the fashionable pessimism of the Crystals, being 'a girl group' could imply either not a real group, or somehow less than. Nobody called the Stones 'a boy band'. Today, no radio stations play the songs of the Marvelettes despite their enormous success (bigger than the Kinks, wouldn't you know), even though any investigation of their music proves that the magic never ends. "Paper Boy" is directly 'in your face, man'. They deserve your love because they came from a long-gone era when the waiting-to-buy was just as exciting as the actual purchase. Wanda, I'll mith you."
MORRISSEY, 27 December 2021.