deke richards


Michael learned quickly. He was like a sponge, taking it all in. He could take a part I had given him and sing it right back to me; he would also give me a line that was better than the one I gave him. It made me wish other artists were as capable. And he was only 11 years old. At 12 and 13 he became downright scary. No matter how good he thought he was, Michael wanted to be better - to ultimately be the best. I never thought of Michael as a child. Maybe that was my mistake. To me, he was a total professional who happened to be young and small.~Motown songwriter and producer, Deke Richards

January 31, 1970 - 47 Years Ago Today: The Jackson 5 went to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart with their single, “I Want You Back.” It was their debut single shortly after being signed to Motown Records and the first single they recorded in Los Angeles, California. The B-side, “Who’s Lovin’ You,” a cover of the Smokey Robinson & The Miracles song, was recorded earlier at Hitsville U.S.A. (Motown) in Detroit, Michigan. “I Want You Back,” enjoyed a four-week run at No. 1 on the Billboard R&B Chart and is noteworthy for being the group’s first of four consecutive No. 1 singles. This single was recorded in July 1969 when lead singer, Michael Jackson, was 10 years-old. It has been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and ranks at No. 121 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and has sold in excess of six million copies. “I Want You Back” was written by Berry Gordy, Fonce Mizell, Freddie Perren and Deke Richards.