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Detroit-native Motown songwriter Lamont Dozier dies at 81

Songwriter Lamont Dozier attends the 2013 BMI Pop Awards at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on May 14, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California.
Chelsea Lauren
/
Getty Images for BMI
Songwriter Lamont Dozier attends the 2013 BMI Pop Awards at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on May 14, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California.

Detroit is remembering native son and famed Motown songwriter Lamont Dozier, who has died at the age of 81.

Dozier's songs earned him a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and a place in the Library of Congress.

Dozier and his songwriting partners, the Holland Brothers, helped define the Motown sound.

In a 2019 interview, Dozier said his songs traced his own journey from growing up poor in Detroit and working as a janitor to carving a place in music history.

"But that's part of life and things I've done, you know what I mean? Some of them I wasn't that quite proud of, but after I did 'em I thought 'man, there's a song in there somewhere," he said.

Dozier wrote well over 400 songs.

Between the 1960s and 1980s more than 40 of them became number-one hits.

Quinn Klinefelter is a host and Senior News Editor for 101.9 WDET, anchoring midday newscasts and preparing reports for WDET, NPR and the BBC. Klinefelter joined WDET in 1998 after earning a M.A. from the nation’s top-ranked journalism school, the University of Missouri-Columbia, and working as a sports correspondent for BBC Radio 4 and as a talk show host, anchor and reporter for Wisconsin Public Radio.