DETROIT — Maxine Powell, died Monday morning at Providence Hospital in Southfield, Mich. She was 98. Ms. Powell was sought after by Berry Gordie in 1964 to help groom singers such as Diana Ross and Marvin Gaye into performers fit “for kings and queens,” as Powell often put it.”I teach class, style and refinement,” she would say.
For anyone who has toured the Motown Museum on West Grand Blvd in Detroit and listened to the tour guide, they will give you a glimpse of what it was like in 1964 to have Ms. Powell across the street from Motown Records in the driveway of a home that she used to teach the rising stars of how to enter and exit a car properly.
Powell’s legacy was honored during an August reception at the Motown Museum Maxine. Powell can be said to be the one who put the polish on Motown. And she did it extremely well.
Funeral arrangements have not been announced.