Dwarfed by the Fisher Building  and the GM Building  is the diminutive Motown Historical Museum (2648 W. Grand Blvd., 313/875-2264, www.motownmuseum.com , 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Tues.–Sat., $10 adults, $8 children under 13). Known to many across the country as “Hitsville U.S.A.,” this is where the Motown Sound exploded from the now-legendary Studio A and soon had teenagers around the country “Dancin’ in the Streets.”
Berry Gordy, Jr., bought the unremarkable two-story house in 1959 as a fledgling songwriter with a dream of managing singers. Today, the state historic site looks much as it would have in the early 1960s, with an office and tape library filled with reel-to-reel tape machines, company manuals, and newspaper clippings. The second floor re-creates Gordy’s 1959–60 apartment, where he and his staff would spend nights packing records to ship to radio stations around the country.
The Motown Historical Museum’s most prized display, however, is the original Studio A, where top tunes such as “Stop in the Name of Love” and “My Girl” were recorded. Diana Ross and the Supremes, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Martha and the Vandellas, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Little Stevie Wonder, and the Jackson Five all recorded in this studio during their early careers.
Other artifacts on display include rare photos, gold records, flashy costumes, and other memorabilia.