Joel Sebastian and Marvin Gaye 1963

13 Sep


I posted this on my Facebook page, but it may be interesting for my Jesus Rocks The World blog as well, since it is an early example of the integration of music and religion. On Saturday, May 11 1963, I was a sophomore attending Fitzgerald High School in Warren, Michigan. St. Marks, the Catholic church next door to the school, was pretty much integrated into school activities, and this high school dance was one of those events. This was a big dance, because Joel Sebastian, along with Lee Allen had been the biggest DJs in Detroit at the time, on 1270 AM radio, WXYZ. Joel Sebastian hosted the dance and brought a new singer with him from a new Detroit record label called Motown. The singer he brought was Marvin Gaye, who lip synched a couple of songs. After the dance was over, I helped Joel Sebastian pack up his gear and carried it out to the car for him. He pulled out a pack of Winstons and lit up a cigarette, and I asked him if he would autograph one of them and give it to me. He thought that I just wanted to bum a cigarette off him, and said that he would just give me one, but I assured him that I really did want it autographed as a memento. Other than breaking where I had to scotch tape it about 20 years ago and a little discoloration from the tobacco condensing on the paper, it’s in pretty good shape, along with my ticket stub.

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