The Funk Brothers
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
The Funk Brothers was the nickname of Detroit, Michigan, session musicians who performed the backing to most Motown Records recordings from 1959 until 1972, when the company moved to Los Angeles. The Funk Brothers played on Motown hits such as "My Girl", "I Heard It Through the Grapevine", "Baby Love", "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours", "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone", "The Tears of a Clown", and "(Love is Like a) Heat Wave".
The role of the Funk Brothers is described in Paul Justman's 2002 documentary film Standing in the Shadows of Motown, based on Allan Slutsky's book of the same name. The opening titles proclaim the Funk Brothers as "having played on more number-one records than The Beatles, Elvis, The Rolling Stones, and The Beach Boys combined."