Lamont Dozier  

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Zippin' up my boots
Goin' back to my roots

--"Going Back to My Roots" (1977) by Lamont Dozier

Related e



Lamont Dozier (1941 – 2022) was an American composer and record producer best known for being part of the Holland–Dozier–Holland team and for writing "Going Back to My Roots" (1977), which was later recorded by Odyssey.



Dozier was a member of Holland–Dozier–Holland, the songwriting and production team responsible for much of the Motown sound and numerous hit records by artists such as Martha and the Vandellas, The Supremes, The Four Tops, and The Isley Brothers. Along with Brian Holland, Dozier served as the team's musical arranger and producer, while Eddie Holland concentrated mainly on lyrics and vocal production.

Along with the Holland Brothers, Dozier followed his work for Motown Records as founder and owner of Invictus Records and Hot Wax Records, producing top-charting hits for acts Freda Payne, Honey Cone, Chairmen of the Board, and 100 Proof Aged in Soul.

Early years

Dozier recorded a few unsuccessful records for various Detroit labels before the trio started working together as a writing and production team for Motown in 1962. They first made their mark the following year with Martha and The Vandellas' early hits, including "Come and Get These Memories" (number 6 R&B), "Heatwave" (number 1 R&B, number 4 pop), and "Quicksand" (number 8 pop).

In 1964, "Where Did Our Love Go" became the first of ten number 1 pop hits which Holland–Dozier–Holland would write and produce for the Supremes over the next three years or so. After Holland–Dozier–Holland left Motown in 1968 to form the Invictus and Hot Wax labels, Dozier began recording as an artist on their labels. The most successful song was "Why Can't We Be Lovers" (number 9 Billboard R&B). Dozier departed from Holland–Dozier–Holland in 1973, and was replaced by new arranger-producer Harold Beatty.


Dozier went on to record a number of albums as a performer in his own right, also writing much of the material. The 1977 album, Peddlin' Music on the Side (Warner Bros. Records) contained "Going Back to My Roots", which was later recorded by Odyssey. The earlier Black Bach (ABC Records) featured the single "Fish Ain't Bitin' " (#4 R&B, No. 26 pop).

He had his biggest hit with 1974's "Trying to Hold on to My Woman" (ABC), which reached No. 15 on the pop chart and No. 4 on the R&B chart. For the second season of the TV sitcom That's My Mama, (ABC, 1975) Dozier wrote and sang the theme song, replacing the first season's instrumental only theme music. In 1981, he scored a beach music hit with "Cool Me Out" and also in that year released a single Shout About It from his LP Lamont. This track had considerable airplay on UK soul radio stations as well as being promoted by UK DJ Robbie Vincent in the early 1980s to a British audience.


Dozier had another number 1 hit as a songwriter in the 1980s, joining with Phil Collins to write the song "Two Hearts" for the movie soundtrack for Buster. "Two Hearts" received a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song, tying with "Let the River Run" from Working Girl by Carly Simon; an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song; and a Grammy Award for Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or Television. Collins and Dozier also co-wrote "Loco in Acapulco" for The Four Tops, which is also featured on the Buster Soundtrack.

In 1984, Essex, England-born singer Alison Moyet scored a U.S. top 40 hit with the Dozier-penned "Invisible". Three years later, Dozier cowrote "Infidelity" and "Suffer" with Simply Red frontman Mick Hucknall for the British pop-soul band's second album, Men and Women. In 1989, they teamed again to write "You've Got It" and "Turn It Up" for Simply Red's follow-up LP, A New Flame.

In 1987, Lamont Dozier composed alone a song for the soundtrack of another film: the song "Without You", which was recorded as a duet by the R&B singers Peabo Bryson and Regina Belle, to be the love theme from the comedy film Leonard Part 6, released the same year. The film starred Bill Cosby in the lead role. The song was released as a single and entered the United States and United Kingdom music charts, peaked at No. 8 on the Adult Contemporary Tracks, No. 14 on the R&B chart, No. 85 on the UK Singles, and No. 89 on the Billboard Hot 100 (1987–88). "Without You" was also recorded for the Peabo Bryson album Positive, released in 1988.

"Without You" also received two adaptations: the first was in Portuguese and the second was in Spanish, in 1989 and 1990, respectively. Both adaptations received the title "Amor Dividido", and were recorded by the Brazilian singer Rosana, "Amor Dividido" in Spanish is a duet by Rosana with the Spanish singer Emmanuel.

Personal life

Lamont is married to Barbara Dozier, and they have three children: two sons, Beau Alexandre (born November 26, 1979) (known for his relationship with Joss Stone and for his work for artists such as Tiffany Evans) and Paris Ray (born September 12, 1984), and a daughter, Desiree Starr (born August 1, 1988).

He is a cousin of John Witherspoon.

According to an interview he gave on television, he has Cherokee ancestry.

Singles discography

The following singles featured Lamont Dozier as a performer
As a member of The Romeos:

  • “Gone, Gone, Get Away” (1957); Fox 749
  • “Moments To Remember You By” (1957); Fox 846

As a member of The Voice Masters:

  • “Hope And Pray” (1959); Anna 101
  • “Needed” (1959); Anna 102
  • “In Love In Vain” (1960); Frisco 15235

As a member of Ty Hunter and The Voice Masters:

  • “Orphan Boy” (1960); Anna 1114
  • “Free” (1960); Anna 1123

As Lamont Anthony:

  • “Popeye (The Sailor Man)” (1961) withdrawn, and replaced by "Benny The Skinny Man" (same backing track, new vocal); Anna 1125
  • “Benny The Skinny Man” (1961); Anna 1125
  • “Just To Be Loved” (1961); Checkmate 1001

As Lamont Dozier:

  • “Dearest One” (1962); Mel-o-dy 102

As a member of Holland-Dozier (Lamont Dozier and Brian Holland):

  • “What Goes Up Must Come Down” (1963); Motown 1045
  • “Don't Leave Me” (1972); Invictus 9110
  • “Why Can't We Be Lovers” (1972); Invictus 9125
  • “Don't Leave Me Starvin' For Your Love” (1972); Invictus 9133
  • “Slipping Away” (1973); Invictus 1253
  • “If You Don't Wanta Be In My Life” (1973); Invictus 1254
  • “You Took Me From A World Outside” (1973); Invictus 1258

As Lamont Dozier:

  • “Trying To Hold On To My Woman” (1973); ABC 11407
  • “Fish Ain't Bitin'” (1974); ABC 11438
  • “Let Me Start Tonite” (1974); ABC 12044
  • “All Cried Out” (1975); ABC 12076
  • “Out Here On My Own” (1976); ABC 12234
  • “Sight For Sore Eyes” (1977); Warner Brothers 8432
  • “Boogie Business” (1979); Warner Brothers 8792
  • “Cool Me Out” (1981); Columbia 02035
  • “Too Little Too Long” (1981); Columbia 02238
  • “Shout About It” (1982); M & M 502
  • “Inside Seduction” (1991); Atlantic / Wea

Album discography

  • Out Here on My Own” (1973); ABC 804
  • “Black Bach” (1974); ABC 839
  • “Love & Beauty” (1975); Invictus 33134
  • “Right There” (1976); WB 2929
  • “Peddling Music on the Side” (1977); WB 3039
  • “Bittersweet” (1979); WB 3282
  • “Working on You” (1981); Columbia 37129
  • “Lamont” (1981); M&M 104
  • “Bigger Than Life” (1983); UK Demon FIEND12
  • “Inside Seduction” (1991); Atlantic 82228
  • “Reflections of Lamont Dozier” (2004); Jam Right/Zebra 54633

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Lamont Dozier" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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