Where Our Soul Train Cruise Artists Call Home
The Soul Train Cruise is like one, big weeklong house party filled with lots of old and new friends grooving to great music and having a good time. So many of our performers and our guests return year after year that when we all get together, it’s a homecoming like no other. No matter where we all are from, no matter where we all live now, when we’re with our Soul Train family and friends, it feels just like home. We started to wonder where our Soul Train Cruise artists really do call home and were surprised to find out that many of them share the same roots.
The birthplace of Motown is also where The Spinners and The Miracles hail from, just like Philadelphia turned the world on to an entirely new sound and gave us The Trammps featuring Earl Young and Russell Thompkins Jr of the New Stylistics, too.
The folks in Jersey City, NJ must have heard the music that was coming from the state next door; both Gerald Alston of The Manhattans and Marilyn McCoo grew up there, less than 100 miles away from Philly. Eddie Levert of The O’Jays and Howard Hewett were also close neighbors. Eddie calls Canton, OH his home while Howard first started singing in Akron, OH, just a 30 minute drive down the road.
Soul Train was born in Chicago, where our cruise host Tony Cornelius grew up and George Daniels earned his title of “Chicago’s Music Man.” By the time the television show moved to Los Angeles, acts like The Whispers, Rose Royce and all of those Soul Train Dancers (including Derek Fleming and Monique “Mo Que” Chambers) were ready to welcome Don Cornelius and his crew with open arms. And The Pointer Sisters were never far away, singing and dancing up in Oakland, CA.
Maxi Priest calls two far-flung places his home, England and Jamaica, and he taps into the culture and music of both places to influence his soulful reggae songs. Back here in the states, Charlie Wilson is one of the greatest talents to emerge from Tulsa, Jeffrey Osborne from Providence, RI and Billy Davis Jr from St. Louis.
But we like to think that home is where the heart and soul are. The artists, guests and hardworking crew on the Soul Train Cruise make every sailing a homecoming for all of us. And just like folks back home, we can’t wait to see you again!