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Hank Dixon

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Information about Hank Dixon

Profile image of Hank Dixon

Profession

Category:
MusicMakers
Occupation(s):
Singer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Lavender
Favorite Food:
Bean Soup
Favorite Time of Year:
All Year
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Maui, Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
God Bless The Child That's Got His Own.

Birthplace

Born:
12/17/1939
Birth Location:
Detroit, Michigan

Profession

Category:
MusicMakers
Occupation(s):
Singer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Lavender
Favorite Food:
Bean Soup
Favorite Time of Year:
All Year
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Maui, Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
God Bless The Child That's Got His Own.

Birthplace

Born:
12/17/1939
Birth Location:
Detroit
See how Hank Dixon is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Singer Hank Dixon was born on December 17, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan to Melvia Thomas Dixon and George Dixon, Sr. As children, Dixon and his ten siblings performed at the nightly services of the Metropolitan Church of God in Detroit. Dixon began his education at Detroit’s George Washington Carver School. Following his enlistment in the U.S. Army in the late 1950s, Dixon completed his basic training at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri; and then he served as a bridge engineering specialist in Karlsruhe, Germany.

Dixon was discharged from the Army in 1965. Around this time, Dixon founded The Originals with baritone Walter Gaines, bass singer Freddie Gorman and lead tenor C.P. Spencer. The group first served as the male background vocalists for artists like Stevie Wonder and David Ruffin at the Motown Records studios in Detroit. In 1969, the group released their debut album, Green Grow the Lilacs, on Soul Records, a subsidiary label of Motown Records. The album featured the song Baby, I’m for Real written by Marvin Gaye. Once the track became a commercial success, the album was reissued under the title Baby, I’m for Real. Gaye also wrote The Originals’ next hit single, ‘The Bells,’ in 1970. The Originals went on to tour with The Temptations; and they performed at the Apollo Theater in New York City. In 1975, The Originals moved to Los Angeles, California, where they recorded the album Down to Love Town. They became a regular guest on the Art Laboe Connection radio program, and were also featured on the television show, Soul Train. The Originals left Motown Records in 1977; and recorded albums with Columbia Records and Motorcity Records. In 1980, Dixon became a bus driver for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, retiring in 2004. He and his daughter, Terrie Dixon, re-established The Originals in the mid-2000s; and they went on to tour with Defrantz Forrest and Dillon F. Gorman, the son of Freddie Gorman.

Dixon and his wife, Ella Dixon, have three children: Tammy Dixon, Terrie Dixon and Tony Dixon.

Hank Dixon was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on July 20, 2017.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Hank Dixon's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Hank Dixon lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Hank Dixon describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Hank Dixon describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Hank Dixon describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Hank Dixon describes the sights of his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Hank Dixon remembers singing with his family at the Metropolitan Church of God in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Hank Dixon remembers the George Washington Carver School in Ferndale, Michigan
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Hank Dixon recalls his decision to enlist in the U.S. military
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Hank Dixon describes his home life
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Hank Dixon talks about his service in the U.S. Army
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Hank Dixon recalls his work at the Detroit Diesel Corporation
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Hank Dixon remembers singing background vocals at Motown Records
  • Tape: 1 Story: 14 - Hank Dixon talks about his wife and children
  • Tape: 1 Story: 15 - Hank Dixon remembers recording his first single with The Originals
  • Tape: 1 Story: 16 - Hank Dixon remembers performing with The Originals at cabarets in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Hank Dixon remembers The Originals' first album, 'Green Grow the Lilacs'
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Hank Dixon talks about The Originals' choreography
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Hank Dixon recalls working for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Hank Dixon remembers the decline of The Originals
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Hank Dixon remembers The Originals' transition to Fantasy Records
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Hank Dixon talks about the popularity The Originals' hit songs
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Hank Dixon talks about the new members of The Originals
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Hank Dixon describes his work as a church soloist
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Hank Dixon talks about his family
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Hank Dixon remembers moving to Palmdale, California
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Hank Dixon shares advice to aspiring entertainers
  • Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Hank Dixon remembers the deaths of his parents
  • Tape: 2 Story: 13 - Hank Dixon reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 2 Story: 14 - Hank Dixon reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 2 Story: 15 - Hank Dixon describes his concerns about the music industry
  • Tape: 2 Story: 16 - Hank Dixon talks about his plans for the future
  • Tape: 2 Story: 17 - Hank Dixon remembers traveling with his wife
  • Tape: 2 Story: 18 - Hank Dixon talks about his career with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
  • Tape: 2 Story: 19 - Hank Dixon describes his retirement
  • Tape: 2 Story: 20 - Hank Dixon shares a message to future generations
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Hank Dixon remembers touring with The Originals
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Hank Dixon describes the Motown Records offices in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Hank Dixon remembers performing on 'Soul Train'
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Hank Dixon describes the style of The Originals
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Hank Dixon talks about The Originals' background vocal work
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Hank Dixon reflects upon Motown Records' impact in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Hank Dixon remembers Marvin Gaye's influence on The Originals
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Hank Dixon talks about moving from Detroit, Michigan to Los Angeles, California
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Hank Dixon remembers the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles, California
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Hank Dixon talks about the celebrity culture in Los Angeles, California
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Hank Dixon narrates his photographs