Plight of The Red Man

Soulful Detroit Forum: Open Forum: Plight of The Red Man
Top of pageBottom of page   By John Lester ( - on Saturday, June 29, 2002 - 11:21 pm:

I am reading the album credits Ralph and see the name Doris Holland.

Doris used to work at the museum until she passed....she served me everytime I went there....she looked very much like Diana Ross.

What was her contribution to this album....did the Funk Bros play on this album?

Maybe you can tell me about how this album came about...cos at the time the Rare Earth label was a little hard for us diehard Motown addicts to appreciate.

Top of pageBottom of page   By Ralph ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 04:12 am:

If you like I will tell you about Plight of the Redman, but not tonight. I have had a very long day in the studio and I'm totally fried. I'm trying to remember who Doris Holland was. I know I'm familiar with the name but I'm drawing blanks. Maybe tomorrow John

Top of pageBottom of page   By millie ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 04:13 am:

Hi John,
I remember Doris Holland...was she related to the HDH Hollands? She was working for Esther Edwards at the museum the last time I saw her and I always found her to be very sweet. You're right, she did remind me of Diana Ross...!

Top of pageBottom of page   By John Lester ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 06:07 am:


I always remember the picture of Doris Holland and Diana the days when Esther organised the layour of the Museum (with much more love, care and devotion I might add) and this picture was on display at the Museum when pictures were displayed underneath the heavy glass on a table...I spotted this picture of Doris and Diana and couldn't help thinking they could well be sisters.

I wish I could jog your memory Ralph with this picture of her that I have of Doris here at home...but sadly no scanner - a really lovely woman. I gather that she worked at Motown in 1964.

Ralph...give those grey cells a shake.

Top of pageBottom of page   By Sue ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 01:43 pm:

It's my understanding that no, Doris Holland wasn't related to the Holland Brothers. She told me once that she didn't live far from Hitsville so if anyone ever needed to get in quickly, they'd call her up. Lovely lady ...

Top of pageBottom of page   By john lester ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 03:35 pm:

Funny you should say that Sue...I got Diana Ross to sign my autograph book on the opposite page to Doris and she asked the same question!!

Ralph..I found the picture of Doris and I am taking it to work to get scanned...then I am goingto try and get a mate to put it on here...I will never work out how to do it...or maybe david will do it for me..

Top of pageBottom of page   By Ralph Terrana (Ralph) ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 03:48 pm:

I'm still trying to shake somethng loose John. Do the album credits give any indication of her purpose or is her name just mentioned?

Top of pageBottom of page   By Davie Gordon ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 04:24 pm:


I'm looking forward to your reminiscences about
XIT - I like "Plight of The Red Man" but for me
their "Silent Warrior" album is the business.

Tommy Bee is somebody I'd like to know a great deal more about - in the sixties he was involved
in some great records out of Albuquerque including
the amazing "I Wanna Come Back From The World of
LSD" by the Fe Fi Four Plus 2.

He's still very active - he runs a label called
Canyon which is dedicated to preserving Native
American music and has a huge catalogue of
albums by musicians from it seems every tribal
group still extant. He won a Grammy a few years ago for his efforts in preserving traditional
music and encouraging the development of contemporary Native American music.

I'd love to know if Norman Whitfield ever paid
much attention to XIT - I can see their influence
in tracks like "Squeeze Me, Please Me" by the
Undisputed Truth - an amazingly exciting bit
of noise of which I never get tired.

Top of pageBottom of page   By david, glasgow, scotland ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 05:34 pm:


Any pics which you can send to me by e-mail will be included at short notice.

I'm sure that you will have some very interesting Motown artifacts.

A pic of Doris would be a great start.

Top of pageBottom of page   By Ralph Terrana (Ralph) ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 07:05 pm:

Davie G.
Regarding the album. Harry Balk called me into his office one day and tod me he wanted me to call this guy, Tommy Bee, in New Mexico who was the manager of a Native
American band that had been signed by the West Coast office. This was around 1971 and there was a resurgent movement in the U.S. regarding the plight of the Native Americans. The problem was, the L.A. office didn't have a clue what to do with these guys.

Tommy Bee: In another life he could have been a horse salesman for the Indians ( "Red Cloud, have I got a horse for you. Only ridden to Sunday morning pow wow"
) I called him and we talked a while. He told me he was a crazy Indian and I assured him I was a crazy Italian so we kind of hit it off from the start.

Mike Valvano ad I would fly to New Mexico and spend a couple of weeks with the band in their lodge high in the Sandia Mountains above Albuquerque. For the first two days though we didn't meet the band, but stayed holed up in our motel with Tommy as he told us his thoughts and gave us a history lesson on the American Indian.
Motown L.A. had promised a massive budget for this project which would have included an embossed beaded album cover and several individual pages inside relating the story of the songs on the album. While there we visited artist Alton Walpole who lived and created his wonderful art in an old stagecoach stop in the desert. We contracted him to do the intricate beaded cover.

The band was then flown to Detroit to begin recording. they came in with all their authentic drums and percussion. They insisted that this album would be as true to the culture as posssible. They were quite a sight, dressed always in traditional Indian garb, walking around Motown and the streets of busteling downtown Detroit.
Mike and I brought in Bob Ohllson as recording engineer and we all got on very well with each other.

For some reason, L. A. began slashing our once generous budget and things never really worked out quite as well as I had hoped for the making of that album.It was not an easy album to produce. It was satisying, however, to recieve letters from various teachers around the country who were using the album as a teaching aid in their classes regarding Native Americans.

I understand that Tommy Bee is doing well for himself these days and somehow managed control of the Motown masters of the albums recorded. I never quite figued out how he pulled that one off, but like I said, the guy was smooth.

Top of pageBottom of page   By john lester ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 07:17 pm:

well that little shake did well Ralph....

do it again, and let's see what comes out this time!!! LOL

David...thanks for your help, as always.....I got some real nice pictures that YOU personally are goning to get mad over....

Top of pageBottom of page   By david, glasgow, scotland ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 07:32 pm:


Looking forward immensely to your e-mails .

Ralph nice story.

Top of pageBottom of page   By Davie Gordon ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 07:33 pm:


Thanks so much for the background on XIT.

I love the idea of them strolling around downtown
Detroit in full regalia.

Both "Plight" and "Silent Warrior" are on CD on
Tommy Bee's SOAR (Sounds of America Records) label
- I managed to pick up a copy of "Silent Warrior"
for £1 when I was raking through a box of cheap
CD's that one of the Glasgow record stores was trying to get rid off - to say I was delighted
would be a real understatement. God knows what
my neighbours thought when I played it really
loud :-)

I was curious about how he managed to get the rights to the albums - I thought at first he'd
done it off his own back as it was pretty
unlikely that anybody from Motown's legal staff
would find out about it. Then
again it's possible that it was one of Berry
Gordy's occasional fits of altruism - I've heard
that he gave the rights to those old Martin
Luther King albums to his widow so she could
benefit from any sales. Doing the same for XIT
gets him ethical brownie points from me anyway.

Thanks again, Davie

Top of pageBottom of page   By Bob Olhsson ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 08:18 pm:

Mike Valvano told me that BG gave Tommy the XIT masters years ago. I've been running into first-hand stories about BG's "fits of altruism" for too many years to accept that it was only occasional.

Top of pageBottom of page   By Davie Gordon ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 08:58 pm:


I take your point - I shouldn't have made that
comment without personal knowledge so please
consider it retracted.

Top of pageBottom of page   By John Lester ( - on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 10:19 pm:

Thank goodness for that retraction....I was just about to look that word up in the dictionary to see what it meant.

Honest I was!!

Top of pageBottom of page   By Ralph ( - on Monday, July 01, 2002 - 01:23 am:


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