When Motown was known as the Sound of Young America, when Marvin Gaye, Tammi Terrell and the Supremes were at the top of the charts, this pair was responsible for creating many of their classic hits.
In the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s they wrote songs for Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Chaka Khan, Luther Vandross, Diana Ross, Teddy Pendergrass, the Fifth Dimension, the Miracles and many others.
Their best known songs include Ain’t No Mountain High Enough, Your Precious Love, Let’s Go Get Stoned, Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing, Reach Out and Touch (Somebody’s Hand), I’m Every Woman, You’re All I Need To Get By and Solid (As a Rock).
Although they are known primarily as songwriters, Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson also polished, dynamic performers. Today, on the commons at the office complex known as MetroTech Center, they were the opening act for the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Rhythm and Blues Festival.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you … Ashford and Simpson.