Lamont Dozier, the Songwriter and Producer Who Helped Popularize Motown, Has Died

Leila Kozma - Author

Aug. 10 2022, Published 8:08 a.m. ET

Lamont Dozier
Source: Getty Images

The songwriter and producer Lamont Dozier, who was behind hits like "Baby Love" and "You're a Wonderful One," died on Aug. 8, 2022, at age 81. He joined Motown Records alongside Brian and Eddie Holland in 1962, helping the label achieve mainstream success with a slew of iconic songs.

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Dubbed Holland-Dozier-Holland or HDH, the trio helped the Supremes, the Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, and others rise to international fame. What happened to Lamont? What's his cause of death?

Lamont Dozier
Source: Getty Images
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What was Lamont Dozier's cause of death?

Born on June 16, 1941, in Detroit, Mich., Lamont first earned renown thanks to his work with the Holland brothers. During their five-year tenure at Motown Records, the trio helped bring the unmistakable blend of R&B, jazz, and pop that came to be known as Motown to the mainstream.

Lamont died on Monday, Aug. 8, 2022. He spent his last hours in his Arizona home. Lamont's cause of death has not yet been revealed. An autopsy will be conducted, per USA Today.

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Lamont Dozier built an incredible body of work as a songwriter, producer, and solo artist.

Between 1962 and 1967, Lamont and the Holland brothers penned "Heat Wave," the Martha and the Vandellas song that opened at No. 82 on the Billboard Hot 100, staying on the chart for four weeks and peaking at No. 4, "Baby I Need Your Loving," which was performed by Four Tops and stayed on No. 3 for two weeks, and many others.

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Lamont and the Holland brothers left the label in 1967 because of a financial dispute. They continued to work together, founding Hot Wax Records and its sister label, Invictus Records, to bring the work of artists like Ruth Copeland, Freda Payne, and groups like the Chairmen of the Board to the mainstream.

"Give Me Just a Little More Time," the debut single of Chairmen of the Board, peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100. "Unhooked Generation" by Freda Payne made it to No. 43 on the Billboard Hot R&B Songs chart. "Band of Gold" by Freda Payne entered at No. 93, peaking at No. 3. It was co-written by Lamont, the Holland brothers, and Ron Dunbar.

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Lamont split from the Holland brothers in the 1970s because he wanted to focus on his career as a solo artist. He released "Trying to Hold on to My Woman" in 1973. The song promptly made it onto the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at No. 15. "Fish Ain't Bitin" charted at No. 26. Lamont is a two-time Grammy winner. He received a Golden Globe and an Academy Award nomination for the soundtrack of Buster, which he co-wrote with Phil Collins.

Lamont Dozier married three times. His wife of 41 years, Barbara Ullman, passed away in 2021.

Lamont married three times. His first marriage to Ann Brown and his second marriage to Daphne Dumas ended in divorce. Details about his first marriage are unavailable. He and Daphne stayed together for around 10 years.

Lamont is survived by six children, Lamont Jr., Michelle, Michael, Beau Alexandre, Paris Ray, and Desiree Starr, and two grandchildren.

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