DETROIT (WWJ) - Until recently, 98-year-old Maxine Powell was still recruiting students. Powell, who died last week, instructed legendary Motown artists like Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, the Supremes, Smokey Robinson and many others in the rules of style and refinement.
But, at Powell’s funeral Friday, Detroiter Christine Granger recalled a lesson she learned from Powell about 10 years ago.
Granger says Mrs. Powell was always in teaching mode and there were so many things she learned from her while they worked together on the Motown Exhibit at the Detroit Historical Museum.
“In her gentle voice, she said to me — that’s not the way a lady gets in and out of a car,” said Granger. “And, at her age, she had started instructing me on the proper way to get in gracefully and to get out gracefully.”
“She used to say … you’ll be singing before kings and queens. And, of course, we laughed at her because we were only 16 years old and … the only queens we knew were the ones lived down the street. You know,” she laughed. “But, you know, everything she said, kinda’ … came true.”