- Detroit, Michigan: a nickname.
- Also called Motown sound. an upbeat, often pop-influenced style of rhythm and blues associated with the city of Detroit and with numerous black vocalists and vocal groups since the 1950s and characterized by compact, danceable arrangements.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for motown
I know that Detroit is losing market share in auto sales, but how did they let the Motown sound slip out of their hands?The Best Albums of 2014
December 13, 2014
The ambiance is almost asexual as rockabilly and Motown play in the background.Women, It's Time to Reclaim Our Breasts
September 9, 2014
Motown (one would probably say the softest of the four at that point) certainly had reach into the white teenage audience.Before the Earthquake Hit: When The Beatles Landed in America
January 29, 2014
Amy Winehouse incorporated a lot of Motown and soul and doo-wop into her stuff, an updated version of it.
The funniest one for us was the “Motown Tribute to Nickelback.”
- trademark music combining rhythm and blues and pop, or gospel rhythms and modern ballad harmony
C20: from Motown Records of Detroit; from Mo (tor) Town, a nickname for Detroit, Michigan, centre of the US car industry
Word Origin and History for motown
recording label launched 1960 by Berry Gordy Jr., from Mo(tor) Town, perhaps based on Motor City, a nickname for Detroit attested by 1911.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper