[ moh-toun ]
/ ˈmoʊˌtaʊn /


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. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for motown

British Dictionary definitions for motown


/ (ˈməʊˌtaʊn) /


trademark music combining rhythm and blues and pop, or gospel rhythms and modern ballad harmony

Word Origin for Motown

C20: from Motown Records of Detroit; from Mo (tor) Town, a nickname for Detroit, Michigan, centre of the US car industry

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

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