The New Motown Museum, Brought to You by Ford Motor Company

A $6 million investment from the automaker means visitors will be seeing Ford branding all across the musical museum.

The Motown Historical Museum is getting a $6 million boost from Ford Motor Company and UAW-Ford in the museum’s $50 million expansion efforts.

As a result, Ford branding will be especially conspicuous when the new and improved museum opens. A previously announced state-of-the-art theater will be named the Ford Motor Company Theater; the museum will incorporate a “CARaoke experience,” where visitors will take part in an “interactive Ford-branded activity that incorporates music with Ford vehicles”; and Ford will provide official vehicles for the museum.

It’s a little interesting considering that Henry Ford despised the musical bedrock of the kind of rhythm of blues that Berry Gordy would end up making, but Ford and museum officials remind that Gordy patterned the record label’s assembly-line method of making hits after Ford’s technique of making cars.

“Motown and Ford Motor Company have wide and deeply connected roots,” Robin Terry, the museum’s chairwoman and CEO, says in a news release.  “As two Detroit-born brands, they have had — and continue to have today — a transformative and profound impact on creativity and innovation around the world.

Ford’s investment will also provide educational, music and other programming for local students and communities.

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“It is very gratifying to support the expansion of the Motown Museum, and in doing so, we strengthen an institution that has great historical and cultural significance to our region and the world,” UAW Vice President Jimmy Settles says.  “This partnership also allows us to continue our commitment to the Motown Museum’s surrounding community, which is a community that many Detroit natives treasure.” 

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