Mary Wells

Not in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Eligible since: 1986 (The 1987 Induction Ceremony)

Nominated in: 1986   1987   

Previously Considered? Yes  what's this?

Inducted into Rock Hall Projected in 2024 (ranked #293) .

Essential Songs (?)WikipediaAmazon MP3YouTube
My Guy (1964)

Mary Wells @ Wikipedia

Mary Wells Videos

Will Mary Wells be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame?
"Musical excellence is the essential qualification for induction."


28 comments so far (post your own)

How could MARY WELLS not be in the Rock & Roll
Hall of Fame??? The premier female artist
on Motown???? Mary placed four records in
the American top ten in the early 1960s.
Mary also toured with the Beatles in Europe
as they stated she was their favorite female
MARY WELLS belongs in the Rock & Roll Hall of

Posted by Randy Russi on Tuesday, 10.31.06 @ 09:27am

Man has she been overlooked! The first female Motown artist-and she could really sing! 23 top 100 songs on Billboard in the 60's-and the Beatles loved her music. A truly great artist who belongs in!

Posted by Greg on Saturday, 01.5.08 @ 13:36pm

We have to get her into The Hall.This is ridiculous.They're putting cruddy artists that no one even knows.Mary could sing.The phrasing.the coolness,the hipness.Whoever sung like that?.No one.I believe she influenced coutless singers from Aretha to Gladys they all copped that cool.Mary belongs in The Hall.Is she still being blacklisted for leaving Motown? That crap is gone.Mary said her manager told her to and it was dumb advice.But forget that,Mary's songs have lasted forever.Even today.They sound brand new and fresh.What a singer.She belongs in The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.

Posted by Jameycruz on Sunday, 11.16.08 @ 12:20pm

I agree. Mary Wells deserves to be recognized as a pioneer of early rock and soul music and of the early variation of what became "The Motown Sound". A lot of Motown and soul artists owe gratitude to this woman. She just wasn't known for singing "My Guy", she was truly Motown's first shining star. But hey if it took the Ronettes a long time to get in, Mary should be a piece of cake... let's hope so!

Posted by Tim on Thursday, 04.9.09 @ 01:57am

Yes, absolutely. Just listen to "Two Lovers" "The One Who Really Loves You" "My Guy" (of course) and my new fave, "What's Easy for Two is so Hard for One" - Brings a tear to my eye..What a voice!
Mary, Martha Reeves, and Tami Terrell are my fave Motown female voices.
Mary has to get in...I mean, RUN DMC and Grandmaster Flash? Cmon, like there are a lack of great rock bands and singers to induct?
Let's get that petition filled and off to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

Thommy in Cali

Posted by Thommy H on Thursday, 07.2.09 @ 23:04pm


Posted by PETE LACERVA on Monday, 09.14.09 @ 05:08am

I have no issue with most of Pete's statement. Mary Wells is extremely important.

Posted by Dameon on Monday, 09.14.09 @ 16:17pm

Like so many real talent she is not IN RROF... No big big Hype even when she was on the "top of the Charts",,
As of now only 166 votes... These are the real legends and should be in the RRHOF.. As time passes the newer ones should be IN ... It was people like Mary that open the door to many since then ,,, She can sing....!Lots of hits also lots of style She was a leader and still is,,,
YES to the BEST

Posted by mrxyz on Tuesday, 09.15.09 @ 12:44pm

Yeah, Dameon (and Pete) but no Supremes would have been a good thing, imo. And Motown was already being carried at the time by Marvin Gaye, Martha And The Vandellas, and the Temptations, too.

Mary Wells, probably does deserve it... she even was one of the first to incorporate Latin rhythms with R&B... but I'd still make her wait until the Marvelettes, Jr. Walker And the All-Stars, the Commodores, and even the Velvelettes and Rare Earth were all in.

Posted by Philip on Tuesday, 09.15.09 @ 16:59pm

If the 'rock hall' is to be taken seriously as anything more than a freak show, then it can't leave out people who are/were vital to its creation, by their contribution to the genre.
Those people who made a major contribution, you would think, would seem to be worthy of being in a place called the 'hall of fame'. So although it may aim or claim to be authentic and authoritative, the 'hall' is just a vague 'highlight reel' of rock n roll, a brief and insufficient synopsis at best, because the issue remains, How do you vote in the Supremes if you don't vote in Mary Wells? We're not talking about some lounge singer. It's like voting in 'Lewis and Clark' as famous explorers, but not Columbus.
Being thorough is currently not its strong suit. You already know all about the music, here's the scrapbook; fine: we don't need every detail. Just give credit where it's due, thank you.

Posted by PETE on Thursday, 10.8.09 @ 10:14am

I agree with many that Mary Wells should be in the Hall. She may not have had the booming voice of other Motown artists, but i don't think anyone else had a smoother or more beautiful voice in Motown (or any other style).

Posted by The_Avenger on Thursday, 03.18.10 @ 08:03am

Man has she been overlooked! The first female Motown artist-and she could really sing! 23 top 100 songs on Billboard in the 60's-and the Beatles loved her music. A truly great artist who belongs in!

Posted by Greg on Friday, 09.24.10 @ 21:20pm

Goldmine-The famous oldies music magazine, recently issued an article on 12/15/10 , in it's continuing series on " Artists who should be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but are not".

This article is about the 3M's of Motown: Miracles,Marvelettes,and Mary Wells: Missing from the Rock Hall.

Check it out HERE:

...and feel free to make comments.

R.I.P. Mary.

Posted by Bill G. on Sunday, 01.30.11 @ 11:52am

For years I never paid attention to the machinations of the "Hall," because I deemed it a reckless organization. Now, finding that Mary Wells is not an inductee, confirms my suspicions as to the morays of this contentious organization. Mary Wells was known as the most prolific two-sided hit artist of her time, and the rock that maintained the establishment called Motown.

Posted by Bill on Sunday, 03.4.12 @ 21:56pm

****MARY WELLS****

A new BOOK is coming on MARY WELLS. It is entitled "MARY WELLS:The Tumultuous Life of Motown's First Superstar" Read the details at the above link. This book is due to be released on November 1, 2012

Posted by Bill G. on Saturday, 06.30.12 @ 18:46pm

If Smokey Robinson has anything to do with it, Mary Wells and The Marvelettes will be nominated this year.

Posted by Roy on Saturday, 08.11.12 @ 09:12am

****MARY WELLS****

See the Bio of MARY WELLS (from the TV One series UNSUNG) at the above link.

Posted by Bill G. on Friday, 08.17.12 @ 13:29pm

****The Death of MARY WELLS****


Posted by Bill G. on Friday, 08.17.12 @ 14:09pm

I think she will be nominate for 2014 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Posted by Jerome Magajes on Saturday, 02.2.13 @ 05:35am

Mary Wells and The Marvelettes on the same ballot, yes!! Chic and Donna Summer did it for so long.

Posted by Roy on Saturday, 02.2.13 @ 09:00am

(Reuters) - Mary Wells, Motown Records' first female star who paved the way for the success of Diana Ross and The Supremes, shot to fame in the early 1960s only to fade away as a footnote of the longtime Detroit record label.

Now, some two decades after Wells' death in 1992 at age 49, the singer who scored a No. 1 hit with "My Guy," is receiving a push for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Peter Benjaminson, the author of the first Wells biography, "Mary Wells: The Tumultuous Story of Motown's First Superstar," has spearheaded the campaign for the singer, who he said has not received the recognition afforded to the likes of The Supremes or Martha and the Vandellas.

Benjaminson, 67, believes that aside from Wells' merits as an R&B singer and as Motown's first big female star, she deserves consideration as a pioneer who crossed the black-and-white racial divide in the United States.

"I think it's unfair to have Mary, who set the path for so many superstars today, be excluded from an honor like this, which she should've gotten a long time ago," Benjaminson told Reuters by phone from his home in New York's Harlem neighborhood.

Wells was born into a broken household in Detroit in 1943 and contracted spinal meningitis and tuberculosis at a young age, which left her partially blind and deaf.

After graduating high school Wells set her sights on Berry Gordy, the founder of Motown, with a song she wrote herself, "Bye Bye Baby."

"Gordy kept refusing (a meeting), but she kept persisting," Benjaminson said. "Finally, he got so annoyed that he asked her to sing it right there ... He was so impressed he signed her up the next day as a Motown singer."

"Bye Bye Baby," rose to No. 45 on the Billboard Top 100 chart in 1960, a rare feat for a black, female singer, Benjaminson said.

"She really paved the way for the other women who came after, including Diana Ross," Benjaminson said. "She showed how quickly a woman could rise on the charts with Motown."

Wells was nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and 1987, but never made the cut for induction.

"I don't know what happened in 1986 and 1987, but she's certainly due the honor this late in the game," he said.

Benjaminson is hoping first to get Wells inducted into the Legends Hall of Fame at the Apollo Theater in Harlem, a prominent historical venue for African-American musicians.

"I think that would help in getting her into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame," said Benjaminson, who hopes his book may play a role in resurrecting Wells' reputation.

Benjaminson has set up a Facebook page called "Induct Mary Wells into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame," that urges fans to send letters to the foundation that runs the Cleveland, Ohio-based Hall of Fame (

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum was established in 1983 and has inducted some 700 performers, songwriters and record producers, chosen by some 600 artists, music historians and industry members.

After scoring other hits such as "You Beat Me to the Punch," in 1962, Wells landed atop the chart for two weeks in 1964 with "My Guy," her final Motown hit.

Wells left Motown at the height of her popularity over compensation issues and never found the same success again. She died in 1992 after a battle with throat cancer.

Benjaminson's biography of Wells, published in November 2012, is his third book on Motown.

Posted by Bill G. on Wednesday, 02.6.13 @ 16:56pm


Posted by Bill G. on Thursday, 04.25.13 @ 15:32pm

My name is Happy but it makes me sad to not see her in

Posted by Happy on Sunday, 07.21.13 @ 19:35pm

I agree, Happy. Motown artists, MARY WELLS, THE MARVELETTES, JR WALKER & THE ALL-STARS, and THE SPINNERS (mainly for their post-Motown work), should have been inducted YEARS AGO.

Posted by Bill G. on Sunday, 07.21.13 @ 20:14pm

I can understand her missing out on the first two years, when compared to a majority of the inductees from the first two years, but I can't understand why she's never been nominated since. I think, much like Gladys Knight And The Pips, persistence would have paid off.

Posted by Philip on Monday, 07.22.13 @ 01:09am

Mary Wells deserves a spot in the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, for being the "very" first female vocalist to record for the Tarma Record Label which later revolved into Motown Records Label. Her career as a female vocalist, even started before as a member of the Motown Records office staff.
Mary took the hard road to startdom, and ended up as the darling of the radio-live concert-and stage performance life.

Posted by Paul "Billy" Wolfe on Monday, 07.29.13 @ 11:12am

Nominated TWICE....then FORGOTTEN ?

One of Motown's original headliners?


Motown's "Little Miss Hitmaker"

Influenced MANY female artists who are ALREADY in the Hall...


Her omission is one of the Hall's BIGGEST ERRORS !!!

*****CORRECT IT !!!*****

Posted by Bill G. on Thursday, 08.13.15 @ 04:07am

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