1 minute read

Troubled Times

More Tension

Without consulting Flo and Mary, Gordy made a dramatic decision. The group would no longer be known as “the Supremes.” Instead, Diana was now publicly presented as the lead singer, and the group's name was changed to “Diana Ross and the Supremes.” The tension between the women increased. “The real meaning of changing our name to ‘Diana Ross and the Supremes’ became clear to me as I looked across the room at Berry and Diane,” Mary later said of the change. “All of a sudden, I was alone. There wasn't a group anymore. This was the worst thing that had ever happened to us, yet Diane and I would never speak about it.”

Diana and Mary knew that Flo's drinking was becoming a problem. They tried to help by cutting back on their own drinking, hoping that Flo would get the hint and drink less. They tried hiding Flo's drinks from her. Nothing seemed to help. In the 1960s, alcoholism was still considered a dirty secret. It was not talked about openly. There was no way to get Flo the help she needed at the time. Instead, Flo continued to drink, started showing up late to public appearances and rehearsals, and continued to feel hurt and angry. Things got even worse when Gordy confronted Flo about her weight. She responded by throwing a drink in his face. Gordy lost patience with Flo's behavior.

Additional topics

Musician BiographiesThe SupremesTroubled Times - More Changes, Busy Life, More Tension, A Supreme Replacement, Moving Forward, Tragedy