all who wander are not lost

The big football thing is coming, so more powdering of turds around town – this is the Sanders Building on I-75/Woodward. Formerly part of the Motown Office complex along with the adjoined Donovan building. The Sanders building once housed a bank, a restaurant, as well as Motown facilities. On the top floor was recording studios and mixing facilities. The basements of the structure were utilized as echo chambers for the mixing studio. Marvin Gayes masterpiece “What’s Goin’ On” was mixed in this building, with the echo sends recorded in the basements. I am not aware of any major albums being fully recorded here, although they did have full isolation booths and mixers. The “Snake Pit” in the Motown House on Grand Boulevard was still in full use up until Berry Gordy pulled the Detroit plug in the early 70’s.

Note the Motown Blue window panes

This facade is being rehabbed, along with many others around town as part of a project to “fool” visitors into thinking the town is not quite as blown out as is really is.

Stunning terra cotta treatments on the facade

Ooops, looks like UA guy got in here recently !

Deco inlay studded with light bulb sockets.

3 Responses to Sanders Building

  • First of all, heres one of the remodeling blueprints from 1968 when Berry Gordy purchased the two buildings for Motown.

    http://photobucket.com/albums/v158/nailhed_raven/Artifakts/?action=view&current=Donovan_Blg_plans.jpg

    This one is from Nailhed Raven. I have a complete set of prints of each floor.

    As far as who owns the building(s) – its still owned by Berry Gordy, founder of Motown Records. There are rumors of demolition after the football game.

  • theres a room full of chemicals stewing up on like the sixth floor or something, do you know who owns the building? wonder what the insurance is like haha
    theres some goodies left in there too but i’d recommend lung protection

  • whoah, bigtime hookup. i’d wondered what that building _really_ was; it’s a scraped-clean shell on the upper floors, but has a very nice (if incredibly dusty and decayed) lobby… really too bad; that terracotta, and the plaster in the lobby; we thought it was a bank, but weren’t sure.