In Memoriam: TSU Alum and Motown Great Maurice Davis

Posted: 07/19/2012

  • By: Tyler Clifford

DETROIT (WXYZ) – Maurice Davis, local legendary trumpeter of the Motown Records session band Funk Brothers, died Friday at the age of 71.

Davis recorded over 1,500 songs primarily for Motown Records where he was the lead trumpet for almost 15 years.  He recorded and toured with artists such as Tony Bennett, Sammy Davis, Jr., The Temptations, Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, and The Supremes.

Davis is most recognized as the lead trumpet on the three-time Grammy Award winning Temptations song “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone,” which was ranked #168 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

As he recorded, Davis simultaneously performed for his community as a teacher.  Born in Memphis Tennessee in 1941, Davis received a degree from Tennessee State University and began teaching at Rust College in northern Mississippi until permanently moving to Detroit in 1965.


Checkout these videos of his outstanding musicianship.


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