The Supremes' founding member Mary Wilson shared the news of original Supreme singer Barbara Martin's passing on Twitter today (March 5). She was 76.
Barbara Martin passed 💔😢— Mary Wilson (@MWilsonSupreme) March 5, 2020
Born June 1, 1943, Martin contributed to many of the Supremes' early works, including a shared lead with Diana Ross on "(He's) Seventeen" and multiple tracks on the group's debut album Meet the Supremes.
The legendary group began as a quartet called the Primettes, with original members being Diana Ross, Florence Ballard, Mary Wilson and Betty McGlown. When Betty left the Motown group, Barbara Martin stepped in as her replacement. They began to call themselves the Supremes in 1961; Barbara left a year later and the group became a trio.
The band also confirmed the news of her passing on their Facebook page, writing "Our hearts go out to Barbara's family and friends. Once a supreme, always a Supreme."