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EDITIONS
 Tuesday, 31 December, 2002, 09:50 GMT
Diana Ross: Troubled icon
Diana Ross was the leader of girl group The Supremes
Ross (right) started her glittering career with The Supremes
BBC News Online profiles Diana Ross who has been arrested on drink driving charges.

Police stopped the former Supremes star after a motorist called to report a swerving vehicle in the western state of Arizona.

Diana Ross shot to fame as the leader of the all-girl group The Supremes in the 60s.

Signed to the soul label Motown, The Supremes were formed with Mary Wilson, Barbara Martin and Florence Ballard as The Primettes in 1959.

After Martin's departure, the Supremes went on to become one of the biggest groups of the 60s, scoring 12 number one hits.

In 1967 they changed their name to Diana Ross and The Supremes - there was no guessing as to who had control in the group.

After 1969's Someday We'll Be Together, Ross left the group, embarking on a solo career.

The 70s were started in style with the release of the evergreen soul classic Ain't No Mountain High Enough, then with her starring role as Billie Holiday in the 1972 film Lady Sings The Blues.

Rumour

The 70s also saw her duetting with Marvin Gaye on an album, starring in more films such as Mahogany and the musical The Wiz (also starring a young Michael Jackson).

She was rumoured to have had an affair with the young star in the 1980s and created column inches with her affair with Gene Simmons, the bass player from glam rock group KISS.
Diana Ross
Ross' influence as a recording star has dwindled in the last decade

In 1981 she scored the biggest hit of her career, the duet with Lionel Richie Endless Love. The 80s also saw her chart with the slick Muscles and Chain Reaction, produced by The Bee Gees.

In 1986, Ross married Arne Naess, a Norwegian shipping magnate, amid rumours that she was to wed Motown founder Berry Gordy and return to his label, which she had left in 1981.

By the 1990s Ross was recording new material only sporadically.

Acrimony

In 1994 she famously opened the football world cup in the US, fluffing a penalty in full view of the world's television viewers.

Her marriage to Naess petered out in 1999, and a year later a Supremes tour with Ross as the only original member - her relationship with the others having dissolved into acrimony - folded after disappointing ticket sales.

In 1999 she made headlines after allegedly assaulting a female flight attendant at Heathrow Airport after the attendant had tried to conduct a body search before she boarded her flight.

Earlier this year, Ross booked into a rehab clinic in California to deal with long-running battles with drug and alcohol addiction.

See also:

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