The U.S. Postal Service offered a sneak peek of the entertainment, historic and cultural figures that will grace several of the new Forever stamps and other stamps to be issued in 2019.

R&B crooner Marvin Gaye (1939–1984) is honored as the “Prince of Soul” in the Music Icons series. Inspired by historic photographs, art director Derry Noyes designed the stamp pane with original art by Kadir Nelson.

BlackAmericaWeb reported that Ron Brewington, executive director for the Los Angeles chapter of the Motown Alumni Association, has lead the global campaign for a commemorative stamp honoring the late soul legend.

“Brewington has been spearheading a worldwide campaign (‘A Stamp For Marvin’) since June 2003 to get a commemorative U.S. postage stamp for singer Marvin Gaye. He also conducted a concurrent campaign of celebrities along with the unanimous support of a resolution by the Los Angeles City Council, former Los Angeles Mayor James Hahn and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors to get this unique and special honor for the deceased singer,” the website noted.

The U.S. Postal Service explains the “stamp pane is designed to resemble a vintage 45 rpm record sleeve. One side of the pane includes the stamps, brief text about Gaye’s legacy, and the image of a sliver of a record seeming to peek out the top of the sleeve. Another portrait of Gaye appears on the reverse along with the Music Icons series logo.”

The 42nd stamp in the Black Heritage series honors dancer/actor/singer Gregory Hines (1946–2003). Noyes based the stamp’s design on the 1988 photograph by Jack Mitchell. According to the Postal Service, “Hines developed the entertainment traditions of tap into an art form for a younger generation and is credited with renewing interest in tap during the 1990s.”

Poet Walt Whitman, Woodstock and Love are also featured in the latest series of stamp subjects. Since 1847, the stamp program has celebrated the people, events and cultural milestones unique to the history of the United States.

“The miniature works of art illustrated in the 2019 stamp program offer something for everyone’s interest about American history and culture,” said U.S. Postal Service Stamp Services Executive Director Mary-Anne Penner. “From legendary poet Walt Whitman to the entertainment genius of Gregory Hines to the majestic beauty of our Wild and Scenic Rivers, this program is diverse and wide ranging and tells America’s story on stamps.”

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