Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:57 pm

Akhenaten wrote:
Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:08 pm

28. 1968 | Diana Ross & The Supremes And The Temptations | I'm Gonna Make You Love Me
30. 1970 | Bob & Marcia | Young, Gifted And Black

47. 1972 | The Spinners | Could It Be I'm Falling In Love
Good ballot, Akhenaten. I was especially happy to see #28 since you and I are the only ones to list it so far!

Never heard of #30 before, just played it on youtube. Definitely not your typical 1970 Motown record.

#47 is no good, it's not Motown. The Spinners were on Atlantic then. I moved the next 3 on the list each up one slot, if you want to give me a new #50 you can.

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Akhenaten
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Akhenaten » Tue Oct 01, 2019 12:28 pm

Hymie wrote:
Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:57 pm
#47 is no good, it's not Motown. The Spinners were on Atlantic then. I moved the next 3 on the list each up one slot, if you want to give me a new #50 you can.
Ok, I'll go for...
1966 | The Temptations | (I Know) I'm Losing You
... as my no.50.
Who put the bomp in the bomp ba bomp ba bomp?

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Tue Oct 01, 2019 1:33 pm

Akhenaten wrote:
Tue Oct 01, 2019 12:28 pm
Hymie wrote:
Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:57 pm
#47 is no good, it's not Motown. The Spinners were on Atlantic then. I moved the next 3 on the list each up one slot, if you want to give me a new #50 you can.
Ok, I'll go for...
1966 | The Temptations | (I Know) I'm Losing You
... as my no.50.
Got it, thanks!

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Tue Oct 01, 2019 11:52 pm

My girlfriend Diane's ballot:

01) Miracles: Tracks Of My Tears
02) Temptations: Just My Imagination
03) Temptations: I Wish It Would Rain
04) Miracles: The Love I Saw In You Was Just A Mirage
05) Frank Wilson: Do I Love You Indeed I Do
06) Martha & Vandellas: Dancing In The Street
07) Isley Brothers: This Old Heart Of Mine
08) Shorty Long: Function At The Junction
09) Stevie Wonder: Signed Sealed Delivered I'm Yours
10) Marvin Gaye: Stubborn Kind Of Fellow
11) Jr. Walker & All-Stars: (I'm A) Road Runner
12) Undisputed Truth: Smiling Faces Sometimes
13) Jr. Walker & All-Stars: How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You
14) Mary Wells: You Beat Me To The Punch
15) Temptations: Don't Look Back
16) Four Tops: Baby I Need Your Loving
17) Marvin Gaye: Can I Get A Witness
18) Miracles: Swept For You Baby
19) Temptations: Since I Lost My Baby
20) Marvelettes: Too Many Fish In The Sea
21) Brenda Holloway: Every Little Bit Hurts
22) Jackson 5: Who's Loving You (45 RPM VERSION ONLY--NOT THE ALBUM
VERSION, TOTALLY DIFFERENT RECORDING)
23) Commodores: Brick House
24) Kim Weston: It Should Have Been Me
25) Gladys Knight & Pips: Everybody Needs Love
26) Mary Wells: The One Who Really Loves You
27) Stevie Wonder: I Was Made To Love Her
28) Four Tops: Ask The Lonely
29) Miracles: Ooo Baby Baby
30) Martha & Vandellas: I'm Ready For Love
31) Elgins: Heaven Must Have Sent You
32) Temptations: You're My Everything
33) Stevie Wonder: Living For The City
34) Supremes: Come See About Me
35) Martha & Vandellas: Nowhere To Run
36) Temptations: Beauty Is Only Skin Deep
37) Marvin Gaye: Hitchhike
38) Temptations: My Girl
39) Four Tops: Something About You
40) Miracles: My Girl Has Gone
41) Miracles: Walk On By (album track--the Bacharach-David song)
42) Temptations: I Could Never Love Another
43) Marvin Gaye: The End Of Our Road
44) Supremes: Back In My Arms Again
45) Marvin Gaye: Too Busy Thinking About My Baby
46) Miracles: Baby Baby (album track--NOT "Baby Baby Don't Cry")
47) Gladys Knight & Pips: Friendship Train
48) Marvin Gaye: That's The Way Love Is
49) Temptations: Ain't Too Proud To Beg
50) Miracles: What's So Good About Good-By
Last edited by Hymie on Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by BryanBehar » Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:33 am

1. Smokey Robinson & the Miracles- I Second That Emotion
2. Temptations- Ain’t Too Proud to Beg
3. Supremes- You Can’t Hurry Love
4. Marvelettes- Please Please Mr. Postman
5. Stevie Wonder- I Believe When I Fall in Love
6. Smokey Robinson & the Miracles- Tracks of My Tears
7. Jackson 5- The Love You Save
8. Supremes- Stop! In the Name of Love
9. Temptations- Just My Imagination
10. Smokey Robinson & the Miracles- You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me
11. Jackson 5- I Want You Back
12. Four Tops- Reach Out
13. Supremes- Someday We’ll Be Together Again
14. Gladys Knight- Midnight Train to Georgia
15. Four Tops- Walk Away Renee
16. Marvin Gaye/ Tami Terrell- It Takes Two
17. Jackson 5- ABC
18. Stevie Wonder- Superstition
19. Stevie Wonder- For Once in My Life
20.Smokey Robinson & the Miracles- Tears of a Clown
21. Ma4vin Gaye- Innercity Blues
22. Marvin Gaye- What’s Going On
23. Stevie Wonder- Higher Ground
24.Supremes- Reflections
25. Marvin Gaye- Let’s Get it on

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:16 am

BryanBehar wrote:
Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:33 am

14. Gladys Knight- Midnight Train to Georgia
Bryan, you're in, but this one was disqualified. They did this after the left Motown. I moved everything below it up one slot.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by madzong » Fri Oct 04, 2019 8:21 pm

Here is my ballot:

1. Public Enemy - Fight The Power
2. The Jackson 5 - I Want You Back
3. The Jackson 5 - ABC
4. Stevie Wonder - Superstition
5. Marvin Gaye - I Heard It Through The Grapevine
6. Stevie Wonder - Higher Ground
7. Marvin Gaye - What’s Going On
8. Edwin Starr - War
9. Four Tops - Reach Out, I’ll Be There
10. Martha And The Vandellas - Dancing In The Street
11. The Temptations - My Girl
12. Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On
13. The Supremes - Stop! In The Name Of Love
14. The Four Tops - I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)
15. The Four Tops - Walk Away Renee
16. Barnett Strong - Money (That’s What I Want)
17. The Marvelletes - Please Mr. Postman
18. Smokey Robinson & The Miracles - The Tears Of A Clown
19. Smokey Robinson & The Miracles - Tracks Of My Tears
20. Stevie Wonder - Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 04, 2019 9:20 pm

madzong is in, thanks.

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Listyguy
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Listyguy » Sat Oct 05, 2019 3:30 pm

1. Jackson 5 - I Want You Back
2. Four Tops - Reach Out (I'll Be There)
3. The Supremes - You Can't Hurry Love
4. Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell - Ain't No Mountain High Enough
5. The Temptations - (I Know) I'm Losing You
6. Stevie Wonder - Visions
7. Marvin Gaye - Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)
8. Stevie Wonder - Superstition
9. The Supremes - When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes
10. Stevie Wonder - Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing
11. Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - The Tracks of My Tears
12. Stevie Wonder - I Wish
13. Stevie Wonder - Living For the City
14. The Temptations - Ain't Too Proud To Beg
15. Marvin Gaye - What's Going On
16. Stevie Wonder - Uptight (Everything's Alright)
17. Martha and the Vandellas - Dancing in the Street
18. Stevie Wonder - As
19. Lionel Richie - All Night Long (All Night)
20. Stevie Wonder - Sir Duke
21. The Temptations - Papa Was a Rollin' Stone
22. Four Tops - Standing in the Shadows of Love
23. Four Tops - I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)
24. The Temptations - My Girl
25. Rick James - Super Freak
26. Stevie Wonder - Pastime Paradise
27. Edwin Starr - War
28. Commodores - Brick House
29. Four Tops- Baby I Need Your Loving
30. Diana Ross - I'm Coming Out
31. Public Enemy - Fight the Power
32. The Supremes - Where Did Our Love Go?
33. Stevie Wonder - Isn't She Lovely
34. Marvin Gaye - I Heard It Through the Grapevine
35. Jackson 5 - I'll Be There
36. Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On
37. Stevie Wonder - I Ain't Gonna Stand For It
38. The Marvelettes - Please Mr. Postman
39. Rick James - Give It To Me Baby
40. The Supremes - Baby Love

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Sat Oct 05, 2019 5:03 pm

Thanks, Listy. You're in!

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Father2TheMan » Sun Oct 06, 2019 5:54 pm

The problem with making a list for this label is the embarrassment of riches : far too many great singles and it compounds once you add album tracks to that.

I was already well past the 50 mark just compiling a possibilities list based on forumers who have already chimed in and it got worse when I added my own selections not yet mentioned. (This 100 is whittled down from 186 possibles.) My Top 50 will be mostly "the usual suspects" with maybe 1 or 2 surprises just outside the ones that will count.

I plan to listen to as much of the singles catalogue (and album entries I"m not familiar with from other forumers) by the deadline and post a revised list. (Hymie-don't worry, my Top 50 won't be changing).

It will mostly be to let the rest of y'all see what I picked up on from others' lists.

1. Martha and the Vandellas | Nowhere To Run | 1965
2. Barrett Strong | Money (That's What I Want) | 1959
3. Temptations | My Girl | 1964
4. Marvin Gaye | I Heard It Through the Grapevine | 1968
5. Temptations | I Can't Get Next To You | 1969
6. Marvin Gaye | What's Going On? | 1971
7. Temptations | Get Ready | 1966
8. The Four Tops | Reach Out (I’ll Be There) | 1966
9. Stevie Wonder | For Once in My Life | 1968
10. Marvin Gaye | Let’s Get It On | 1973
11. Contours | Do You Love Me? | 1962
12. Edwin Starr | War | 1970
13. Stevie Wonder | Sir Duke | 1976
14. Martha and the Vandellas | (Love Is Like a) Heat Wave | 1963
15. Temptations | Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone | 1972
16. Martha and the Vandellas | Dancing in the Street | 1964
17. Stevie Wonder | Living for the City | 1973
18. Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell | Ain't No Mountain High Enough | 1967
19. Boyz II Men | It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday | 1991
20. Lionel Richie and Diana Ross | Endless Love | 1981
21. Jr. Walker and the All-Stars | Shotgun | 1965
22. Mary Wells | My Guy | 1964
23. Rick James | Super Freak Part 1 | 1981
24. Stevie Wonder | Superstition | 1972
25. Temptations | The Way You Do the Things You Do | 1964
26. The Marvelettes | Please Mr. Postman | 1961
27. Stevie Wonder | I Was Made to Love Her | 1967
28. Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell | Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing | 1968
29. Boyz II Men and Mariah Carey | One Sweet Day | 1995
30. The Miracles | Shop Around | 1960
31. Jimmy Ruffin | What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted? | 1974
32. Stevie Wonder | Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours | 1970
33. Marvin Gaye | Inner City Blues (Makes Me Wanna Holler) | 1971
34. Temptations | Just My Imagination | 1971
35. The Supremes | You Can’t Hurry Love | 1966
36. Stevie Wonder | My Cherie Amour | 1970
37. Temptations | Ball of Confusion | 1970
38. Boyz II Men | End of the Road | 1992
39. Stevie Wonder | Uptight (Everything Is All Right) | 1965
40. The Four Tops | It's The Same Old Song | 1965
41. Temptations | Ain't Too Proud To Beg | 1966
42. The Jackson 5 | ABC | 1970
43. The Four Tops | Bernadette | 1967
44. The Supremes | Stop! In The Name Of Love | 1965
45. Marvin Gaye | Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology) | 1971
46. The Miracles Feat. David Griffin | Love Machine | 1975
47. The Undisputed Truth | Smiling Faces Sometimes | 1971
48. The Jackson 5 | I’ll Be There | 1970
49. The Miracles | The Tracks of My Tears | 1965
50. The Miracles | You've Really Got A Hold On Me | 1962

51. Temptations | I Know (I'm Losing You) | 1966
52. The Supremes | Love Child | 1968
53. Marvin Gaye | I'll Be Doggone | 1965
54. The Supremes | Baby Love | 1964
55. Commodores | Brick House | 1977
56. Diana Ross | I'm Coming Out | 1980
57. The Supremes | You Keep Me Hangin' On | 1966
58. The Supremes | Where Did Our Love Go? | 1964
59. Charlene | I've Never Been to Me | 1982
60. Commodores | Easy | 1977
61. Shanice | I Love Your Smile | 1991
62. Lionel Richie | Running With the Night | 1983
63. Diana Ross | Theme from Mahogany (Do You Know Where You’re Going To) | 1975
64. Stevie Wonder | Saturn | 1976
65. Dazz Band | Let it Whip | 1982
66. Boyz II Men | Motownphilly | 1991
67. India.Arie | Video | 2001
68. Diana Ross | Upside Down | 1980
69. Commodores | Nightshift | 1984
70. Lionel Richie | All Night Long (All Night) | 1983
71. Gladys Knight & The Pips | Neither One of Us | 1972
72. Rockwell | Somebody's Watching Me | 1984
73. Smokey Robinson | Being With You | 1981
74. Stevie Wonder | A Place In The Sun | 1966
75. Temptations | Cloud Nine | 1969
76. Commodores | Three Times a Lady | 1978
77. Stevie Wonder | Higher Ground | 1973
78. Marvin Gaye | How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) | 1964
79. Charlene and Stevie Wonder | Used to Be | 1984
80. Commodores | Lady (You Bring Me Up) | 1981
81. Stevie Wonder | I Wish | 1976
82. Spinners | It's A Shame | 1970
83. Lionel Richie | Hello | 1984
84. The Miracles | The Tears of a Clown | 1970
85. Temptations | Don't Let the Joneses Get You Down | 1969
86. Stevie Wonder | You Are the Sunshine of My Life | 1972
87. The Four Tops | Baby I Need Your Loving | 1964
88. Stevie Wonder | Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing | 1973
89. David Ruffin | My Whole World Ended (The Moment You Left Me) | 1969
90. Stevie Wonder | Isn't She Lovely? | 1976
91. Diana Ross | Ain't No Mountain High Enough | 1970
92. Stevie Wonder | Heaven Help Us All | 1970
93. Martha and the Vandellas | Jimmy Mack | 1967
94. Stevie Wonder | I Just Called to Say I Love You | 1984
95. Lionel Richie | Say You, Say Me | 1985
96. Stevie Wonder | If It's Magic | 1976
97. Marvin Gaye & Kim Weston | It Takes Two | 1966
98. Stevie Wonder | Yester-me, Yester-you, Yesterday | 1969
99. Rick James | Give It To Me, Baby | 1981
100. Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell | You’re All I Need to Get By | 1968

100. Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell | You’re All I Need to Get By | 1968
101. Smokey Robinson | Cruisin' | 1979
102. Lionel Richie | Dancing on the Ceiling | 1986
103. The Four Tops | Standing in the Shadows of Love | 1966
104. Brenda Holloway | Every Little Bit Hurts | 1964
105. Temptations | I Wish It Would Rain | 1967
106. The Jackson 5 | I Want You Back | 1969
107. Diana Ross and Marvin Gaye | My Mistake (Was to Love You) | 1974
108. Stevie Wonder | If You Really Love Me | 1971
109. Erykah Badu | Bag Lady | 2000
110. Gladys Knight & The Pips | If I Were Your Woman | 1970
111. DeBarge | Rhythm of the Night | 1985
112. Stevie Wonder | I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever) | 1972
113. Marvin Gaye | I Want You | 1976
114. Rare Earth | Get Ready | 1970
115. Marvin Gaye | Too Busy Thinking 'Bout My Baby | 1969
116. Stevie Wonder | As | 1976
117. Teena Marie | I Need Your Lovin' | 1980
118. Jr. Walker and the All-Stars What Does It Take? (To Win Your Love) | 1975
119. Temptations | Glasshouse | 1975
120. Edwin Starr | Twenty-Five Miles | 1969
121. Little Stevie Wonder | Fingertips | 1963
122. Temptations | The Girl's Alright With Me | 1964
123. Marvin Gaye | Ain't That Peculiar? | 1965
124. Rick James | You and I | 1978
125. Stevie Wonder | That Girl | 1981
126. Mary Wells | You Beat Me to the Punch | 1962
127. Stevie Wonder | Never Dreamed You'd Leave in Summer | 1971
128. Temptations | Hum Along and Dance | 1970
129. Martha and the Vandellas | Love (Makes Me Do Foolish Things) | 1965
130. Rare Earth | I Just Want to Celebrate | 1971
131. Stevie Wonder | Happier Than The Morning Sun | 1972
132. Temptations | Beauty Is Only Skin Deep | 1965
133. The Four Tops | Ain't No Woman (Like the One I've Got) | 1973
134. The Jackson 5 | Dancing Machine | 1974
135. Stevie Wonder | Lately | 1981
136. Temptations | Shakey Ground | 1975
137. The Four Tops | Shake Me Wake Me (When It's Over) | 1966
138. The Marvelettes | Don't Mess with Bill | 1965
139. Rick James | Cold Blooded | 1983
140. Stevie Wonder | Knocks Me Off My Feet | 1976
141. Temptations | Please Return Your Love to Me | 1968
142. The Supremes | Love is Here and Now You're Gone | 1967
143. Temptations | Message from a Black Man | 1969
144. The Supremes | Reflections | 1967
145. Smokey Robinson & the Miracles | Going to a Go-Go | 1965
146. The Supremes | Back In My Arms Again | 1965
147. Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | More Love | 1967
148. The Four Tops | 7 Rooms of Gloom | 1967
149. Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell | If I Could Build My Whole World Around You | 1967
150. Martha and the Vandellas | Come And Get These Memories | 1963
"The laughs come hard in Old Lang Syne....."

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Sun Oct 06, 2019 7:47 pm

Great list Father2. This one...
29. Boyz II Men and Mariah Carey | One Sweet Day | 1995
...is not Motown and was disqualified. Boyz II Men were guests on her Columbia release. I moved everything up one slot so that "Temptations | I Know (I'm Losing You) | 1966" is now #50.

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Sun Oct 06, 2019 7:59 pm

Father2TheMan wrote:
Sun Oct 06, 2019 5:54 pm
The problem with making a list for this label is the embarrassment of riches : far too many great singles and it compounds once you add album tracks to that.
This is reflected in the voting so far as there are already 124 songs that have 100 points or more. This countdown will be bigger than any of the previous ones that I have done. It may even be a top 200 if I get enough ballots.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by sonofsamiam » Mon Oct 07, 2019 5:39 pm

Embarrassment of riches is right...

1 | Stevie Wonder | Living for the City
2 | Marvin Gaye | What’s Going On
3 | The Supremes | You Keep Me Hangin' On
4 | Public Enemy | Fight the Power
5 | The Temptations | Papa Was a Rollin' Stone
6 | Marvin Gaye | Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)
7 | Stevie Wonder | Superstition
8 | Stevie Wonder | I Was Made to Love Her
9 | Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | The Tracks of My Tears
10 | The Four Tops | Reach Out I’ll Be There
11 | The Jackson 5 | I Want You Back
12 | Frank Wilson | Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)
13 | Marvin Gaye | Trouble Man
14 | Thelma Houston | Don't Leave Me This Way
15 | Stevie Wonder | He's Misstra Know-It-All
16 | Stevie Wonder | Sir Duke
17 | The Velvelettes | Needle in a Haystack
18 | The Temptations | Psychedelic Shack
19 | Stevie Wonder | As
20 | Diana Ross & The Supremes | Reflections
21 | Shanice | I Love Your Smile
22 | Teena Marie | Square Biz
23 | Diana Ross | I'm Coming Out
24 | Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell | Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing
25 | The Marvelettes | The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game
26 | The Supremes | Where Did Our Love Go
27 | Marvin Gaye | How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)
28 | Stevie Wonder | Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing
29 | Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | The Tears of a Clown
30 | Stevie Wonder | Higher Ground
31 | The Four Tops | Baby I Need Your Loving
32 | The Miracles | You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me
33 | Stevie Wonder | Never Dreamed You'd Leave in Summer
34 | The Temptations | I Wish It Would Rain
35 | The Jackson 5 | I'll Be There
36 | Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell | Ain't No Mountain High Enough
37 | Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | The Love I Saw in You Was Just a Mirage
38 | The Commodores | Easy
39 | Martha & The Vandellas | Nowhere to Run
40 | Marvin Gaye | If I Should Die Tonight
41 | Jr. Walker and the All-Stars | Shotgun
42 | Shorty Long | Here Comes the Judge
43 | The Undisputed Truth | Smiling Faces Sometimes
44 | Stevie Wonder | They Won’t Go When I Go
45 | Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | I Don't Blame You at All
46 | Diana Ross & The Supremes | Love Child
47 | Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell | You’re All I Need to Get By
48 | Martha & The Vandellas | In and Out of My Life
49 | The Temptations | Runaway Child, Runnin' Wild
50 | Stevie Wonder | I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever)
51 | The Four Tops | Standing in the Shadows of Love
52 | Marvin Gaye | I Heard It Through the Grapevine
53 | Stevie Wonder | All in Love Is Fair
54 | The Temptations | Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)
55 | Erykah Badu | Green Eyes
56 | Diana Ross | Love Hangover
57 | Willie Hutch | Brother's Gonna Work It Out
58 | The Isley Brothers | This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)
59 | Marvin Gaye | When Did You Stop Loving Me, When Did I Stop Loving You
60 | The Jackson 5 | Never Can Say Goodbye
61 | The Temptations | My Girl
62 | Marvin Gaye | Let’s Get It On
63 | Stevie Wonder | Pastime Paradise
64 | The Temptations | I Can't Get Next to You
65 | Brenda Holloway | Every Little Bit Hurts
66 | Stevie Wonder | Blame It on the Sun
67 | The Temptations | Masterpiece
68 | The Supremes | I Hear a Symphony
69 | The Temptations | Ball of Confusion (That's What the World Is Today)
70 | Stevie Wonder | Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)
71 | Marvin Gaye | Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)
72 | The Commodores | Brick House
73 | Mary Wells | My Guy
74 | Rick James | Super Freak
75 | Diana Ross & The Supremes | Someday We'll Be Together
76 | Edwin Starr | War
77 | The Temptations | (I Know) I'm Losing You
78 | Marvin Gaye | After the Dance
79 | Gladys Knight & The Pips | Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye)
80 | The Miracles | Shop Around
81 | Stevie Wonder | Fingertips
82 | Kim Weston | Take Me in Your Arms (Rock Me a Little While)
83 | Marvin Gaye | Can I Get a Witness
84 | Stevie Wonder | You Haven't Done Nothin'
85 | The Supremes | Stop! In the Name of Love
86 | Stevie Wonder | Uptight (Everything's Alright)
87 | Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | I Second That Emotion
88 | R. Dean Taylor | There's a Ghost in My House
89 | Boyz II Men | It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday
90 | The Four Tops | Bernadette
91 | The Dazz Band | Let It Whip
92 | The Contours | Do You Love Me
93 | The Marvelettes | Please Mr. Postman
94 | The Four Tops | Walk Away Renee
95 | The Temptations | Get Ready
96 | The Commodores | Nightshift
97 | Smokey Robinson & The Miracles | Going to a Go-Go
98 | Gladys Knight & The Pips | I Heard It Through the Grapevine
99 | Martha & The Vandellas | Dancing in the Street
100 | The Jackson 5 | ABC
Last edited by sonofsamiam on Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:19 pm

sonof is in!

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by sonofsamiam » Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:25 pm

Hymie wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:19 pm
sonof is in!
Gah! Don't compile mine yet, I inadvertently left off "He's Misstra Know-It-All", my favorite underrated sunny-sounding yet vitriolic Stevie track.

I'm just going to shuffle around some Stevie tracks to make it simpler. Let me know if you need an overview of the changes in case you already plugged everything in.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:19 pm

sonofsamiam wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:25 pm
Hymie wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:19 pm
sonof is in!
Gah! Don't compile mine yet, I inadvertently left off "He's Misstra Know-It-All", my favorite underrated sunny-sounding yet vitriolic Stevie track.

I'm just going to shuffle around some Stevie tracks to make it simpler. Let me know if you need an overview of the changes in case you already plugged everything in.
I did plug everything in, so tell what you do.

sonofsamiam
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by sonofsamiam » Tue Oct 08, 2019 10:39 pm

Hymie wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:19 pm
sonofsamiam wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:25 pm
Hymie wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:19 pm
sonof is in!
Gah! Don't compile mine yet, I inadvertently left off "He's Misstra Know-It-All", my favorite underrated sunny-sounding yet vitriolic Stevie track.

I'm just going to shuffle around some Stevie tracks to make it simpler. Let me know if you need an overview of the changes in case you already plugged everything in.
I did plug everything in, so tell what you do.
Never mind you can use as is

CupOfDreams
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by CupOfDreams » Sun Oct 13, 2019 7:43 am

Top 50 Motown & Affiliated Songs

1) Marvin Gaye - Inner City Blues (Makes Me Wanna Holler)
2) Stevie Wonder - Living For The City
3) Stevie Wonder - As
4) The Temptations - Papa Was A Rolling Stone
5) Marvin Gaye - What's Going On
6) Public Enemy - Fight The Power
7) Four Tops - Reach Out, I'll Be There
8) Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - The Tracks Of My Tears
9) Stevie Wonder - Superstition
10) Marvin Gaye - Trouble Man
11) Stevie Wonder - Higher Ground
12) Marvin Gaye - Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)
13) Stevie Wonder - Superwoman (Where Were You When I Needed You)
14) Marvin Gaye - I Heard It Through The Grapevine
15) The Jackson 5 - I Want You Back
16) The Supremes - My World Is Empty Without You
17) The Undisputed Truth - Smiling Faces Sometimes
18) The Supremes - Come See About Me
19) Stevie Wonder - You Haven't Done Nothin'
20) Martha & the Vandellas - Nowhere To Run
21) Four Tops - Baby I Need Your Loving
22) Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - I Second That Emotion
23) Stevie Wonder - Uptight (Everything Is Alright)
24) Marvin Gaye - I Want You
25) Stevie Wonder - I Was Made To Love Her
26) Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - Tears of a Clown
27) The Miracles - You've Really Got A Hold On Me
28) Eddie Kendricks - My People...Hold On
29) Stevie Wonder - My Cheri Amour
30) Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell - You're All I Need To Get By
31) The Temptations - Ball of Confusion
32) The Jackson 5 - The Love You Save
33) Stevie Wonder - If You Really Love Me
34) Mary Wells - My Guy
35) The Temptations - My Girl
36) Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On
37) Jr. Walker & the All-Stars - Shotgun
38) Edwin Starr - War
39) The Temptations - Ain't Too Proud To Beg
40) Stevie Wonder - Another Star
41) The Temptations - Cloud Nine
42) The Temptations - Just My Imagination (Running Away With Me)
43) Frank Wilson - Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)
44) Jimmy Ruffin - What Becomes of the Broken-Hearted
45) Stevie Wonder - Pastime Paradise
46) Martha & the Vandellas - Jimmy Mack
47) Four Tops - It's The Same Old Song
48) The Velvelettes - He Was Really Sayin' Somethin'
49) Four Tops - Something About You
50) Erykah Badu - Penitentiary Philosophy

Honorable Mention

The Supremes - Baby Love
Marvin Gaye - Too Busy Thinking About My Baby
The Temptations - Get Ready
Four Tops - Shake Me, Wake Me (When It's Over)
Stevie Wonder - You Are The Sunshine Of My Life
Four Tops - I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)
Stevie Wonder - I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever)
The Isley Brothers - This Old Heart of Mind (Is Weak For You)
Four Tops - Standing In The Shadows of Love
Stevie Wonder - Signed, Sealed, Delivered
Stevie Wonder - For Once In My Life
The Temptations - I Can't Get Next To You
Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell - Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing
Marvin Gaye - Got To Give It Up
Stevie Wonder - Boogie On Reggae Woman
Four Tops - Bernadette
Gladys Knight & the Pips - I Heard It Through The Grapevine
The Miracles - Shop Around
Martha & the Vandellas - Dancing In The Street
Stevie Wonder - I Wish
Stevie Wonder - I Love Having You Around
Stevie Wonder - Maybe Your Baby
Stevie Wonder - Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing
Marvin Gaye - What's Happening Brother
Marvin Gaye - I'll Be Doggone
The Temptations - The Way You Do The Things You Do
Stevie Wonder - Sir Duke
The Marvelettes - Don't Mess With Bill
Diana Ross & the Supremes - Reflections
Jr. Walker & the All-Stars - What Does It Take (To Win Your Love)
Stevie Wonder - Too High
The Jackson 5 - I'll Be There
Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - Going To A Go-Go
Eddie Kendricks - Boogie Down
The Temptations - Get Ready
Rick James - Mary Jane
Edwin Starr - Twenty Five Miles
The Temptations - (I Know) I'm Losing You
Diana Ross & the Supremes - Love Child
Rick James - Super Freak
Stevie Wonder - You and I
The Supremes - Nothing But Heartaches
Stevie Wonder - Look Around
The Temptations - Psychedelic Shack
Erykah Badu - Didn't Cha Know
Diana Ross & the Supremes - Someday We'll Be Together
The Supremes - Stoned Love
Willie Hutch - Brothers Gonna Work It Out
Rare Earth - I Just Want To Celebrate
Stevie Wonder - Master Blaster
Four Tops - Walk Away Renee
Barrett Strong - Money (That's What I Want)
The Supremes - Love Is Here And Now You're Gone
Diana Ross & the Supremes and The Temptations - I'm Gonna Make You Love Me
Stevie Wonder - Keep On Running
The Supremes - I Hear A Symphony
The Temptations - You Make Your Own Heaven And Hell Right Here On Earth
The Spinners - It's A Shame
Dazz Band - Let It Whip
Shorty Long - Devil With A Blue Dress
Stevie Wonder - Yester-Me, Yester-You, Yesterday
The Marvelettes - The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game
Marvin Gaye - Here, My Dear
Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - Ooo Baby Baby
Marvin Gaye - How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)
Diana Ross - Love Hangover
Eddie Kendricks - Keep On Truckin'
Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - More Love
Rare Earth - Get Ready
Stevie Wonder - Fingertips
The Isley Brothers - Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me A Little While)
Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell - Keep On Lovin' Me Honey
The Jackson 5 - ABC
The Temptations - Runaway Child, Running Wild
Diana Ross - Ain't No Mountain High Enough
The Supremes - Back In My Arms Again
The Marvelettes - Please Mr. Postman
Erykah Badu - Back In The Day
The Jackson 5 - Never Can Say Goodbye
Rare Earth - Born To Wander
Mary Wells - You Beat Me To The Punch
The Temptations - Take A Stroll Thru Your Mind
Four Tops - A Simple Game
Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell - Your Precious Love

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:19 pm

Thanks, Cup. You're in!

I am up to 35 ballots now, and the list is shaping up nicely. Deadline is a week from today at midnight ET.

Getting mostly full 50 song ballots too, which helps.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Myself » Sun Oct 13, 2019 7:45 pm

1. Marvin Gaye – I Heard It Through the Grapevine
2. Public Enemy – Fight the Power
3. Four Tops – Reach Out I’ll Be There
4. Stevie Wonder – Superstition
5. The Temptations – Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone
6. Smokey Robinson – Being with You
7. Diana Ross – Upside Down
8. Edwin Starr – War
9. Marvin Gaye – What’s Going On
10. Martha & the Vandellas – (Love is Like a) Heat Wave
11. The Supremes – My World Is Empty Without You
12. The Miracles – You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me
13. The Supremes – You Keep Me Hangin’ On
14. The Supremes – Stop! In the Name of Love
15. Stevie Wonder – Living for the City
16. The Temptations – I Can’t Get Next to You
17. Jimmy Ruffin – What Becomes of the Brokenhearted?
18. Marvin Gaye – Inner City Blues (Makes Me Wanna Holler)
19. The Temptations – Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)
20. Mary Wells – My Guy
21. Stevie Wonder – Visions
22. Stevie Wonder – Higher Ground
23. Stevie Wonder – Pastime Paradise
24. Diana Ross – Touch Me in the Morning
25. The Supremes – You Can’t Hurry Love
26. The Miracles – The Tracks of My Tears
27. Stevie Wonder – Fingertips, Part 2
28. Stevie Wonder – My Cherie Amour
29. Diana Ross – Ain’t No Mountain High Enough
30. Rockwell – Somebody’s Watching Me
31. Four Tops – I Can’t Help Myself
32. The Temptations – My Girl
33. Marvin Gaye – Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)
34. Barrett Strong – Money (That’s What I Want)
35. The Contours – Do You Love Me
36. The Supremes – Baby Love
37. Diana Ross – Theme from Mahogany (Do You Know Where You’re Going To)
38. The Undisputed Truth – Smiling Faces Sometimes
39. The Supremes – Where Did Our Love Go
40. The Marvelettes – Please Mr. Postman
41. The Supremes – Someday We’ll Be Together
42. The Supremes – Love Child
43. The Jackson 5 – I’ll Be There
44. Stevie Wonder – Sir Duke
45. Billy Preston & Syreeta – With You I’m Born Again
46. Gladys Knight & the Pips – If I Were Your Woman
47. Stevie Wonder – Part Time Lover
48. Marvin Gaye – I Want You
49. The Temptations – Get Ready
50. Rick James – Super Freak

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Sun Oct 13, 2019 11:50 pm

Myself, you're in. Thanks.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:27 pm

DEADLINE TO SUBMIT YOUR BALLOT IS SUNDAY AT MIDNIGHT ET.

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Smith35 » Fri Oct 18, 2019 7:45 am


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Elder
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Elder » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:03 pm

1 Stevie Wonder - Living for the City 1973
2 Stevie Wonder - As 1976
3 Diana Ross - Love Hangover 1976
4 Stevie Wonder - Higher Ground 1973
5 Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On 1973
6 Stevie Wonder - Superstition 1972
7 Marvin Gaye - What's Going On 1971
8 The Jackson 5 - I Want You Back 1969
9 The Temptations - My Girl 1964
10 Public Enemy - Fight the Power 1989
11 The Supremes - You Can't Hurry Love 1966
12 Marvin Gaye - Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology) 1971
13 Diana Ross - I'm Coming Out 1980
14 Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell - Ain't No Mountain High Enough 1967
15 Smokey Robinson and The Miracles - The Tracks of My Tears 1965
16 Erykah Badu - Window Seat 2010
17 The Supremes - Baby Love 1964
18 The Miracles - You've Really Got a Hold on Me 1962
19 Queen Latifah - U.N.I.T.Y. 1993
20 Stevie Wonder - Visions 1973
21 The Temptations - Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me) 1971
22 Four Tops - Reach Out I'll Be There 1966
23 Marvin Gaye - I Want You 1975
24 Stevie Wonder - For Once in My Life 1968
25 The Supremes - You Keep Me Hangin' On 1966
26 Erykah Badu - Bag Lady (remix edit) 2000
27 The Supremes - I Hear a Symphony 1965
28 Thelma Houston - Don't Leave Me This Way 1976
29 Stevie Wonder - I Wish 1976
30 Marvin Gaye - Got to Give It Up, Part 1 1977
31 Stevie Wonder - Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing 1973
32 Martha and The Vandellas - Dancing in the Street 1964
33 The Temptations - Papa Was a Rolling Stone 1972
34 Diana Ross and The Supremes - Someday We'll Be Together 1969
35 Erykah Badu feat. Andre 3000 - Hello 2015
Losing My Edge

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by antonius » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:23 pm

1. Marvin Gaye | Inner City Blues
2. Marvin Gaye | Right On
3. The Temptations | Papa was a rollin' Stone
4. The Temptations | Ball of Confusion
5. Marvin Gaye | Let's Get It On
6. Marvin Gaye | What's going on
7. Marvin Gaye | Got to give it up
8. Temptations | Just my imagination
9. Marvin Gaye | What's happenin' brother
10. Marvin Gaye | Distant Lover
11. Marvin Gaye | Mercy Mercy Me
12. Commodores | Brick House
13. Edwin Starr | War
14. Stevie Wonder | Living for the city
15. Marvin Gaye | I Heard it through the grapevine
16. Temptations | Ain't too proud to beg
17. Stevie Wonder | Superstition
18. Marvin Gaye | Ain't That Peculiar
19. Stevie Wonder | I Wish
20. Temptations | I Wish it would rain
21. Marvin Gaye | If I should die tonight
22. Miracles | Tracks of my Tears
23. The Temptations | Psychedelic Shack
24. Stevie Wonder | Golden Lady
25. Miracles | Tears of a clown
26. Tempations | Shakey Ground
27. Stevie Wonder | Too High
28. Isley Brothers | This Ole Heart of Mine
29. Marvin Gaye | Wholy Holy
30. The Temptations | Funky Music Shure 'Nuff Turns me on
31. Sisters Love | Give me your love
32. Stevie Wonder | Sir Duke
33. Stevie Wonder | As
34. Stevie Wonder | Master Blaster
35. Marvin Gaye | Flyin' High in the friendly Sky
36. Temptations | Cloud Nine
37. Stevie Wonder | Visions
38. Contours | Do you love me
39. Diana Ross | My Ol' Piano
40. Marvin Gaye | Trouble Man
41. Erkah Badu | Bag Lady
42. Public Enemy | Fight the Power
43. Temptations | I know I'm losing you
44. Miracles | I second that emotion
45. Teena Marie | I Need your lovin'
46. Commodores | Nightshift
47. Dennis Edwards | Don't look any further
48. Marvin Gaye | I Want You
49. Miracles | You've really got a hold on me
50. Erykah Badu | Didn't Cha Know

Hymie
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 18, 2019 10:38 pm

Elder and antonius are in. Thanks guys!

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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Father2TheMan » Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:31 am

I listened to as many of the songs I was unfamiliar with that forumers mentioned on their lists as I could. There are a couple that I ran into on my own and a handful of these are tunes I already liked ("Let Your Hair Down" for example) that didn't quite make my list submission. I also heard some interesting oddities along the way like a Dickie Goodman styled breakin record to cash in on the lunar mission, an R&B take on the old cowboy folk ballad "Home on the Range" and a "hip" musical PSA aimed at encouraging youngsters to get their diplomas.

It takes me quite a few plays to really determine how I feel about a song so they aren't going to crack my Top 150 yet but here's some that could maybe hit my list in future that I felt are worth a listen.

BUBBLING UNDER/NEW DISCOVERIES
1. Brenda Holloway | When I'm Gone | 1965
2. Dee Mullins | Love Makes the World Go 'Round, But Money Greases the Wheel | 1965 Country
3. Diana Ross | I'm Still Waiting| 1970
4. Diana Ross | Take Me Higher | 1995
5. Eddie Holland | Last Night I Had a Vision | 1964 (B side)
6. Four Tops | Ask the Lonely | 1965
7. Frank Wilson | Do I Love You? (Indeed I Do) | 1965
8. Gladys Knight & the Pips | Didn't You Know (You'd Have To Cry Sometime) | 1969
9. Gladys Knight and the Pips | Help Me Make it Through the Night | 1972
10. Gladys Knight and the Pips | I Heard It Through the Grapevine | 1967
11. Johnny Griffith Trio | I Did | 1963 (B side) Recommended for fans of Vince Guaraldi
12. Jr. Walker and the All-Stars | Shake and Fingerpop | 1965
13. Lesley Gore | She Said That | 1972
14. Marv Johnson | Come to Me | 1959
15. Marvin Gaye | Stubborn Kind of Fellow | 1962
16. Mary Wells | The One Who Really Loves You | 1962
17. Mary Wells | You Beat Me To the Punch | 1962
18. Michael Jackson | One Day in Your Life | 1975
19. P.J. | It Takes a Man to Teach a Woman How to Love | 1971
20. Public Enemy | Fight the Power | 1989
21. Singin' Sammy Ward | That Child is Really Wild | 1960 (B side)
22. Stevie Wonder | Creepin' | 1974
23. Stevie Wonder | Superwoman (Where Were You When I Needed You) | 1972
24. Stevie Wonder | They Won't Go When I Go | 1973
25. Stevie Wonder | You've Got It Bad Girl | 1972
26. The Downbeats | Your Baby's Back | 1962
27. The Marvelettes | Destination:Anywhere | 1968
28. The Marvelettes | Forever | 1963 (B side)
29. The Marvelettes | The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game | 1966
30. The Marvelettes | Too Many Fish in the Sea | 1964
31. The Messengers | That's the Way a Woman Is | 1971
32. The Miracles | Bad Girl | 1959
33. The Miracles | Everybody's Got To Pay Some Dues | 1961
34. The Miracles | I Don't Blame You At All | 1971
35. The Miracles | Swept for You Baby | 1967 (B side)
36. The Miracles | The Love I Saw In You Was Just a Mirage | 1967
37. The Miracles | Whatever Makes You Happy | 1963 (B side)
38. The Miracles | Would I Love You? | 1964 (B side)
39. The Supremes | When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes | 1963
40. The Temptations | Don't Look Back | 1965 (B side)
41. The Temptations | I Could Never Love Another (After Lovin' You) | 1968
42. The Temptations | Let Your Hair Down | 1973
43. The Temptations | What Love Has Joined Together | 1965 (B side)
44. The Temptations | Your Wonderful Love | 1961 (B side)
45. Thelma Houston | Don't Leave Me This Way | 1976
46. Thelma Houston | I Want To Go Back There Again | 1971
47. Wolfe | Tale of Two Cities | 1972
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Re: Best Motown Songs

Post by Hymie » Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:58 am

Father, I'm impressed at the work you put in to become more familiar with Motown items.

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Tue Oct 22, 2019 2:03 am

Okay, been working on tabulating and laying out the results of this almost non stop since the survey closed last night. With so many good songs eligible for this it was a lot more work than my surveys on just one artist. But I am ready to start to countdown the results starting tomorrow morning.

There are 240 songs that were listed on at least 2 ballots. There are even more than that of songs that were only mentioned on one ballot, so around 500 songs in all were mentioned on at least one ballot. Because there were so many good songs known and eligible, a high percentage of voters submitted a full 50 song ballot. This provides me more data and makes the results a little more meaningful.

I will be starting the countdown at song #157. That song garnered 111 points in the balloting. The voting was much more spread out than it ever is when I survey just one artist, as there are way more good and well known records than any one artist could ever have.

The songs in the countdown will cover 31 years (1959-1989). Some even newer records made the survey lower down. They will be shown in the final results that I will post at the end of the countdown. As usual there were a few records that finished much higher than I had expected, along with some records that I thought would do well, but had hardly any support at all. if any.

So "Get Ready" for Motown for the next couple of months or so.


Image

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Tue Oct 22, 2019 1:18 pm

Okay, we are ready to go. For song #157 we go to 1961 for the first of 15 songs on the countdown by this legendary Motown act:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09LHibzdk_s

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Tue Oct 22, 2019 6:14 pm

Song #157 is "The Only One I Love" by the Miracles, from 1961. Here's the review from the "MOTOWN JUNKIES" website.

https://motownjunkies.co.uk/2009/10/17/56/

A solo writing credit for Smokey on this one, his third such credit after the stupendous single Way Over There, and the rather less stupendous B-side Who’s Lovin’ You.

It’s a sweet, slow-paced ballad that doesn’t really go anywhere, but it’s pretty all the same, well sung by Smokey at the very top of his register. Hardly a million miles away from Who’s Lovin’ You, it again has heavy traces of doo-wop, although this one’s prominent use of rhythm guitar and soft brushed drums does appear to be a step away from that style, towards the sort of arrangement shown on Debbie Dean’s "A New Girl," another Smokey co-write.

Once again, I find myself holding Smokey to higher standards than other Motown artists and songwriters of the period, which isn’t really fair; but while this might have been a passably good effort by one of Motown’s early-Sixties lesser lights, it’s little more than filler when put up against some of the Miracles’ better songs even only to this point.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I vehemently disagree with the review. I think it's an excellent and very pretty ballad from the early Miracles. I like it better than "Way Over There," which the reviewer loved. It was issued on Tamla as the B side to "Ain't It Baby."

Image


Song #156 is up now. We just heard from the first superstar vocal group from Motown, the Miracles. Song #156 comes from the first superstar solo act from the label.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6BOGWgGVAo

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Tue Oct 22, 2019 11:24 pm

We just heard song #156 on the countdown, "Two Lovers," by Mary Wells from 1962. Mary Wells early on was known as the "Queen of Motown" after her first few hits on the label.

From Wikipedia:

The song was the third consecutive hit to be both written and produced by Smokey Robinson of The Miracles and recorded by Mary Wells, the two previous charters being "The One Who Really Loves You" and "You Beat Me to the Punch." The song's cleverly devised lyrics at first appear to be about a girl singing to one lover who is "sweet and kind" and a second who treats her bad and makes her sad; eventually, the girl reveals that the two lovers are actually the same person. The song became Wells's most successful release to date, reaching #1 on the Billboard R&B chart and #7 on the Billboard pop chart. Its success would be eclipsed two years later by the singer's most successful release ever, the signature tune "My Guy."

Personnel
Lead (and additional) background vocal by Mary Wells
Background vocals by The Love Tones (Joe Miles and Stan Bracely, with Eddie Kendricks of The Temptations)
Written and produced by Smokey Robinson
Instrumentation by The Funk Brothers

=========================================================================================================

I just discovered that Dolly Parton did a very faithful version of the song on one of her albums:



Let's see what the guy at "Motown Junkies" had to say about "Two Lovers."

The third of Mary Wells’ trio of big hits written and produced by Smokey Robinson in 1962 (following on from The One Who Really Loves You and You Beat Me To The Punch), this is also for my money the weakest of the bunch.

The partnership between Mary and Smokey was Motown’s first really successful pairing up of a great performer with a great writer/producer; both parties flourished under the arrangement, and the results weren’t just measured in hit records for Mary. Throughout 1962, Robinson used his work with Wells to define and refine a clearly-identifiable “Motown Sound,” a midtempo, calypso-influenced style which most of the label’s roster ended up flirting with, resulting in hits of varying magnitude for both Smokey’s own group the Miracles (the sumptuous I’ll Try Something New) and lesser lights at the time like the Supremes (Your Heart Belongs To Me).

The best examples, though, were the aforementioned first two hit singles Smokey wrote for Mary Wells in 1962; two excellent records, so excellent that they perhaps masked the fact that all this midtempo, calypso-tinged stuff was leading Motown down a musical dead end. The public didn’t yet care – like its predecessor, Two Lovers landed in the pop Top Ten and topped the R&B charts – but things were already moving on at Motown, and this is pretty much the last good record that could be squeezed out from what was becoming a stale formula.

I’m being unduly harsh (just for a change, I know). This is a good record – I thought I’d best make that clear right now for anyone who’s not already skipped ahead to see the mark I’ve given it. It’s just that there are two things wrong with it for me; there’s an all-pervading atmosphere of treading water, and there are two almost-identical, considerably better Mary Wells records already available to compare it to. Once you’ve made "The One Who Really Loves You" and "You Beat Me To The Punch," where else is there to go? Without changing direction, the only way is down. Those two are magnificent pop records; this is an entertaining, beautifully-sung sketch that sounds as though it was assembled out of various offcuts from those two records.

So, musically, this one doesn’t really do much that those two hadn’t already done; of the smattering of new elements, the brassy horns are a plus, but the weird “popcorn” percussion (a noise that sounds like two coconut halves being knocked together) is a minus, so they cancel each other out. Really, the whole thing is little more than a retread of Mary’s first two big hits of the year, and so whilst it sounds good and all, musically it’s not doing anything new, nothing that we haven’t already heard.

But it’s a Mary Wells single, which means there’s still plenty to like. Mary gives another excellent performance, her smoky, smoldering voice sounding better than ever, growing more confident with each successive single. She’s getting very good as an actress, too; it’s testament to her charisma and charm (both of which radiate off this record with an almost visible brightness) that even though she’s being made to sing some of Smokey Robinson’s clunkiest lyrics, she manages to keep things convincing.

Ah yes, the lyrics. Right. Other than Mary’s vocal, the record’s big selling point is its twist ending; I don’t want to spoil the surprise, so anyone who (for whatever baffling reason) is reading this without having listened to the song first should go and do that immediately.

Okay, are they all gone? Excellent. The conceit of the song is that Mary explains how she has Two lovers, and I ain’t ashamed / Two lovers, and I love them both the same, a scandalous admission which must have caused a few white radio jocks to suck in their breath in the prudish climate of 1962. She describes the character traits of her two lovers in turn: one is gentle and kind, while the other treats me bad / Makes me sad / Makes me cry, but still she loves them both equally. At the end, though, we find out that they’re actually the same person. Zing!

The way this is phrased in the song:

“Darling, well
Don’t you know that I can tell
Whenever I look at you
That you think that I’m untrue
‘Cos I say that I love two
But I really, really do
‘Cos you’re a split personality
And, in reality…
Both of them are you”

– has led a number of reviewers to take the phrase “split personality” quite literally, suggesting Mary’s boyfriend really does have a mental health problem that causes him to think he’s two different people, or something like that. I’ve never subscribed to this view – I think the song is meant to be Mary pointing out, gently, to her man that he sometimes acts like such a complete arse that it’s almost as if he’s a different person. (In fact, I think if the song really were meant to be taken literally, it would lose a lot of its charm – it would be a slightly tacky comedy number, and you never want to reduce Mary Wells to that.)

Mary's third LP, 'Two Lovers', which features this song.


Image


No, it’s a nice enough idea in principle – my problem with it is that it’s so clunky, uncharacteristically so for a wordsmith as skillful Smokey Robinson. It’s not clear until the “big reveal” just who Mary is addressing this information to, or why; and even when we do find out, it’s still poorly written. Like another bafflingly highly-regarded Smokey Robinson clunker, What’s So Good About Goodbye?, the initial “Oh, that’s clever!” of the thin central conceit seems to have blinded people to some very ordinary writing. Look at those lines up there; beautifully sung they may be, but as dialogue, they’re just terrible. Smokey’s trying to catch a fairly complicated sentiment in a few very short lines, but it’s not easy to paraphrase something like “I can tell from your face that this whole “two lovers” business has shocked you, but don’t worry; I’m just employing a narrative device because I want to make it clear how your love for me seems to blow hot and cold” in a way that can be parsed quickly by pop listeners over the course of ten seconds. Still, if you had to put your money on anyone to carry it off, it would probably be Smokey Robinson – but he doesn’t manage it, and instead he ends up saddling Mary with a lumbering amateur theatrical monologue that doesn’t really stand up to close scrutiny.

That’s the rub, I suppose – there just isn’t enough here to reward repeat listens, especially after the “shock” of the twist ending has been revealed. It’s a nice enough tune, but it’s so heavily reminiscent of the two better ones Mary Wells had already cut in 1962 that it seems almost perverse to come to this one rather than one of those.

But Mary, though. Mary, Mary, Mary. I could listen to her all day; she’s so seductive and charming that she almost makes Smokey’s dialogue work, and frankly I’d never turn down the chance of more Mary Wells. But I’m really finding it tough to even try and review this record in isolation – I mean, what would I think of this if I’d never heard The One Who Really Loves You or You Beat Me To The Punch? I’d probably end up rating it a lot higher, I guess, because it shares a lot of what was good about those records, without really adding anything to the mix – but then it’s difficult to say for sure, because I can’t forget those songs, and furthermore those are both eternal, written around universal themes, whereas this one’s based on surprising the listener with a conceit that only works the first time around, and that’s a flaw I can’t write off completely for the sake of isolation.

It’s good, but at the same time it’s not as good as some almost identical Mary Wells records I’ve already reviewed. That’s it.

Aargh. Tell you what. Ignore me, and go and listen to this record, which is a perfectly good Mary Wells single, perhaps even a “typical” Mary Wells single, and see what you think. Me, I think it’s extremely disappointing without ever being noticeably bad, and so this seems like a fair enough mark to me. Your mileage may vary.


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Next up is song #155. Motown was a black owned and operated label that recorded mainly black acts. They did have a few white acts here and there though. Of the 157 records on this countdown just two of them are from white acts. Song #155 comes from one of those white acts, although you'd never know it from what it sounds like.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9wotiDai5U

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Wed Oct 23, 2019 4:17 am

Song #155 is "Square Biz" by Teena Marie, from 1981. Teena does some rapping on the record, and it won't be the only rapping that you hear on this countdown. Teena's rap on this song was actually a verse from "Rapper's Delight." The late Teena Marie was born in 1956 and was given the nickname Lady Tee by Rick James, who she did some songs with. Her ethnic heritage was Portuguese, Italian, Irish, and American Indian.

In the early 1970s, after the family moved to Venice, Los Angeles, Brockert spent her adolescent years in the historically black Venice enclave of Oakwood, nicknamed "Venice Harlem." There, she would acquire a strong spiritual influence from neighborhood matriarch Berthalynn Jackson, a black woman who would become her godmother.

"Square Biz" was written, arranged, and produced by Teena herself, and was her biggest hit single for Motown, getting to #3 on the Billboard Black chart and it got to #50 on the Hot 100 Pop chart. She went on to have a top 10 pop chart hit for Epic called "Lovergirl" in 1984.


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Next up is song #154, as Motown starts to make records with a more progressive sound in 1967. Check out the end of this record, as it includes an ending that was not released at the time that the record was current.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfK9LkUOWWg

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Wed Oct 23, 2019 1:12 pm

Song #154 is "Reflections" from the Supremes. It was the first Supremes record released under the new billing, Diana Ross & the Supremes, and is among their last hit singles to be written and produced by Motown's main production team Holland–Dozier–Holland (H–D–H). It peaked at number 2 on the United States Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart and number 5 on the UK Singles Chart. "Reflections" stalled at #2 for two weeks behind Bobbie Gentry's "Ode to Billie Joe", which Diana Ross re-recorded as a solo for the Reflections album.

In 1967 Motown started to feature a more progressive sound, as many of the hits of the day by then were somewhat psychedelic sounding. This got more prevalent on Motown records in the next couple of years, especially with the Temptations after Dennis Edwards replaced David Ruffin as the baritone lead. "Reflections" was one the first Motown records to feature this new sound.

Although it is sometimes cited as one of the first mainstream pop recordings to feature a Moog synthesizer, the unusual sounds on the track were generated on a test oscillator and treated with effects. Motown, the Supremes' record label, purchased a Moog III synthesizer, but not until December 1967.

The first nationally televised performance to feature Ballard's replacement Cindy Birdsong as a member of The Supremes on American television, now billed as "Diana Ross & the Supremes," was on an episode of the ABC variety program The Hollywood Palace. The episode was hosted by entertainer Sammy Davis Jr. and first broadcast on September 26, 1967.

A later remastered reissue of the song, running 3:11, although containing the looped section that closes the hit 2:50 single version in the fade-out, features a cold closing as originally recorded.

Personnel
Lead vocals by Diana Ross
Background vocals by Mary Wilson and Marlene Barrow
Instrumentation by The Funk Brothers
Earl Van Dyke – Wurlitzer electric piano, Hammond organ, test oscillator
James Jamerson – bass guitar
Richard "Pistol" Allen – drums
Joe Messina – guitar
Jack Ashford – percussion


Image


RANK-BALLOTS-POINTS-TITLE-ARTIST
154 - 03-114 - Reflections - Supremes
155 - 02-114 - Square Biz - Teena Marie
156 - 04-113 - Two Lovers - Mary Wells
157 - 03-111 - The Only One I Love - Miracles


Up next at #153 we have the first appearance on the countdown from another legendary Motown act. This artist has 20 songs on the countdown.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H--_-gPX3Nw

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Wed Oct 23, 2019 5:22 pm

At #153 we heard "I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever" by Stevie Wonder, which is the closing track on his 1972 album "Talking Book." This was the first of 4 consecutive legendary albums by Stevie. The song was co-written by Yvonne Wright. This track was featured in the movie "High Fidelity" and was included on the soundtrack album.


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Coming up next is song #152, and it's the opening song from the same album that #153 is on.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbenaOqv4yQ

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Wed Oct 23, 2019 10:27 pm

Song #152 is "You Are The Sunshine of My Life" from the "Talking Book" album in 1972. This was a #1 song on the Billboard Hot 100 as a single in 1973. It won Wonder a Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, and was nominated for both Record of the Year and Song of the Year. Rolling Stone ranked the song number 287 on their list of the "500 Greatest Songs of All Time".

Before Stevie comes in with his vocal, the opening lines of the song are sung by Jim Gilstrap and Lani Groves, who were among the backup singers at the session. The single version of the song differs from the album version with the addition of horns to the mix; this version is also included in the greatest hits compilation album Stevie Wonder's Original Musiquarium I.

Personnel
Source: Talking Book, Tamla: T 319L, October 27, 1972 (album cover)

Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, background vocal, Fender Rhodes, drums
Jim Gilstrap – first lead vocal, background vocal
Lani Groves – second lead vocal, background vocal
Gloria Barley – background vocal
Scott Edwards – electric bass
Daniel Ben Zebulon – congas

Image


Next up at #151 is the B side of a single from 1965:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KvpDtss8dC0

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 24, 2019 3:33 am

Song #151 is "A Fork In The Road," another gorgeous flip side ballad from the Mighty Miracles. It was on the other side of "The Tracks of My Tears," which MIGHT be coming up later on this countdown :-), you never know. The song was written by Miracles members Smokey Robinson, Pete Moore, and Ronnie White. It was included as the closing track on the Miracles' 1965 studio LP, "Going to a Go-Go." Though this original version never charted nationally, it was a strong regional hit in many areas of the country and a popular part of the Miracles' live show.

Let's check in again with "Motown Junkies" and see what the review is like on this one. By the way, the site has not had a new review in over 6 months. The last record reiewed was "Shake Me, Wake Me" by the four Tops, so they are stalled in 1966 right now.

A FORK IN THE ROAD - MIRACLES - Tamla T 54118, June 1965

For Motown, the summer of 1965 was the summer of Holland-Dozier-Holland; the trio were riding high, the Four Tops’ I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch) replacing the the Supremes’ Back In My Arms Again as the number one record in America. But records like A Fork In The Road offer further proof, not that any were needed, that Smokey Robinson remained Motown’s most beguiling and most brilliant songwriter. There’s alchemy at work here, but alchemy of a very Smokey kind, something personal to him; although there are strong echoes of the Miracles’ previous (beautiful) single, Ooo Baby Baby, A Fork In The Road is actually more of a refinement of the early Miracles’ “dreamscape” songs like You Can Depend On Me and I Can’t Believe, all fuzz and high voices and blissed-out cloud-blankets, as interpreted by Smokey, Claudette and the boys with five extra years’ worth of growing-up and hindsight.

Unlike those early efforts, which still sound directionless to these ears, A Fork In The Road is gorgeous; moreover, as of 1965, it’s the sort of song that Smokey – and only Smokey – can now weave into gold.

I always like the sound of the Miracles when Claudette – who didn’t travel with the group for live shows, and who’s not pictured on the sleeve of any Miracles album after 1963 – is pushed right to the front in the mix; as I’ve said before, it’s like a holdover from the doo-wop days, as though somewhere it’s still 1956, will always be 1956. That’s as true here as anywhere, as Smokey’s voice journeys even higher and softer than usual, his wounded falsetto doing the work of a female soprano, the overall effect strange and dreamlike. But there’s a darker twist to the lyrics which go further than Smokey might ever have dared back in the early days.

The Miracles' excellent sixth studio LP, 'Going To A Go-Go', which featured this song among many others.On the surface, it’s a straightforward enough concept – take a simple lyrical conceit, drape it in a dreamy, cloudy atmosphere (to coin a phrase, this sounds smoky), confuse the listener’s senses and carry them away as hints of strange and wonderful things happen in the distant corners of the mind, like fireworks in a thick fog. This is why so many people are tempted to try it, and why so many people get it badly wrong, because for this to work, the atmospherics aren’t enough. You have to make sure – and here’s another major difference between this and the likes of I Can’t Believe – make sure you find a tune from somewhere that didn’t previously exist. When you do that, as Smokey does here – I’ve heard this chorus two dozen times now and it still takes me by surprise when Smokey leaps the stave to grab a completely unexpected note (“I know I may be just a stranger / Lovers, LET ME warn you there’s a danger…”) – only then can you drench the rest of the record in the trappings of some Twentieth Century doo-wop lullaby.

The lyrics are astonishing; Smokey had submitted his fair share of advice songs in the past, but this one has a darker context, the narrator advising us not to make the same mistakes he did. (Danger, heartbreak dead ahead, as another Motown writer put it.) Despite the gliding beauty of the record, this is no easy ride, and fair warning is given right from the start, as the narrator – seemingly addressing nobody in particular (the second-person stuff comes later in the song) – mutters to himself:

Seems like love should be easier to bear
But it’s such a heavy load
Worldwide traveler, you ain’t been nowhere
‘Til you’ve traveled down love’s road…

“Easier to bear”? “Heavy load”? This is a very different kind of relationship to the one on the A-side, the all-or-nothing The Tracks Of My Tears; here, for this narrator, love (or rather, the duty of trying to keep a relationship alive) seems to be a kind of masochistic punishment. In fact, the moral of the song is “don’t mess up a good thing”, don’t sabotage your happiness for the sake of some minor disagreement – the titular fork in the road – but the way Smokey sings it, full of tears and with the other Miracles forming a mournful Greek chorus behind him, the whole thing takes on mythical properties, the narrator as a spirit guide for lovers everywhere, condemned to roam the earth warning others to heed his fate.

It’s light-hearted stuff alright.

But this is Smokey Robinson, and these are the Miracles, and they can get away with it, first making something heavy and corporeal out of the tears and mist and rain, and then sugar-coating it so the whole thing goes down smooth again. Smokey is often talked about in terms of his being a poet, but I’ve always thought of him more purely as an artist, in every sense, and A Fork In The Road is a prime example of that. Sumptuous in its beauty, quietly devastating in its lyrics… I don’t know how he’s doing this.

MOTOWN JUNKIES VERDICT
8/10

===========================================================================================================

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Next we go to 1967 for the first appearance on the countdown of another legendary Motown act with song #150.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YV-iNKfIwYM

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:49 pm

We just head song #150, "Seven Rooms of Gloom" from the Four Tops in 1967. This one reached #14 on the Billboard Hot 100, but I prefer the flip side, "I'll Turn To Stone." I hope that makes the countdown. Described as "throbbing with dread over a racing minor key dominated arrangement" it was written by Holland–Dozier–Holland. This is the first of 10 items on the countdown by the Four Tops.

Personnel
Levi Stubbs – lead vocals
Abdul "Duke" Fakir – background vocals
Renaldo "Obie" Benson – background vocals
Lawrence Payton – background vocals
Jackie Hicks – background vocals
Marlene Barrow – background vocals
Louvain Demps – background vocals
Funk Brothers – instrumentation


Image



Moving along now to #149, and it will already be the third time that we hear a great B side ballad from the Miracles.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgPPfg2ruLI

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:27 pm

Song #149 is "Would I Love You" by the Miracles, from 1964. This was the flip side of "That's What Love Is Made Of," which was the hit side of the 45. This one was written by Smokey alone, and was done in the old style. Let's see what our friend at MOTOWN JUNKIES had to say in his review.

The Miracles: “Would I Love You” - Tamla T 54102 (B), August 1964

Definitely the better of the two sides – let’s get that straight right from the start. Would I Love You is a much stronger song than That’s What Love Is Made Of, simple and enduring. Would it have made a better single? I’m not so sure.

Smokey cut this gentle ballad in Chicago with a string section, following the lead of the earlier underwhelming single (You Can’t Let The Boy Overpower) The Man In You and dating from around the same time. It seems to have sat on the shelf for a little while, but maybe Robinson fancied pairing the A-side’s nursery-rhyme tweeness with another song of melodic and lyrical simplicity.

Certainly, there’s a shared lack of “edge” between the two songs, a kind of gentle inoffensiveness (is that a word?) that seems to hint at Smokey the artist – as opposed to Smokey the million-selling songwriter/producer – moving in a softer, more mainstream, MOR direction. (I’m sure, on this evidence, not many people predicted that the Miracles’ next single would be a raucous, lunkheaded would-be dance rocker. But that’s a story for another day.)

That’s where the comparison ends, though. Where That’s What Love Is Made Of is grating in its simplistic form, Would I Love You billows along in graceful simplicity, and there’s a world of difference between those two things.

It’s really quite lovely, and if it catches you when you’re in the right mood, you could certainly fall head over heels for its many charms. Smokey is on excellent vocal form (the unexpected kick up the scale at 1:36 – would I HOLD you? – is perhaps my favourite moment of his singing career so far, but his call-and-response work in the second half of the song is almost equally noteworthy).

I’ve never read a review of this that didn’t single out Claudette for individual praise, and I’m not going to break that streak; she sounds wonderful, leading the rest of the Miracles in some strange, ethereal backing vocals before soaring away to take the main vocal line, pulling the titular refrain right up to the rooftops. The bed of strings and tinkling high-register piano wrap everything up in ribbons the colour of spring… it’s all so pretty.

And then there’s the lyrics. While rather more direct than Smokey’s usual fare (there’s no self-amusing wordplay here, nor any sense of Robinson finding the exact expressions for the feelings he wants to convey), they’re instead disarmingly honest, in the manner of much of his best work. A song of love, devotion and total openness, and one that can’t be derailed by the use of the word “birdie” in the first stanza.

But – you knew there was a “but” on its way, right? – if it catches you in the wrong mood, it falls flat on its face. It’s another absolutely standard, off-the-peg ambling 6/8 doo-wop cut, and the tune is only carried away from the usual doo-wop chord changes and taken somewhere interesting by the strings. The song itself, lyrics aside, is absolutely flat. If it’s undeniably more beautiful (much more beautiful!) than earlier Miracles attempts to disguise a song’s factory-settings nature by hanging all manner of vocal and instrumental loveliness on that standard skeleton – see You Can Depend On Me, or Who’s Lovin’ You, or I Can’t Believe, or I’ve Been Good To You, etc etc etc – it’s still something of a surprise to find it happening again. Unlike the Marvelettes’ Forever, it’s never quite pushed me over.

All of which has always stopped me ever pushing this right to the very top, rather than seeing it as a really good Miracles song. It’s probably not the sort of thing that would have made a suitable A-side – it’s too slow and gentle, and (more importantly) too meandering, for that, lacking the killer hook to take it to the very top level – but it’s beautiful and it’s honest, and if a record has those things going for it, you can’t really say too much against it.

MOTOWN JUNKIES VERDICT
7/10



Image


Moving down to #148 now, this artist has the most songs on the countdown, This is the first of 22 songs on this list from this act.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTISVVWZ1_0

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Cold Butterfly » Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:47 pm

Really surprised that "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" placed so low, considering that it's one of Stevie's most critically and commercially successful songs.
"I remember you was conflicted, misusing your influence. Sometimes I did the same, abusing my power, full of resentment" - Kendrick Lamar

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 24, 2019 8:39 pm

Cold Butterfly wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:47 pm
Really surprised that "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" placed so low, considering that it's one of Stevie's most critically and commercially successful songs.
I see it as pretty schmaltzy adult pop myself. I used to turn the station when it would come on during its chart run. Not as bad as "I Just Called To Say I Love You," but a precursor to that kind of mainstream adult drivel.

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Thu Oct 24, 2019 11:11 pm

Song #148 comes from Marvin Gaye. It's "Too Busy Thinking About My Baby" from 1969. The song was the first release from Gaye's 1969 studio album M.P.G. The single also reached #5 in the UK Singles Chart. It reached #4 on the Billboard Hot 100, and was one of the top 5 soul chart records of the year, topping the Billboard Soul chart for 6 weeks. The song was written by Norman Whitfield, Barrett Strong, and Janie Bradford. The song was first recorded by The Temptations as a track on their 1966 album Gettin' Ready. Eddie Kendricks sings lead on the recording, which was produced by Whitfield.


Whitfield produced Gaye's version as well, which featured background vocals by The Andantes (Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow and Louvain Demps), who sang backup on dozens of Motown hits. . The song's lyrics feature the male narrator discussing how he has "no time to discuss weather" or "think about what money can buy," because when he thinks about his woman, "I ain't got time for nothing else."

Image


Next up is #147, from one of the biggest selling Motown albums ever:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BwLs22Hxi6Q

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Listyguy » Fri Oct 25, 2019 12:42 am

Cold Butterfly wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:47 pm
Really surprised that "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" placed so low, considering that it's one of Stevie's most critically and commercially successful songs.
Keep in mind this isn't just voters from this forum. A lot of the other voters for these lists, like Hymie, tend to prefer the 50s and 60s (or in the case of Motown, just the 60s).

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 25, 2019 1:28 am

Listyguy wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 12:42 am
Cold Butterfly wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:47 pm
Really surprised that "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" placed so low, considering that it's one of Stevie's most critically and commercially successful songs.
Keep in mind this isn't just voters from this forum. A lot of the other voters for these lists, like Hymie, tend to prefer the 50s and 60s (or in the case of Motown, just the 60s).
The song was only named on 5 of 44 ballots.

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:20 am

Song #147 is "Hello" by Lionel Richie from the "Can't Slow Down" album in 1983. It was a #1 album on Billboard, and 20 years ago it was already listed as 10 times platinum. Could be the biggest selling album Motown ever had. The single was #1 on the Pop, Black, and Adult Contemporary charts. The song also went to number one in the UK Singles Chart for six weeks. The song later inspired a lawsuit by songwriter Marjorie Hoffman White, who accused Richie of plagiarizing her composition "I'm Not Ready to Go."

Image


Next up at #146 is the song that was #10 on my ballot! I purposely found a video with the mono mix on the song, it's much better than the stereo mix.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1HIGhUDJJc

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 25, 2019 1:06 pm

Song #146 is "I'll Turn To Stone" by the Four Tops. This B side charted on the Hot 100 in its own right, and was huge in a couple of markets, especially in Philadelphia. The flip side, "Seven Rooms of Gloom" was song #150. "I'll Turn To Stone" was written by Holland, Dozier, Holland, and R. Dean Taylor. It's my favorite Four Tops record for sure.


Image



RANK-BALLOTS-POINTS-TITLE-ARTIST
146 - 03-124 - I'll Turn To Stone - Four Tops
147 - 03-124 - Hello - Lionel Richie
148 - 04-123 - Too Busy Thinking About My Baby - Marvin Gaye
149 - 03-123 - Would I Love You - Miracles
150 - 04-119 - Seven Rooms of Gloom - Four Tops
151 - 03-117 - A Fork In The Road - Miracles
152 - 05-115 - You Are the Sunshine of My Life - Stevie Wonder
153 - 04-115 - I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever) - Stevie Wonder
154 - 03-114 - Reflections - Supremes
155 - 02-114 - Square Biz - Teena Marie
156 - 04-113 - Two Lovers - Mary Wells
157 - 03-111 - The Only One I Love - Miracles
===========================================================================

Up now is song #145. It's one of the more obscure tracks on the list, an LP track from 1964.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WFMelnVNA38

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 25, 2019 6:16 pm

Song #145 is "A Favor For A Girl" by Brenda Holloway. This was on her "Every Little Bit Hurts Album" in 1964. It was only listed on 2 ballots, but both had it in the top 10.


Image


Next up is #144. We go to 1975 for a big hit by a singer who used to be the lead singer of a group.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34yv3D8oYBI

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:28 pm

We just heard song #144, "Walk Away From Love," by David Ruffin from 1975. This was a #1 record on the Billboard R&B chart, and it reached #9 on the Hot 100 Pop Chart. The record was produced by Van McCoy and the song itself was written by Charles Kipps, The record was also top 10 in the UK. The backing vocals were performed by the disco group Faith, Hope & Charity.


Image


Next up at #143 is another very obscure one.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1fcDoDCK-Y
Last edited by Hymie on Sat Oct 26, 2019 5:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Best Motown Songs - RESULTS

Post by Hymie » Sat Oct 26, 2019 3:39 am

The #143 song is You're My Desire" by the Equadors, from 1961. This was released on the short lived Motown subsidiary label, Miracle. The song was written by Rex Robertson Jr. and Mickey Stevenson, and produced by William Stevenson. It's a straight 1950s styled doo wop ballad. I'm wondering what the Motown Junkies guy had to say when he reviewed this one:

The Equadors: “You’re My Desire”
Miracle MIR-7 (B), September 1961


One of the most obscure of all Motown’s many acts, the Equadors cut just this one single for the ill-fated Miracle label, and both sides of it are totally forgettable on an Olympic level.

The liner notes to The Complete Motown Singles: Volume 1 describe this as “street-corner doo-wop… following a tried and true formula.” I’m not so inclined to be charitable; I think this is utterly pedestrian doo-wop, to the point where it sounds like a million other Fifties doo-wop records based on the same tired chord progression. Now, if a record is going to set itself up as being very much in the mold of a great many other records in the same genre, it’s left needing to do something very special to stand out from the crowd. The Satintones’ remarkable Angel is a fine example of how to use that “plain vanilla” doo-wop structure to great effect by adding a few stylistic touches and a strong lead vocal performance; the Equadors’ You’re My Desire has none of those things going for it, and falls wholly flat.

This was the end of the mysterious Equadors’ Motown journey, although Mary Wells – then the label’s biggest star – did turn in a reasonably faithful cover of this song for her Top Ten second album, The One Who Really Loves You, in 1962, where it rubbed shoulders with her version of another failed Motown B-side, Barrett Strong’s Two Wrongs Don’t Make A Right.

MOTOWN JUNKIES VERDICT
3/10


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That's about what I expected from someone who clearly doesn't get why that doo wop sound was and still is so beloved.


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Moving right along, song #142 is up next. We go to 1972 for this one:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NZi2C4YVvE

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