Category: i heard it through the grapevine

On this day in music history: December 2, 1967 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Gladys Knight & The Pips hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 6 weeks, also peaking at #2 on the Hot 100 for 3 weeks on December 16, 1967. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the biggest hit for the Atlanta, GA based R&B vocal quartet. Riding a wave of success writing and producing a string of hits for The Temptations, Norman Whitfield and his main songwriting partner Barrett Strong write “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” during this period in mid to late 1966. Whitfield cuts the song on The Miracles and The Isley Brothers, with both of their versions going unreleased (initially). Undaunted, the producer records it again in a dramatic rearrangement with Marvin Gaye in the Spring of 1967. The song is rejected by Motown’s Quality Control department as being “too different” and uncharacteristic of the Motown Sound. Gaye’s version is also shelved as a result of this rejection. Still believing strongly in the song, Whitfield asks Berry Gordy, Jr. if he can cut it on another artist. Gordy agrees, and the producer returns to the studio to cut the new version with Gladys Knight & The Pips. Inspired by Aretha Franklin’s recent smash “Respect”, Whitfield gives his song a similar “funky and earthy” arrangement. Featuring The Funk Brothers providing the musical backing, Whitfield plays the completed track for Gladys Knight & The Pips who work out their own vocal arrangement for the song. The group record their vocals at Motown’s Studio A in Detroit on June 17, 1967. Released as a single on September 28, 1967, initially Motown puts little promotional support behind it, and the group themselves actually approach DJ’s to encourage them to play the single. The strategy works and the record takes off within a month of its release, also crossing over to the pop charts and selling nearly two million copies in the US alone.

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On this day in music history: November 7, 1981 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Roger hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 2 weeks, also peaking at #79 on the Hot 100 on November 28, 1981. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the first solo number hit for the front man of the R&B/Funk band Zapp. For his cover version of the Marvin Gaye classic, Roger takes inspiration from artists such as funk contemporaries Cameo, fusion jazz stalwarts Weather Report and from songwriter/producer Norman Whitfield when coming up with an original arrangement for the song. Roger plays most of the instruments on the track himself, except for the drums and which were handled by his brothers Lester and Terry “Zapp” Troutman. When his debut solo album “The Many Facets Of Roger” is released in the late Summer of 1981, is issued without a lead single. When Troutman and Warner Bros can’t decide between “So Ruff, So Tuff” (eventually released as the second single) and “Grapevine”, the latter wins out by default when DJ’s favor it over other tracks on the album. Clocking in at nearly eleven minutes on the album, it is edited split into two parts for single release in August of 1981. The success of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” also drives “The Many Facets Of Roger” album to the top of the Billboard R&B album chart on the same date, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

On this day in music history: December 14, 1968 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Marvin Gaye hits #1 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B singles charts for 7 weeks. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the first number one pop single for the Motown superstar. Gaye is the third artist on the label to record the song in April of 1967, with previously recorded versions by The Miracles and The Isley Brothers but are shelved. Motown founder Berry Gordy initially believes Gaye’s version it isn’t a hit either so it is also shelved. In the interim, Whitfield cuts the song on Gladys Knight & The Pips who have a runaway smash with it in December of 1967 (#1 R&B, #2 Pop). Marvin Gaye’s version remains in the Motown vault until September 1968, when it is finally issued on the album “In The Groove”. DJ’s begin playing it as a LP cut, eventually pushing Motown to release it as a single on October 30, 1968. Entering the Hot 100 at #34 on November 23, 1968, it leaps to the top of the chart only three weeks later, unseating Motown label mates Diana Ross & The Supremes’ “Love Child” from the top spot. Two weeks after “Grapevine” hits number one on the Hot 100, it resides over a unique Top 10 in which Motown Records holds down five of the top ten chart positions including the top three positions on the chart for four consecutive weeks. “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” sells over four million copies in the US, at the time becoming Motown’s largest selling single to date. One of the most frequently covered songs in Motown’s catalog, Creedence Clearwater Revival and Roger Troutman score hit with their versions of the song. Marvin Gaye’s recording is used in the film “The Big Chill” in 1983, helping propel its soundtrack album to multi-Platinum status. Musician Buddy Miles sings it as the voice of the animated claymation group The California Raisins, and hits the charts in 1986. A re-recorded version is also used in a UK commercial for Levi’s 501 jeans in 1985, featuring model and singer Nick Kamen, The commercial prompts Motown to reissue Gaye’s version as a single, and it peaks at #8 on the UK singles chart. Marvin Gaye’s recording of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” is inducted into the Grammy Hall Of Fame in 1998.

On this day in music history: December 2, 1967 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Gladys Knight & The Pips hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 6 weeks, also peaking at #2 on the Hot 100 for 3 weeks on December 16, 1967. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the biggest hit for the Atlanta, GA based R&B vocal quartet. Riding a wave of success writing and producing a string of hits for The Temptations, Norman Whitfield and his main songwriting partner Barrett Strong write “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” during this period in mid to late 1966. Whitfield cuts the song on The Miracles and The Isley Brothers, with both of their versions going unreleased (initially). Undaunted, the producer records it again in a dramatic rearrangement with Marvin Gaye in the Spring of 1967. The song is rejected by Motown’s Quality Control department as being “too different” and uncharacteristic of the Motown Sound. Gaye’s version is also shelved as a result of this rejection. Still believing strongly in the song, Whitfield asks Berry Gordy, Jr. if he can cut it on another artist. Gordy agrees, and the producer returns to the studio to cut the new version with Gladys Knight & The Pips. Inspired by Aretha Franklin’s recent smash “Respect”, Whitfield gives his song a similar “funky and earthy” arrangement. Featuring The Funk Brothers providing the musical backing, Whitfield plays the completed track for Gladys Knight & The Pips who work out their own vocal arrangement for the song. The group record their vocals at Motown’s Studio A in Detroit on June 17, 1967. Released as a single on September 28, 1967, initially Motown puts little promotional support behind it, and the group themselves actually approach DJ’s to encourage them to play the single. The strategy works and the record takes off within a month of its release, also crossing over to the pop charts and selling nearly two million copies in the US alone.

On this day in music history: November 7, 1981 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Roger hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 2 weeks, also peaking at #79 on the Hot 100 on November 28, 1981. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the first solo number hit for the front man of the R&B/Funk band Zapp. For his cover version of the Marvin Gaye classic, Roger takes inspiration from artists such as funk contemporaries Cameo, fusion jazz stalwarts Weather Report and from songwriter/producer Norman Whitfield when coming up with an original arrangement for the song. Roger plays most of the instruments on the track himself, except for the drums and which were handled by his brothers Lester and Terry “Zapp” Troutman. When his debut solo album “The Many Facets Of Roger” is released in the late Summer of 1981, is issued without a lead single. When Troutman and Warner Bros can’t decide between “So Ruff, So Tuff” (eventually released as the second single) and “Grapevine”, the latter wins out by default when DJ’s favor it over other tracks on the album. Clocking in at nearly eleven minutes on the album, it is edited split into two parts for single release in August of 1981. The success of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” also drives “The Many Facets Of Roger” album to the top of the Billboard R&B album chart on the same date, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: December 14, 1968 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Marvin Gaye hits #1 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B singles charts for 7 weeks. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the first number one pop single for the Motown superstar. Gaye is the third artist on the label to record the song in April of 1967, with previously recorded versions by The Miracles and The Isley Brothers but are shelved. Motown founder Berry Gordy initially believes Gaye’s version it isn’t a hit either so it is also shelved. In the interim, Whitfield cuts the song on Gladys Knight & The Pips who have a runaway smash with it in December of 1967 (#1 R&B, #2 Pop). Marvin Gaye’s version remains in the Motown vault until September 1968, when it is finally issued on the album “In The Groove”. DJ’s begin playing it as a LP cut, eventually pushing Motown to release it as a single on October 30, 1968. Entering the Hot 100 at #34 on November 23, 1968, it leaps to the top of the chart only three weeks later, unseating Motown label mates Diana Ross & The Supremes’ “Love Child” from the top spot. Two weeks after “Grapevine” hits number one on the Hot 100, it resides over a unique Top 10 in which Motown Records holds down five of the top ten chart positions including the top three positions on the chart for four consecutive weeks. “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” sells over four million copies in the US, at the time becoming Motown’s largest selling single to date. One of the most frequently covered songs in Motown’s catalog, Creedence Clearwater Revival and Roger Troutman score hit with their versions of the song. Marvin Gaye’s recording is used in the film “The Big Chill” in 1983, helping propel its soundtrack album to multi-Platinum status. Musician Buddy Miles sings it as the voice of the animated claymation group The California Raisins, and hits the charts in 1986. A re-recorded version is also used in a UK commercial for Levi’s 501 jeans in 1985, featuring model and singer Nick Kamen, The commercial prompts Motown to reissue Gaye’s version as a single, and it peaks at #8 on the UK singles chart. Marvin Gaye’s recording of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” is inducted into the Grammy Hall Of Fame in 1998.

On this day in music history: December 2, 1967 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Gladys Knight & The Pips hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 6 weeks, also peaking at #2 on the Hot 100 for 3 weeks on December 16, 1967. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the biggest hit for the Atlanta, GA based R&B vocal quartet. Riding a wave of success writing and producing a string of hits for The Temptations, Norman Whitfield and his main songwriting partner Barrett Strong write “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” during this period in mid to late 1966. Whitfield cuts the song on The Miracles and The Isley Brothers, with both of their versions going unreleased (initially). Undaunted, the producer records it again in a dramatic rearrangement with Marvin Gaye in the Spring of 1967. The song is rejected by Motown’s Quality Control department as being “too different” and uncharacteristic of the Motown Sound. Gaye’s version is also shelved as a result of this rejection. Still believing strongly in the song, Whitfield asks Berry Gordy, Jr. if he can cut it on another artist. Gordy agrees, and the producer returns to the studio to cut the new version with Gladys Knight & The Pips. Inspired by Aretha Franklin’s recent smash “Respect”, Whitfield gives his song a similar “funky and earthy” arrangement. Featuring The Funk Brothers providing the musical backing, Whitfield plays the completed track for Gladys Knight & The Pips who work out their own vocal arrangement for the song. The group record their vocals at Motown’s Studio A in Detroit on June 17, 1967. Released as a single on September 28, 1967, initially Motown puts little promotional support behind it, and the group themselves actually approach DJ’s to encourage them to play the single. The strategy works and the record takes off within a month of its release, also crossing over to the pop charts and selling nearly two million copies in the US alone.

On this day in music history: November 7, 1981 – “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Roger hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 2 weeks, also peaking at #79 on the Hot 100 on November 28, 1981. Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, it is the first solo number hit for the front man of the R&B/Funk band Zapp. For his cover version of the Marvin Gaye classic, Roger Troutman takes inspiration from artists such as funk contemporaries Cameo, fusion jazz stalwarts Weather Report and from songwriter/producer Norman Whitfield when coming up with an original arrangement for the song. Roger plays most of the instruments on the track himself, except for the drums and which were handled by his brothers Lester and Terry “Zapp” Troutman. When his debut solo album “The Many Facets Of Roger” is released in the late Summer of 1981, is issued without a lead single. When Troutman and Warner Bros can’t decide between “So Ruff, So Tuff” (eventually released as the second single) and “Grapevine”, the latter wins out by default when DJ’s favor it over other tracks on the album. Clocking in at nearly eleven minutes on the album, it is edited split into two parts for single release in August of 1981. The success of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” also drives “The Many Facets Of Roger” album to the top of the Billboard R&B album chart on the same date, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.