Martha Reeves, and her friends who would become the Vandellas, did backup singing at Motown, along with Martha's clerical duties. The girls recorded with Marvin Gaye and, at that session, the owner of Motown, Berry Gordy, was impressed with Martha's voice. He decided to put out a single featuring her girl group.
Martha first heard the song that would make her famous when it was performed by Marvin Gaye. Marvin was a co-writer of the tune and, frankly, she was not impressed with the song. She agreed to record it anyway, and she put her heart into it. The anthem of the era was released in 1964 and it went right up the R&B and the pop charts. On the Billboard pop charts, it peaked at #2. You have to know this one. Baby, this was the Detroit sound.
There were a number of remakes -- the Mamas and Papas, Ramsey Lewis and Van Halen come to mind. However, the next most successful cover, and it still did not top Martha's original hit, was this crazy version by two of rocks most enduring legends. This visually stunning video helped turn a performance from the Live Aid concert into a #7 single back in 1985. Dig the cool outfits.
Steven L. Smith
Bellingham WA Home Inspections