Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Dynamic Duo

Most male/female duets in popular music are banal and wilfully Maudling, every supposed serious artist has made an attempt. The modern duet is generally a mediocre R&B singer teaming up with an untalented rapper.
There have been good duets in all types of genres; Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway, Peter Gabriel & Kate Bush, Kenny Rodgers & Dolly Parton, Otis Redding & Carla Thomas Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Jordan, Bob & Marcia.
In terms of duets it doesn’t get much better than Marvin Gaye and Tammy Terrell.
Taking over from Kim Weston as Marvin Gaye’s vocal partner their collaboration produced some of the greatest Motown songs ever recorded, written by some of the great songwriters; Ashford & Simpson, Johnny Bristol, Berry Gordy, Clyde Wilson, Hal Davis, Etta James and Brook Benton. They included;

"Ain't No Mountain High Enough"

"The Onion Song"

"You're All I Need to Get By"

"Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing"

"You Got What It Takes"

"If I Could Build My Whole World Around You"

"Somethin' Stupid"

"Your Precious Love"

"Hold Me Oh My Darling"

"Two Can Have a Party"

"Little Ole Boy Little Ole Girl"

"If This World Were Mine"

"Sad Wedding"

"Give a Little Love"

"Oh How I'd Miss You"

"Good Lovin' Ain't Easy to Come By"

"Keep On Lovin' Me Honey"

"What You Gave Me"

"You Ain't Livin' Till You're Lovin'"

Tammy and Marvin had a rumoured relationship aside from singing together and that shows in the vocals. Tammy died young of a brain tumour in 1970 aged, a heartbreakingly young, 24. Marvin was killed by his father at the age of 44. What they produced together was classic.

Next time you hear of a duet being released by Beyonce and MC shuttlecock, or Mariah Carey and DJ Insipid, flip on a Marvin and Tammy tune sit back and listen to how it’s really done.


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