[JPL] Marvin Gaye's original What's Goin' On?.....

Arturo Gomez arturo at kuvo.org
Mon Jan 26 13:14:16 EST 2009

Like many others I rank Marvin Pentz Gaye’s What’s Going On in my all time
top ten albums, I went through 2 original LPs of it during the 70s and then
bought a 3rd copy for posterity in the mid-1980s. I know every nuance of
every song having listened to it hundreds of time from start to finish with
and without headsets on.


I recall that for the 30th anniversary of the release, Motown issued a
special 2 disc set with the original mix of the entire album as well as a
live performance of the entire album by Marvin in Washington DC-his
hometown,  a year or so after the album’s release. The original mix was
never released by Motown until then, this was the transitional period of
Motown from Detroit to Los Angeles and Berry gordy who didn’t like the
political content of the recording had it remixed, the versions we all know
well. After hearing the first mix-the “Detroit Mix” in 2001 I was enjoyed
equally as much if not more, it is not as slick or smooth, it’s a bit
rougher around the edges which I like tremendously. I am convinced that had
Motown released the first mix, it would’ve not made an iota of difference,
it would be held in the same high esteem it is now and we would be listening
to the slicker “alternate” version and I would be saying the same thing
about it as I say now about the first mix. The live performance of the
entire album is very good too but has a full orchestra accompaniment


I remember hearing the alternative take of John Coltrane’s Blue Train, if
that version of the song been chosen for the original release, IMO it
wouldn’t have made any difference.


Arturo Gómez
Music Director, jazz89 KUVO
The Oasis In The City
Colorado's First HD FM Radio Station
Celebrating 14 Years of Live Performances!


More information about the jazzproglist mailing list