Marvin Gaye – “Hitch Hike” (1962)

October 20, 2008 at 7:48 am (Motown)

One of Marvin’s great early hits – this song was released in Dec. 1962 on Tamla and features backing vocals by Martha and the Vandellas. This song came out when Motown was really starting to hit their stride.

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Martha and the Vandellas – “Jimmy Mack” (1967)

October 20, 2008 at 7:43 am (Motown)

Martha Reeves & co.’s final Top 10 hit in America, “Jimmy Mack” was recorded in 1964 but was not released until Feb. 3, 1967. Sheena Easton had a minor hit with the song in 1986.

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The Miracles – “Going to a Go-Go” (1965)

October 20, 2008 at 7:38 am (Motown)

Smokey Robinson & co. came out with this Top 20 hit in 1965. It was their 5th million-selling hit.  Smokey’s wife Claudette sings the backup on here.

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Carla Thomas – “B-A-B-Y” (1966)

October 20, 2008 at 7:32 am (Stax)

Daughter of Rufus Thomas, Carla, the Queen of Memphis Soul, had a #3 R&B hit with this Isaac Hayes-penned slow burner in 1966. Years earlier, she had the first big Memphis soul hit to ever become big with the song “Gee Whiz.”

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Mary Wells – “My Guy” (1964)

October 20, 2008 at 7:26 am (Motown)

“The First Lady of Motown” – this great Smokey Robinson-written & produced classic came out in 1964 and shot straight to the top. Motown’s first female star had a few other hits with Motown, but this was her biggest. She left Motown soon after this song came out, hoping to make more money elsewhere, as well as establish a movie career, but due to health problems, among other things, it never worked out for her, unfortunately. Wells passed away in 1992 at the age of 49 due to cancer.  

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