Rabz’ Radio Show July 2022: Motown and Soul

Two of my favourite musical styles. Motown of course, being named after the “Motor City” Detroit, which has experienced its share of hard times in the recent past.

Founded by Berry Gordy in 1958, the label was better known as Tamla Motown outside of the States. Motown’s most notable achievement was almost 80 top ten hits between 1960-1969, a significant proportion of which were attributable to its legendary songwriting team of Holland Dozier Holland.

When you hear a Motown classic from that era, you will know. It will lift you effortlessly off your feet.

Soul – there are no time limits on this magnificent musical style. I’d like to think of it as a more multidimensional expression of the Blues. It invariably focuses on those most basic and profound human emotions, love and heartbreak. Which makes it no different to most contemporary music, when you think about it – and yet it is.

One of my favourite Motown tunes – the original and the best:

Some knockout soul:


Enjoy, Cats!

82 responses to “Rabz’ Radio Show July 2022: Motown and Soul”

  1. Roger Avatar

    Just love those Four Tops.

    Oh, yeah.

  2. jupes Avatar

    Temptations – Just My Imagination.

    ‘Stones did a great version on Some Girls.

  3. jupes Avatar

    Of course, any and every hit of the Supremes is a classic.

    I hear a symphony.

  4. Hugh Avatar

    Not Motown, but a nice piece of soul:


  5. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Two fine tracks! Haven’t heard the second one for quite a while, very smooth.

    I’m going to repeat one I put up yesterday, since I liked it so much and the video is so gloriously funky.

    Ike and Tina Turner – Nutbush City Limits (1973)

    Ike and Tina weren’t Detroit, but they did the Motown style just fine I think.

  6. Rabz Avatar

    Bruce – that film clip for one of the most awesome funk tunes of all time is just bloody awesome.

    Miss Charney – brunette magnificence. 🙂

  7. Rabz Avatar

    In any just world, Ike’s opening licks on Nutbush City Limits would have been heritage listed.

  8. Roger Avatar

    Much copied, but the original and the best.

    Oops…I see it was listed in the header.

  9. Rabz Avatar

    Three minutes of incomparable R ‘n’ B

    Best listened to at 2:00am in a nightclub while fully loaded, which describes the first time I ever heard it.

    1985, Hip Hop Club, Paddinghurst.

  10. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Have to have another one with dancing.

    Aretha Franklin – Think (1968 & 1980)

    She can really act, a natural. Would be in great demand today, but sadly she’s no longer with us.

    (It’s the extended scene from the movie as the lead up dialog is so glorious.)

  11. Roger Avatar

    OK…if Ike & Tina qualify as Motwn I’m stretching the definition to this.


  12. Hugh Avatar

    Not soul, but definitely from the motor city:


  13. Roger Avatar

    And finally, from me anyway.

  14. John Sheldrick Avatar
  15. jupes Avatar

    Annie Lennox and Al Green.

    Put a Little Love in Your Heart.

  16. Hugh Avatar

    An underrated track from Stevie Wonder:


  17. Rabz Avatar

    The Spector’s crowning glory

  18. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle
  19. Rabz Avatar

    The Queen of Soul

    Accept no substitutes, under any circumstances, ever.

  20. Rabz Avatar

    Rendered in a more contemporary context with a shout out to “light my fire” …

  21. calli Avatar

    What happens when Aussies try it?


  22. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Not Motown or soul but very very close. I didn’t realize until now that Taj Mahal is the guy whose track it actually is.

    She Caught The Katy – Taj Mahal (1968)

  23. Rabz Avatar

    Calli great work – I loved the Hepnotics. 🙂

  24. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Rendered in a more contemporary context

    The Stranglers doing Walk On By…? Cool!

    I had a couple of Stranglers albums, they were yummy. Can’t recall if they were vinyl or cassette, but I don’t have them now. Gone in a lost past phase change from one existence to another existence. I can’t remember when it was. I’m taking liberty to put up a Stranglers classic. Nothing to do with Motown, but seriously chunky.

    The Stranglers – No Mercy (1984)

    Rabz gave me the excuse to go off topic, blame him.

  25. Rabz Avatar

    Played this version to my nephew back in 2005, who’d only ever heard the Marvin version, him – “what the hell is it?”

    The original and the best, that’s what.

    The preferred version in these enlightened times – Gladys, just belting it. 🙂

  26. Wally Dalí Avatar
  27. Rabz Avatar

    the excuse to go off topic, blame him

    So in other words, no film clips featuring Miss Ellie’s magnifique new and improved bottomage, Cats.

    It’s enough to make you wonder what is going on.

  28. Wally Dalí Avatar
  29. John Sheldrick Avatar

    Not Tamla Motown but White Soul Music by the one and only Dusty.


  30. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Dunno why but I got the idea of thinking where this music genre was going to in our time. Which took me to TV On The Radio, a band I doubt most Cats have heard of.

    TV On The Radio – Will Do (2011)

    TV On The Radio – Golden Age (2009)

    TV On The Radio – Second Song (2011)

    Really good videos too. I wish African American music had gone down this avenue rather than into rap, which is tedious and angry.

  31. Rabz Avatar

    Sheldo – (it’s alleged) the producers at Muscle Shoals were stunned when she turned up and was not wearing the Justine Turdeaux shoe polish.

  32. Wally Dalí Avatar
    Wally Dalí

    Oi, I’ve heard of TVotR.
    They don’t turn me on though.

  33. Rabz Avatar

    a band I doubt most Cats have heard of

    Unearthed “Dear Science” this evening while ploughing through my CD collection on a fruitless search for “20 Greatest Motown Hits”.

    If I’ve lost the latter, much unhappiness will descend on Casa Rabz at some indeterminate point in the near or far future. 🙂

  34. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Oops, the second vid is geoblocked. Here it is available in Oz.

    TV On The Radio – Golden Age

    I try to link the original artists’ site, like I did, but sometimes that gets me into trouble.

  35. John Sheldrick Avatar

    July 2, 2022 at 9:53 pm
    Sheldo – (it’s alleged) the producers at Muscle Shoals were stunned when she turned up and was not wearing the Justine Turdeaux shoe polish.

    That is funny as…………………….

    Stand By Me by Ben E King


  36. Wally Dalí Avatar
    Wally Dalí

    Motown co-founder Berry Gordy’s son-
    …what the hell happened?
    Not his most famous song, but his best by a long shot. With that scourge of US RnB, the extended video interlude.

  37. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    I’m off. But in keeping with the idea where this all went here’s one place where it went. Rabz’ first track in the comments rapidly became this.

    Rolling Stones – Can I Get A Witness (1964)

    Motown and the Stones was a match made in heaven, or something. I’ve loved every minute of the progeny since then.

  38. MatrixTransform Avatar

    r.e.s.p.e.c.t just because

    and you can leave your hat on
    not strictly motown but, of the era

    was at a Labor party gig once and my ex-missus did Aretha karaoke on the table with the swinging microphone and all

    same night Paul Keating did ‘leave yr hat on’ complete with a shirt button rip.

  39. Nelson_Kidd-Players Avatar

    Late to the party, as usual, and, rather than bring music, I’ll just share an experience.

    A short work assignment in Detroit meant a little opportunity to do some touring on the weekends. The Henry Ford museum is a must: I could probably take two days to do justice to both the indoor display area (trains, Edison’s VW Kombi camper, Rosa Park’s bus, many presidential limos including that one) and Greenfield Village (a Swan Hill Pioneer Settlement on steroids with relocated buildings and artifacts of historical significance). Nearby Niagara Falls lives up to the hype – take the behind the falls tour though rock tunnels that show the water from the inside. By contrast, the Detroit overhead railway, while not a monorail, was worth riding only to experience its Simpsons-esque decrepitude.

    On a main road in a dilapidated part of town (one of them), where every second house is abandoned and the KFC five doors up the road has 4″ plexiglass between the servers and the customers with a shuffle box in the counter, is Motown’s Hitsville studio, now a museum. Two houses joined together, filled with memorabilia and dedicated guides to take you through the buildings. Apart from the memorabilia on the walls and the stories related by the guides, naturally the highlight is the main studio, still set up with various instruments and period consoles for the producers beyond the windows. We were given a chance to perform our own acapella renditions of My Girl for the gents and Stop! In The Name of Love for the ladies of the tour group. Photos were officially forbidden but I see one has escaped into the wild and is as I remember it. It’s smaller than the photo suggests, or maybe that was the size of our group.

    A worthwhile visit. As a bonus, our rental car was where we left it, around in a side street, and unmolested.

  40. Nelson_Kidd-Players Avatar

    Actually, in the 15-odd years since I was there, many of the houses – both the abandoned ones and the ones in-between that were obviously loved – have been razed. Check out the streetview images between 2009 and recent.

  41. Rabz Avatar

    NKP bringing the reality (again) …

  42. Nelson_Kidd-Players Avatar

    Okay then, Rabz, let’s do a little uplifting

  43. Nelson_Kidd-Players Avatar

    And there you go, Stevie Wonder, er, a tribute group is touring here in September…

  44. Nelson_Kidd-Players Avatar

    Oh, and the Motown rule of thumb for predicting hits among the staff (as related by our guide): Imagine you’re a school kid in the ’60s with money in your pocket to buy lunch. Would you forego your lunch and instead buy this single? If enough of the staff at-least thinks the prospect worthy of consideration, the single passes the test.

  45. Crossie Avatar

    This has been mentioned but not linked, so here it is.

  46. Petros Avatar

    Standing in the shadows of Motown is a great documentary. It’s about the musicians that played on most of the tracks from that era.

  47. Bruce of Newcastle Avatar
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Thanks Rabz for a fine night of great music!

    Really contrasts the desert of music now, I don’t know why since we still have all those instruments and so much more to work with. I was in a bottleshop yesterday, they were playing Don’t Bring Me Down by ELO. Which is from 1979. You rarely hear anything modern and interesting in shops and public spaces, it’s all this golden era stuff. Which is great! But shows up the current age of rap and elevator music.

  48. Dot Avatar

    Sad to hear Sir Rod Stewart is banned for life from this thread. 🙂

  49. Katzenjammer Avatar

    Oh my gosh dear, they’re playing our song. Do you remember back then.

  50. Crossie Avatar

    Almost forgot the counterpart to My Girl is, of course, My Guy.

  51. Rabz Avatar

    Me and that woman we don’t mention …

  52. Rabz Avatar

    The Rawls – about as smooth as it gets, Cats …

  53. Dragnet Avatar

    Damn this thread !
    It’s taken me 36 hours to work through it ?
    Well done all !!

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