Song Lyric Sunday (1 March 2020) – Noise

Last week, Jim (NewEpicAuthor, A Unique Title For Me) set a theme of things to do with rheumatoid arthritis (my choice). This week, theme of noise.

When I read Jim’s prompt this week I remembered a Motown cassette (in those days) that I was given for my nineteenth christmas, must have been 1987.

In the UK,we didn’t hear Motown regularly, some UK artists performed cover versions of the Motown hits, but like a lot of the music I like, it wasn’t really mainstream. But this cassette was the real deal, and introduced me to a host of classics, including Marvin Gaye songs. I guess several of Marvin’s tunes would have charted earlier in the UK, but they would have been too early for me to remember, so several of these classic tunes were new material to me – many of his duets, for example.

But not the song I shall present today. This song dates from 1966 – the year my parents were married – and was written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, just as a song for the Motown stable. It was first recorded by The Miracles, but first released by Gladys Knight and the Pips in 1967, the year I was born. So the song was already a success before Marvin even sniffed it.

In fact, Marvin recorded his version in 1968, and it went onto his album In The Groove. Marvin’s release gained the attention of various disc jockeys, the song went mainstream, and reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. Thus both the song, plus Marvin’s version, became hits, and a soul classic.

I don’t know if I ever heard the song during my own childhood – I guess I must have, but I certainly heard it when it was featured in a famous Levis 501 commercial in 1985, and its subsequently re-issued in 1986 – it again reached #8 in the UK, so it would have had lots of airplay here.

Soon as you hear the song, you’ll recognise it. Though it is the wrong side of fifty, it lives on as a classic. So much so, that in 2004 it was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame, and featured at #81 in Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. (#1 was Bob Dylan’s Like a Rolling Stone, if you’re interested.) And when Billboard compiled a chart-of-charts to commemorate their fortieth anniversary, this song came in at #65. They don’t come much bigger.

Anyway, enough waffle. I hope you enjoy y choice today. See if you can guess which song I’m talking about before you read any further.










I bet you’re wonderin’ how I knew
‘Bout your plans to make me blue
With some other guy you knew before
Between the two of us guys
You know I loved you more
It took me by surprise I must say
When I found out yesterday
Don’t you know that I heard it through the grapevine
Not much longer would you be mine
Oh I heard it through the grapevine
Oh I’m just about to lose my mind

Honey, honey yeah.
I heard it through the grapevine
Not much longer would you be mine baby

I know a man ain’t supposed to cry
But these tears I can’t hold inside
Losin’ you would end my life you see
‘Cause you mean that much to me
You could have told me yourself
That you loved someone else
Instead I heard it through the grapevine
Not much longer would you be mine
Oh, I heard it through the grapevine
And I’m just about to lose my mind

Honey, honey yeah
I heard it through the grapevine
Not much longer would you be mine, baby

People say believe half of what you see
Some and none of what you hear
But I can’t help but be confused
If it’s true please tell me dear
Do you plan to let me go
For the other guy you loved before?

Don’t you know I heard it through the grapevine
Not much longer would you be mine, baby yeah
I heard it through the grapevine
I’m just about to lose my mind
Honey, honey, yeah
I heard it through the grapevine,
Not much longer would you be mine, baby yeah

Honey, honey, yeah
I heard it through the grapevine,
Not much longer would you be mine, baby yeah yeah
I heard it through the grapevine,
Not much longer would you be mine, baby yeah yeah

Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong

Author: Stroke Survivor UK

Designed/developed IT systems for banks, but had a stroke in 2016, aged 48. Returned to developing from home, plus do some voluntary work. Married, with a grown-up, left-home daughter.

22 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday (1 March 2020) – Noise”

  1. Ever hear Creedence Clearwater Revival’s version of this? Marvin’s is totally different, and Gladys Knight and The Pips did an excellent cover as well. Regardless of who does it, it’s a great song.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. One of the first songs I really understood (looked up and translated) the lyrics from because I really had no clue what a grapevine was and I felt it didn’t had a lot to do with grapes 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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