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  1. #1

    The Marvelettes - I Want a Guy


  2. #2
    frankly this is better than the Sup original lol

    although the demo/unreleased version we got on the Meet the Sup expanded edition wasn't as hideous as the original release too

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    frankly this is better than the Sup original lol

    although the demo/unreleased version we got on the Meet the Sup expanded edition wasn't as hideous as the original release too
    That's pretty much why I posted this version. I can't stand most of the Supremes' earlier material (pre-1963), save for Let Me Go the Right Way and Your Heart Belongs to Me. Those songs were where the Supremes finally found their footing. But their version of Guy left me flat.

    The difference in the Marvelettes' version shows how (at the time) superior that group was. And definitely how far ahead of the pack Wanda Young Rogers was as a vocalist in those early Motown years.

  4. #4
    Oh I agree. Much of the really early sup stuff is borderline terrible. Not that I still donít play it lol 😉

    I do think another strong song (relatively speaking) from their early days is You Bring Back Memories. Time Changes Things was rather strong too

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    frankly this is better than the Sup original lol
    Wasn't the Marvelettes' version the original? The "Please Mr. Postman" album came out a year or two before "Meet the Supremes," didn't it? Or did their single of "Guy" on Tamla actually precede the Marvelettes?

  6. #6
    No the supremes was the original. I want a guy was recorded in late 1960 and released in early 61. Before the Marvelettes were even signed to Motown. The supremes were the first girl group at the company

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    That's pretty much why I posted this version. I can't stand most of the Supremes' earlier material (pre-1963), save for Let Me Go the Right Way and Your Heart Belongs to Me. Those songs were where the Supremes finally found their footing. But their version of Guy left me flat.

    The difference in the Marvelettes' version shows how (at the time) superior that group was. And definitely how far ahead of the pack Wanda Young Rogers was as a vocalist in those early Motown years.
    This is why I love this forum. I love reading people's thoughts on the music and what each person hears and how it might differ from the way I hear it. Of course I love when people hear what I hear, but it makes for interesting conversation when everyone is coming to the table with a different view.

    Where the Supremes are concerned, I love their early stuff because IMO it shows the group's raw talent, before Gordy polished them and they evolved into legends. Some of the songs are bad, like "I Want a Guy", others are pretty good, like "Buttered Popcorn". Once Barbara left they really found their groove. But I can understand why the early cuts might not be someone's cup of tea.

    On the other hand, your thoughts about the Marvelettes being a "superior" group, even in those early days, is the opposite from my own view. (Only an idiot would fail to point out my obvious bias toward the ever popular Supremes, however I love music and all my musical thoughts are me calling things as I hear them, with no respect to my musical partialities.)

    To me the best thing going for the Marvelettes was the fact that Motown seemed to be able to quickly match the Marvelettes to songs that young audiences easily identified with, and their stage routine was something to see. But vocally, when you think of the top female groups at the label- in addition to the Marvelettes, the Supremes and Martha and the Vandellas, and maybe the Velvelettes since they did achieve a couple of top 40 records- the Marvelettes always come across to me as the group that best embodies the old Sesame Street song "which of these things is doing their own thing...three of these things are kinda the same...but one of these things is doing their own thing..." Lol They were so different, vocally speaking. Those other female groups were harmonizers. Sometimes the Marvelettes backgrounds are...well, not that harmonious.

    Gladys had a real good voice. Once she left the group I wish she had gotten a chance to showcase it as it matured prior to the Motorcity stuff. Wanda's natural voice was nice, but when she'd sing in that high voice it always makes me think of someone choking a cat, like on "So Long Baby". But oh man, when Smokey got a hold of Wanda and really developed that smokey (no pun intended) quality to her voice, she became one of the underrated talents at the label IMO. And replacing the other girls with the Andantes only made this period of their recordings that much better.
    Last edited by RanRan79; 03-13-2018 at 12:30 AM.

  8. #8
    In a not dissimilar vein is "After All" as done by The Supremes / Miracles. It's a good example of how Motown and its artists matured given "The Marvelettes" much later slinky version by Wanda. Illustrates the discussion quite well I think.

  9. #9
    For me, The Marvelettes' "I Want A Guy" is the best recording of the song. The Supremes' take on it would've been better if it were recorded in the same key that The Marvelettes used on theirs.

  10. #10
    I can't fault the Marvelettes themselves, but the dominance of the Ondioline, which is more subdued in the Supremes' recording, leads me to find this version virtually unlistenable.

  11. #11
    My first touch with Motown was The Supremes, I was a huge fan but in the meantime I found out some things which made me very sad and I was very dissapointed. So in my school time in the English lesson, we heard "Love child" and analysed the lyrics, in my opinion it was definitve a Diana Ross & The Supremes song with Cindy and Mary in the backround. Years later I discovered it was a Diana Ross record with The Andantes. The second dissapointment was for me to find out that one of my fravorite songs "Forever" only included Diana, I found it out as I saw the Ed Sullivan show. Then I looked around and there were The Marvelettes with the earthy sound and voices. I prefer more than The Supremes, the only group with two lead singers, but I prefer more the version of The Supremes of "I want a guy", because in my opinion itīs more timeless than The Marvelettes version. On the other hand "Way over there" I prefer more the Marvlettes version, is more groovy than The Miracles

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by kenneth View Post
    Wasn't the Marvelettes' version the original? The "Please Mr. Postman" album came out a year or two before "Meet the Supremes," didn't it? Or did their single of "Guy" on Tamla actually precede the Marvelettes?
    The Supremes' version was released before the Marvelettes'.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    For me, The Marvelettes' "I Want A Guy" is the best recording of the song. The Supremes' take on it would've been better if it were recorded in the same key that The Marvelettes used on theirs.
    I think the Marvelettes version is the best too. The Supremes' arrangement was just all wrong. It sounds so dreary. I've never liked it, although I have come to appreciate Diana's vocal on it much more than I once did.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    I can't fault the Marvelettes themselves, but the dominance of the Ondioline, which is more subdued in the Supremes' recording, leads me to find this version virtually unlistenable.
    Even though vocally I prefer this version, you're right, I don't know what Brian and Robert were THINKING! The sound was terrible whereas the Supremes' version was actually pristine but, like someone said, the Supremes' version would've been much better had it been at a lower tone. Too high for Diana (or any of them) to sing in imho

  15. #15
    It is a lousy song regardless of who sings it.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Circa 1824 View Post
    It is a lousy song regardless of who sings it.
    I agree. I don't like it by either group!

  17. #17
    On the back of the "Please Mr. Postman" LP was a contest and you wrote to 2648 W Grand Blvd & named your favorite song on the LP.....I think "I Want a Guy" won because it was the flip of Twistin Postman. Most of us kids at the time , heard it first by the Marvelettes & didn't even know who the Supremes were. The production on the Marvelletes is more "up to date" then the original.The first 45 I bought of Supremes was Let Me Go The Right Way, then found the earlier ones I the .39 bin that most drug stores & dime stores had.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by 144man View Post
    I can't fault the Marvelettes themselves, but the dominance of the Ondioline, which is more subdued in the Supremes' recording, leads me to find this version virtually unlistenable.

    Back in the day, the Ondioline was a poor man's substitute for a string section, which Motown couldn't afford to shell out for back then. The use of the Ondioline worked far better on the Temptations' "Dream Come True."

    On songs like the Marvelettes' "I Want a Guy," Stevie Wonder's "Contract on Love," and Mary Wells' "The Day Will Come," you have to use your imagination as to how they would have sounded had they used a string section instead of the Ondioline.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by jalowe1957 View Post
    Back in the day, the Ondioline was a poor man's substitute for a string section, which Motown couldn't afford to shell out for back then. The use of the Ondioline worked far better on the Temptations' "Dream Come True."

    On songs like the Marvelettes' "I Want a Guy," Stevie Wonder's "Contract on Love," and Mary Wells' "The Day Will Come," you have to use your imagination as to how they would have sounded had they used a string section instead of the Ondioline.
    With tecnology today, strings can be added. I still think the song is lousy.

  20. #20
    I agree, it sure wasn't A side material.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    I think the Marvelettes version is the best too. The Supremes' arrangement was just all wrong. It sounds so dreary. I've never liked it, although I have come to appreciate Diana's vocal on it much more than I once did.
    Me too tbh
    But I just wished they had produced it at a lower tone. Shows that when HDH finally got with them, they found the RIGHT SPOT.

    Berry AND Smokey had been producing them wrong (for the most part; I'm still mad Let Me Go wasn't a bigger hit than it was, least on the R&B chart; I LOVE that song so much!)

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Circa 1824 View Post
    With tecnology today, strings can be added. I still think the song is lousy.
    It was a typical bubblegum song. Even the Marvelettes couldn't make it mature and they were kids themselves (Wanda was the oldest Marvelette at 18 when this was recorded)!

  23. #23
    If you look at all of the supremes recordings from 1960 until the release of I want a guy, itís hard to imagine how Guy was selected and as the A. Pretty much any other of their recordings at this time would have been better

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    If you look at all of the supremes recordings from 1960 until the release of I want a guy, it’s hard to imagine how Guy was selected and as the A. Pretty much any other of their recordings at this time would have been better
    I think when you look at those early recordings, you see a group in search of a sound. They didn't know whether to be pop or R&B or rock and roll... then again, so did Motown lmao

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    I think when you look at those early recordings, you see a group in search of a sound. They didn't know whether to be pop or R&B or rock and roll... then again, so did Motown lmao
    Sure itís commendable to experiment but still just about ANYTHING would have been better then IWAG lol. After all. Never again. Not that those tunes were sensational but still...

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    Sure it’s commendable to experiment but still just about ANYTHING would have been better then IWAG lol. After all. Never again. Not that those tunes were sensational but still...
    I like "After All", mostly it's attraction for me is being the only cut with all four original Supremes on lead, but I don't think it was any better a choice for a single than "I Want a Guy". "Never Again" would have been the best choice of those very late 1960/early 1961 recordings. Diana's lead is nice, the background is nice, the groove (with the finger snaps) is nice. Whether it would've hit- probably not- is anyone's guess, but it would've definitely been a better choice than "I Want a Guy". I will admit though, I think "I Want a Guy" might have been better with Mary on lead. I don't think Diana found her ability to interpret a slow song until "Your Heart Belongs to Me".

    The Marvelettes just had better songs and that's probably due to them coming out of the gate with "Please Mr. Postman", which of course it is said they brought with them to the label. Motown didn't have to "experiment" on them. "Postman" was a monster hit out of the gate and that told Motown what direction to move the girls in. I think it's been "argued" in this forum before that the Marvelettes got pigeonholed into that direction even as the other girl groups- both at Motown and in the general industry- were moving on.

  27. #27
    That last comment, that is SO true. The Marvelettes were unfortunately pigeonholed. As seen in their discography, they had more to offer and it just wasn't brought out enough.

  28. #28
    the Grace Jones angle ....

    Last edited by Boogiedown; 03-15-2018 at 08:57 PM.

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