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  1. #1

    55 Years Ago This Week - October 31, 1963

    The Supremes released their first Top 40 hit,.... "When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes"!


  2. #2
    IT still sounds great. This song opened up the door to the greatest female group in history ever, The Supremes. This song WTLLSSTHE and their next release Where Did Our Love Go? introduced a new era in music,
    that is still evolving
    Last edited by Zantellor; 10-27-2018 at 07:23 PM.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Zantellor View Post
    IT still sounds great. This song opened up the door to the greatest female group in history ever, The Supremes. This song WTLLSSTHE and their next release Where Did Our Love Go? introduced a new era in music,
    that is still evolving
    Actually the follow up was the excellent but flop 'Run, Run, Run' which peaked at #93!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by copley View Post
    Actually the follow up was the excellent but flop 'Run, Run, Run' which peaked at #93!
    Run Run Run which early on in their career featured the Andantes, a move that causes consternation and distress 55 years later

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by jobeterob View Post
    Run Run Run which early on in their career featured the Andantes, a move that causes consternation and distress 55 years later
    That is not true. The Andantes are not on "Run, Run, Run". Lead vocals by Diana Ross
    Background vocals by Florence Ballard, Mary Wilson, Holland–Dozier–Holland and The Four Tops.

    You made that up for some weird reason known only to you!
    Last edited by marv2; 10-28-2018 at 03:25 AM.

  6. #6
    When the Love... should've been a bigger hit but I understood why: it almost sounded like a MR&TV's track. Don't know what the Hollands were thinking with Run Run Run. I always cite Where Did Our Love Go as the START of the Supremes as we know them.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    When the Love... should've been a bigger hit but I understood why: it almost sounded like a MR&TV's track. Don't know what the Hollands were thinking with Run Run Run. I always cite Where Did Our Love Go as the START of the Supremes as we know them.
    According to the notes from TCMS-1964, HDH were influenced by the Phil Spector "Wall Of Sound" when they recorded The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" in 1963. The song was also recorded prior to (yet released after) "When The Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes" so listeners (as well as DJs here in the USA) expecting a progression (or soundalike) from "Lovelight" were thrown off by "Run, Run, Run". And like you do, a lot of fans consider "Where Did Our Love Go" the beginning of The Supremes that we know & love.
    Last edited by Motown Eddie; 10-28-2018 at 12:28 PM.

  8. #8
    Being very young and living in the UK I was not actually aware of 'RRR' being released between 'Lovelight' & 'WDOLG' until a few years later. I've always liked it and in fact prefer it to 'Baby Love'! Mind you I prefer anything to 'Baby Love'!

  9. #9
    The title of the song should have been shortened somehow. Maybe just, “When the Lovelight Starts,” which isn’t much better, but following up that marathon title, “A Breathtaking, First Sight Soul-Shaking, One Night Lovemaking, Next Day Heartbreaking Guy,” they should have known better.

    The number would have been much better suited to Martha.


  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    According to the notes from TCMS-1964, HDH were influenced by the Phil Spector "Wall Of Sound" when they recorded The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" in 1963. The song was also recorded prior to (yet released after) "When The Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes" so listeners (as well as DJs here in the USA) expecting a progression (or soundalike) from "Lovelight" were thrown off by "Run, Run, Run". And like you do, a lot of fans consider "Where Did Our Love Go" the beginning of The Supremes that we know & love.
    Well I know WHY they did it but I don't understand WHY any one of them thought it was a good idea. It wasn't their sound lol

    And it was obvious folks knew it wasn't Motown-esque, which explains why it was a massive flop. Thankfully they finally found the sound for them with WDOLG.

  11. #11
    who does the male growl around 1:40?

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    who does the male growl around 1:40?
    The Hollands, Lamont Dozier and the Four Tops.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    Well I know WHY they did it but I don't understand WHY any one of them thought it was a good idea. It wasn't their sound lol

    And it was obvious folks knew it wasn't Motown-esque, which explains why it was a massive flop. Thankfully they finally found the sound for them with WDOLG.
    It was pretty popular in the Detroit/Toledo area. They had more regional followers than national at this time.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by marv2 View Post
    The Hollands, Lamont Dozier and the Four Tops.
    does it sound like one person though?

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    does it sound like one person though?
    It could have been any one or two of the guys, but all of them sang back up on it with the Supremes. If I just had to guess, I'd say it sounds like Brian Holland, Obie Benson or Levi Stubbs.

  16. #16
    Listening to it now. They were not kidding around when they recorded this song. They pulled out all of the stops. Flo is really strong on the background. I can make her out first above everyone else, then Mary right along with her. The guys are buried back there and doing the handclaps. A very danceable record for sure.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    According to the notes from TCMS-1964, HDH were influenced by the Phil Spector "Wall Of Sound" when they recorded The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" in 1963. The song was also recorded prior to (yet released after) "When The Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes" so listeners (as well as DJs here in the USA) expecting a progression (or soundalike) from "Lovelight" were thrown off by "Run, Run, Run". And like you do, a lot of fans consider "Where Did Our Love Go" the beginning of The Supremes that we know & love.
    Good info. RUN RUN RUN does sound like an interruption to their emerging distinct sound , so it makes sense that it's an earlier recorded song. Similarly, learning that Stevie Wonder's YOU ARE THE SUNSHINE was a song written a few years earlier makes sense when you compare its style to the more progressive sound of SUPERSTITION , which wound up getting released before it.

    Marv: as a total guess , I'll go with Levi
    Last edited by Boogiedown; 10-29-2018 at 12:24 AM.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    When the Love... should've been a bigger hit but I understood why: it almost sounded like a MR&TV's track. Don't know what the Hollands were thinking with Run Run Run. I always cite Where Did Our Love Go as the START of the Supremes as we know them.
    I don't even think Martha and the girls could've hit any bigger with "Lovelight". The fact that it made it as far as #23 pop is about as much as could've been expected IMO. What surprised me is that "Lovelight" reached #2 on Cashbox's R&B chart. It's my understanding- and someone please correct me if I'm wrong- that where Billboard relied on a combination of factors, Cashbox based it's chartings on record sales (and I'm assuming reported sales via record stores, as I'm sure Motown wasn't giving anyone an accounting of just how well or not a record was selling). "Lovelight" made it all the way to #20 on the Cashbox pop chart, so between it's #2 and 20 showings sales wise, I think the song was probably more popular than it's #23 Billboard placement would otherwise suggest. It is interesting to ponder how the song would've charted on the Billboard r&b if that chart had not been discontinued at the time.
    Last edited by RanRan79; 10-29-2018 at 12:50 PM.

  19. #19
    As for "Run, Run, Run", I agree, it seems like such a step backwards. It's a good song, Diana does a great lead on it, although I think the male vocals on the song are unnecessary and take away from the sound. It would've made a great album track or b-side, but it should not have followed up "Lovelight". I would've released a reworked version of "Penny Pincher", which of course is a "Lovelight" soundalike, and we know how Motown liked to follow up a hit with a soundalike. The problem with "Penny" is that there's not enough punch in the instrumentation and Flo and Mary are not on the same page volume wise and they could've benefited from a more harmonious sound, although Flo sounds great "on her own". I think "Penny" being as successful or even more successful would've depended on the changes the producers made in a re-recorded version. As is, I understand why it was passed over for release.

    I know the idea is that once HDH locked in on a formula for the group that the Supremes belonged to them, but I think Weatherspoon and Stevenson's "Don't Take It Away" would have made a worthy follow up also. It certainly would've done better than "Run" IMO.

  20. #20
    i've always liked Lovelight but agree it's a bit of an anomaly for the Sups. it's clearly more of an r&b record, similar to what MRATV had been doing with Heatwave. and what's more is Berry was dying to find that elusive female artist/group that could really bridge black r&b music with white pop music. Lovelight is a very r&b approach and while its lots of fun, it doesn't seem to really capture the mission that Berry was after.

    Run Run Run IMO is a predecessor to the Jimmy Webb fiasco lol. it's an overproduced song with too much going on and not enough nuance between the various instrumental lines. every instrument an vocalist is singing at full volume for 100% of the recording. it's doesn't built to a crescendo. Even many of the Phil Spector works layered in things as the song went on. or dropped at times so that the listener had a little bit of a break. Run (and many of the Webb songs like Paradise, Silent Voices) are just too much and too heavy.

    In comparison look at Stoned Love. now that certainly has a ton of things going on. massive orchestral track, vocals, etc. But the strings aren't all playing at full volume through every measure of the song. same with the sax, the brass, the vocals, etc. things swirl in and out and it builds to a monumental ending.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    I don't even think Martha and the girls could've hit any bigger with "Lovelight". The fact that it made it as far as #23 pop is about as much as could've been expected IMO. What surprised me is that "Lovelight" reached #2 on Cashbox's R&B chart. It's my understanding- and someone please correct me if I'm wrong- that where Billboard relied on a combination of factors, Cashbox based it's chartings on record sales (and I'm assuming reported sales via record stores, as I'm sure Motown wasn't giving anyone an accounting of just how well or not a record was selling). "Lovelight" made it all the way to #20 on the Cashbox pop chart, so between it's #2 and 20 showings sales wise, I think the song was probably more popular than it's #23 Billboard placement would otherwise suggest. It is interesting to ponder how the song would've charted on the Billboard r&b if that chart had not been discontinued at the time.
    Wasn't that was when Billboard thought black artists didn't need an R&B chart? That period was kinda weird but yeah I do wonder about "Lovelight" and its position on the Billboard R&B chart myself...

  22. #22
    Not sure how to articulate this but "Lovelight" sounded more current of the time, where "Run" seemed like a step back to the doo-wop days. Not a smooth progression.

  23. #23
    While I was getting ready for Trick or Treating, the kids on Bandstand were dancing to "When The Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes" here beginning at 3:40 in this video clip:


  24. #24
    Loving this clip



  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by copley View Post
    Loving this clip


    Absolutely magic, I wonder when and where this was recorded?

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by rovereab View Post
    Absolutely magic, I wonder when and where this was recorded?
    This was recorded in October 1964 for The T.A.M.I. Show at the Santa Monica Civic Center in California (and first released to theaters 12/29/1964). Yes indeed, The Supremes' performance for the classic concert film is absolute magic.
    Last edited by Motown Eddie; 10-30-2018 at 04:56 AM.

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    Well I know WHY they did it but I don't understand WHY any one of them thought it was a good idea. It wasn't their sound lol

    And it was obvious folks knew it wasn't Motown-esque, which explains why it was a massive flop. Thankfully they finally found the sound for them with WDOLG.
    Remember The Crystals' "Da Doo Run Run"? Perhaps HDH was trying to ride the coattails of that massive hit from 1963 when they cooked up The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" (which also explains why the went for the Spector 'Wall Of Sound' when they produced the song).

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by midnightman View Post
    Wasn't that was when Billboard thought black artists didn't need an R&B chart? That period was kinda weird but yeah I do wonder about "Lovelight" and its position on the Billboard R&B chart myself...
    I'm not sure what their reasoning was. Probably something stupid.

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    Remember The Crystals' "Da Doo Run Run"? Perhaps HDH was trying to ride the coattails of that massive hit from 1963 when they cooked up The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" (which also explains why the went for the Spector 'Wall Of Sound' when they produced the song).
    You're probably right. And it might've worked had it been released soon after it was recorded, but by the time it hit the airwaves there was too much new and innovative sounds going on, which their previous single "Lovelight" had been a part of.

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    Remember The Crystals' "Da Doo Run Run"? Perhaps HDH was trying to ride the coattails of that massive hit from 1963 when they cooked up The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" (which also explains why the went for the Spector 'Wall Of Sound' when they produced the song).
    exactly right. in hindsight we can see how musical trends came and went, what had staying power, what changes evolved over time. but back in 63 there was no way to predict that the girl group sound would decline, that Spector would sort of burn out, the rise of the British.

    Plus between 59 and early 64, motown as just another label IMO. it wasn't until WDOLG and the subsequent songs of Baby Love, Dancing in the streets, My guy, My girl, Baby i need your loving, etc that the MOTOWN SOUND really started to evolve. sure there were great songs in the early years and hits too. but it was a more experimental era and sometimes they were copying others. once the MOTOWN SOUND was a hit, they were the trend setters, not the followers.

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    This was recorded in October 1964 for The T.A.M.I. Show at the Santa Monica Civic Center in California (and first released to theaters 12/29/1964). Yes indeed, The Supremes' performance for the classic concert film is absolute magic.
    As an FYI, The blonde popping her head between Florence & Mary towards the end (she has a target on her sweatshirt) is Teri Garr who started as a dancer.

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    I'm not sure what their reasoning was. Probably something stupid.
    The reason I recall being offered was that the charts had become too similar - what was selling pop at that time was what was selling R & B - likely a result of what Motown did to the market in 1964 1965

  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by thommg View Post
    As an FYI, The blonde popping her head between Florence & Mary towards the end (she has a target on her sweatshirt) is Teri Garr who started as a dancer.
    And the assistant choreographer (not seen in the film) was Toni Basil who later had the #1 hit "Mickey".

    The booklet states the concert took place October 28 & 29, 1964. Baby Love would reach #1 two days later in the Billboard issue dated October 31, 1964. This explains why Come See About Me wasn't performed. CSAM entered the Billboard chart, at #66, in issue November 14, 1964.
    Last edited by johnjeb; 10-31-2018 at 10:44 AM.

  34. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by jobeterob View Post
    The reason I recall being offered was that the charts had become too similar - what was selling pop at that time was what was selling R & B - likely a result of what Motown did to the market in 1964 1965
    Yes, that is what I had heard and read, also.

    Here is a quote taken from Joel Whitburn's book "Top R&B Singles 1942-1999"

    HIATUS: 11/30/63 - 1/23/65

    Billboard did not publish an R&B singles chart from November 30, 1963 through January 23, 1965. It is our understanding that there was so much crossover of titles between the R&B and pop singles (Hot 100) charts that Billboard considered the charts to be too similar. This does not mean that R&B artists stopped turning out hits. After all, it was during this 14-month period that Motown established itself as an R&B institution.


    Any errors in the above statement are my typos.

    I have a few chart books (most dated only through 2000, approximately) and none mention why the R&B chart was resumed. I guess one can assume that it was due to demand or maybe even Motown's influence.
    Last edited by johnjeb; 10-30-2018 at 02:34 PM.

  35. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Motown Eddie View Post
    Remember The Crystals' "Da Doo Run Run"? Perhaps HDH was trying to ride the coattails of that massive hit from 1963 when they cooked up The Supremes' "Run, Run, Run" (which also explains why the went for the Spector 'Wall Of Sound' when they produced the song).
    Yeah I know that.
    Motown was still going through an identity crisis somewhat in '63-64 with some of its artists.
    So yeah they indeed were trying to get into the hot sound of the time.

  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by johnjeb View Post
    Yes, that is what I had heard and read, also.

    Here is a quote taken from Joel Whitburn's book "Top R&B Singles 1942-1999"

    HIATUS: 11/30/63 - 1/23/65

    Billboard did not publish an R&B singles chart from November 30, 1963 through January 23, 1965. It is our understanding that there was so much crossover of titles between the R&B and pop singles (Hot 100) charts that Billboard considered the charts to be too similar. This does not mean that R&B artists stopped turning out hits. After all, it was during this 14-month period that Motown established itself as an R&B institution.


    Any errors in the above statement are my typos.

    I have a few chart books (most dated only through 2000, approximately) and none mention why the R&B chart was resumed. I guess one can assume that it was due to demand or maybe even Motown's influence.
    Motown definitely played a part in integrating pop culture. Even after the R&B charts was brought back, Motown was creating the wave of black artists that normally hit the pop charts.

  37. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by thommg View Post
    As an FYI, The blonde popping her head between Florence & Mary towards the end (she has a target on her sweatshirt) is Teri Garr who started as a dancer.
    That was 1964. Coincidentally, 24 years later in 1988 several of those artists would be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on the same day! The Beach Boys, the Supremes and Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones would induct the Beatles at the January 1988 ceremony. Several of the folks in the T.A.M.I. Show would be onstage together at the Waldorf in 1988 for a jam session.

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