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  1. #1

    You Bring Back Memories...SD Quality Control Vote

    Let's keep it real. Motown been screwing up Supremes releases since the early days. The idea that "My Heart Can't Take It No More" was going to do anything to put the Supremes on the map had to be a drug induced hallucination. Did Billie Jean Brown come to a QC meeting with some bad stuff and everybody in the meeting was just f'ed up when "My Heart" came up for a vote and they thought it sounded like something different than what it was and so they were like "yea" during the vote? I think "You Bring Back Memories" would've made a good follow up to "Right Way". Might not have put the girls in the top 10 or 20, but possibly top 40. Definitely higher than #129.



    "You Bring Back Memories" as the Supremes' 5th single. Yea or nay??

  2. #2
    Nay.

    It's a nice song and much better than MY HEART..., but it doesn't strike me as a hit. If they wanted to go with a similar route, maybe they could have pulled out THOSE D.J. SHOWS. But if they wanted to point the way to the future, they could have gone with TIME CHANGES THINGS.

  3. #3
    I think if Let Me Go The Right Way had been a larger national pop hit, the natural follow up could have been You Bring Back.

    frankly i love the song - it's one of my favs from their early sessions. But since Let Me Go only hit 90, i think the company thought to try another route.

    Not sure why My Heart was considered the most viable option. At the time they'd also already recorded Time Changes Things and I'm Giving You Your Freedom. Perhaps Time Changes b/w I'm Giving might have made a slightly better showing.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post

    Not sure why My Heart was considered the most viable option.
    I think Motown was a desperate to get a hit on the girls. Since Ray Charles' country album had been such so successful, as well as hits by Little Esther and Solomon Burke, they might have thought that was an untapped market.

  5. #5
    To my ears, “Time Changes Things” is the best track on Meet The Supremes and might have made a more significant dent in the charts. Diane wasn’t as nasal and screechy as she was on so many of the other tracks. The guitar obbligato was excellent, and sophisticated for the label at the time. Granted, they were still trying unsuccessfully to use the cha-cha tempo which worked for Mary Wells but not for The Supremes. The following “country” effort under Clarence Paul was just a mistake, period, although I do prefer most of those tracks to most of the ones on Meet The Supremes. Still, none of the pre-HDH tracks were going to do the trick.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    I think if Let Me Go The Right Way had been a larger national pop hit, the natural follow up could have been You Bring Back.

    frankly i love the song - it's one of my favs from their early sessions. But since Let Me Go only hit 90, i think the company thought to try another route.

    Not sure why My Heart was considered the most viable option. At the time they'd also already recorded Time Changes Things and I'm Giving You Your Freedom. Perhaps Time Changes b/w I'm Giving might have made a slightly better showing.
    I agree with all the above, sup_fan. Until someone pointed out the Ray Charles country connection, I was puzzled by the choice of My Heart Can't Take It. It's still one of my least favorite Supremes tracks.
    Time Changes Things and I'm Giving You Your Freedom are among my favorite "no-hit" Supremes recordings. They would made for a very good double-sided single.

  7. #7
    wow and I love my Heart, especially that three part harmony thing that happens in there..oh well, that nasally screechy sound which i love paid Motown's bills for a decade or two..

  8. #8
    given the supremes' talent and all, i'm not opposed to the idea of them doing a C&W album. exactly because of the success Ray had with it. however the key difference is that Ray approached his material with a sophistication and level of respect for the music that motown did not. Imagine what the end product would have been like if the Motown production staff had applied the same level of care that Askey did for the Sings R&H project?

    the banjo player of RnR Banjo Band is actually a musician of merit however that has to be one of the most ridiculous songs to be recorded EVER at motown. maybe even worse that Living In Shame with the poisonous jam fumes that killed poor mamma in her tenement home lololol

    But what if motown had had a few prominent C&W guest artists on the record, and kept the gorgeous 3-part harmony and had more real C&W songs being covered and not just bizarre Motown originals and if they'd taken some of the real C&W songs and gave them a motown treatment?

    huge potential that was pretty much wasted

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by reese View Post
    Nay.

    It's a nice song and much better than MY HEART..., but it doesn't strike me as a hit. If they wanted to go with a similar route, maybe they could have pulled out THOSE D.J. SHOWS. But if they wanted to point the way to the future, they could have gone with TIME CHANGES THINGS.
    DJ Shows I think was a missed opportunity for 1961. It may have done something. But by early 1963 that song sounded dated. IMO "Memories" sounds like it's slightly past it's time even in early 1963, but listening to some of Motown's other offerings around the same time, I think the song could've made more noise than most of the previous singles.

    I LOVE "Time Changes Things", but I don't hear it as a single.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    I think if Let Me Go The Right Way had been a larger national pop hit, the natural follow up could have been You Bring Back.

    frankly i love the song - it's one of my favs from their early sessions. But since Let Me Go only hit 90, i think the company thought to try another route.

    Not sure why My Heart was considered the most viable option. At the time they'd also already recorded Time Changes Things and I'm Giving You Your Freedom. Perhaps Time Changes b/w I'm Giving might have made a slightly better showing.
    I just don't hear either "Time" or "Freedom" as singles, but I'm thinking that almost anything they had recorded at that point would've been better options than "My Heart".

  11. #11
    My ears tell me that every Meet The Supremes single git the A side wrong except Buttered Popcorn. In ‘61, He’s !7 might have hit. Maybe a Baby Dont Go. Time Changes Things and You Bring Back Memories are well crafted for top 40 in their time frame. YBBM has a lot to offer with its dramatic opening and swinging seque. Ross’ leads on these are top notch and very radio friendly. I also think Mary’s voice in Baby Don’t Go could have fit radio easily as well as Flo on Popcorn, but that is not exactly a commercial tune.

    I never would have released I Want. A Guy, Your Heart Belongs To Me, Let Me Go Athens Right Way or......gulp.......as much as I love it.......Ray Charles considering.......no excuse for My Heart Can’t Take It No More (unless released as a novelty tune under the pseudonym “The Yowling Alley Cats.”)

  12. #12
    I wouldn't say the respect that Clarence Paul had for the music was any less than Ray had. What Ray Charles did and what the Supremes did were two different works. From the artist POV, Ray Charles co-produced the work he did on the album, while the Supremes did not. There is something to be said about what happens when an artist is adept at producing oneself. The Supremes had very little creative control in the studio, so anything they recorded was at the guidance of the producer, in this case Paul.

    On top of that, where Ray approached country music with the intention of "updating" it and molding the songs into a sort of rhythm and blues, and definitely a Ray Charles style, Clarence Paul seems to have given the Supremes a traditional direction. So the productions were coming from two different artistic view points, but I wouldn't say one was any more or any less respectful of the material. Ray's work was obviously more innovative, and in that manner I'd agree that it was more sophisticated.

    Had Clarence Paul been as innovative as Ray was with the country material, I'd be in agreement that having the Supremes move from the r&b they had been doing to a shift in country music made sense. But that's not what happened. I can't imagine that anyone at Motown- anyone- heard "My Heart Can't Take It No More" and thought that r&b and pop stations would play it. (I guess for it to even register a #129, somebody somewhere had to play it...but where?) And there wasn't a chance in hell that three Black girls were going to get a country record played on country radio either at the time. So it all leaves the question of "just what were they thinking?"

    As a fan of country music myself, I love what the girls did. And perhaps had a C&W album been put together say in 1966 (the one year the girls didn't release a specialty album) with innovative arrangements coupled with the girls' beautiful harmonies, it probably would've made for a classic album. But the C&W album we did get was basically a hodgepodge of tracks culled from re-recordings of the original C&W tracks (sans "My Heart" which was left as is) plus new recordings of r&b/pop cuts that I guess was supposed to constitute the "pop" part of the album title.

    The 1965 album might have gone over a bit better had it had a slightly different title and was composed of a couple of the traditional country cuts, plus some of the new recordings, plus some of the Ballads and Blues songs.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by TheMotownManiac View Post
    My ears tell me that every Meet The Supremes single git the A side wrong except Buttered Popcorn. In ‘61, He’s !7 might have hit. Maybe a Baby Dont Go. Time Changes Things and You Bring Back Memories are well crafted for top 40 in their time frame. YBBM has a lot to offer with its dramatic opening and swinging seque. Ross’ leads on these are top notch and very radio friendly. I also think Mary’s voice in Baby Don’t Go could have fit radio easily as well as Flo on Popcorn, but that is not exactly a commercial tune.

    I never would have released I Want. A Guy, Your Heart Belongs To Me, Let Me Go Athens Right Way or......gulp.......as much as I love it.......Ray Charles considering.......no excuse for My Heart Can’t Take It No More (unless released as a novelty tune under the pseudonym “The Yowling Alley Cats.”)
    Until "My Heart", "I Want a Guy" is the only A side I would've vetoed. I dig "Your Heart Belongs to Me", however I don't really hear it being a hit. But because the lead and background vocals on it are so good and the track is nice, I may have given it a chance. Because Mary Wilson felt the need to focus only on the pop charts in her first book (both in actual passages as well as the chart positions in the back), it was a minute before I found out that "Right Way" actually made it #26 r&b. I'm sure this position was helped by the Supremes participation in the Motown Revue and the promotion that the record received as a result, but it is a damn good record and it doesn't surprise me that r&b stations may have taken to it.

    I think because Mary had a Shirley Alston type of sound, the Supremes might have gone somewhere with her on lead, but I'm not convinced "Baby Don't Go" was the song. And as silly as "Popcorn" is, it's right in line with all the other novelty cuts that were hitting big at the time, so it's still a mystery to me why more weight wasn't put on it. It was definitely a memorable song.

    I actually like "Never Again" as the A side over "I Want a Guy", though I don't think it would've done much better. But it is a better song IMO. I love Diana's lead vocal, nasal as it is, but if you really listen to the way she's approaching those lyrics, I would swear she was singing to someone in particular.

  14. #14
    I really would love to know what radio stations picked "My Heart Can't Take It No More" up for it to register any position on Billboard. Also I think the version they performed at the Apollo, while probably not giving them a hit either, would've been a better choice of single. I had hoped there was some kind of toned down (country wise) version of "My Heart" in the vaults. Maybe there is and we'd get it on a conceivable expanded edition of the C&W album. Maybe the song could be remixed by taking the vocals and adding a different track?

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    the banjo player of RnR Banjo Band is actually a musician of merit however that has to be one of the most ridiculous songs to be recorded EVER at motown. maybe even worse that Living In Shame with the poisonous jam fumes that killed poor mamma in her tenement home lololol
    I actually like the C&W album a lot, and I think it holds up much better than say, the Bit of Liverpool album. But I agree that "Banjo" is a pretty silly song. I also agree the banjo player is pretty great.

    But if you want an even sillier song that tries to kind of tap into the same "let's try to rock and roll" market, then you should listen to "Jo Jo the Dog Faced Boy" by Annette Funicello! IMHO this one shouldn't even have been considered an outtake!

    Last edited by kenneth; 05-23-2019 at 03:23 PM.

  16. #16
    I do love the C&W album and Ross branching out into new areas; there were just too many Supremes albums out at that same moment in time for anything to stick; the vote was divided, not everyone had the $$$ to buy all those albums

  17. #17
    i think the intent was to have the parents buying the concept albums for themselves and the teens buying the 45s. perhaps the parents would be curious about the Sups since they've heard so much buzz and excitement. of course they wouldn't want to listen to the rock and roll garbage (lol) and so something more "adult" would be to their taste

  18. #18
    I think the specialty albums probably were aimed at the adult market, probably because Gordy recognized early on that the Supremes had that something that appealed to everybody, so why not capitalize off of it? Remember the Supremes recorded Liverpool and C&W in the fall of 1964 before the girls exploded with their appearance on Ed Sullivan. They only had two number ones- on the way to a third- and certainly weren't the force they would be after 1965 got underway, so on paper it wouldn't have made sense to send them into the studio to do so much different material in a short period of time. I think Gordy was genius in recognizing their ability to appeal with such varied material, which of course would eventually pay off.

  19. #19
    exactly - they were doing People, I Am Woman, Anyone with a Heart in their shows prior to hitting it big. in the spring of 64 they were only 20 years old! and doing these complex gorgeous songs in 3-part harmony. sure they polished their vocals on these tracks as time went on. the earlier version of I Am Woman isn't as strong as the Copa one but still, these girls had IT

  20. #20
    Just saw this thread and thought I'd weigh in. Apparently "My Heart Can't Take It No More" did very well in Pittsburgh. Would anyone else remember this? I was too young but my older sisters knew the song and the teenage girl next door had the 45. Years later I saw a local list of Pittsburgh's most popular oldies and "My Heart" was on the list. "Your Heart Belongs To Me" had also been on Pittsburgh's top 40 list. Then I don't believe there was any airplay until "Lovelight" which was very popular. I also remember a local interviewer asking Diana in the 80's if she remembered these songs as they were local hits. Of course she said she did and also mentioned that she used to have family in Pittsburgh.
    And while on the subject of CW&P it seems that every song on the album (except "My Heart") was rerecorded closer to the LP release. There is an earlier version of each song in the vaults.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by George Solomon View Post
    Just saw this thread and thought I'd weigh in. Apparently "My Heart Can't Take It No More" did very well in Pittsburgh. Would anyone else remember this? I was too young but my older sisters knew the song and the teenage girl next door had the 45. Years later I saw a local list of Pittsburgh's most popular oldies and "My Heart" was on the list. "Your Heart Belongs To Me" had also been on Pittsburgh's top 40 list. Then I don't believe there was any airplay until "Lovelight" which was very popular. I also remember a local interviewer asking Diana in the 80's if she remembered these songs as they were local hits. Of course she said she did and also mentioned that she used to have family in Pittsburgh.
    And while on the subject of CW&P it seems that every song on the album (except "My Heart") was rerecorded closer to the LP release. There is an earlier version of each song in the vaults.
    Thanks for weighing in George. Obviously "Funny", "Makes No Difference Now", "You Didn't Care", "Lazybones", and "Banjo Band" have 1963 and late 1964 versions (the 1964 versions of course making the actual C&W album). But to get some clarity, are you saying that "Tumbleweeds", "You Need Me", "Baby Doll", "Tears In Vain" and "Sunset" all have unreleased earlier versions?

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    Thanks for weighing in George. Obviously "Funny", "Makes No Difference Now", "You Didn't Care", "Lazybones", and "Banjo Band" have 1963 and late 1964 versions (the 1964 versions of course making the actual C&W album). But to get some clarity, are you saying that "Tumbleweeds", "You Need Me", "Baby Doll", "Tears In Vain" and "Sunset" all have unreleased earlier versions?
    Yes, to all with the possible exception of "Baby Doll". Would have to investigate that one a little further.

  23. #23
    Well then this is something to look forward to!!

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