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  1. #1
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    Diana & Marvin album review and a question

    This is a good review of the Diana & Marvin album which also features some wonderful happy pictures of the two artists together.

    https://ianphillipssite.wordpress.co...-album-review/

    My question is, the review mentions 18 songs being recorded. We had 14 of them on the expanded version of the album. Does anyone know anything about the other 4 songs please?

    Thanks.

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    Do we know if the track I'll Keep My Light In My Window was actually recorded during the D&M album time frame? I have always had the impression that it was recorded much later like '78 or '79 for the Pops We Love You album.

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    I remember reading somewhere that 5-10-15-20-25-30 YEARS OF LOVE was a song that was planned but I don't know if this is true. A solo Marvin version was released on his first boxed set.

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    The whole album was lacklustre for me and I know they were successful but their versions of "You Are Everything" and "Stop, Look Listen" pale by comparison to The Stylistics for me. The last three tracks on the original album were better
    "I'm Falling In Love With You", "My Mistake [[Was To Love You)" and "Include Me In Your Life" but there was no real umph to any of it. The drums on "My Mistake" sound shocking - they might just as well have been banging on a cardboard box. Nevertheless I love both artists - wish they hadn't bothered with this project.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    The whole album was lacklustre for me and I know they were successful but their versions of "You Are Everything" and "Stop, Look Listen" pale by comparison to The Stylistics for me. The last three tracks on the original album were better
    "I'm Falling In Love With You", "My Mistake [[Was To Love You)" and "Include Me In Your Life" but there was no real umph to any of it. The drums on "My Mistake" sound shocking - they might just as well have been banging on a cardboard box. Nevertheless I love both artists - wish they hadn't bothered with this project.
    I think the quality of material was very reflective of where Motown was in 1973 in terms of songwriting. The album is just a collection of songs with no real common thread beyond the love concept. With the label's two of their three biggest stars one would have thought there would have been an all hands on deck call to find or write the very best songs in the company. Instead it seemed like the company was relying more on Diana's and Marvin's own star power to sell the 45s and album instead of great songs. But I think the company had been stuck in this songwriting rut since the departure of HDH in 1968. Heck look at the two Supremes's and Temptations's duet albums from '68 and '69. I don't think there was one original song on either album. And the Supreme's and Four Top's three duet album proves my point even more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SatansBlues View Post
    I don't think there was one original song on either album. And the Supreme's and Four Top's three duet album proves my point even more.
    "For Better Or Worse" and "Why [Must We Fall In Love]" were both previously unrecorded by anyone at Motown as far as I know. For Better Or Worse and who knows Why [see what I did there?! ], they didn't really put any kind of major focus on either song in the US. Covers, covers, covers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danman869 View Post
    "For Better Or Worse" and "Why [Must We Fall In Love]" were both previously unrecorded by anyone at Motown as far as I know. For Better Or Worse and who knows Why [see what I did there?! ], they didn't really put any kind of major focus on either song in the US. Covers, covers, covers.
    Actually, For Better of Worse was first recorded by Jonah Jones one month before the Temps and Supremes recorded their version. And Why was only covered by the Supremes and Temptations. So between 24 songs, there was only one original song on their albums, and an argument could be made to count For Better as the second one.

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    Good read !!

    Likely Motown wasn't out to make Ross and Gaye a serious tangible team that would hit the road performing together and therefore didn't want to saddle them with original songs meant for 'them' and identified as theirs. The project was likely a ploy to keep their duet guy still identifiable as such should he want or need to go that way in the future. Diana Ross was just a conduit for that cause, a ready made stand-in who already had plenty on her plate with nothing to lose.

    Having two of their big acts sing ready made songs together would be an easy investment with adequate sales.

    That neither seemed to especially embrace this match-up and brought nothing to the project from their own toolboxes suggests this was a perimeter arrangement meant as a cash-in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SatansBlues View Post
    Actually, For Better of Worse was first recorded by Jonah Jones one month before the Temps and Supremes recorded their version. And Why was only covered by the Supremes and Temptations. So between 24 songs, there was only one original song on their albums, and an argument could be made to count For Better as the second one.
    But Motown Unreleased 1969 had a Temptations only version of Why [Must We Fall In Love]". Wonder if it had been meant as a Tempts only initially with Diana etc added to an already canned track or was it always meant as a duet.

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    Just listened to the Temptation's version of the song. It's a different lead vocal and there seems to be gaps for Diana to sing into. Perhaps the Temptations had a couple of takes and the one considered superior was then duetised?

    https://youtu.be/QQBwKOoPCck

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    This is turning into a nice thread....

    I find it interesting to hear views about Diana & Marvin. It seems that the album was better received in the UK. Myself and several friends bought it when released and I remember how popular in general it was.

    I tend to ignore the views on it suffering from them recording most of the songs separately. Many of the iconic Marvin & Tammi songs are the same, including Ain't No Mountain High Enough. It just doesn't spoil the final songs for me.

    I do hope that some information turns up here about the "missing unreleased songs" and that one day we will have a proper expanded Diana & Marvin album with all of the songs and those from the initial album that were edited down at the time. Even a good remix of the songs would be good too for me.

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    https://youtu.be/BMt18phyFZs

    For those who haven't seen it, here is Russ discussing the recording sessions with Marvin and Diana, a few minutes into the video.

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    I liked this album. Of course, I never expected them to become a team like Marvin & Tammi so the number of cover songs didn't bother me. It showed the comradery between the Motown artists. They sounded good together. I am surprised that Special Part of Me was released as a single. That took a while to grow on me. My Mistake was the one, I think. I wonder why they didn't start off with that one. When the deluxe version came out, I was not drawn to any of the unreleased songs. The Bachrach song from Lost Horizon was especially puzzling to me. Not sure why they delved into that one.

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    There's an alt vocal version of "Pledging My Love" on YouTube...

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    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    There's an alt vocal version of "Pledging My Love" on YouTube...
    I think this is the unedited version of the version on Diana & Marvin, with an early fade, that was initially released on a Japanese album and then on Marvin's Love Songs:Greatest Duets CD.

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    No one has mentioned “Just Say, Just Say”, an Ashford & Simpson penned song which for me was the stand out track of the album, love the way they vocals intertwine with each other and a great instrumental bridge which repeats to the fade, love it.

  17. #17
    "My question is, the review mentions 18 songs being recorded. We had 14 of them on the expanded version of the album. Does anyone know anything about the other 4 songs please?"


    For the answer [[on a certain track) to your question, read the bumped Love me for a reason Johnny Bristol thread.

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    According to the liner notes of the EE of Last Time I Saw Him, the song Since I Don't Have You was intended for the Diana & Marvin album, but Marvin never recorded his vocals. The 1990 4-CD box set The Marvin Gaye Collection contains alternate versions of You're A Special Part of Me [[at 4:37 a full minute longer that the originally released version) and Don't Knock My Love [[with Ross saying "Take it to the top, Marv!").

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    Hi Roverob. I admit I had NO interest whatsoever about another thread yielding negative comments about the D&M lp, but this was a good find and a fun, informative read. Thanks for it!

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    It was reported that Diana did not like working with Marvin in the studio due to Marvins weed smoking that permiated the air and she had an aversion to...

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    Quote Originally Posted by StuBass1 View Post
    It was reported that Diana did not like working with Marvin in the studio due to Marvins weed smoking that permiated the air and she had an aversion to...
    And she was pregnant

    It would be reasonable to avoid smoke and pot even if it wasn’t cool enough in the industry

    I respect that choice

    Many duets are recorded separately; I think they got along quite well; certain elements wanted to make a story out of not very much so they did

    The album stayed on the charts a long while and kept selling for a long time making it a success

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    Quote Originally Posted by mysterysinger View Post
    There's an alt vocal version of "Pledging My Love" on YouTube...
    The vocals sound more relaxed and less emotional here. I much prefer the original album version.
    There are so many timeless treasures to be had on the Diana & Marvin set.
    I think it a huge mistake Motown did not go for “You Are Everything” as the lead single in the USA. The combination of their voices sounds dynamic here, as well as being the most commercial sounding song on the album.
    “Just Say Just Say” is probably my fave and should have been the third single, at least in the UK.
    “Keep My Light” has to have been recorded at a later date as it was far to good to have been left off.

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    I've always loved most of Side 1 of the "Diana & Marvin" duet LP -- especially "You Are Everything". The part where Diana sings, "Ooh, nothin's changed" gets me every time! I agree with Ollie -- it would have made a powerful first single. I also prefer the released album version of "Pledging My Love" to the alternate version above which leaves out my favorite part of the song. Side 2 has two tracks that I love -- "Just Say, Just Say," which is an Ashford & Simpson jewel which should have been released as a single instead of "Don't Knock My Love". And I love "My Mistake". Two songs that I could never stand, however, and still can't to this day, are "I'm Falling In Love With You" and "Include Me In Your Life" All of those incessant Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', / Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin's cheapened it and ruined it for me. Overall, though, I love the "Diana & Marvin" LP release.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Philles/Motown Gary View Post
    I've always loved most of Side 1 of the "Diana & Marvin" duet LP -- especially "You Are Everything". The part where Diana sings, "Ooh, nothin's changed" gets me every time! I agree with Ollie -- it would have made a powerful first single. I also prefer the released album version of "Pledging My Love" to the alternate version above which leaves out my favorite part of the song. Side 2 has two tracks that I love -- "Just Say, Just Say," which is an Ashford & Simpson jewel which should have been released as a single instead of "Don't Knock My Love". And I love "My Mistake". Two songs that I could never stand, however, and still can't to this day, are "I'm Falling In Love With You" and "Include Me In Your Life" All of those incessant Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', / Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin's cheapened it and ruined it for me. Overall, though, I love the "Diana & Marvin" LP release.
    I feel the same about the album, Gary. My Mistake should have been the first single, followed by You Are Everything and Just, Just Say. For me, that would have been the perfect singles lineup and I think would have resulted in much better chart performances and sales - for the album, too. I would have replaced Don't Knock My Love with I've Come To Love You So Much, another Ashford/Simpson gem from the EE. It's a perfect song to precede Pledging My Love at the album's close.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Philles/Motown Gary View Post
    I've always loved most of Side 1 of the "Diana & Marvin" duet LP -- especially "You Are Everything". The part where Diana sings, "Ooh, nothin's changed" gets me every time! I agree with Ollie -- it would have made a powerful first single. I also prefer the released album version of "Pledging My Love" to the alternate version above which leaves out my favorite part of the song. Side 2 has two tracks that I love -- "Just Say, Just Say," which is an Ashford & Simpson jewel which should have been released as a single instead of "Don't Knock My Love". And I love "My Mistake". Two songs that I could never stand, however, and still can't to this day, are "I'm Falling In Love With You" and "Include Me In Your Life" All of those incessant Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', / Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin', Darlin's cheapened it and ruined it for me. Overall, though, I love the "Diana & Marvin" LP release.
    The “ooh nothings changed” line you refer to Gary is from “Just Say Just Say”. That’s if I remember my ooh’s correctly.
    I have read reviews that mention Marvin sings rings around Diana on the album. I personally think her warm and delicate vocals compliment Marvin’s gruff vocal style perfectly.
    I really enjoy the laid back vibe of “Include Me In Your Life”, but now you have me thinking. Perhaps a whole new vocal line that begins with the word Darlin’ might have proved better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky2012 View Post
    I feel the same about the album, Gary. My Mistake should have been the first single, followed by You Are Everything and Just, Just Say. For me, that would have been the perfect singles lineup and I think would have resulted in much better chart performances and sales - for the album, too. I would have replaced Don't Knock My Love with I've Come To Love You So Much, another Ashford/Simpson gem from the EE. It's a perfect song to precede Pledging My Love at the album's close.
    I agree with nearly everything you say, Lucky. The only issue I have is that the album needs an uptempo track to replace "Don't Knock My Love" [[which, IMO, was way too fast). "I've Come To Love You So Much" would be too slow as a replacement. To keep the pacing balanced, and if Motown wanted to dip into the Wilson Pickett catalog, I would have chosen his mid-tempo "634-5789" which could have been sped up a tad, or Wilson's "Land Of 1,000 Dances" which could be slowed down just a bit. I can easily imagine Diana & Marvin shining on those two Pickett replacements [[especially if Motown let Diana sing in a slightly lower register).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    The “ooh nothings changed” line you refer to Gary is from “Just Say Just Say”. That’s if I remember my ooh’s correctly.
    I have read reviews that mention Marvin sings rings around Diana on the album. I personally think her warm and delicate vocals compliment Marvin’s gruff vocal style perfectly.
    I really enjoy the laid back vibe of “Include Me In Your Life”, but now you have me thinking. Perhaps a whole new vocal line that begins with the word Darlin’ might have proved better.
    Your "oohs" are right on, Ollie! Diana's "Ooh, nothin's changed" is indeed from "Just Say, Just Say", not from "You Are Everything". Like they say, I was in the "right church, wrong pew!" I don't know how much you've heard about the recording session with Diana and Marvn, but Diana was pregnant at the time and not getting along at all with Marvin, which may have affected her voice. [[I know she was singing in an unusually-high register during that era.) Marvin insisted on smoking weed at the session, and, understandably, Diana didn't want to be breathing it in for her baby. Berry was at the session and intervened, asking Marvin to stop smoking in Diana's presence. They ended up recording most of the album separately -- and individually -- on their own. [[If you haven't already, check out Ralph & Russ' YouTube video describing what happened at that first duet recording session. It's hilarious!) For the benefit of new members and anyone who's interested, here it is!

    Ralph & Russ Terrana - Motown Recording Engineers
    Cue at 3:02-6:06:
    https://youtu.be/BMt18phyFZs
    Last edited by Philles/Motown Gary; 09-05-2021 at 04:02 PM.

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    Good stuff Gary !

    oh they sound like they're so much in love

    lol!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    Good stuff Gary !

    oh they sound like they're so much in love

    lol!
    Thanks, Boogie! I know! HaHa!!! I had forgotten about that part! It's even funnier than I remembered!!!

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    It's a rather bizarre scenario. Two of Motown's biggest stars taking three years to accomplish a believable album of love songs from separate recording sessions because they couldn't get along. Can't make this stuff up. lol!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    It's a rather bizarre scenario. Two of Motown's biggest stars taking three years to accomplish a believable album of love songs from separate recording sessions because they couldn't get along. Can't make this stuff up. lol!
    Where did you hear that the album took 3 years to complete, Boogie? Thinking that I might have missed something, I went back and listened to that part of the video. Again, I didn't hear Ralph nor Russ mention the time frame from start of the album to completion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Philles/Motown Gary View Post
    I agree with nearly everything you say, Lucky. The only issue I have is that the album needs an uptempo track to replace "Don't Knock My Love" [[which, IMO, was way too fast). "I've Come To Love You So Much" would be too slow as a replacement. To keep the pacing balanced, and if Motown wanted to dip into the Wilson Pickett catalog, I would have chosen his mid-tempo "634-5789" which could have been sped up a tad, or Wilson's "Land Of 1,000 Dances" which could be slowed down just a bit. I can easily imagine Diana & Marvin shining on those two Pickett replacements [[especially if Motown let Diana sing in a slightly lower register).
    I really like the idea of "634-5789" with Diana in her lower register!

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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky2012 View Post
    I really like the idea of "634-5789" with Diana in her lower register!
    You bet, lucky! Diana sounded sexy as all get-out on The Supremes' & The Tempts' "Try It Baby" from The Supremes Join The Temptations album, which is a dotted-eighth's shuffle beat, as is "634-5789". Wouldn't it be something if Diana covered "634-5789" on her new album later this month!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Philles/Motown Gary View Post
    Where did you hear that the album took 3 years to complete, Boogie? Thinking that I might have missed something, I went back and listened to that part of the video. Again, I didn't hear Ralph nor Russ mention the time frame from start of the album to completion.

    wiki, of course !

    Album sessions dragged on throughout 1971 and into early 1973

    wiki

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    Quote Originally Posted by Philles/Motown Gary View Post
    Your "oohs" are right on, Ollie! Diana's "Ooh, nothin's changed" is indeed from "Just Say, Just Say", not from "You Are Everything". Like they say, I was in the "right church, wrong pew!" I don't know how much you've heard about the recording session with Diana and Marvn, but Diana was pregnant at the time and not getting along at all with Marvin, which may have affected her voice. [[I know she was singing in an unusually-high register during that era.) Marvin insisted on smoking weed at the session, and, understandably, Diana didn't want to be breathing it in for her baby. Berry was at the session and intervened, asking Marvin to stop smoking in Diana's presence. They ended up recording most of the album separately -- and individually -- on their own. [[If you haven't already, check out Ralph & Russ' YouTube video describing what happened at that first duet recording session. It's hilarious!) For the benefit of new members and anyone who's interested, here it is!

    Ralph & Russ Terrana - Motown Recording Engineers
    Cue at 3:02-6:06:
    https://youtu.be/BMt18phyFZs
    Russ does a great Berry Gordy impersonation lol.
    I think despite everything Diana felt a lot of affection for Marvin. The way she sought him out towards the end of Motown 25 is testament to this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Russ does a great Berry Gordy impersonation lol.
    I think despite everything Diana felt a lot of affection for Marvin. The way she sought him out towards the end of Motown 25 is testament to this.
    Yeah, Ollie, Russ' Berry Gordy immitation was a hoot, although I've never thought that Berry's voice sounded at all feminine. If Diana resented Marvin, I'm sure it was only temporary at that one recording session. Further proof is Diana's posthumous tribute to Marvin via "Missing You". She truly loved Marvin like family and really missed him, as did the original '60s Motown artists. Diana's heartfelt emotions shined brightly in the studio recording of that tribute to Marvin, as did her live performances of it.

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    But!! .... gotta disagree with that conclusion Gary.

    Two /three years of not being able to get over it and if nothing more - to at least act like professionals to get the job done well - does not sound like much of a sound relationship, partnership , friendship....All that time, -months into years -neither thought or cared enough to call the other and say

    this is soooo silly ......


    reefer madness??
    Last edited by Boogiedown; 09-06-2021 at 04:56 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    But!! .... gotta disagree with that conclusion Gary.

    Two /three years of not being able to get over it and if nothing more - to at least act like professionals to get the job done well - does not sound like much of a sound relationship, partnership , friendship....All that time, -months into years -neither thought or cared enough to call the other and say

    this is soooo silly ......


    reefer madness??
    Boogie, once again, where did you come up with the notion that it took 3 years to complete the "Diana & Marvin" LP project? I've never read nor heard of such a thing.

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    Gary its in wiki . I copied it above a couple of posts up. Irregardless ....even if it were done in weeks , months .... the point is this is not the behavior of people with a basic fondness for each other , especially within this given circumstance aimed at projecting love and affection. Does it not strike you as absurd??

    I'll reread wiki


    added:

    elsewhere on wiki::

    Released October 26, 1973
    Recorded 1971–1973
    Last edited by Boogiedown; 09-06-2021 at 05:33 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boogiedown View Post
    Gary its in wiki . I copied it above a couple of posts up. Irregardless ....even if it were done in weeks , months .... the point is this is not the behavior of people with a basic fondness for each other , especially within this given circumstance aimed at projecting love and affection. Does it not strike you as absurd??

    I'll reread wiki


    added:

    elsewhere on wiki::

    Released October 26, 1973
    Recorded 1971–1973
    Sorry, Boogie. I didn't see your Wiki post until now. I don't know... it's been said that Wiki can be edited and revised by pretty much anyone. Since learning that, I've learned to take Wiki with a grain of salt. Out of the ton of Motown books that I've bought and read over the years, not once have I read that the "Diana & Marvin" album took 3 years to record. After the first attempt and failure at a real duet recording session, Berry decided that, to keep peace, Diana & Marvin would record their parts separately from then on. There's no reason it should have taken 3 years to complete the album. If it indeed did take that long, that's no reflection on Diana. To my knowledge, Diana's only beef against Marvin was to protect her unborn child she was carrying from Marvin's offensive weed smoke. Diana was pregnant again a year later with Tracee. Why would she want to risk going back into the studio with Marvin again for a repeat performance of the first nightmare?? It was so much easier to just record their parts separately. That doesn't mean that Diana nor Marvin were carrying a grudge against each other. By 1971, Diana had dived head first into her newfound solo career. She simply didn't have time to worry about exchanging pleasantries with Marvln regarding his dope habits.

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