Friday, September 19, 2008

R.I.P. Norman Whitefield

The world has lost one of the greatest songwriters/producers of all time today. Norman Whitefield was found dead in his home is Los Angeles. He was 68 years old.

Who is Norman Whitefield you ask? He was a producer and songwriter best known for his work on the classic Motown label during the 60's. He also went on to write the classic disco hit, "Car Wash" which criminally earned him only his second-ever Grammy award.

He was also immortalized in this great lyric from Billy Bragg's "Levi Stubbs' Tears":

"Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong
Are here to make right everything that's wrong
Holland and Holland and Lamont Dozier too
Are here to make it all okay with you"

Here is a list of just SOME of the tunes this guy wrote or produced. Simply amazing....

1963: "Pride & Joy" - Marvin Gaye
1964: "Too Many Fish in the Sea" - The Marvelettes
1964: "He Was Really Sayin' Somethin'" - The Velvelettes
1964: "Girl (Why You Wanna Make Me Blue)" - The Temptations
1966: "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" - The Temptations
1966: "Beauty Is Only Skin Deep" - The Temptations
1966: "(I Know) I'm Losing You" - The Temptations
1967: "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" - Gladys Knight & the Pips, also recorded by Marvin Gaye and Creedence Clearwater Revival
1967: "You're My Everything" - The Temptations
1967: "I Wish It Would Rain" - The Temptations
1968: "I Could Never Love Another (After Loving You)" - The Temptations
1968: "The End of Our Road" - Gladys Knight & The Pips
1968: "Cloud Nine" - The Temptations
1968: "Ain't No Sun Since You've Been Gone" Diana Ross & The Supremes
1969: "Friendship Train" - Gladys Knight & the Pips
1969: "Runaway Child, Running Wild" - The Temptations
1969: "Too Busy Thinking About My Baby" - Marvin Gaye
1969: "I Can't Get Next to You" - The Temptations
1970: "Psychedelic Shack" - The Temptations
1970: "Ball of Confusion (That's What the World Is Today)" - The Temptations
1970: "War" - Edwin Starr
1971: "Smiling Faces Sometimes" - The Undisputed Truth, originally recorded by The Temptations
1971: "Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)" - The Temptations
1972: "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" - The Temptations
1976: "Car Wash" - Rose Royce

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