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Marvin Gaye at the Copa
     

Marvin Gaye at the Copa

by Marvin Gaye
 
Generally regarded as an iconic nightclub in the history of New York City, the Copa represented that and more to Motown owner Berry Gordy. For Gordy, the Copa was one of many benchmarks indicating that his little experiment called Motown was successful, and having his artists there was the ultimate symbol of how far he had come. The Supremes<

Overview

Generally regarded as an iconic nightclub in the history of New York City, the Copa represented that and more to Motown owner Berry Gordy. For Gordy, the Copa was one of many benchmarks indicating that his little experiment called Motown was successful, and having his artists there was the ultimate symbol of how far he had come. The Supremes already had their shot at the Copa, and a live album was issued shortly thereafter. Next up was Gordy's rebellious but chart topping prodigy, Marvin Gaye. In many respects this was the ideal performance for Gaye, as many of the singers he grew to idolize shared the stage there at one point or another, with names like Sinatra and Cole. This was also Gaye's shot at branching out beyond the starched suit of formulaic (but highly successful and groundbreaking) songs that Gordy and Motown urged him to sing. In many instances, Gaye felt the material beneath him, and patiently waited for the day when he could croon his way to the top (a batch of unreleased recordings in this style would resurface in 1997's excellent Vulnerable compilation). The performances came and went, and everything was in place to release the results. However, this never came to pass (according to the outstanding liner notes, it was largely attributed to the tumultuous relationship between Gaye and Gordy; they had an ongoing feud that continued in one variation or another until the end of Gaye's life) and the project was ultimately shelved. Fast forward to 2005, and the folks at Motown Select had the good sense to remaster and release these recordings in a limited pressing. Marvin Gaye at the Copa is a survey of Gaye's finest performances during that two-night stint and the results are nothing short of striking. A balance of standards, ballads and Motown favorites in medley form comprise the 17 tracks on the disc, and with every performance Gaye's velvet-smooth delivery is more than evident; it's addicting. His longing to be out from under the contrived entertainment and choreography -- the juggernaut of the Motown formula -- bleeds through on tracks such as "The Shadow of Your Smile," "Strangers in the Night," and "The Song Is You." And if anything, the release of these tracks not only serve as a kind of vindication -- Gaye could not only capably sing in this fashion, he could do it better than Gordy would ever allow him credit for. It's somewhat liberating to have this collection readily available, but also somewhat sad that his career and his dreams never fully came to fruition. Of all Gaye's previously issued live works, this ranks with the best of them. For fans of Gaye's early years, this is musical manna from heaven.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/13/2006
Label:
Hip-O Select
UPC:
0602498643303
catalogNumber:
000362902

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Marvin Gaye   Primary Artist
Maurice King   Conductor

Technical Credits

Steve Allen   Composer
Hoagy Carmichael   Composer
Marvin Gaye   Composer
Smokey Robinson   Composer
Bert Kaempfert   Composer
Harold Rome   Composer
Jerome Kern   Composer
Leslie Bricusse   Composer
Betty Comden   Composer
Henry Cosby   Composer
Lamont Dozier   Composer
Ben Edmonds   Liner Notes
Norman Gimbel   Composer
Berry Gordy   Composer
George Gordy   Composer
Adolph Green   Composer
Juan Luis Guerra   Composer
Oscar Hammerstein   Composer
Eddie Holland   Composer
Brian Holland   Composer
Johnny Mandel   Composer
Warren "Pete" Moore   Composer
Anthony Newley   Composer
Cole Porter   Composer
William "Mickey" Stevenson   Composer
Charles Strouse   Composer
Jule Styne   Composer
Paul Francis Webster   Composer
Harry Weinger   Producer
Norman Whitfield   Composer
Stuart Gorrell   Composer
Bobby Rogers   Composer
Don Ovens   Author
Vartan   Art Direction
Eddie Snyder   Composer
Marvin Tarplin   Composer
Pat Lawrence   Executive Producer
Ryan Null   Photo Coordination

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