Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Norman Whitfield

Love Don’t Live Here Anymore

First recorded by Rose Royce (US #32/R&B #5/UK #2/IRE #7/NZ #2 1978).
Also recorded by Madonna (1984).
Other hit versions by Jimmy Nail (UK #3 1985), Madonna (US #78/MOR #29/DANCE #16/CAN #24/POL #9 1996).

From the wiki: “”Love Don’t Live Here Anymore” is a song written by Miles Gregory and originally recorded by Rose Royce. It was produced by former Motown songwriter and producer Norman Whitfield (‘I Heard It Through the Grapevine‘,’War‘,’Smiling Faces Sometimes‘) for Whitfield Records. Lead vocals were sung by Gwen Dickey and the song was released as the second single from Rose Royce’s third studio album Strikes Again.

“The song was developed as a result of producer Whitfield’s interest to work with Paul Buckmaster, the British arranger and composer. Together they asked songwriter Miles Gregory to write a song for them. Gregory’s undergoing medical care for his deteriorating physical health became the inspiration behind the song. ‘Love Don’t Live Here Anymore’ was one of the first recordings to make effective use of an electronic drum machine (most likely the Roland CR-78, released in 1977).

Wherever I Lay My Hat (That’s My Home)

Originally recorded by Marvin Gaye (1963).
Hit version by Paul Young (US #70/UK #1 1983).

From the wiki: “‘Wherever I Lay My Hat (That’s My Home)’ is a song written by Marvin Gaye, Barrett Strong and Norman Whitfield, and first recorded by Gaye in 1962 as an album track on That Stubborn Kinda Fellow. Years later, Paul Young’s version of the song was a UK #1 single for three weeks in July 1983. The song fared less well on the Billboard Hot 100, where it peaked at #70, but was later used in the 1986 film Ruthless People and its accompanying soundtrack album.”

War

First recorded by The Temptations (1969, released 1970).
Hit version by Edwin Starr (US #1/UK #3/CAN #1/GER #9 1970).

From the wiki: “‘War’ is a counterculture era soul song written by the songwriting team of Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong (‘Smiling Faces Sometimes‘, ‘I Heard It Through the Grapevine‘, ‘Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone‘), and produced by Whitfield, for the Motown label in 1969. Whitfield first produced the song – a blatant anti-Vietnam War protest – with The Temptations as the original vocalists. Whitfield re-recorded the song with Edwin Starr as the vocalist, with the label deciding to withhold The Temptations’ version from single release so as not to alienate their more conservative fans.

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