Inner City Blues (Makes Me Wanna Holler)

22 04 2009

This song’s a Marvin Gaye classic.  It’s the best Marvin Gaye song I’ve heard (I admit I haven’t heard every song in his catalog.)  The vocals get right to the agony and pain of the subject matter.  It’s very spiritual.  I’m not big on songs with a social message or with social commentary but “Inner City Blues” actually moves me.  It seems very timely in these hard economic times.

What can you say about the Funk Brothers?  [EDIT] Bob Babbitt’s simple but powerful bass line would carry the song if Marvin hadn’t.

I can’t seem to get this song out of my head.  I’m not sure why this song doesn’t get more recognition as one of the greatest songs of the last 40 years.  It’s that good.

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4 responses

27 05 2009
bluesmokeofparadise

Love Marvin. Great choice to represent him.

I think a lot of the stuff he had to turn out for Motown wasn’t entirely him, but this represents Marvin’s soul, imo.

Thanks for posting it. Tragic life and death, he deserves to be remembered.

28 05 2009
ourboy

Marvin was fantastic, a one-of-a-kind talent. Inner City Blues is probably my favorite of his many great songs.

14 07 2011
Speechrighter

Your tribute to James Jamerson is entirely appropriate — but you should be aware that Bob Babbitt played bass on Inner City Blues! I believe that was the only song Jamerson didn’t handle on What’s Going On.

19 07 2011
Sean

Speechrighter is correct about Bob Babbitt. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize that until a few months after I posted this. I knew Bob had done stuff with Marvin but I had not realized he was on this song until I saw a little documentary on him (Bob) some months back. Oops.

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