Various Artists

Summer of Motown

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Summer of Motown distills the vinyl box set of the same title down to a single, super CD, hitting many of the set's and the label's highlights along the way. The only notable omissions within are the Jackson Five, but you will find the Supremes, Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Marvin Gaye and many more.

Spanning the years from Barrett Strong's 1959 masterpiece "Money (That's What I Want)" to Teena Marie's 1979 R&B hit "I'm a Sucker for Your Love", Summer swoops through the archives and emerges victorious. And while the album is hit-laced, there are also a few rarities to be found, including Smokey Robinson & the Miracles' sweet, harmony drenched version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine and Marvin Gaye's storming "This Love Starved Heart of Mine (Is Killing Me)", which was finally released 22 years after its 1967 recording.

Far removed from the typical Motown compilations, Summer goes for the unexpected and the less frequently recycled, while still including enough big numbers to satiate pop fans. The sensational singers, the fabulous backings, the unforgettable melodies, they're all here, but for once, it's not the same old songs as on every other album you own.

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