The song was not initially written for Gaye but his version remains the most acclaimed and popular
The Motown Soul classic “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” gives Marvin Gaye his first No.1 in 1968 on the Hot 100
Written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong for Motown Records in 1966, “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” was not initially thought for Marvin Gaye. The song was first recorded by The Miracles and released for the first time in 1967 by Gladys Knight & The Pips, but it was Gaye’s version that turned out to be the most memorable, enduring and definite of all. Marvin Gaye’s version was recorded in spring 1967, and is the second known recording, though it was rejected by Berry Gordy to be released as a single, and would also later go onto an album, “In the Groove” It wasn’t until the fall of 1968 that the single for the Marvin Gaye’s version was finally released after heavy demanding and airplay of the song. The song quickly reached No.1 in the U.S Hot 100 on December 14th, 1968 and it was Gaye’s first No.1 in the US. The Gaye recording has become an acclaimed soul classic. In 2004, it was placed at number 80 on Rolling Stone’s list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”, t was also inducted to the Grammy Hall of Fame for “historical, artistic and significant” value. It is to this day his signature song.
Watch Marvin Gaye performing “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” live in 1969
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