Marvin Gaye

Rock & Roll Hall of Famer

Category: Performer

Inducted in: 1987

Inducted by: Nick Ashford and Valerie Simpson

Nominated in: 1986   1987

First Eligible: 1986 Ceremony

Inducted into Rock Hall Revisited in 1989 (ranked #27) .

Essential Albums (?)WikipediaAmazon MP3Amazon CD
What's Going On (1971)
Let's Get It On (1973)
Here, My Dear (1978)

Essential Songs (?)WikipediaAmazon MP3YouTube
How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) (1965)
It Takes Two (1966)
Ain't No Mountain High Enough (1967)
I Heard It Through The Grapevine (1968)
Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing (1968)
Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology) (1971)
Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) (1971)
What's Going On (1971)
Let's Get It On (1973)
Got to Give it Up (1977)
Sexual Healing (1982)

Marvin Gaye @ Wikipedia

Marvin Gaye Videos


4 comments so far (post your own)

with him in here i don't see why we dont have any modern r&b artists.

Posted by xavier on Friday, 01.16.09 @ 02:49am

One of the most gifted and eduring singers that Motown ever launched into orbit was Marvin Gaye. He has made a huge contribution to soul music by redefining it not just as a creative force, but also as a call for social change. Marvin was a true Renaissance man in the world of soul because he was a fantasic singer, but also a song writer, producer, and a multi talented musican. Most importantly, Gaye possessed a powerful and soulful voice that was grit edged yet had sweetness to it. He was also a musical versionary who concevied songs as more then just personal feelings, whether it's his early show tunes, political issues, sexual songs or marriage. Marvin sang in differant styles from ballads to gritty soul. In every stage of his career, Gaye showed an air soulful authority driven by heartbroken vulnerability. He was a long hurting person who sought peace in music.

Born in Washington, D.C. on April, 2rd, 1939, Marvin Gaye Jr. began his singing career at age three in church and soon took up playing piano and drums which allowed him to escape from the abuse at home. When prefoming in Detroit, Gaye's tenor voice caught the ear of Berry Gorby Jr. who sighed him to his Motown label in 1961. First, Marvin was a drummer for Smokey Robinson and Mircales then a solo artist where he stuggled to find his voice until his fourth song, "Stubborn Kind Of Fellow" became a small hit in 1962 and in 1963, Marvin scored his frist Top Ten hit, "Pride And Joy" although he was often at odds with Motown. During this time, Gaye had his share of duets with singers like Mary Wells and Tammi Terrell with whom he scored several hits. In 1968, Marvin's greatest hit, "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" topped the charts. During this time, Marvin had to cope with a number of personal problems as his marriage was falling apart and the meterial that he was making for Motown was leaving out the political issues that were griping the nation and in 1970, he disappeared, reappearing the next year with an album that would be a landmark and would cause a dramatic shift in black music. "What's Going On" was a masterpiece and allowed Gaye to explore social and political problems ranging from poverty and drug abuse to the Vietnam War. While the album baffled Motown, it got on the Top Ten charts and conviced other soul singers like Stevie Wonder to take control of their music. Through the 70s and early 80s, Marvin held the top with albums like "Let's Get It On", "Lover Man" and "Midnight Love". Sadly like his idol, Sam Cooke, Marvin's life ended on April 1st when he and his father had an argument which resulted in Gaye dying from a gun shot.

With Marvin Gaye's death came a reevaluation of his work and meny have deemed "What's Going On" to be one of the finest albums in rock and roll history. Marvin's music and voice continued to inspire and influence white and black soul singers from Al Green to Lionel Richie and Hall And Oates.

Posted by Andrew on Sunday, 11.4.12 @ 01:37am

One of the most gifted and influential singers ever launched into orbit by the Motown hit factory, Marvin Gaye has made a large contribution to soul music and to the Motown sound especially and blazed a trail for the continued evolution of black music.

As one of soul music's Renaissance men, Marvin could do it all from songwriting to producing to session man. Most important, he possessed a classic R&B voice that had a gritty edge yet had sweetness to it.

A musical visionary, he saw albums as much more then just individual songs, whether it be political events, sexual politics or marriage. Moving from a lean R&B sound to stylish soul to finally arrive at an intensely personal of musical self-expression, Marvin's songs from "Can I Get A Witness?" to "Inner City Blues" not only redefined soul music as a creative force but also expanded its impact as a force for social change.

In the early days of Motown, he played drums and piano for the likes of groups such as The Miracles. Marvin also wrote or co-wrote for himself and other artists, including the sixties soul classic, "Dancing In The Street".

Gaye recorded songs in a variety of styles, from adult ballads to gritty soul. At each stage in his career, Marvin produced a soulful authority lead by passionate enthusiasm and heartbroken vulnerability.

He was a long suffering soul who sought peace in his music. David Ritz noted that Gaye's songs were prayers and strategies for survival.

In the early 1970s, Marvin moved beyond his earlier material to become one of Motown’s first autonomous artists. His artistic ability reached it's peak with 1971's "What's Going On", an ambitious concept album that drove deep into on such problems as The Vietnam War, poverty and environmental issues over a free flowing musical backdrop that drew from classical and jazz. Gaye referred to the album as a "gift from God" and the album's spiritual expressions showed themselves in his lyrics.

Besides establishing a new credibility for Motown in a more album oriented style, "What's Going On" produced three influential and potent songs that opened people's ears to the problems plaguing the black community and the U.S.

After this groundbreaking album, Gaye created more love and relationship oriented albums like the erotic "Let's Get It On" and a deconstruction of his failed marriage with "Here, My Dear". On April 1st, 1984, Marvin Gaye was shot by his father and died.

I've always seen Marvin Gaye as a troubled artist. Someone whose personal life was a nightmare but found comfort in his music. He is certainly one of the most political soul artists I've ever heard and his voice and sound can still be felt in the music of artists from Al Green and Daryl Hall & John Oates to Michael Jackson and Aica Keys.

Posted by Andrew on Wednesday, 02.5.14 @ 00:47am

2016 Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee!

Posted by Roy on Wednesday, 03.2.16 @ 20:55pm

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