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Going to Motor City

November 27, 2022

This week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt from Jim Adams is Motown songs. I think this is a really rich prompt with a lot of great music from some iconic artists – both performers and songwriters – to choose from.

I was tempted to pick a song written by R. Dean Taylor because he was one of the few white writers/producers working for Motown, and also because he passed away this past January after year-long complications from COVID. Taylor worked with the kings of Motown (the “king” part might be disputed by Berry Gordy, Jr.), (Lamont)Holland-(Brian)Dozier-(Eddie)Holland, and he wrote or co-wrote or produced songs for Diana Ross & The Supremes, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Gladys Knight & the Pips and others. He’s most well-known for his Top 10 single, Indiana Wants Me.

The song I did choose is This Love Starved Heart of Mine (It’s Killing Me) written by Kay and Helen Lewis and performed by Marvin Gaye with a group of powerful back-up singers, strings, and a smoking hot rhythm section. The song was recorded in 1965 but not released until 1994’s compilation album, Love Starved Heart: Rare and Unreleased. Why it took 29 years for this song to be released is anyone’s guess, but AllMusic offers this explanation:

Love Starved Heart assembles 25 unreleased tracks recorded by Marvin Gaye between 1963 and 1971, Motown’s golden era. That it took three decades for these songs to see the light of day speaks far more to the intensity of the label’s assembly line production ethic than to the quality of the material itself — at their most pedestrian, these are fine performances simply lost in the shuffle… (read more)

This isn’t Marvin’s most well-known song, but I like it a lot.

(As a bonus song I included a video of The Doobie Brothers going Motown with the song, Take Me in Your Arms (Rock Me a Little While) written by Holland-Dozier-Holland and originally recorded in 1965 by Kim Weston)

This Love Starved Heart of Mine (It’s Killing Me)
Kay and Helen Lewis

Hee, ohh baby.

Life’s a nightmare and I can’t stand it
since you turned me lose.

And you know without your loving
my life has no use.

I know I made mistakes now baby,
thinking love would pull me through,
honey, honey, now my love starving heart is killing me,
darling, since I lost you.

Oh, oh ohh!

(Love starved heart of mine) Killing me
wanting you more than before.
(Love starved heart of mine) Killing me
don’t turn me from your door.

I guess you know I thrown my pride
right down in the dirt.

What else can I do now baby
won’t you come take away the hurt?

Honey, honey I got walls in my poor heart
can’t take it now that you’re gone.

Think I’m gonna cave right in now honey
the pain is much too strong. Ohh!

(Love starved heart of mine) Killing me,
I seen you deal better dimes.
(Love starved heart of mine) Killing me,
So have pity on this heart of mine.

Do… Ow! Go ahead
Do baby!
Oh!

Life’s a nightmare and I can’t stand it
since you turned me lose.

And you know without your loving
my life has no use.

I know I made mistakes now darlin’,
thinking love would pull me through
honey, honey, now my love starving heart is killing me,
honey, since I lost you.

Ohh!

(Love starved heart of mine) Killing me
Wanting you more than before
(Love starved heart of mine) Killing me
Don’t turn me from your door.

Love starved heart of mine, killing me
I seen you deal better dimes—

<Fade to end>

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. November 27, 2022 9:48 am

    It is great when a song this good is dug up from the archives. Yet another song where a woman is leaving Marvin, which he was good at getting this message across. Great choice Michael and that was a nice touch adding the Doobie song.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. November 27, 2022 11:49 am

    Great post 💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

  3. November 27, 2022 2:57 pm

    A terrific twofer! Thanks for sharing

    Liked by 2 people

  4. January 28, 2023 8:51 am

    nice

    Like

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