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The Playlist Special: Top Artists Pick Their Personal Top 10

Smokey Robinson: Marvin Gaye

"Marvin was always late to sessions," recalls Robinson, Gaye's old friend. "But it didn't matter: You'd play a song once and he'd sing it like he wrote it."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Listen: Smokey Robinson's Top Marvin Gaye Songs

  • 1.
    "Let's Get It On" | Marvin Gaye, 1973

    So funky, so soulful. One of my favorite parts is the "aaah, baby!" he does up top.

  • 2.
    "Try It Baby" | Marvin Gaye, 1964

    I like the subject – you're with somebody when they got nothing, now they have everything and they're too good for you.

  • 3.
    "How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) - Album Version (Stereo)" | Marvin Gaye, 1964

    The melody is so unforgettable, even people who can't sing can sing it. Holland-Dozier-Holland were some of the greatest songwriters of all time.

  • 4.
    "Sexual Healing" | Marvin Gaye, 1982

    Marvin went to Belgium to dry out from drugs, and when I saw him later he'd started running and making music. What a comeback.

  • 5.
    "What's Going On" | Marvin Gaye, 1971

    I remember visiting Marvin at home when he was working on this LP. He was at the piano, saying, "Smoke, God is writing this album, he's sending me these songs."

  • 6.
    "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" | Marvin Gaye, 1968

    The Miracles were the first to record this, and Gladys Knight had a huge hit with it, but Marvin made it haunting from the first note.

  • 7.
    "You're All I Need To Get By" | Marvin Gaye, Tammi Terrell, 1968

    I heard this in a Motown meeting. Everybody raised their hand saying it was a smash hit.

  • 8.
    "That's The Way Love Is " | Marvin Gaye, 1969

    It's one of those songs where you could go anywhere in the world and people will sing along.

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