James Corden is always up for a good argument about music and this time the late night host has tapped Smokey Robinson for a debate over classic soul versus modern soul. Robinson appeared on The Late Late Show to promote new documentary Hitsville: The Making of Motown, prompting Corden to contend that he prefers the soulful hits of 2019.
“I’m talking like Usher, Bruno Mars, Alicia Keys, Lauryn Hill,” Corden notes. “I feel like new songs have better sound.”
The host is interrupted by Robinson, who takes Corden to task. “I heard you been telling people that modern soul music is better than classic soul music,” Robinson says. “Well, you know, classic soul music is my thing, man.” He adds, “How about we settle this right here, right now?”
Back by The Filharmonic, Robinson and Corden takes turns attempting to prove their music is best, with Robinson performing his own track “Cruisin” and The Temptations’ classic “Get Ready.” Corden counters with Bruno Mars “Finesse” and Lizzo’s “Juice.” Finally, the duo come together in agreement on a rendition of “My Girl.”
Hitsville: The Making of Motown, which will premiere August 24th on Showtime, recounts the story of Motown Records. It features Robinson, as well as Berry Gordy, Dr. Dre and John Legend, and was directed by Benjamin and Gabe Turner. The documentary will have an accompanying official soundtrack, which will feature music from the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Robinson, Marvin Gaye, the Temptations, Martha and the Vandellas and the Jackson 5. The record is available to pre-order as a 16-track and 35-track set.