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American Idol: The Top 10 Sing The Sound Of Motown

March 26, 2009 04:00 PM by Paulene Hinds


Last night on American Idol , the contestants sang The Sound of Motown and according to Simon Fuller,creator, founder and executive producer of American Idol /19 Entertainment,the contestants have literally recorded their vocals over some of the most familiar instrumental tracks in history while recording their studio tracks.

“Everyone will recognize these instrumental tracks, and we’re very grateful to Motown for the unprecedented move of unlocking their vaults and allowing our American Idol finalists to record their vocals over these famous recordings and make them available exclusively on iTunes,” Simon Fuller said.

The 10 Motown hits performed by the American Idol finalists will be available for purchase and download exclusively on iTunes starting today.

“Motown has one of the greatest catalog of songs ever recorded,” says Simon Fuller. “It’s very exciting to be able to write a new chapter in Motown history by giving our contestants access to these original instrumental tracks.”

Check out the songs the contestants sang last night belowand also learn alittle bit of the history that goes along with each one.

The 10 songs that were performed on American Idollast nightwith Rickey Minor conducting the show’s live band were:

“How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You,” Kris Allen

Marvin Gaye’s original version of “How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You” became his biggest hit to date when it peaked at No. 6 in 1965. It was only his second visit to the top 10, after “Pride And Joy” was a No. 10 hit in 1963. In 1975, James Taylor covered “How Sweet It Is” and bested the Marvin Gaye recording by one notch, peaking at No. 5.
“Ooo Baby Baby,” Anoop Desai

Released in 1965 by the Smokey Robinson-led Miracles, “Ooo Baby Baby” became the group’s biggest hit in two years, peaking at No. 16. Twelve years later, the song was an even bigger hit when Linda Ronstadt changed the spelling to “Ooh Baby Baby” and took it to No. 7.

“Let’s Get It On,” Matt Giraud

Marvin Gaye’s biggest hit of the ’70s was “Let’s Get It On,” which was the second of his three No. 1 hits. The single spent three weeks in pole position in 1973.
“Get Ready,” Danny Gokey

Featuring the sweet vocals of Eddie Kendricks, “Get Ready” reached No. 29 for the Temptations in 1966. Despite its chart position, the song has remained a favorite ever since, and was the debut single and biggest hit for Motown’s rock ‘n’ roll group, Rare Earth. Their remake peaked at No. 4 in 1970.

“Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone,” Allison Iraheta

Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong wrote “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” and produced the original version for Motown’s The Undisputed Truth. But the song didn’t become a hit single until it was recorded by the Temptations in 1972. Their version went right to No. 1.

“For Once In My Life,” Megan Joy

Written by Ron Miller and Orlando Burden, “For Once In My Life” has become such an evergreen, recorded by so many artists, that many people don’t realize it was originally a Motown hit. Stevie Wonder’s single spent two weeks at No. 2 in 1968, making it his second-biggest hit to that date.

“The Tracks Of My Tears,” Adam Lambert

The follow-up to “Ooo Baby Baby” was another silky, soulful Smokey Robinson composition recorded by his group, the Miracles. “The Tracks Of My Tears” peaked in the same position as its predecessor, No. 16, in the same year, 1965. Two years later, Johnny Rivers had an even bigger hit with the song when his cover version went to No. 10. In 1976, “The Tracks Of My Tears” was a hit for the third time when Linda Ronstadt’s remake checked in at No. 25.

“You Can’t Hurry Love,” Scott MacIntyre

Diana Ross, Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard were No. 1 for the seventh time when the Supremes’ “You Can’t Hurry Love” topped the chart in 1966. The Holland-Dozier-Holland tune was a hit again in 1983 when Phil Collins’ energetic version climbed to No. 10.

“Ain’t Too Proud To Beg,” Michael Sarver

Motown was having a great year in 1966 with all of its core acts consistently hitting the top 20, and the Temptations were no exception. They had a No. 13 hit with “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg,” a song that was later a hit for the Rolling Stones (1974) and Rick Astley (1989).
“(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave,” Lil Rounds

One of the very first hits for the writing/producing team of Eddie Holland, Lamont Dozier and Brian Holland was Martha & the Vandellas’ “(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave,” the trio’s second chart single. The song was hot enough to peak at No. 4 and was a hit again when it soared to No. 5 in 1975 for Linda Ronstadt.

American Idol returns tonight at 9 PM ET for their live results show!

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Photos Courtesy: FOX

Topics: American Idol, FOX Reality TV Shows |

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