"NIGHTRAIN" SPEAKS ON:

Smokey Robinson and the Miracles
Updated 3/8/2013





- ------------------------------------
"FORK IN THE ROAD"
Smokey Robinson and the Miracles
by:
* Smokey Robinson
* Pete Moore
* Ronnie White

- -------------------------------------


Seems like love should be easier to bear,
But it's such a heavy load.
Worldwide travels, you ain't been nowhere,
'Till you've traveled down love's road.
Although I may be just a stranger,
Lovers, let me warn you there's a danger
Of a fork in love's road.
Beware,
The danger's there..ooooh.

One way is for those who go alone.
That way tempts the fool like me.
But lovers, don't try to make it on your own,
You don't want this misery.
Oh, I did not see the sign,
OOO, before I left my love behind,
At the fork in love's road
Beware,
The danger's there..oooh.

If there is something that you don't see eye to eye,
You better think before you tell your love goodbye,

'Cause your paths may never cross again,
Oooo, make sure you take the same bend,
At the fork in love's road,
Beware,
The danger's there,
If you really care,
Oh, oh, oh...beware...

--William "Smokey" Robinson


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NIGHTRAIN REVIEWS THE SONG "FORK IN THE ROAD"
by: Smokey Robinson and the Miracles

- -------------------------------------

I have always loved "FORK IN THE ROAD" as well
(just in case yall couldn't guess....lol)

But just wait till you hear this LIVE version that just came out!!!

It's badd
and Smokey is CLEARLY at the...
"TOP OF HIS GAME"

(and OH MY, what a "game" that is, isn't it?)

It's a "game", that clearly...
SMOKEY ROBINSON IS the MASTER OF...
(isn't it?)

The song starts out with those same, VERY SOFT ever present SOLO guitar tones of Marv Tarplin.
Then Smokey starts going into his damn...

***ZONE***


"SEEMS LIKE LOVE SHOULD BE EASIER..."

and then you hear some woman from the audience start...
***SCREAMING OUT HER MIND***

apparently she has fainted, because the SCREAMING stops.....lol
(perhaps she has been ecorted out of the Roostertail, by local medical personel?)

This is simply a MAJESTIC SONG that I can't figure out why I am writing about so much, because the simplicity of it's message and the BRILLIANCE of the musicians and singers allow it to speak for itself.

I dunno if it's the baddest slow jam of ALL TIME?
Maybe I should just leave the answers to questions like that in the hands of "rock critics"?
After all THEY are better qualified to discuss the music of Smokey Robinson and make judgements on his "genuis" than I am?

(but it's gotta be close)


 

 


    SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES ON THE CLASSIC SOUL SITE
    (The Super Badd Azz Mo Fo Smokey Robinson and the Miracles website)


    SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES ON THE CLASSIC SOUL SITE

  • NIGHTRAIN'S SMOKEY MEMORIES
  • "NIGHTRAIN SINGS SMOKEY "
  • "BABY BABY DON'T CRY" - A TRUE STORY
  • NIGHTRAIN'S SMOKEY DISCOGRAPHY
  • WHEN SMOKEY SINGS - A TRIBUTE TO SMOKEY
  • HISTORICAL ANALYSIS - Going to the Outer Limits With the Songs of Smokey Robinson
  • DVD REVIEW: Smokey Robinson & The Miracles (Definitive Performances 1963 - 1987)


    RIP Bobby Rogers of the Miracles: Services Info + Soul-Patrol Audio Tribute

    RIP Bobby Rogers of the Miracles: Services Info + Soul-Patrol Tribute 1. Here are the dates/times
    Sunday March 10th 2013 9:00am - 9:00pm
    Monday March 11th 2013 11:00am

    Oh you need more? Well here is something pro-active that all of you Miracles fans can do.

    Go to the following link at the site of the Funeral Home:
    http://jameshcolefh.frontrunnerpro.com/runtime/86628/runtime.php?SiteId=86628&NavigatorId=313914&op=moreinfo&viewOpt=dpaneOnly&ItemId=1513944&LinkId=220

    There you can not only obtain the rest of the details such as the venue/location of the viewing & services, but you can also:

    -Light an online "virtual candle"
    -Leave a message to Bobby/Family
    -Leave a condolences
    -View a photo slide show
    -Read shared stories
    -View shared photos
    -You can share the site on Facebook
    -And more

    In other words, they built kind of a "mega site" dedicated to the memory of Bobby Rogers!!! (big ups to whomever put this together!!!)

    I would encourage all of you to go here & not only leave a message, but also share this resource with anyone out there who is a Miracles fan. And for the few of yall out there who aren't Miracles fans, just go there anyhow (you might get converted)

    http://jameshcolefh.frontrunnerpro.com/runtime/86628/runtime.php?SiteId=86628&NavigatorId=313914&op=moreinfo&viewOpt=dpaneOnly&ItemId=1513944&LinkId=220

    2. Just got a call from our friend Nightrain from his jail cell. (Collect of course.....lol)

    Quite naturally he was in tears over the passing of Bobby Rogers. After all "Nightrain" is the creator of the
    SuperBaddAzzSmokeyRobinson&theMiraclesWebPage:
    http://www.soul-patrol.com/soul/smokey.htm

    During the course of the conversation he reminded me of his 2002 Soul-Patrol.Net Radio broadcast called; "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 360 Degrees of Love." http://www.soul-patrol.net/going.ram

    And he reminded me that the broadcast was:
    INTRODUCED BY THE LATE BOBBY ROGERS
    http://www.soul-patrol.net/going.ram

    And he asked me to post the broadcast and let it play in the blackround of the main page at www.soul-patrol.com (which I just did)

    SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES: "GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO"- the choice cuts and the previously unheard gems from the vaults of Motown which are included on the GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO, CD reissue, we are going to present the material as a 4 part concept album that I'll call "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 360 degrees of love".

    INTRODUCED BY THE LATE BOBBY ROGERS http://www.soul-patrol.net/going.ram

    (Requires RealAudio player, download free at www.real.com)

    When I asked "Nightrain" how he found out about Bobby Rogers passing, he told me the following: "They let us have Facebook here in the joint..."

    --Bob Davis
    609-351-0154
    earthjuice@prodigy.net

    Co-Founder www.soul-patrol.com


    Analysis: Going to the Outer Limits With Smokey Robinson and the Miracles

    Analysis: Going to the Outer Limits With Smokey Robinson and the Miracles Obviously given the passing of Bobby Rogers, I have been spending quite a bit of time thinking about the Miracles & their ongoing legacy this week. I know it may sound strange to some of you, but given that my desire to write about the Miracles was one of the 3 main reasons why I started the Soul-Patrol.com site in the first place :)

    (Along with Miles Davis & Jimi Hendrix)

    Call it my very own "sick little obsession."

    I came across this piece I wrote a few years ago that provides a little insight into what I have been thinking about this week.

    It's called; Going to the Outer Limits With Smokey Robinson

    Enjoy...
    -----------------

    Please bear with me...
    I ask your forgiveness, but I'm just trying to work out a few ideas to help me get to where I need to go, because I have a very specific task that I have to accomplish, that involves me laying out a few ideas and placing a context around things...

    (although it might not appear to be so, I am actually trying to get to a very specific thing, it's not just "random conversation about Smokey Robinson")

    I've been actually trying to work all of this out in my mind for many years and you can see some of my earlier attempts when the site first began on the following web pages:

    http://www.soul-patrol.com/soul/nt_smokey.htm

    http://www.soul-patrol.com/soul/smokey1.htm

    http://www.soul-patrol.com/soul/baby.htm

    Those three web pages are actually incomplete, and left incomplete on purpose. Those 3 pages are very "raw" and they are the result of a "stream of conciousness" which occurred at around 3am one night, with the 3 disc Smokey Robinson and the Miracles "Anthology" blasting in my headphones, back in 1998 when I first decided to actually put something about the Miracles on the web....lol

    Since that time I have pretty much left Smokey Robinson alone, in terms of doing anything beyond something superficial.

    And now I return to one of my very favorite topics...

    Smokey Robinson is truly a unique artist in my eyes.
    I first became a fan of his music when I was about 10 years old (1967).

    As I have stated many times, the foundation of the Soul-Patrol website is built upon the music & ideas of three artists:

    - Miles Davis
    - Jimi Hendrix
    - Smokey Robinson & the Miracles

    Those three are not arbitrary.
    There is a specific reason for each of the three.

    Smokey Robinson's music has had a big influence on my life. The songs he has written are something that I have analyzed to death, over and over again, every which way from Sunday. Just ask anyone who knows me....lol

    And because he is BOTH the "singer" and the "songwritter", the songs are executed EXACTLY as he wants them to be.

    The songs themselves are majestic 3 minute parables.
    But that's only part of the story.

    And understanding the rest of the story means that I had to seek out both the "horizontal" as well as the "vertical".

    Like most artists, Smokey Robinson's music is usually presented as a "vertical thing".

    - a song
    - an album
    - an isolated performance
    - a chart position
    - etc.

    Usually viewed as a singular thing in a vacuum, out of context and therefore outside of the realm of true focus & clarity. Therefore the true value of his artistic contribution is totally misunderstood, even by people who think he is a great artist.

    --Even Bob Dylan's famous quote about Smokey is insufficent. Don't simply think of Smokey as a mere "poet". Think of him as a writter/storyteller on the same level as someone like James Joyce. (remember how surprised you were the first time you read "Ulysees" and found that when you reached the end of the book, that you were right back at the beginning?)

    --You see it's the music of Smokey Robinson that taught me to look at things in life in a "horizontal fashion" in addition to looking at life in a "vertical fashion".

    --That's because all of his songs are connected to each other, not only across albums, but even across decades. There are also no clear answers in his songs. Life is a complex thing. The questions are easy. The answers are elusive.

    --In short if you take a close look at the songs of Smokey Robinson, he is actually telling a huge story (a novel if you will) about not only love, but life itself.

    --He's laying out the "rules of engagement for life", via the vignettes that comprise the individual songs. Taken individually there are many great songs by Smokey Robinson that we have heard presented to us. However we have never actually seen the complete story laid out for us. In other words the songs of Smokey Robinson actually provide a complete tapestry.

    But that complete & complex story is there.
    Here is a small example...


    Starting with "Bad Girl" ("She wasn't a BAD girl at first....so GOOD at the start now we must part ...oh yes she's BAD....bad girl cuz she's BREAKING MY HEART...)in 1957. Threading it's way thru "You Really Got a Hold On Me" (I don't like you, but I love you") & "Shop Around" ("Before you ask some girl for her hand you betta shop around for as long as you can") in the early 60's. To the late 60's with "The Love I Saw In You was Just a Mirage" ("The promise of LOVE was written on your face. You led me on with UNTRUE kisses. ..You held me CAPTIVE with your FALSE embrace. ....Quicker than I could bat an eye you were tellin me GOODBYE..."). Right to "Quiet Storm".

    --All of these songs are connected "horizontally", and in my opinion when taken together Smokey is saying something that is quite dark & sinister about the way some females sometimes behave!!!

    --I have no idea if he is talking about the same woman or multiple women thru this entire sequence? I have no idea if he is talking about his own relationships or those of other people he knows?

    --We never really find out, because in the songs he never really tells us what his own involvement may or may not be. In the end, that part of it isn't really important, because if it were, then he would have told us.

    What is important is his horizontal thought process.
    He is delivering a consistent message [even if you disagree with him] that spans decades and he did it within the context of a music industry that only places importance on "vertical thinking" (ex: a single hit record). It's actually easy to see when you "connect the dots" between the songs.

    This is only an example of one of these "horizontal threads" that connect the seemingly unconnected songs of Smokey Robinson together. There are in fact many more. Most are not as "dark & sinister" as the "Bad Girl" thread, but they are there.

    And on a personal level once I understood this thought process, it changed my life forever...

    There is a kind of genius at work here that is comparable to the 1950 - 1951 CCNY Basketball team, which to this day is STILL the ONLY college basketball team to ever win BOTH the NIT & NCAA Championship in the same season. Not only did they will all of their games in BOTH tournaments, but they also covered the "point spread" because every single player had taken a "dive" with gamblers. And like the 1950 - 1951 CCNY Basketball team, the totality of Smokey Robinson's accomplishment on BOTH the "horizontal & vertical tip" is actually difficult to comprehend anyone else duplicating!!!

    Once I came to that realization about what Smokey was actually doing, not only did I begin to understand the magnificence of it all, but I also learned that it was important to "connect the dots" together across multiple ideas/concepts in order to gain understanding of people and situations.

    And to this day it remains exactly how I think about the world, as a huge and complex matrix of ideas, people, places, events, etc.

    In other words, the shortest distance between two points is rarely a "straight line". Instead it's really a "complex matrix (or web)" if interconnected "things" that on the surface seem to be disconnected.

    People have asked me why I have never interviewed Smokey Robinson, given the overall importance of his music to the development of the Soul-Patrol.com website. Cuz this topic is what I would want to talk about with him and to discuss it with him in excruciating detail. And I'm afraid that he wouldn't give me enough time to answer my questions....lol

    - Maybe when he left the Miracles, he thought that he had completed the entire story?

    - Maybe he came back as a solo artist because, he realized that he had more to tell.

    - Maybe the reason why his albums have been so inconsistant for the past 20 years or so, is because he doesn't know how to complete the entire story?

    - Maybe he will tie it all together for us at some point?

    - Maybe he won't?

    - etc.

    And of course I would want to write it all down.
    All of the questions. All of the answers.

    Cuz nobody has ever written down the "the horizontal view" on Smokey. Only the vertical. Perhaps in the end, the "the horizontal view" on Smokey, isn't supposed to be written about. Perhaps it is something that is only learned via the discovery process.

    These songs are all very personal to me, because more than anything else, they have given me a framework for thinking. And that is something that you can never thank a person enough for!

    Just like the old TV show called the "Outer Limits" said...

    "Do not adjust the vertical"
    "Do not adjust the horizontal"
    "We are in control..."

    --Bob Davis
    609-351-0154
    earthjuice@prodigy.net

    Co-Founder www.soul-patrol.com


    MORE CORRUPTION: HOLLYWOOD WALK OF FAME F@CKS OVER MOTOWN 50 (& THIS TIME IT'S THE MIRACLES)

    MORE CORRUPTION: HOLLYWOOD WALK OF FAME F@CKS OVER MOTOWN 50 (& THIS TIME IT'S THE MIRACLES) Normally I could care less about this insult. I mean who really cares about something so trivial, when the country is faced with such enormous problems. However there is a whole lotta CORRUPTION at the heart of a whole lotta this "award giving business" and we certainly haven't been shy over the years in discussion it.

    THIS IS FLAT OUT WRONG!!!!

    However in this case I do care, simply because as I have stated many times over:

    THE MIRACLES ARE ONE OF THREE CORE ARTISTS THAT ARE AT THE CORE OF THE SOUL-PATROL.COM WEBSITE. (the other two are of course Miles Davis & Jimi Hendrix)

    This systematic EXCLUSION of BILLY GRIFFIN and MARV TARPLIN from the legacy of the MIRACLES is nothing short of an attempt to RE-WRITE & DISTORT BLACK HISTORY (probably for someone's financial gain).

    2009 sure is a glorious time, for a whole lot of reasons:

    1. The mood of optimism sweeping the country in anticipation of the presidency of Barrack Obama. Even the "evil people" like Pat Buchanan & Newt Gingrich are genuinely excited.

    2. The year long celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Motown Records, ("the sound of young america")

    What could be nicer and more positive the convergence of these two American institutions? Then I get these two announcements.....

    ---------------------
    First this one
    ---------------------

    THE HOLLYWOOD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE WALK OF FAME COMMITTEE ANNOUNCES

    NEW WALK OF FAME RECIPIENTS FOR 2009

    HOLLYWOOD, CA.-A new group of entertainers in motion pictures, television, live theater, and recording have been selected to receive stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, it was announced today by the Walk of Fame Committee of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. These individuals were chosen from among hundreds of nominations to the committee at a meeting held June 12, and ratified by the Chamber's Board of Directors.

    The Walk of Fame recipients for the year 2009 are:

    MOTION PICTURES: Tinkerbell, Tim Burton, Leslie Caron, Cameron Diaz, Robert Downey, Jr., Charles Durning, Ralph Fiennes, Hugh Jackman, Sir Ben Kingsley and William H. Macy

    TELEVISION: Mark Burnett, Felicity Huffman, Chuck Lorre, William Petersen, Kyra Sedgwick, and John Stamos

    RECORDING: Kenny "Baby Face" Edmonds, Dave Koz, The Miracles, Doug Morris, RUSH, Shakira and The Village People

    RADIO: Bill Handel and Harry Shearer

    "After much deliberation, the Walk of Fame committee has selected 25 of our greatest talents! Fans and tourists from all over the world will enjoy seeing their favorite personalities receive this prestigious honor. There was a significant increase of applications received this year and so many deserving celebrities. Our committee worked diligently to select those stars which would appeal to the masses" stated Earl Lestz, Chairman of the Hollywood Walk of Fame Committee.

    ---------------------
    Then this one
    ---------------------

    FROM THE MAA

    Smokey Robinson has his own star, and now his cohorts (Bobby Rogers, Claudette Robinson, Pete Moore, and Ron White [deceased]) will have their star also. We are very proud of the fact that we were instrumental in getting this group something that is long over due.

    ----------------------------

    Normally I could care less about this insult. I mean who really cares about something so trivial, when the country is faced with such enormous problems. However in this case I do care, simply because as I have stated many times over:

    THE MIRACLES ARE ONE OF THREE CORE ARTISTS THAT ARE AT THE CORE
    OF THE SOUL-PATROL.COM WEBSITE (the other two are of course Miles Davis & Jimi Hendrix)

    SOUL-PATROL'S OFFICIAL POSITION IS THAT WE ARE OPPOSED TO THIS.

    THIS ISN'T MY OPINION, THIS HAS BEEN DOCUMENTED
    --IT'S BEEN DOCUMENTED BY MOTOWN
    --IT'S BEEN DOCUMENTED BY SMOKEY ROBINSON

    ALL ONE NEED DO IS LISTEN TO THE ALBUM
    "Smokey Robinson & the Miracles 1957-1973": http://www.soul-patrol.net/mir_live.ram

    And you will hear Smokey Robinson talking about BILLY GRIFFIN and MARV TARPLIN and their respective roles in the Miracles. One would think that the documentation would speak for itself? But apparently that is NOT THE CASE

    CLEARLY BILLY GRIFFIN and MARV TARPLIN DESERVE TO BE HONORED AS MEMBERS OF THE MIRACLES & HISTORY SAYS SO

    --Billy Griffin was the lead singer on the Miracles biggest hit song.
    --Marv Tarplin performed on ALL of their hits and co-wrote many of them


    This systematic EXCLUSION of BILLY GRIFFIN and MARV TARPLIN from the legacy of the MIRACLES is nothing short of an attempt to RE-WRITE & DISTORT BLACK HISTORY (probably for someone's illicit financial gain).

    SOUL-PATROL'S OFFICIAL POSITION IS THAT WE ARE OPPOSED TO THIS.

    Stay tuned...



    Interview: Marv Tarplin (Miracles Guitarist)

    Interview: Marv Tarplin (Miracles Guitarist) I received a call last April from Sylvia Tarplin. She said, "Zee I'm doing a 3 way with Marv". "Hey Marv, when are you going to do an interview for Soul-Patrol", I asked. Marv was not interested in this conversation at all. I told him how everyone wanted to hear his story, but we could not persuade him to do an interview. I do know that Marv is shy like that. ..No microphones in his face … that's for Smokey.

    I think it has something to do with losing a loved one and granting their wishes somehow, so after Sylvia's funeral on September 24, 2004 Marv began to tell me his story.

    At an early age Marv had a musical gift. He already played by ear. His mother enrolled him in music school to learn piano. Marv played the piano six months before he started playing the Guitar. I must add that I knew Marv's mother Ruby Tarplin. She used to have us over for the best soul food dinners ever. Marv lost her a few years ago.

    Some of the most famous clubs were located in Detroit on Canfield & John R. Among them were The Flame Showbar, The Frolic and Garfield Lounge.

    One day as Marv was walking with his guitar down John R near Canfield in Detroit, 3 girls began yelling to him out of an apartment window. It scared him at first and He didn't know if he should run or what. After seeing that it was Diana, Florence and Mary he decided to go up to see what they wanted. He used to go to Northeastern with Mary and Flo. They wanted him to be the guitarists for their group, The Primettes. He accepted and they began rehearsing.

    They did amateur and talent shows at schools around Detroit and the Greystone Ballroom. Diana knew Smokey, so she had the hook up for them to go over to Smokeys house so he could listen to them and help them get their big break. Smokey liked them but he seemed to like Marv more and asked Marv if he would play with his group, The Miracles, for a few years. Although Marv agreed, he still continued to play for the Primettes. Diana Ross usually tells the story differently. I've heard her say that Smokey took Marv from them.

    This Marv Tarplin, Smokey Robinson blend was really unique. They along with Warren "Pete" Moore collaborated and wrote some of the most famous songs ever. Marv, the melodies and Smokey and Pete Moore, the lyrics. "Tracks of my Tears," is listed as one of the 5 best songs ever. Other songs they collaborated on were, "Crusin", "Going To A Go Go", "The Love I Saw In You was Just a Mirage", "Aint That Peculiar", "You Really Got A Hold On Me" and my favorite "Baby Come Close". . Turn The Lights Down Low, Baby Come Close…Put your hands in mine, Oh please be kind, Let me Touch Your Heart, Let The Fire Start Ooooo so Warm, So Warm…..

    Marv played guitar along with The Funk Brothers on "You Really Got A Hold On Me" . Eddie Willis of the Funk Brothers was cording on the backbeat against Marvs simple but eloquent melodic melodies. I did a little research and found that Smokey was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1987 as a solo artist, even though he made his most famous hits with The Miracles.

    Marv Tarplin has continued to play with Smokey until this day. Even after Smokey left The Miracles in 1972 and went solo. Marv is listed in the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time. Marv's daughter Talease and wife Sylvia attended the 2003 Soul Patrol Convention. Thanks Marv.. RIP Sylvia I'll always love you, my dear and best friend.

    --Zielove

    CD Review: Billy Griffin - "Like Water"



    Billy

    When it comes to Billy Griffin, I am extremely biased (so I may as well tell you that up front). In my opinion, he is one of the most underrated and under recognized artists in the history of Soul music.


    Here are some of the facts that you need to know about Billy Griffin:

    Motown

    "Don't Let It End ('Til You Let It Begin)" (1973) R&B: #26 US: #56
    "Give Me Just Another Day" (1973) R&B: #47 US: #111
    "Do It Baby" (1974) R&B: #4 US: #13
    "Don't Cha Love It" (1974) R&B: #4 US: #78
    "Gemini" (1975) R&B: #43 US: #101
    "Love Machine - Pt. I" (1975) R&B: #5 US: #1 UK: #3
    "Night Life" (1976) R&B: #60

    Columbia

    "Spy for Brotherhood" (1977) R&B: #37 US: #104
    "I Can Touch the Sky" (1977)
    "Mean Machine" (1978) R&B: #55


    How many other artists do you know of who sang lead on ten charting hits that get as little respect as...

    "Mr. oh I can't remember his name but he is the guy who took smokey robinson's place"...(click here to read the rest of the review....)


    Concert Review: SMOKEY ROBINSON @ VAN WEZEL in SARASOTA,FL
    (All I can say is DAAAAMMMMMNNNN!!!!)

    Click Here to get more info about Concert Review: SMOKEY ROBINSON @ VAN WEZEL in SARASOTA,FL SMOKEY was in town!!! Fortunately I had the night off and got to attend. I went as a "reviewer" for Soul-Patrol and not as a fan. That didn't take long to change.

    So often we go to shows with a certain level of anticipation and expectation. Hey....it's SMOKEY. With all the hits and the history, it's going to be a good show. WRONG!!!! This was a GREAT show. He came out "clean". Gold glitter suit walking out to the vamp leading into "Going to a Go Go". Even had some cute little "honeys" in "Go-Go" outfits, dancing as was done "back in the day".

    Great opening, the band was smooth and tight; grove was happening, as expected. "I Second That Emotion" was next and again, happening. Groove on, and Smokey was sounding better than I remembered him a few years ago here. He got the audience involved with "You Really Got a Hold on Me". The "room" was in! NOW!!! It was as though he decided get to laying some "Smokey" down.

    He had the "honeys" come back out and do a little dancing along side of him while he delivered "Quiet Storm". You get the feeling now of a production stage show as the girls did their routine as Smokey crooned. This is where I began to notice not only was he sounding cleaner than I'd ever heard him, but he was more vocally athletic than I'd ever heard him. I was beginning to get really amazed, and THEN........with a similar intro to the Linda Ronstandt arrangement, he went into "OOO Baby, Baby". All I can say is DAAAAMMMMMNNNN!!!! He absolutely milked it. At this point, it became a bit more difficult to watch this show as a "reviewer" and not as a fan. I have heard many live versions of Smokey sing this classic, but this was unbelievable. MILKED IT, y'all!!!
    Beyond "Basement Blue Light Party". It came off so well, even 'he' said, "We should have done that FIRST"!!!

    He did a little monologue; talking about Motown and a medley of some songs he wrote for The Temptations, bringing the tempo back up a notch, and of course, concluding with "My Girl". Then, with a brief story about Stevie Wonder with an imitation and hit "Tears of a Clown". The crowd is rolling! I can see on the house monitors that they were on board big time. They lowered the lights, rolled down a projection screen and played a video introducing his "Timeless Love" album from last year. Smokey returned to the stage with a "Combo" now on stage him in a white Tux Dinner Jacket, easing out on the stage to "Fly Me To The Moon". This was VEGAS!!! He even threw in some Spanish Lyrics on "Night and Day". At the end of this particular segment I even told Smokey's Road Manager that this show belongs in Vegas on a regular basis. Smokey did another
    "Ease", and returned in a Black satin outfit with "glitters" and opened the final segment with "Being with you" (threw a little Spanish in that one too).

    At this point he did a medley of some of his compositions. I was pleased that he included "More Love" in the medley (that's "MY" favorite and would have been VERY disappointed if he didn't do at least a piece of it). But the "OH No he's NOT!!" was the opener of the segue, "Who's Loving You". This I didn't expect and again...DAAAAAMMMMMNNN!!!! TOW IT UP!!!!

    "Just to see her" followed. Some of the stage crew bought into his "walk off" as though it was the end of the show. I said, "He can't get out of this building without doing "The Tracks Of My Tears" and "Cruisin' ". Show nuff, with a deserving spotlight and intro of the great Marv Tarplin playing the Intro, he did "Tears" and closed with a audience participation "Cruising' ".

    Here's the deal! If you hear Smokey is coming to your town....and you DON'T
    go......consider that you have missed something!!! At the risk of stating the obvious...not only is this man a Legend...not only will you hear the sound track of the 60's,along with his most recent project of "Timeless Love", but you will have missed the opportunity to examine Greatness!!!! I walked out of this show with the same feeling I had after seeing Johnny Mathis. I just witnessed....GREATNESS!!!!

    According to his road manager, they will be touring. DON'T MISS THIS!!! You WILL be sorry if you do. That is if you would like to get a look at what Greatness looks and sounds like.

    --Earl Gregory




    **INTERVIEW - Claudette Robinson


    Claudette Robinson and Nightrain I finally got to meet Claudette Robinson of the Miracles, and she couldn't have been nicer to me (yes that is a picture of Claudette and I....lol). This is someone I have had a crush on since I was about 13 years old, and meeting her in person was truly exciting for me!!! I talked with her for quite a while. And as I talked with her, I knew that there was simply no way that I would be able to focus enough in order to sit down and do a taped interview with her, I was simply too "goo goo eyed"....lol

    She is today (at whatever her age is) simply stunning.

    And more importantly as you will hear in the interview she did with Kevin Amos, shes one of the most articulate and intelligent entertainers that you will ever meet.

    Soul-Patrol's Kevin Amos interviews R&B Foundation Board Member Claudette Robinson about Artist Rights, Why are the Miracles not in the RRHOF, Pre Civil Rights Conditions, & the R&B Foundation.

    Take a listen at the following link and let me know what you think...

    Claudette Robinson Interview

    --Nightrain





    **CD Review: Smokey Robinson's "Timeless Love"
    (Jazz/Standards)


    Smokey Robinson's Timeless Love Forty-four years ago - that's right - Mr. Robinson first recorded several of the tunes on his latest album. Mr. Robinson still retains his tenor/falsetto voice and still demonstrates control although his voice does have a lower register - and this is a good thing. Having just listened to his 1962 versions of "Speak Low" and "I've Got you Under My Skin," I'm happy too say that the Smokey Robinson of 2006 is able to capture greater emotion from these recordings, which is something he did not display in 1962. In particular, "Under My Skin" really has a nice arrangement and vocal! Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, without question, Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald could and did elevate these so-called "easy listening songs" to legendary status.

    It's good, no, it's great to hear Smokey Robinson has the necessary sensitivity to convey the story, the message so important for this kind of quality (no rap allowed) music. However, with some songs Mr. Robinson seems to simply go through the motions. So, in this regard, it would have been great if Mr. Robinson re-captured the emotional content and vocal sensitivity from songs he's actually written like, "Even Tho," and "Gone Again," and "Sad Time," from his "Touch The Sky" album. Or, without question, "Daylight and Darkness" from the "Warm Thoughts" album. But don't let the aforementioned observations stop you from buying his latest album. Buy it. Sit back and relax, and listen to the absolute smoothest crooner around! Thanks, Smokey for a wonderful album!

    --Trip Reynolds



    **Smokey Robinson (solo & w/Miracles) - Definitive Collection
    (Classic Soul)

    You will be pleased to know that I did listen to the new Smokey Robinson CD called "Definitive Collection". It's basically a compilation of Smokey's solo hits, a few Miracles classics and two brand new Smokey Robinson solo cuts. One of them is badd (Fallin') and the other one is just ok (My World). I suspect that Fallin' will end up being played on Soul-Patrol.Net Radio :) This is a good CD for someone who is relatively new to Smokey because it presents a nice overview of his career and brings you right up to today with the inclusion of some brand new studio material from Smokey.

    CD Review: Smokey Robinson And The Miracles: "The Live Collection"

    Smokey and the Miracles LiveNow here is the one your boy "nightrain" will truly go WILD over....

    SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES:
    "THE LIVE COLLECTION"
    (on HIP-O Select)

    This is not a CD for someone who is "new" to Smokey. This is a CD for the person who wants to take a deep exploration into the live performances of one of the best live performers in the history of Black music! It's truly an artifact of a moment captured in time

    Remember a few years ago when Harry put "Going To A Go Go" and "Away We A Go Go" on the same CD, plus threw in some previously unreleased material??

    (this CD is just as badd as that one was)

    It's actually a two CD set that contains two LIVE albums:

    - Smokey Robinson and the Miracles (1957-1972)
    - Smokey Robinson and the Miracles (LIVE)


    I own both of these LP's and I brought them when they first came out. In fact I STILL have them both (and they are in raggedy shape....lol) I have scanned in images from both to create some of the graphics which appear on the Soul-Patrol website...I have listened to BOTH of these LP's at least a thousand times :) And I long ago committed to memory every damn note of both

    I'll tell yall, right now I am listening to the live version of "BAD GIRL", from Smokey Robinson and the Miracles (1957-1972) a song that won't even play on my LP copy anymore, the damn grooves are seriously worn out...lol. Those two LP's of mine will never be played again. The sound quality of this two CD set is impeccable. And it's like I am hearing the song for the very first time. Smokey just plain KILLS THIS SONG.
     
    You can hear the females screaming in ecstasy
    No
    I mean...
    :::S*C*R*E*A*M*I*N*G:::


    Now I don't wanna get too graphic here, but listening to this live rendition of "BAD GIRL"...(u know damn well that the seats of those screaming females are wet.....lol)

    This song is the epitome of what a slow jam is supposed to be. In fact I just hit the repeat button...lol

    There are MANY KILLER LIVE VERSONS of both songs made famous by the Miracles as well as by other artists (ex: check Smokey's monster version of Dionne Warwick's "Walk on By", from Smokey Robinson and the Miracles LIVE)

    The Miracles Live is awesome. It's the Miracles at the height of their powers, in live performance. Smokey's the star, but they really are a group on stage. Claudette joins the Miracles on stage when they sing "BAD GIRL".

    This too will end up on Soul-Patrol.Net radio as an entire program because it's some serious history. If it doesn't, "nightrain" willl kill me for sure....lol After all he is the creator of the:


    SupaBaddAzzMoFoSmokeyRobinson&theMiraclesWebpage

    (which I guess he will have to now update....)

    The CD ends with our friend young Billy Griffin joining the Miracles on stage in a rousing version of "Going To a Go Go"

    Hell I'm going to get me a glass of wine and start this damn CD over again....


    --Bob Davis
    earthjuice@prodigy.net



    Listen To Smokey Robinson and the Miracles - The Live Collection

    LISTEN TO SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES - "THE LIVE COLLECTION" (featuring the classic "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles - 1957-1972").


    The 1970's Miracles


    Click on the image above to listen and listen to MIRACLES: I LOVE YOU SECRETLY (w/Billy Griffin on lead)
    You will hear THREE VERSIONS of this great song on this broadcast, along with a few other 70's Miracles songs taken from the brand new 'Miracles: Love Machine, the 70's collection' CD.
    'Miracles: Love Machine, the 70's collection' ,Billy Griffin, Ronnie White, Pete Moore, Bobby Rogers, Marvin Gaye, Don't Cha Love It, I Love You Secretly, Do It Baby

    HAVE YOU EVER BEEN IN LOVE WITH SOMEONE (and been afraid they didn't love you back?)

    Go ahead and take a listen
    http://www.soul-patrol.net/mir_70.ram


    Click on the image above to listen and listen to GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO the choice cuts and the previously unheard gems from the vaults of Motown which are included on the GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO, CD reissue, we are going to present the material as a 4 part concept album…that I'll call "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 360 degrees of love".


  • NIGHTRAIN'S SMOKEY MEMORIES
  • "NIGHTRAIN SINGS SMOKEY "
  • "BABY BABY DON'T CRY" - A TRUE STORY
  • NIGHTRAIN'S SMOKEY DISCOGRAPHY
  • WHEN SMOKEY SINGS - A TRIBUTE TO SMOKEY


    CD REVIEW:
    SMOKEY ROBINSON & MIRACLES :
    GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO


    Smokey Robinson and the Miracles

    Now I suppose that many of you out there would wonder why I should get so excited about this NEW RELEASE???
    I mean, after all, it's not like this is a new concept???

    These two CLASSIC LP's have been paired before as "two fer's" AT LEAST twice before.

    I brought them as a "two fer" back in the 1970's on 8-track and then once again in the early 1990's on CD.

    In reviewing this CD I find myself in a similar position as I was in reviewing the Jimi Hendrix VOODOO CHILD COLLECTION last year.

    Many people already own these songs in one or more media formats (8-track, cassette, LP's, 45's, CD's, etc).
    Why should you buy this "two fer" now?

    There are two groups of people who should buy this CD release.

    1. People who are HARD CORE Smokey Robinson & the Miracles fans (folks who have damn near all of the words to his songs memorized)
    2. People who are new to the lyrical genuis (better described as "the game") of Smokey Robinson

    Obviously I am in the first group :)




    Click on the image above to listen and listen to GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO the choice cuts and the previously unheard gems from the vaults of Motown which are included on the GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO, CD reissue, we are going to present the material as a 4 part concept album…that I'll call "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 360 degrees of love".

    * PEOPLE IN GROUP ONE

    The reasons why people in this group will want this CD are:
    - Because of the SONIC QUALITY of the recording
    - Because of the 3 PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED bonus tracks (including the LIVE version of "Fork in the Road", which is AWESOME!!!!!!)

    * PEOPLE IN GROUP TWO

    This "two fer" is a PERFECT way to introduce you to the lyrical genuis of Smokey!
    On these two LP's, Smokey Robinson is at the very pinnicale of both his songwriting and vocal powers.
    It's a perfect way to discover, perhaps for the first time, just how POWERFUL the songs are and just how underated he is in this respect.

    * On a single CD you get about 12 MONSTER slow jams that not only would fill up a hot/steamy ghetto house party dance floor in the 1960's/1970's (or perhaps even today???). Taken as a whole, these songs almost in and of themselves literally define the "slow jam genre", all performed by the MASTER (Smokey Robinson) at his vocal peak!

    * On a single CD you get 14 mid tempo songs, all mostly written by Smokey (there are two VERY TASTY COVERS). One of the most interesting things to me about Smokey's "mid tempo songs" is that the lyrical content is just as
    WICKED as the outright "slow jams" . Many times folks who are only casually into Smokey tend to skip the mid tempo joints, because they want the slow jams. This is a CRITICAL ERROR.....

    * Once the "new Smokey fan" gets the CD, it becomes CRITICAL to listen to the songs OVER AND OVER. This way you will be able to really get the "
    word mastery " that Smokey uses in these songs. At that point you will be able to begin to recognize the "pattern", which ultimately forms what I lovingly refer to as...

    "Smokey Robinson's 360 DEGREES OF LOVE"

    Once you make your initial identification of this lyrical pattern, then you will truly understand....

    "the game at which Smokey is the lyrical master of"

    Bob Dylan understood it
    ("rock critics", completely missed it)

    And that is why this CD is worth buying!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Anyhow...

    Here is the track listing for...
    SMOKEY ROBINSON & MIRACLES :
    GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO
    (enjoy it with someone you LOVE)


    Click on the image above to listen and listen to GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO the choice cuts and the previously unheard gems from the vaults of Motown which are included on the GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO, CD reissue, we are going to present the material as a 4 part concept album…that I'll call "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 360 degrees of love".


    1. Tracks Of My Tears
    2. Going To A Go Go
    3. Ooo Baby Baby
    4. My Girl Has Gone
    5. In Case You Need Love
    6. Choosey Beggar
    7. Since You Won My Heart
    8. From Head To Toe
    9. All That's Good
    10. My Baby Changes Like The Weather
    11. Let Me Have Some
    12. Fork In The Road

    AWAY WE GO-GO

    13. Whole Lot Of Shakin' In My Heart
    14. You Don't Have To Say You Love Me
    15. (ComeRoundHere) I'm The One I Need
    16. Save Me
    17. Oh Be My Love
    18. Can You Love A Poor Boy
    19. Beauty Is Only Skin Deep
    20. I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself
    21. Baby Baby
    22. Walk On By
    23. Swept For You Baby
    24. More More More Of Your Love

    BONUS TRACKS (PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)

    25. It's Fantastic
    26. Goin Out Of My Head
    27. A Fork In The Road (live at the Roostertail)


    Click on the image above to listen and listen to GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO the choice cuts and the previously unheard gems from the vaults of Motown which are included on the GOING TO A GO-GO/AWAY WE GO-GO, CD reissue, we are going to present the material as a 4 part concept album…that I'll call "Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 360 degrees of love".

    SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES ON THE CLASSIC SOUL SITE

  • NIGHTRAIN'S SMOKEY MEMORIES
  • "NIGHTRAIN SINGS SMOKEY "
  • "BABY BABY DON'T CRY" - A TRUE STORY
  • NIGHTRAIN'S SMOKEY DISCOGRAPHY
  • WHEN SMOKEY SINGS - A TRIBUTE TO SMOKEY
  • HISTORICAL ANALYSIS - Going to the Outer Limits With the Songs of Smokey Robinson
  • DVD REVIEW: Smokey Robinson & The Miracles (Definitive Performances 1963 - 1987)


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