Marvin Gaye was killed 35 years ago today. But he’s “still the man” as Motown has just released “You’re the Man,” his “lost album.” This collection was recorded in 1972 between the successes of “What’s Going On” and what turned out to be “Let’s Get it On.”
“You’re the Man” has been released before, at least some of it, in various incarnations. It was splintered off into box sets and b sides and Motown collections. But now it’s available it in its entirety. You can see why Marvin shelved it. Despite amazing vocals and terrific songs, it lacked cohesion as an album. After the high of “What’s Going On,” this album was pedestrian. There was no theme. In the past it would have sufficed. But to Marvin it must have sounded like a step backward.
But dip into “You’re the Man” anywhere and you’ll find gold. “The World is Rated X” is masterful, and could have fit into “What’s Going On” easily. “Piece of Clay,” had Marvin lived long enough to tour in his older years, would have been a show stopper. “You Are That Special One” is a slammin’ Motown masterpiece. “I’m Going Home” is Marvin at his funky best.
I can’t wait to have the physical CD in my car.
Many have tried to make Marvin Gaye movies without luck. I hope someone tries again, but just the Sixties through this period, when Marvin was a shining star. He deserves a polished legacy, and to be revered forever.