Today, I take a look at one the biggest hits from Gladys Knight & The Pips!

Gladys Knight & the Pips’ “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” topped the Billboard soul chart in late 1967.

Marvin Gaye’s version of the song topped the pop chart a year later. Neither Gladys or Marvin were the first to record the song. The Miracles were — in a version included on their Special Occasion LP.

Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong wrote and produced both versions of “I Heard It Through the Grapevine.” Marvin Gaye’s version was recorded earlier, but when Motown chief Berry Gordy was reluctant to release it as a single, the producers cut the song with the Pips using a different arrangement, reminiscent of Aretha Franklin’s “Respect.”

Ironically Franklin’s single “Respect” edged out “Grapevine” for the Grammy as 1967’s Best Rhythm Blues Vocal Performance. Of course, I am really excited about Gladys being on this season of Dancing With The Stars. 🙂

Check out this classic performance from Soul Train:


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