Marvin Gaye’s In The Groove album was released by Motown Records in August 1968. Buried on the LP’s first side, “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” – a track that was considered a cover of the Gladys Knight & the Pips’ hit from the year before – became the album’s third single on October 30, 1968. The song rocketed up Billboard‘s Hot 100 and R&B Singles charts, as well as the UK Singles chart, reaching No. 1 across all three. With the single’s major international success, Motown quickly rereleased the album with the title I Heard It Through The Grapevine. Today, commemorating the smash single’s 50th anniversary, Motown/UMe reissues the album in a unique edition with its I Heard It Through The Grapevine artwork on the outside and the original In The Groove artwork reproduced on a heavyweight inner sleeve. The new LP reissue is available on black vinyl and limited edition, Sound of Vinyl-exclusive purple “grape” color vinyl.
Purchase I Heard It Through The Grapevine on vinyl: https://ume.lnk.to/Grapevine
In The Groove was Marvin Gaye’s eighth studio album, his first solo studio release in more than two years. “Chained,” from the album, was still climbing the chart (peaking at No. 8 R&B and No. 32 on the Billboard Hot 100) when curious radio DJs began to spin Gaye’s version of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine.” Motown founder Berry Gordy hadn’t initially planned to release Gaye’s recording of the Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong song, as it had been rejected at numerous Quality Control meetings. “You,” later the album’s lead single, had been chosen; frustrated producer Whitfield re-arranged “Grapevine” and recorded it with Gladys Knight & the Pips, who took it to No. 2 Pop and No. 1 R&B. Gaye’s version, though cut first, went in the vault until In The Groove was released more than a year later.
As radio play for Marvin’s version of “Grapevine” took hold, Mr. Gordy made the decision to officially release it as a single, as well as to retitle, redesign, and rerelease Gaye’s album as I Heard It Through The Grapevine. While the single reigned atop the US and UK charts at No. 1, becoming one of the year’s top hits and Motown’s most successful single of the 1960s, the retitled album peaked at No. 2 on Billboard‘s R&B Albums chart.
Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” held the Billboard Hot 100’s No. 1 spot for seven of its 15 total weeks on the chart. The song is ranked at No. 81 in Rolling Stone‘s ‘500 Greatest Songs of All Time’ list and in 1998, it was inducted into the GRAMMY® Hall of Fame, which recognizes “recordings of lasting qualitative or historical significance.”
Marvin Gaye: I Heard It Through The Grapevine [black vinyl; ltd. edition purple “grape” vinyl]
2. Tear It On Down
4. I Heard It Through The Grapevine
5. At Last (I Found A Love)
6. Some Kind Of Wonderful
1. Loving You Is Sweeter Than Ever
2. Change What You Can
3. It’s Love I Need
4. Every Now and Then
5. You’re What’s Happening (In The World Today)
6. There Goes My Baby