It’s a game of give and take

Sometimes you can’t hurry these things. In 1958 a Detroit junior high school student named Florence Ballard befriended Paul Williams of the male singing group, The Primes.

Ballard was a good singer, as was Williams’ girlfriend Betty McGlown, so The Primes’ manager decided to create a sister group and Ballard quickly recruited her friends Mary Wilson and Diana Ross.

Soon the Doo-wop singing “Primettes” were gaining a following around the Detroit area where they performed at sock hops and talent shows. Eventually Ross asked an old neighbor, Smokey Robinson, to help the group land an audition with Motown executive Berry Gordy, who allowed them to contribute hand claps and background vocals for other Motown artists such as Marvin Gaye and Mary Wells.

When Gordy finally agreed to sign the girls to his label (by which point McGlown had left the group to get married), it was under the condition that they change their name, as The Primes were now called The Temptations. And so in 1961 The Supremes were born.

Written and produced by the Motown team of Holland/Dozier/Holland for the then-prime-time Supremes, and soon featured on “The Supremes A’ Go-Go” (the first LP by an all-female group to reach Number 1 on the Billboard Album charts) “You Can’t Hurry Love” crowned the Billboard Singles charts and peaked at Number 5 in the UK in the summer of ‘66…where it got a second breath sixteen years later when Phil Collins topped the UK  Singles charts with it for two weeks in 1983.

 

Still, despite his clever video with white socks, shades, multiple selves…and just pure fun, Collins never managed to match the panache of Mademoiselles Ross, Wilson and Ballard who went on to release their own Italian cover of the song “L’amore verrà”.

 LISTEN TO THE ORIGINAL – Friday 22 February

You Can’t Hurry Love

 I need love, love to ease my mind

I need to find, find someone to call mine

But mama said you can’t hurry love

No you just have to wait

She said love don’t come easy

It’s a game of give and take

You can’t hurry love

No, you just have to wait

You gotta trust, give it time

No matter how long it takes

But how many heartaches must I stand

Before I find a love to let me live again

Right now the only thing that keeps me hanging on

When I feel my strength, yeah, it’s almost gone

I remember mama said

 You can’t hurry love

No you just have to wait

She said love don’t come easy

It’s a game of give and take

How long must I wait how much more can I take

Before loneliness will ’cause my heart, heart to break

No, I can’t bear to live my life alone

I grow impatient for a love to call my own

But when I feel that I, I can’t go on

These precious words keeps me hanging on

I remember mama said

 Can’t hurry love

No you just have to wait

She said love don’t come easy

it’s a game of give and take

 You can’t hurry love

No you just have to wait

She said love don’t come easy

It’s a game of give and take

No matter how long it takes

 No love, love don’t come easy

But I keep on waiting, anticipating for that

Soft voice to talk to me at night

For some tender arms to hold me tight

I keep waiting; I keep on waiting

But it ain’t easy, it ain’t easy when mama said

You can’t hurry love no

You just have to wait

She said trust, give it time

No matter how long it takes

 You can’t hurry love

You just have to wait

She said love don’t come easy

It’s a game of give and take

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