Tuesday, October 16, 2012

"Let Me Be the Clock" by Smokey Robinson

Song#:  0088
Date:  03/15/1980
Debut:  88
Peak:  31
Weeks:  14
Genre:  R&B

Pop Bits:  The legendary Miracles were a fixture on the pop and R&B charts beginning with "Shop Around" in 1960. By 1970, Smokey Robinson was the focal point of the group, one of its main songwriters, and was a VP for Motown records. He planned to retire from music at that time and focus on his Motown job, but the Miracles had an unexpected hit (and their only #1 pop song) with "Tears of a Clown." Robinson stayed on for another two years and then called it a day with the Miracles in 1972. Like many artists who "retire," he got the itch to get back to music and began a solo career in 1973. Although his albums and singles did well on the R&B chart, it wasn't until "Cruisin'" in 1979 that he had is first pop Top 10. This was immediately followed up with a new album, "Warm Thoughts," and this was the first single released.

ReduxReview:  Let me say that Smokey Robinson is brilliant. Many of the songs he has written are classics. But no matter how incredible someone is as a writer, there will be occasional clunkers that come about. This is one of them for Robinson. The music is not bad - fairly typical quiet storm - but it's the lyrics that kill it for me. It is just a metaphor that goes on way too long. And it is just an awful one. I appreciate what he was trying to do here, but it doesn't work for me. "Hickory dickory dock, I want to be your clock?" Just cringe worthy. But I will say it is not as horrific as his 2009 ode to tub sex "Love Bath."

ReduxRating:  2/10

Trivia:  It was Robinson that suggested to Berry Gordy to start his own label. Gordy started Tamala Records and within a year he also began Motown Records. The two were merged in 1960 and "Shop Around" was the first single from Motown to sell a million records.


1 comment:

  1. Chart Run: 88 - 78 - 68 - 58 - 51 - 47 - 41 - 37 - 33 - 31 - 31 - 67 - 85 - 100