musicology #231

communication #9

(Jimmy Ruffin – What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted)

A song that we, (should), all know delivered with pathos by one of the great Soul singers about a subject that is plainly close to my heart. Older brother of the Temptation’s member David, Jimmy hasn’t received the acclaim he deserves. This version, (the original), has the spoken intro which was removed for the final mix that made it onto the 45, (can’t understand why?)

Lyrics by James Dean, music composed by William Weatherspoon and Paul Riser, music played by the Funk Brothers, background vocals by The Originals, (Freddie Gorman, Walter Gaines, Hank Dixon, Joe Stubbs), and the Adantes, (Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow, Louvain Demps), song produced by Weatherspoon and William Stevenson.


8 thoughts on “musicology #231

  1. “As I walk this land of broken dreams,
    I have visions of many things,
    but happiness is just an illusion,
    filled with sadness and confusion”

    Great opening stanza to a classic song of “Loves Labours Lost”.

    In my opinion you can add this one to the shortlist of top *male songs* on the pain, misunderstandings and heartache of breakup and the “To Late Now” recognition of the warning signs (others to include on that list would be…. Al Green’s How Can You Mend A Broken Heart, Ottis Reading’s These Arms of Mine and Pain In My Heart, Bobby Womack’s Woman’s Got To Have It…. to name but four that spring to mind)

    By *male songs* I’m not suggesting or implying anything other than a song sung with real passion… by a man!!!!


  2. And you can add to that shortlist of men singing with passion the daddy of them all in my opinion…. Marvin Gaye’s magnificent Magnum opus… Here My Dear.

    I’m listening to it right now. What a voice! A true masterpiece!!


  3. Don’t you find it strange how the same song played on different days (ignoring surroundings/climate or mood) comes across in a totally different way…. or is it just me?

    By “comes across” (for wont of easier words) I’m referring to the transcendental message i.e. the way the listener ‘feels’ and ‘responds’ to the whole three, four, or five minute experience.

    As an example…. this morning, on the radio, I heard a very cheesy-foreign language cover version of Tony Clark’s The Entertainer. It stuck in my mind. Thanks to themusicologist I’m now able to “wallow” in the original. Strange thing, this time I instinctively find myself concentrating on the words/text…. and lo and behold, without cause or reason, I’m struck by……

    “The curtains up and your audience is waiting out there,
    now walk on stage boy like you don’t have a care,
    and don’t let ’em know that you’re feeling so low,
    since(?) you’re girl’s put you down you’re a sad-hearted clown,
    but the show must go on, go on and on,
    ‘cos your the entertainer, the entertainer,
    your the entertainer, the entertainer.

    Now hear that applause, now you know you made the grade,
    you fooled them well for the money they paid,
    now walk off in style and don’t forget to smile,
    though your heart tells your …. you can’t let the people down,
    so your one girl has gone but you got to go on,
    when your the entertainer,
    tell your the entertainer,
    your the entertainer,
    you know, you can …………. walk off in style”

    Don’t know about anyone else, but for me that song takes on a completely new – and added – dimension… And that after all the intervening years…. yep, music is the language of the Gods!


  4. maybe not all about but a large part of it, for me, is the universal language’s ability to communicate a message.

    The philosopher Schopenhauer believed, (and I must say I share the belief), that Music has a special capacity to capture the rhythms of our underlying ‘will’, puts us in touch with ‘reality’ itself and circumvents the intellect transcending our desire to ‘know’. Wagner was one of the few who read and was inspired by Schopenhauer.


  5. “will”, “reality”, “know”…… strong words. I’ll take a rain-check if you don’t mind…. But only until such time as I’m “qualified” to respond… chuckle, chuckle!!


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