Thursday, May 22, 2008

TV EYE: Mercy Mercy Me

Marvin Gayes’s 1971 “What’s Going On” is arguably the finest full length soul/r&b triumph ever committed to vinyl, marking Gaye as a creative force on par with the likes of James Brown, Curtis Mayfield, Stevie Wonder or Prince, yet he seems a largely overlooked pop music figure. PBS American Masters-- Marvin Gaye:What’s Going On weighs in and provides Gaye with one hopes will be the start of a deeper probe into the man and his music. Gaye was a true walking contradiction, a smooth performer who winded up dodging gigs, an overtly sensual man with a background and philosophy steeped in religion, a multi-talented and highly creative musician given to stultifying bouts of depression. The hour long doc is a bit thin, but it does feature some decent live footage, plenty of pithy talking head stuff (Smokey Robinson, Mos Def, Michael Eric Dyson), and a truly intriguing late period interview with the man himself.

1 comment:

skylolo99 said...

Thank you Scott for the heads up.
I remember the day Marvin Gaye was shot by his father. I was playing with the Schemers at the Living Room that night. It was one of those 'Where were you when you heard the news?' moments. A few weeks (months?) before he was on the Motown anniversary program on ABC and Diana Ross was holding him real tight, protective like a mother would hold a real gone son. Kinda like a Motown Pieta. Gotta find a photo of that scene at the end of the show.