|By steve c (188.8.131.52 - 184.108.40.206) on Monday, April 15, 2002 - 03:13 pm:|
I just discovered this board from a link on the Motown Board and am extremely impressed with the knowledge and topics here. I recently have been collecting Norman Whitfield productions and was curious about whatever happened to him. The album trail seems to end about 1983. I imagine the CD era has kept him well financed and I know that there is that unreleased Four Tops album that seems to surface whenever this topic arises in print form, but how does one go from producing six or more albums a year to nothing? Also, does anyone know a link to a Whifield records discography. Just when I think I have everything according to ALLMUSIC.Com, something else appears (MAMMATAPEE for instance.) Thanks.... steve
|By david, glasgow, scotland (220.127.116.11 - 18.104.22.168) on Monday, April 15, 2002 - 05:50 pm:|
welcome to the forum steve c.
|By john lester (22.214.171.124 - 126.96.36.199) on Monday, April 15, 2002 - 08:17 pm:|
I just wish Norman would come on here so we could talk to him
Maybe, it might happen..
|By Dennis Coffey (188.8.131.52 - 184.108.40.206) on Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 12:26 am:|
Hi Folks. I did a lot of sessions for Norman. I always enjoyed myself on Norman's sessions because he gave me the freedom to experiment. I also did some sessions for him when I lived in LA.
Norman worked you hard on his sessions but most of the time he was out on the studio floor counting out the tempos and sweating with you. A very talented producer.
|By steve c (220.127.116.11 - 18.104.22.168) on Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 01:36 pm:|
It's interesting to note the change in Norman's style of production from the early 70's to the early 80's. He did seem to do a good job of keeping up with trends. My gut instinct is that the lack of success of some of the Whitfield Records releases (especially the later ones) had more to do with business and promotion issues, than with the quality of music. Even though I prefer the heavy psychedelic stuff, the later dance oriented stuff is pretty darn good.
As an aside Dennis, how many versions of "Smiling Faces" did you work on? Just when I think I have them all (Temptations, Rare Earth, Undisputed Truth, David Ruffin.....), Another version surfaces. I was always curious about his phillosophy in redoing material with different artists. I find myself picking and choosing among which versions I find definitive... steve...
|By BassLand (22.214.171.124 - 126.96.36.199) on Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 03:07 pm:|
I posted this in "Motown Bass Sounds" but I will also post here. I seem to remember that Norman Whitfield was the producer of Poppa Was A Rolling Stone by the Temptations. I was wondering weather that bass line was performed by James Jamerson. I have a website dedicated to Jamerson and someone asked why Poppa... was not in his greatest hits page (http://bassland.net/jamersonhits.htm) In my opinion that line was different from other Motown record and had Jamerson (if it was him) playing differently than on most of the previous recordings. By that I mean Jamerson played looser (the lines did not repeat the same each phrase) on most of the recordings and Poppa was quite repetitive and had lots of space between the phrases. Any thought?
|By Eli (188.8.131.52 - 184.108.40.206) on Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 06:55 pm:|
Hey Babbitt, was that you on Poppa was......??
I kinda think so.
|By Eli (220.127.116.11 - 18.104.22.168) on Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 06:58 pm:|
One of the most interesting post Motown Babbitt sessions was Rubberband man by the Spinners. I was there too!! Babbitt used both the "norml" bass and a piccolo bass. I was the rubberband guy!!
|By Caleb (22.214.171.124 - 126.96.36.199) on Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 07:41 pm:|
"Papa Was A Rolling Stone"-Norman Whitfield originally wanted Babbitt and Andrew Smith to play on this track.They were both touring with Dennis Coffey at the time.He ended up using Eddie Watkins on bass and Aaron Smith on drums,both members of The Temptations road band.
|By Dennis Coffey (188.8.131.52 - 184.108.40.206) on Thursday, April 18, 2002 - 01:27 am:|
Hi folks. The last post is why I didn't play on "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" - The first Temptation hit I didn't play on since "Cloud Nine". I was on the road supporting my own million seller, Scorpio. The one version of Smiling Faces I played on for sure was the Undisputed Truth. I did the solo on my Condor unit. When I did some sessions with Norman in LA, he was starting to use drum machines instead of real drummers. That is one of the reasons why his records started to sound a little different. I was using drum machines to write songs with in the late sixties.
|By john lester (220.127.116.11 - 18.104.22.168) on Thursday, April 18, 2002 - 05:36 am:|
Undisputed Truth - Smiling Faces Sometimes
WHAT A CLASSIC! Wow, wow, wowowowowowow
I am ashamed that us Brits didn't make it a number one hit...utterly ashamed.....
My utmost apologies Dennis.....even though I bought it...
|By david, glasgow, scotland (22.214.171.124 - 126.96.36.199) on Friday, April 19, 2002 - 09:03 am:|
i bought the album too. wasn´t there a cracking northern tune on it? remember "cosmic slop too"
it´s been a long time, or is it too much san miguel?