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The Miracles
Depend On Me: The Early Albums
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Price: $29.98

SHIP DATE: 6/19/09

Miracles first 5 albums on 2 CDs!

Smokey Robinson & the Miracles and Motown are intertwined forever. The company’s first hit group, led by its premier writer-performer-singer, the Miracles had the company’s first million-selling record, its first full-length LP release, and its first artist-executive. They were the stars of the first Motortown Revues, followed by fans who knew the words to every song. Those heady, thrilling, early years are fully documented on Depend On Me: The Early Albums, a 2-CD set that collects the Miracles’ first five albums, three of which are on CD for the first time, as well as rare bonus cuts.

“It was exhilarating, exciting, amazing, and unbelievable that it was happening, because there were so many other groups who were dynamic, who had so many hits. But this was happening to us,” says Miracle Claudette Robinson, as quoted in the collection’s liner notes.

Hi, We’re The Miracles, Cookin’ With The Miracles, I’ll Try Something New, The Fabulous Miracles and Recorded Live On Stage are each in their original mono mixes, as originally issued in the early sixties. So are the five bonus cuts, which include two non-LP singles “Mighty Good Lovin’” and “The Feeling Is So Fine” and rare single versions of “The Only One I Love” and “Shop Around.” For the latter, there is the “slow” regional version that’s appeared on compilations, but for this set we’ve tracked down an earlier alternate pressing that has not been heard in nearly 50 years.

Hi includes the hit versions of “Shop Around” and “Way Over There,” a rare Claudette lead on “After All,” and the classic slow jams “Who’s Lovin’ You” and “(You Can) Depend On Me.” Cookin’ shows the group maturing with more polished production, featuring “Everybody’s Got To Pay Some Dues,” “That’s The Way I Feel,” and surprising jazz vocal harmony in Gershwin’s “Embraceable You.”

I’ll Try Something New was another breakthrough, with the smash title track, “What’s So Good About Good Bye,” “I’ve Been Good To You” and more of the standard repertoire from the previous LP. Miracles Ronnie White and Claudette Robinson are spotlighted on “A Love That Can Never Be” and “He Don’t Care About Me.”

The Fabulous Miracles, sometimes known as “You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me," has an assortment of classics all written or co-written by Smokey, from “A Love She Can Count On” to “Happy Landing.” Recorded Live On Stage, compiled from Revue performances at the Regal and Apollo Theaters, documents the excitement of the early live shows.

All of this wonderful Motown music has been remastered with the usual care and devotion; it’s in a delightful package showcasing the original Miracles LP covers, front and back, with rare photos, detailed track annotations and a rich essay by group chronicler Stu Hackel.

With Depend On Me: The Early Albums, the days of Motown fans shopping around for The Miracles’ early classics are finally over.


Price: $29.98