Yesterday was his birthday. Sunday was the anniversary of his death.
I was hanging out in my dorm room at Syracuse University and a floormate ran down the hall and said Marvin Gaye was dead. Shot by his own father.
We were furious and thought it was a fucked up thing to say as an April Fool's joke. Unfortunately, it was no joke.
My dad and all his friends were big Marvin fans. His music is timeless. If you listen to the words of "What's Going On" that song could have been written today.
I loved his duets with Tammi Terrell. I know there are several Marvin Gaye bio-pics floating around Hollywood. The problem is the music rights. I doubt Berry Gordy would let them go without some kind of script approval. We all know one of Marvin's most acclaimed albums almost didn't see the light of day because Berry thought it wasn't pop enough.
Also who would play Marvin? If I hear one more person out here say Usher is the new Marvin, I will scream. Usher is fine but please people lets get a grip. Marvin is in a very rare league with people like Sam Cooke and Otis Redding. When he sang it could mend your heart or rip it in two. I like Usher's voice, the beats are nice but I get nothing emotionally from him or his music. I forget the songs the minute they are over.
Anyone who reads this blog knows I love my share of fun, pop music depending on my mood. However, there are songs and artists that mean the world to me. I was in the car the other day on the way to the gym and Cooke's "A Change is Gonna Come" came on the radio. One, I love that song, two I rememeber how powerfully Spike Lee used it in MALCOLM X and three, between Iran, Iraq, North Korea, the escalating gang violence here in L.A., etc. I was hoping Sam was right and a change is going to come.