♫ What Becomes of the Brokenhearted ♫ (Redux)

It’s funny how sometimes a train of thought takes one down a track different than the one it started out on, isn’t it?  Tonight, having just finished my ‘good people’ post, I was feeling almost mellow and had a Supremes’ song stuck in my head … right now I cannot remember which one, nor do I have a clue how I got from the Supremees to Jimmy Ruffin.  But, here I am, and while I did play this before, it’s been two years, so most of you have forgotten anyway!  This is a song that somehow stirs emotions within me … good ones, mostly.  When I played this in 2018, most people agreed that both Ruffin’s and Paul Young’s versions were good, but still overwhelmingly chose Ruffin’s as their favourite.  For the record, I agree.


This song was written by Motown writers Jimmy Dean, Paul Riser, and William Witherspoon. They wrote it for The Detroit Spinners, but Jimmy Ruffin convinced the Motown writers to let him try it, and they liked what they heard. Ruffin is the brother of The Temptations’ David Ruffin, by the way.  Smokey Robinson produced the track.

Now, while many artists recorded this song, including The Supremes, I have two favourites and I am torn between the two, so I’m interested in your opinions.  The first is the original by Jimmy Ruffin, released in 1966.  This version hit #6 in the US and #10 in the UK.

In 1992, Paul Young recorded the song and, while it didn’t do as well as the Ruffin version, I still like it.  What do you guys think?  The Jimmy Ruffin version …

Or the Paul Young …

What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted
Jimmy Ruffin/Paul Young

As I walk this land with broken dreams
I have visions of many things
But happiness is just an illusion
Filled with sadness and confusion
What becomes of the broken-hearted
Who had love that’s now departed?
I know I’ve got to find
Some kind of peace of mind
Maybe

The roots of love grow all around
But for me they come a-tumblin’ down
Every day heartaches grow a little stronger
I can’t stand this pain much longer
I walk in shadowsm searching for light
Cold and alone, no comfort in sight
Hoping and praying for someone to care
Always moving and goin’ nowhere
What becomes of the broken-hearted
Who had love that’s now departed?
I know I’ve got to find
Some kind of peace of mind
Help me

I’m searching, though I don’t succeed
But someone look, there’s a growing need
Oh, he is lost, there’s no place for beginning
All that’s left is an unhappy ending
Now, becomes of the broken-hearted
Who had love that’s now departed?
I know I’ve got to find
Some kind of peace of mind

I’ll be searching everywhere
Just to find someone to care
I’ll be looking everyday, I know I’m gonna find a way
Nothing’s gonna stop me now
I’ll find a way somehow
And I’ll be searching everywhere
I know I gotta find a way
I’ll be looking

Songwriters: James Anthony Dean / Paul Riser / William Henry Witherspoonn
What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

15 thoughts on “♫ What Becomes of the Brokenhearted ♫ (Redux)

  1. I was in hospital for a while when young. It seemed that Jimmy Ruffin with this song and Len Barry with 123 were the only two songs on the radio. I grew to hate them. Fortunately, the hate didn’t last. I think Paul Young has a great soul voice ( for a white guy) but I’ve never heard his version before. I didn’t like the intro so Jimmy Ruffin has it for me.
    Cwtch

    Liked by 2 people

    • As I picked this one to re-blog, I looked back at some of the comments from when I first played it in 2018, and noted that at that time you said if I had played it just six months earlier, you would have hated it. I agree that Ruffin’s version is my preference, but Young’s isn’t half bad either.
      Cwtch

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Thank you for sharing!!.. as the song goes the heart will mend and “The Heart Will Go On” for one will not know true love unless they have known heartache… “If you love someone, set them free. If they come back they’re yours; if they don’t, they never were.” (Richard Bach)… 🙂

    Hope you and yours are having a wonderful holiday and until we meet again, on this day and every day..
    May the love that you give
    Always return to you,
    That family and friends are many
    And always remain true,
    May your mind only know peace
    No suffering or strife,
    May your spirit only know love and happiness
    On your journey through life.
    (Larry “Dutch” Woller)

    Liked by 3 people

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