♫ Lonely Teardrops ♫

Last night I played Nightshift, a tribute to Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson, both of whom died in 1984.  I’ve played most of Marvin Gaye’s songs at least once in the nearly 3 years I’ve been doing these music posts, but have only played one by Jackie Wilson, (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher.  So tonight, I’d like to remedy that by playing Jackie’s second most popular song, Lonely Teardrops.

Released in 1959, this was written by the Detroit songwriting team who wrote Wilson’s first several hits – the duo of Tyran Carlo (the pen name of Wilson’s cousin Roquel Davis) and a pre-Motown Berry Gordy Jr., along with Gwen Gordy Fuqua, one of Berry Gordy’s four sisters.  They co-wrote eight other songs for Wilson. At the time, Gordy was a struggling songwriter, but this song – his first Top-10 hit as a songwriter – gave him the confidence to rent a building in Detroit and start the Tamla label, which would become Motown.

Many artists have covered this, including Jose Feliciano, teen idol pop singer Brian Hyland and Michael Jackson.  I didn’t listen to any of the other versions, for I’m quite satisfied with the original in this case (plus I’m tired and longing for my bed).

In September 1975, while performing at the Latin Casino in New Jersey, Wilson collapsed from a heart attack and a stroke right in the middle of this song. He never recovered and remained in a coma for eight more years; he was hospitalized until his death on January 21, 1984 (age 49). In tragic irony, the last words he sung before collapsing were “My heart is crying.” The audience at first thought that his fall was part of the act and they started applauding and cheering. It became evident that something was wrong when about half a minute later, he hadn’t moved. The excitement instantly turned into confusion and shock as attempts to revive Jackie on the stage were to no avail.

As far as I can tell, the song only charted in the U.S. (#7), and I’m not sure why, unless Jackie Wilson was just still too much an unknown.

Lonely Teardrops
Jackie Wilson

My heart is crying, crying
Lonely teardrops
My pillow’s never dry of lonely teardrops
Come home, come home
Just say you will, say you will
(Say you will) say you will (say you will)
Hey, hey (say you will)
My heart is crying, crying

Lonely teardrops
My pillow’s never dry of lonely teardrops
Come home, come home
Just say you will, say you will
(Say you will) say you will, (say you will)
Hey, hey (say you will)

Just give me another chance for our romance
Come on and tell me that one day you’ll return
‘Cause, every day that you’ve been gone away
You know my heart does nothing but burn, crying

Lonely teardrops
My pillow’s never dry of lonely teardrops
Come home, come home
Just say you will, say you will
(Say you will) say you will, (say you will)
Hey, hey (say you will)
Say it right now, baby
(Say you will) come on, come on
(Say you will) say that you
Say it right now, baby
(Say you will) come on, come on
(Say you will) hey come on

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Berry Jr Gordy / Gwendolyn Gordy Fuqua / Tyran Carlo
Lonely Teardrops lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

♫ Nightshift ♫ (Redux)

Yes, yes … I played this one just over a year ago … September 2019.  But, I had a request of sorts for it, and as I listened to it again, I really wanted to play it again!  I do love this one, so please bear with me …


This song, released in 1985, is a tribute to singers Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson, who both died in 1984. Gaye was a Motown star known for love songs like Let’s Get It On and Sexual Healing. Wilson was an R&B singer known for his stirring performances and hits like Lonely Teardrops. Wilson was 49 when he died; Gaye was 44. Both are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

The songwriter Franne Golde was brought in to help with the lyrics. She had recently seen the 1982 movie Night Shift (starring Henry Winkler and Michael Keaton; directed by Ron Howard), which gave her the idea for the title.  This is the Commodores’ only hit since Lionel Richie left the band in 1982. J.D. Nicholas, a former backup singer for Diana Ross, was brought in to replace Richie.  When this song was performed on Motown Returns to the Apollo in the early ’80s, more verses were added to honor other Motown legends who had passed on.

Nightshift
Commodores

Marvin, he was a friend of mine
And he could sing a song
His heart in every line
Marvin sang of the joy and pain
He opened up our minds
And I still can hear him say
Aw talk to me so you can see
What’s going on
Say you will sing your songs
Forevermore (evermore)

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Coming down on the nightshift
I bet you’re singing proud
Oh I bet you’ll pull a crowd
Gonna be a long night
It’s gonna be all right
On the nightshift
Oh you found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

You found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Jackie (Jackie), hey what’you doing now
It seems like yesterday
When we were working out
Jackie (Jackie, oh) you set
The world on fire
You came and gifted us
Your love it lifted us
Higher and higher
Keep it up and
We’ll be there
At your side
Oh say you will sing
Your songs forevermore (evermore)

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Coming down on the nightshift
I bet you’re singing proud
Oh I bet you’ll pull a crowd
Gonna be a long night
It’s gonna be all right
On the nightshift
Oh you found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Coming down on the nightshift
I bet you’re singing proud
Oh I bet you’ll pull a crowd
Gonna be a long night
It’s gonna be all right
On the nightshift
Oh you found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Gonna miss your sweet voice
That soulful voice
On the nightshift
We all remember you
Ooh the songs are coming through
At the end of a long day
It’s gonna be okay
On the nightshift
You found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Songwriters: Franne Golde / Dennis Lambert / Walter Orange
Nightshift – Single Version lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc, Universal Music Publishing Group, Reservoir Media Management Inc, BMG Rights Management

♫ (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher And Higher ♫

Released in 1967, Jackie Wilson recorded this in Chicago with members of The Funk Brothers, who were Motown’s house band. As detailed in the documentary Standing In The Shadows Of Motown, these musicians were responsible for the distinctive Motown sound, but they didn’t make much money and moonlighted by playing sessions for artists like Wilson. Playing on this track were bassist James Jamerson, drummer Richard “Pistol” Allen, guitarist Robert White, and keyboardist Johnny Griffith.

The song was originally written by Chess Records’ in-house writers and producers Carl Smith and Raynard Miner, and initially recorded by The Dells for the label, but not released.

Released in August 1967, the song reached #1 on the US Billboard R&B chart and, in November, peaked on the Billboard Hot 100 at #6, and #11 in the UK.

A cover version by Rita Coolidge in 1977 reached US #2. It was a much slower version and the title was amended slightly to (Your Love Has Lifted Me) Higher And Higher.

(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher
Jackie Wilson

Your love, lifting me higher
Than I’ve ever been lifted before
So keep it it up
Quench my desire
And I’ll be at your side, forever more

You know your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on lifting (love keeps lifting me)
Higher (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
I said your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on (love keeps lifting me)
Lifting me (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
Listen

Now once, I was down-hearted
Disappointment, was my closest friend
But then you, came and it soon departed
And you know he never
Showed his face again

That’s why your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on lifting (love keeps lifting me)
Higher (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
I said your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on (love keeps lifting me)
Lifting me (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
Alright

I’m so glad, I’ve finally found you
Yes that one, in a million girls
And I whip, my loving arms around you, honey
I can stand up, and face the world

Let me tell ya, your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on lifting (love keeps lifting me)
Higher (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)
I said your love (your love keeps lifting me)
Keep on (love keeps lifting me)
Lifting me (lifting me)
Higher and higher (higher)

Now sock it to me
Hold me, the other woman
Keep my love going
Higher and higher
I said keep on lifting
Lift me up mama

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Carl Smith / Gary Jackson / Raynard Miner
(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Warner Chappell Music, Inc

♫ Nightshift ♫

This song, released in 1985, is a tribute to singers Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson, who both died in 1984. Gaye was a Motown star known for love songs like Let’s Get It On and Sexual Healing. Wilson was an R&B singer known for his stirring performances and hits like Lonely Teardrops. Wilson was 49 when he died; Gaye was 44. Both are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

The songwriter Franne Golde was brought in to help with the lyrics. She had recently seen the 1982 movie Night Shift (starring Henry Winkler and Michael Keaton; directed by Ron Howard), which gave her the idea for the title.  This is the Commodores’ only hit since Lionel Richie left the band in 1982. J.D. Nicholas, a former backup singer for Diana Ross, was brought in to replace Richie.  When this song was performed on Motown Returns to the Apollo in the early ’80s, more verses were added to honor other Motown legends who had passed on.

Nightshift
Commodores

Marvin, he was a friend of mine
And he could sing a song
His heart in every line
Marvin sang of the joy and pain
He opened up our minds
And I still can hear him say
Aw talk to me so you can see
What’s going on
Say you will sing your songs
Forevermore (evermore)

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Coming down on the nightshift
I bet you’re singing proud
Oh I bet you’ll pull a crowd
Gonna be a long night
It’s gonna be all right
On the nightshift
Oh you found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

You found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Jackie (Jackie), hey what’you doing now
It seems like yesterday
When we were working out
Jackie (Jackie, oh) you set
The world on fire
You came and gifted us
Your love it lifted us
Higher and higher
Keep it up and
We’ll be there
At your side
Oh say you will sing
Your songs forevermore (evermore)

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Coming down on the nightshift
I bet you’re singing proud
Oh I bet you’ll pull a crowd
Gonna be a long night
It’s gonna be all right
On the nightshift
Oh you found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Coming down on the nightshift
I bet you’re singing proud
Oh I bet you’ll pull a crowd
Gonna be a long night
It’s gonna be all right
On the nightshift
Oh you found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Gonna miss your sweet voice
That soulful voice
On the nightshift
We all remember you
Ooh the songs are coming through
At the end of a long day
It’s gonna be okay
On the nightshift
You found another home
I know you’re not alone
On the nightshift

Songwriters: Franne Golde / Dennis Lambert / Walter Orange
Nightshift – Single Version lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc, Universal Music Publishing Group, Reservoir Media Management Inc, BMG Rights Management