Song of the Day #311: ‘I Heard it Through the Grapevine’ – Marvin Gaye

marvingayeLike many young suburban white people, my first exposure to these great Motown songs came via The Big Chill soundtrack. That album, which went 6X platinum, was less a document of the film than a Motown greatest hits collection.

These songs stirred the memories of the college friends reunited in that film and likely did the same for countless boomers who watched the film then ran out to buy the soundtrack. For me, too young at the time for some of the film’s more adult moments and likely to be bored by it anyway, I was just thrilled to discover such great new music.

I’m glad I wasn’t a bit older, at an age where I could appreciate and love the film. Because then I might have come to know ‘Ain’t Too Proud to Beg’ as the song that played when everybody cleans up the kitchen and not as just a song.

This song, ‘I Heard it Through the Grapevine,’ was always one of my favorites from that soundtrack. Marvin Gaye sings the hell out of it, as he sang the hell out of everything.

Ooh, I bet you’re wondering how I knew
About you’re plans to make me blue
With some other guy that you knew before.
Between the two of us guys
You know I love you more.
It took me by surprise I must say,
When I found out yesterday.
Don’t you know that…

I heard it through the grapevine
Not much longer would you be mine.
Oh I heard it through the grapevine,
Oh and I’m just about to lose my mind.
Honey, honey yeah.

I know that a man ain’t supposed to cry,
But these tears I can’t hold inside.
Losin’ you would end my life you see,
Cause you mean that much to me.
You could have told me yourself
That you love someone else.


People say believe half of what you see,
Son, and none of what you hear.
I can’t help bein’ confused
If it’s true please tell me dear?
Do you plan to let me go
For the other guy you loved before?
Don’t you know…


5 thoughts on “Song of the Day #311: ‘I Heard it Through the Grapevine’ – Marvin Gaye

  1. Dana says:

    A true classic!

  2. Amy says:

    I’m trying to recall if this was my first exposure to this music. Dana thinks he first heard today’s song in a Fruit of the Loom commercial, and, unfortunately, that’s seeming familiar to me, too 🙂

    Regardless, I certainly remember playing that Big Chill soundtrack again and again. But I did have the association of the dishwashing scene, despite not having even watched the whole film (remember – we came in at the end and sat in the front row of what was clearly a sold out theater? not sure what film we had been seeing – maybe one of the Rocky films? – before we snuck in to see the rest of the movie our parents were watching) Big Chill aside, so many films feature these great songs. I know most of them from various television shows and films that I’ve seen over the years.

    Anyway, this is definitely one of my favorites.

  3. pegclifton says:

    I love this song and loved the movie. As Amy has mentioned the two of you came into the theater after your film had ended and watched the end. It’s time to see this one again!

  4. Clay says:

    I remember well sitting through the end of that movie (in the front right corner of the theater). I believe that was my first exposure to wife-swapping and drug addiction. 🙂

  5. Amy says:

    Ha 🙂 I don’t think we saw that much of the movie. But I’m sure we had an interesting conversation after the film was over.

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