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     “Who’s the best?” is the question that’s been repeatedly presented to the listeners of THE BEST MUSIC OF YOUR LIFE for over ten years.  Why? Because people who are seriously into Motown, groups, songs and memories will always express opinions and proudly support the group of their choice and really mean what they say.  So what do I really  think ? The complex and simple answers are as follows.

     SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES Formed in Detroit circa 1955 were active 5 years before the Tempts and were on the radio by 1958.  Smokey wrote almost all of what the group recorded and determined the sound of their records along with Berry Gordy.  Smokey’s vice-president status brought him into the business aspects of Motown as well as artistic control over other artists like Mary Wells, the Marvalettes, and that OTHER group.

     THE TEMPTATIONS Formed in 1960 from a mixture of Detroit natives and Alabama imports came together when two groups The Primes and the Distants united and dispersed.  The original personnel of the group laid the foundation for what was to become an institution.  The Temptations legacy has rolled into 2007 with their recent (recorded after 2000) works enjoying great success.

SONGS Let’s break down the sounds.  Oversimplified, there are slow songs and fast songs, dance or listen songs, serious and non-sense songs.  So take all of this into consideration when you decide who’s the best group.  PERFORMANCE Dance / Choreography Both groups had the benefit of working with the master, Cholly Atkins.  
THE BAND Arrangers again both groups had the best Detroit musicians from the streets to the symphony. 
LEAD SINGERS + HARMONY Only Smokey, VS Eddie, David, Dennis, Paul, and how many more?  TOTAL MEMBERSHIP How many Miracles have there been?  Less than 10.  How many Temptations?  More than 50.
“I WRITE THE SONGS” Smokey wrote “My Girl” for the Temptations VS
The Temptations wrote _0_ for the Miracles.  
     THE IN COLUMN ELECTION yields, by category THE WINNERS THE TEMPTATIONS excelling in Performance,  Harmony, Choreography THE LOSERS MIRACLES excelling Songs, Lead singer.

     You may not have expected these results considering that Richard Pegue is a Miracles supporter.  But in a world of absolutes, I would have to go along with the Temptations winning for other reasons including longevity. The Tempts are still out there on the road performing (more than one group) since 1960’s singing Smokey’s “My Girl” and “The Way You Do The Things You Do”.  The Miracles have not been officially active since the late 70s?  I also give much credit to the creative arrangers and producers the contributed to these groups output.

     To further explore the whole Motown music thing make sure you see the DVD “Standing In The Shadows Of Motown”.  It is required viewing for The Best Music OF Your Life.  We hear rumors of a part 2 in the works. People who saw the Temptations and Miracles at the Regal Theatre in the ‘60s will love this as a gift.  Speaking of the Regal, it’s really a shame that the reincarnated Regal on 79th street is wasting away.

     Soon we’ll take a look at Chicago’s EL DORADOS singing group and why they deserve a street with their name in the Englewood area.  Here’s hoping we can make it happen with some help from Alderman Willie B. Cochran.   Make sure you see “Talk To Me”  it may still be at the 87th and Ryan ICE Theaters.

     PS Listen to the our show on line atTHEBESTMUSICOFYOURLIFE .COM every Sunday from 10am until 4pm.  Go to the bottom of the home page and click on the little cartoon radio at the bottom.   Please take some time and visit the site.  If you’re south of 51st street listen on your radio to WKKC 89.3 fm.  Direct E mail is:  BESTDUSTY@AOL.COM

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