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For Lovers Only

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Album Review

Nominally, the Temptations' For Lovers Only is an album of pop standards. But producer Richard Perry and primary arranger Isias Gamboa have taken such a radical approach to presenting the familiar songs that listeners accustomed to versions of Rodgers & Hammerstein's "Some Enchanted Evening" and Lerner & Loewe's "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face" that derive from the Broadway musicals in which these songs originated may not recognize them as the same compositions, even after more than one listen. These tracks retain the basic lyrics and some melodic elements, but they go far beyond the usual matters of tempo and instrumental coloring that characterize what is called an arrangement; Gamboa has used the original songs as the merest basis for writing his own songs. And the Temptations pitch in enthusiastically in the transformations. Theo Peoples, singing lead vocals on "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face," launches into an extended vocal improvisation at the end of the song that doesn't contain any of the words Alan Jay Lerner wrote. Similarly, Sammy Cahn might be surprised, if he had lived long enough, to discover that the opening line of his song "Time After Time" is now "Drop the groove." But if For Lovers Only is not traditional by any means, it does make the Temptations sound contemporary, and it became the group's only album released between 1991 and 1998 to reach the charts, spending six months on the R&B lists. In 2000, "Night and Day," an unusually faithful rendition of the Cole Porter song, was used in the film What Women Want in a "remixed" version from the one on the album (which is to say quite different, including a saxophone solo not present on the original). Motown added this recording as a bonus track for a 2002 reissue of the album.

Customer Reviews

Best of the new Temptations

This is the best recording I have heard from the new Temptation sound. I missplaced the original recording and you can only buy it from the Temptation site as a new release. I am glad I found it on itunes


Formed: 1960 in Detroit, MI

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Thanks to their fine-tuned choreography -- and even finer harmonies -- the Temptations became the definitive male vocal group of the 1960s; one of Motown's most elastic acts, they tackled both lush pop and politically charged funk with equal flair, and weathered a steady stream of changes in personnel and consumer tastes with rare dignity and grace. The Temptations' initial five-man lineup formed in Detroit in 1961 as a merger of two local vocal groups, the Primes and the Distants. Baritone Otis...
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For Lovers Only, The Temptations
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