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Love Makes the World Go Round - The Motown Years

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Album Review

This 18-track compilation includes everything from Kiki Dee's early-'70s Motown album Great Expectations, as well as two additional tracks from her time with the label that surfaced on the rare budget Kiki Dee album in the mid-'70s, along with four previously unreleased 1969-1970 outtakes. While it's good to have this fairly rare material thoughtfully combined into one package, it reinforces the sense that neither Motown nor Dee realized the potential from their unusual association. Part of the problem is that there are too many undistinguished cover versions that can't help but suffer in comparison with the classic hit interpretations — not only of songs made famous by fellow Motown artists like Stevie Wonder and the Miracles, but also hits by Dionne Warwick, Jackie DeShannon, Dusty Springfield, and Deon Jackson. Also, however, Dee's voice just isn't as powerful or imbued with character as those of Motown's top talents, and there's sometimes a sense of listening to an understudy for Dusty Springfield, albeit a competent one. So it's more pleasant than it is essential, though it's certainly pleasing enough if you're looking for enjoyable generic examples of the late-'60s Motown sound, albeit with a white British singer rather than a black Detroit one. Occasionally, too, she gets a chance to sink her teeth into some more satisfyingly adventurous material, like the luscious "Oh Be My Love" (co-written by Smokey Robinson) and the uncommonly stark (for Motown) ballad "Jimmy."

Customer Reviews

Supeeeerb and relaaaaxing!!!

Her fantastic voice has been very much underated. Elton knew that.

Biography

Born: 06 March 1947 in Bradford, Yorkshire, England

Genre: Pop

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

Kiki Dee kicked around Britain as a white soul singer for the better part of the late '60s and early '70s — even becoming the first British Caucasian signed to Motown — before hooking up with Elton John, who signed her to his Rocket Records label and produced her first notable hit, "I've Got the Music in Me." In 1976, at which time John was the biggest pop star in the world, he wrote and duetted with Dee on the single "Don't Go Breaking My Heart," which promptly topped the charts all...
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Love Makes the World Go Round - The Motown Years, Kiki Dee
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