Marvin Gaye was born on this date in 1939.
- The Motown legend was born Marvin Pentz Gay Junior in Washington, DC.
- A protégé of singer-turned-producer Harvey Fuqua, who first brought him to Detroit as a member of his group The Moonglows.
- “Stubborn Kind of Fellow” was Marvin’s first R&B chart hit.
- 1963’s “Pride and Joy” marked his debut in the pop Top 10.
- He recorded “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” in 1967, several months before Gladys Knight and the Pips cut it.
- Berry Gordy didn’t like it for a single and didn’t let Motown release it.
- Radio discovered it as a cut on the 1968 album In the Groove, by which time it was known as a hit for Knight.
- Had Top 20 duets with Tammi Terrell, Kim Weston (“It Takes Two”) and Diana Ross(“A Special Part of Me”).
- He turned to more topical, progressive music during the early ’70s, beginning with the album What’s Going On.
- Scored the crime drama Trouble Man, which starred Robert Hooks.
- Shot dead by his preacher-father on April 1st, 1984, one day before his 45th birthday.
- His number-one single “Got to Give It Up” has been the basis of a long-running plagiarism case against “Blurred Lines” composers Pharell Williams and Robin Thicke.
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