Monday, February 11, 2013

Holland-Dozier-Holland: Nowere To Run

Our second Holland, Dozier, and Holland composition that helped define the Motown sound was Martha and the Vandellas’ “Nowhere to Run.” The song, which featured the lead vocals of Martha Reeves on lead vocals, charted at #5 on Billboard’s R&B chart and #8 on the Hot 100.

As with yesterday’s Marvin Gaye recording, “Nowhere to Run” featured the talented house band of Motown Records – The Funk Brothers. The background vocals where handled by the Vandellas – Rosilind Ashford and Betty Kelly.

Often recordings use unique percussion instruments and “Nowhere to Run” is an example of that. Percussionist Ivy Jo Hunter (not to be confused with Ivory Joe Hunter) plays snow chains on this particular recording. If you listen closely, you will hear something that sounds like a bright cabassa – that’s the snow chains.

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