Mary Wells - My Guy


Mary Wells - My Guy

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  "My Guy" is a 1964 hit single recorded by Mary Wells for the Motown label. Written and produced by Smokey Robinson of The Miracles, the song is a woman's dedication to the goodness of her man ("There's not a man today who could take me away from my guy").

 

At the session for the "My Guy" backing track the studio musicians were having issues completing the intro: with the musicians having been playing all day and a half-hour scheduled studio time left, trombonist George Bohanon pointed out to keyboardist Earl Van Dyke that the opening measure of "Canadian Sunset" could be perfectly juxtaposed on the intro's chord changes, and Van Dyke, the session bandleader, expediently constructed an intro incorporating the opening of "Canadian Sunset" and also the "left hand notes" from "Canadian Sunset" composer Eddie Heywood's rendition of "Begin the Beguine". Van Dyke would recall: "We were doing anything to get the hell out of that studio. We knew that the producers didn't know nothing 'bout no 'Canadian Sunset' or 'Begin the Beguine'. We figured the song would wind up in the trash can anyway".

When Wells recorded her vocal she sang over the song's outro with a huskiness evoking the line delivery of Mae West: Wells would recall: "I was only joking but the producers said 'Keep it going, keep it going'."

"My Guy" became the biggest hit ever for Wells, Motown's first female star, and reached the top of the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart on 16 May 1964. The song led the Cashbox magazine R&B chart for seven weeks. "My Guy" was also Wells' last hit single for Motown, except for duets she recorded with label mate Marvin Gaye. An option in her recording contract let Wells terminate the contract at her discretion after she reached her twenty-first birthday on May 13, 1964. Encouraged by her ex-husband, Wells broke her Motown contract and signed with 20th Century Fox in hopes of higher royalties and possible movie roles. However, Wells' career never again reached the heights it had at Motown, and she never again had a hit single as big as "My Guy".

In the United Kingdom, "My Guy" peaked at number five in June 1964.

 

Personnel

  • Lead vocals by Mary Wells
  • Background vocals by The Andantes: Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow, and Louvain Demps
  • Written and produced by William "Smokey" Robinson
  • Instrumentation by The Funk Brothers:
    • Earl Van Dyke: organ
    • Johnny Griffith: piano
    • Eddie Willis: guitar
    • Robert White: guitar
    • James jamerton: double bass
    • Benny Benjamin: drums
    • Dave Hamilton: vibes
    • Herbert Williams: trumpet
    • Russ Conway: trumpet
    • Paul Riser: trombone
    • George Bohannon: trombone

 

 

 

Mary Well - My Guy / Oh Little Boy

U.K. Stateside SS 288 (1964)

The vinyl record attains a strong excellent grading, suggesting few plays.

Both record centre labels are clean and unmarked.

The record centre labels are free from tears, stains or stickers.

The record comes with an original company paper sleeve.

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