B-side of Give God A Chance
(Written by Mae Gooch)
Mae Gooch, leader of the Gospel Stars, had sung lead on most of the group’s recorded output, credited by some sources as having provided lead vocals for both sides of the group’s début Motown single more than two years previously (He Lifted Me and Behold The Saints Of God, released in March 1961). Having temporarily relinquished lead duties for the A-side here, the unexpectedly complex Give God A Chance, she now fittingly returns to her rightful place for the Gospel Stars’ Motown swansong.
Like the A-side, this recording – held over from the winter of 1961 – was produced by Clarence Paul and Andre Williams, accounting for the R&B and blues touches in the backing tracks on both sides. Indeed, there’s more than a touch of the blues about this record, as the band and the backing choir lay down a slow, grinding tempo (augmented by some fierce electric organ), allowing Mae to deliver her message over the top; but for the most part, it’s just a full-on gospel exhortation to TESTIFY.
Much more conventional than the A-side, but not really any less effective for it, this is mainly a showcase for Ms Gooch’s formidable voice; it’s a good, strong gospel workout, nothing more and nothing less.
MOTOWN JUNKIES VERDICT
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“Give God A Chance”
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