It just doesn’t sound like it’s quite finished, which is a pity. (5)
Smokey Robinson, who writes and produces here, had by now developed a knack of bringing the best out of underpowered singers, and this is a fine effort; if it’s not exactly top-drawer Smokey (or indeed top-drawer Jimmy, though listeners at the time had no idea what that might sound like), it’s Ruffin Senior’s best single to date, both whistleable and likeable. (7)
Motown had made such strides during this Golden Age that even the “filler” (for want of a better word) ends up as classy, highly listenable fare. That it could have obviously been even better is almost a churlish observation in these surroundings. (5)
Even if the overall impression is of a pretty record that never quite takes its foot off the brake pedal, there’s more than enough here to suggest Jimmy was one to watch. (6)
A sparse bit of third-rate pedestrian doo-wop filler which would have been rejected by Motown’s Quality Control meetings had it been recorded even a year later. It doesn’t sound tense, raw, intimate, minimal, low-key, or any of the other adjectives usually applied to pared-down recordings; it just sounds awful. Avoid.
An admirable effort, all told, one which showed enough character and potential – as with Henry Lumpkin before him and Marvin Gaye later down the line – to persuade Motown to keep Jimmy on the books, despite an initial lack of chart success. (6)