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What's Going On

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What's Going On is the 1971 album by Marvin Gaye.
220px-MarvinGayeWhat'sGoingOnalbumcover
It is often considered the best motown/soul album ever released. The first Marvin Gaye album credited as produced solely by the artist himself, What's Going On is a unified concept album consisting of nine songs, most of which lead into the next. It has also been categorized as a song cycle, since the album ends on a reprise to the album's opening theme. The album is told from the point of view of a Vietnam War veteran returning to the country he had been fighting for, and seeing nothing but injustice, suffering and hatred.

TracklistingEdit

All songs produced by Marvin Gaye.

Original LPEdit

Side one
  1. "What's Going On" (Al Cleveland, Marvin Gaye, Renaldo "Obie" Benson) – 3:53
  2. "What's Happening Brother" (James Nyx, M. Gaye) – 2:43
  3. "Flyin' High (In the Friendly Sky)" (M. Gaye, Anna Gordy Gaye, Elgie Stover) – 3:49
  4. "Save the Children" (Cleveland, M. Gaye, Benson) – 4:03
  5. "God Is Love" (M. Gaye, A. Gaye, Stover, Nyx) – 1:41
  6. "Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)" (M. Gaye) – 3:16
Side two
  1. "Right On" (Earl DeRouen, M. Gaye) – 7:31
  2. "Wholy Holy" (Benson, Cleveland, M. Gaye) – 3:08
  3. "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" (M. Gaye, Nyx) – 5:26

2001 Deluxe EditionEdit

Disc one (bonus tracks)
  1. "What's Going On" (Detroit Mix) – 4:08
  2. "What's Happening Brother" (Detroit Mix) – 2:43
  3. "Flyin' High (In the Friendly Sky)" (Detroit Mix) – 3:49
  4. "Save the Children" (Detroit Mix) – 4:02
  5. "God Is Love" (Detroit Mix) – 1:47
  6. "Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)" (Detroit Mix) – 3:08
  7. "Right On" (Detroit Mix) – 7:32
  8. "Wholy Holy" (Detroit Mix) – 3:08
  9. "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" (Detroit Mix) – 5:46
  10. "What's Going On" (Rhythm 'n' Strings Mix) – 3:50
Disc two
  1. Sixties Medley (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 13:23
    • "That's The Way Love Is" / "You" / "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" / "Little Darling (I Need You)" / "You’re All I Need To Get By" / "Ain’t Nothing Like The Real Thing" / "Your Precious Love" / "Pride And Joy" / "Stubborn Kind Of Fellow"
  1. "Right On" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 7:33
  2. "Wholy Holy" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 3:32
  3. "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 9:06
  4. "What's Going On" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 5:42
  5. "What's Happening Brother" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 2:54
  6. "Flyin' High (In The Friendly Sky) (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 3:51
  7. "Save The Children" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 4:22
  8. "God Is Love" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 1:43
  9. "Stage Dialogue" (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 2:34
  10. "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" (Reprise) (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 5:12
  11. "What's Going On" (Reprise) (Live At The Kennedy Center) – 4:07
  12. "What's Going On" (Single Version) – 3:56
  13. "God Is Love" (Single Version) – 2:56
  14. "Sad Tomorrows" – 2:27
  15. "Head Title (AKA "Distant Lover")" – 4:07

2002 remasterEdit

  1. "God Is Love" (Single Version) – 2:48
  2. "Sad Tomorrows" – 2:22

2011 Super Deluxe EditionEdit

Professional ratings
2011 deluxe edition
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic
BBC Music (favorable)
The Independent
No Ripcord (10/10)
Pitchfork Media (9.5/10)
Rolling Stone
Spin (9/10)
Uncut

What's Going On was reissued and remastered in a deluxe edition with 28 additional tracks. It was released on May 31, 2011 and received general acclaim from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 100, based on nine reviews, which indicates "universal acclaim".

  1. What’s Going On (Original Rejected Single Mix)
  2. Head Title (Distant Lover) (Demo)
  3. Symphony (Demo)
  4. I Love the Ground You Walk On (Instrumental)
  5. What’s Going On (Mono Single Version)
  6. God is Love (Mono Single Version)
  7. Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology) (Mono Single Version)
  8. Sad Tomorrows (Mono Single Version)
  9. Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) (Mono Single Version)
  10. Wholly Holy (Mono Single Version)
Disc 2
  1. Checking Out (Double Clutch)
  2. Chained
  3. Country Stud
  4. Help the People
  5. Running from Love (Version 1)
  6. Daybreak
  7. Doing My Thing
  8. T Stands for Time
  9. Jesus is Our Love Song
  10. Funky Nation
  11. Infinity
  12. Mandota (Instrumental)
  13. Struttin’ the Blues
  14. Running from Love (Version 2 with Strings)
  15. I’m Going Home (Move)
  16. You’re the Man (Parts I & II)
  17. You’re the Man (Alternate Version 1)
  18. You’re the Man (Alternate Version 2)
LP (Original Detroit Mix – April 5, 1971)
  1. "What's Going On" (Detroit Mix) – 4:08
  2. "What's Happening Brother" (Detroit Mix) – 2:43
  3. "Flyin' High (In the Friendly Sky)" (Detroit Mix) – 3:49
  4. "Save the Children" (Detroit Mix) – 4:02
  5. "God Is Love" (Detroit Mix) – 1:47
  6. "Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)" (Detroit Mix) – 3:08
  7. "Right On" (Detroit Mix) – 7:32
  8. "Wholy Holy" (Detroit Mix) – 3:08
  9. "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" (Detroit Mix) – 5:46
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