Author Topic: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly  (Read 14962 times)

Offline Marvelous

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2012, 10:45:12 pm »
Al Green is definitely on my top 10.


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Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #16 on: June 14, 2012, 08:28:03 am »
O.K. Stevie Wonder's sheer body of classic work out paces Marvin Gaye.

But after Stevie?

Its Marvin Gaye and it isn't even close.

Al Green abdicated from R&B in '74. Teddy peaked relatively early in his career.

Only Marvie and Stevie did the singer songwriter gig at the highest level. So did Prince but he is kinda of a hybrid.

As for R. Kelly, has he ever produced a truly great album? On the level of What's Going On, Songs in the Key of Life (or even Musiquarium for that matter) or Purple Rain? 

I can't think of any.

Kelly had to copy classic lovermen musicians to revive his career with Love Letter.

To me Kelly is the most wildly sucessful of the second tier of R&B musicans such as Alexander O'Neil, Pebo Bryson, Levert, Col Abrams and them.

He isn't not on the Stevie/Marvin/Smokey level.

At all.

 

Offline jefferson L.O.B. sergeant

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #17 on: June 14, 2012, 12:51:11 pm »
O.K. Stevie Wonder's sheer body of classic work out paces Marvin Gaye.

But after Stevie?

Its Marvin Gaye and it isn't even close.

Al Green abdicated from R&B in '74. Teddy peaked relatively early in his career.

Only Marvie and Stevie did the singer songwriter gig at the highest level. So did Prince but he is kinda of a hybrid.

As for R. Kelly, has he ever produced a truly great album? On the level of What's Going On, Songs in the Key of Life (or even Musiquarium for that matter) or Purple Rain? 

I can't think of any.

Kelly had to copy classic lovermen musicians to revive his career with Love Letter.

To me Kelly is the most wildly sucessful of the second tier of R&B musicans such as Alexander O'Neil, Pebo Bryson, Levert, Col Abrams and them.

He isn't not on the Stevie/Marvin/Smokey level.

At all.

 

You left out( I would say conveniently but I'll give you a pass!) SMOKEY ROBINSON and CURTIS MAYFIELD. Those 2 men don't surpass Marvin?

You have weakened your argument by comparing Kelly to Col Abrams.

Really? Col Abrams? 8)


Offline jefferson L.O.B. sergeant

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2012, 01:03:27 pm »
Okay, when I said Marvin was the GOAT, I knew that was rash and I was typing too fast without thinking it through.

But your counter is kinda making my case.

the only person you mentioned who could take the title with ease is Stevie Wonder. When you compare Stevie's "golden period" (MUSIC OF MY MIND, TALKING BOOK, INNERVISIONS, FULFILLINGNESS' FIRST FINALE, SONGS IN THE KEY OF LIFE, the flawed but interesting SECRET LIFE OF PLANTS, and the return to form HOTTER THAN JULY) to Marvin's "golden period" (WHAT'S GOING ON, LET'S GET IT ON, I WANT YOU, the TROUBLE MAN soundtrack, the flawed but interesting HERE MY DEAR), Stevie's got more masterpieces under his belt.

Now that list doesn't count all their respective hits working in the Motown hit machine before they broke off and became creative auteurs.

R. Kelly's HAPPY PEOPLE album is great top to bottom, but it's him mimicking Marvin shamelessly.  Are there some other masterpieces that he's made that I am not considering?  

Curtis Mayfield is magnificent, with the SUPERFLY soundtrack, the SPARKLE soundtrack and the CLAUDINE soundtrack just to name a few great albums, but track for track his solo albums aren't as strong as Stevie's or Marvin's.  

Smokey is the most underrated guy on your list, props for bringing him up, The TEARS OF A CLOWN album is a masterpiece, the QUIET STORM album is also perfect and launched a whole radio format, and his early works with the Temptations launched the great male vocal group of all time.  

Your R. Kelly "argument" (as if a case could be made) is that he makes hits.  Well, Stevie, Marvin, Smokey and Curtis have made more hits then R. Kelly.  And Stevie, Marvin and Curtis inspired countless musicians and had huge cultural impact.  R. Kelly doesn't have a WHAT'S GOING ON or SONGS IN THE KEY OF LIFE in his body of work.  

As a musician, do you want to put R. Kelly's piano playing skills up against Marvin's?

I think Marvin is getting a lot of credit for writing and producing that he may not have done here( Hey, I see that knife!) I will go back and check to see what he actually did on those classic albums. It was either AMERICAN MASTERS or another documentary that chronicled those albums and many times I saw Marvin saying he went to writers with concepts and they came back with a template or actual songs.

Smokey Robinson- Smokey has Marvin hands down. He set the template for the R&B style that dominates to this day and then re-imagined it in the 70's which is the standard for adult contemporary. Marvin followed and benefitted from both.

Curtis Mayfield- I hereby accept the hit for hit challenge on Mayfield's behalf with the caveat that the songs are limited to ones produced SOLELY by either man. At the very least each had to do more than vocals. Mayfield has it by a mile!.

R Kelly- Hits is too limited of a concept here. Kelly can make a song for any genre and produce albums worth of great material. Marvin never did that. I can take Kelly's songs to a church, club, conference or corner and he will have everything covered. As I said before, the sacred and profane is done best by this guy.

I'm not unreasonable so I will admit Marvin has the piano title over Kelly.

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #19 on: June 14, 2012, 09:31:52 pm »
I love how you somehow discount Marvin's writing and producing skills, but accept that R. Kelly is some kind of Prince/Stevie level of one man band genius. 

I don't hate on collaboration, whether it's R. Kelly, Marvin, Lauryn Hill or whoever.  No man is really a musical island.

Everyone keeps asking you to list Kellz perfect albums, his masterpieces, and you keep not doing it.  Given how much you love the man, you can't be scared to compare 12 PLAY to WHAT'S GOING ON. 


Offline Lion

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #20 on: June 15, 2012, 08:38:39 am »

Offline Curtis Metcalf

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #21 on: June 15, 2012, 09:26:41 am »
You left out( I would say conveniently but I'll give you a pass!) SMOKEY ROBINSON and CURTIS MAYFIELD. Those 2 men don't surpass Marvin?

No, they don't. Not as R&B artists by which I mean singers/songwriters/creators of art. No extra credit for doing it "solo". (As Reg pointed out, that's not how it works.) These masters are clearly the primary creative force of their music and just as clearly had help.

As songwriters and producers of their own music and others', both Smokey and Curtis surpass Marvin in my view. Of course, Smokey may be the best American songwriter ever. But that's another discussion.

As a performer though, Marvin houses them both. And just about everybody else for that matter.

So I suppose it does depend on what you value. Smokey vs. Curtis vs. Marvin is a good discussion and reasonable folks could differ. For me though, that's clear win for Marvin.

Marvin vs. Stevie is the real championship match. First off, let's just acknowledge that nobody in any genre can really f*ck with Stevie's golden period. I doubt we'll ever see as magnificent a creative period as that supernova. That said, lyrically I think I prefer Marvin. Stevie writes romance great. Marvin did that and brought the heat on top of it. Back in the day, if you were trying to get busy, did you reach for Innervisions or Let's Get It On? That's what I thought...

And let's not even talk about political / social songwriting -- What's Going On is Mt. Everest.

That said, if I had to give up one of the box sets, I guess I'd hold on to Stevie.
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Offline Battle

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #22 on: June 15, 2012, 09:38:06 am »
Back in the day, if you were trying to get busy, did you reach for Innervisions or Let's Get It On? That's what I thought...




Did anyone ever see that scene in "Something's Gotta Give" where Jack Nicholson's character suffers a heart attack trying to woo a young woman while her mother is in the other room, and 'Let's Get It On' is playing in the stereo?

Offline jefferson L.O.B. sergeant

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #23 on: June 15, 2012, 11:49:56 am »
I love how you somehow discount Marvin's writing and producing skills, but accept that R. Kelly is some kind of Prince/Stevie level of one man band genius. 

I don't hate on collaboration, whether it's R. Kelly, Marvin, Lauryn Hill or whoever.  No man is really a musical island.

Everyone keeps asking you to list Kellz perfect albums, his masterpieces, and you keep not doing it.  Given how much you love the man, you can't be scared to compare 12 PLAY to WHAT'S GOING ON. 



Hold on there!

If you are going to legitimately compare artists you have to view their ability on a solo level. I don't get how that is illegitimate unless you're scared that Marvin can't hold up to that scrutiny. 8)

Lets get this out of the way.

R KELLLY HAS NEVER PRODUCED A SINGLE PROJECT TO MATCH OR SURPASS WHAT'S GOIN ON!

HOWEVER, over the breadth of his career he has produced more than enough material SOLELY to surpass Marvin Gaye.

HAPPY PEOPLE- Perfect album that beats HERE MY DEAR.

12 PLAY- One of the best debuts ever and easily stands up to I WANT YOU.

Offline jefferson L.O.B. sergeant

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #24 on: June 15, 2012, 11:54:16 am »
You left out( I would say conveniently but I'll give you a pass!) SMOKEY ROBINSON and CURTIS MAYFIELD. Those 2 men don't surpass Marvin?

No, they don't. Not as R&B artists by which I mean singers/songwriters/creators of art. No extra credit for doing it "solo". (As Reg pointed out, that's not how it works.) These masters are clearly the primary creative force of their music and just as clearly had help.

As songwriters and producers of their own music and others', both Smokey and Curtis surpass Marvin in my view. Of course, Smokey may be the best American songwriter ever. But that's another discussion.

As a performer though, Marvin houses them both. And just about everybody else for that matter.

So I suppose it does depend on what you value. Smokey vs. Curtis vs. Marvin is a good discussion and reasonable folks could differ. For me though, that's clear win for Marvin.

Marvin vs. Stevie is the real championship match. First off, let's just acknowledge that nobody in any genre can really f*ck with Stevie's golden period. I doubt we'll ever see as magnificent a creative period as that supernova. That said, lyrically I think I prefer Marvin. Stevie writes romance great. Marvin did that and brought the heat on top of it. Back in the day, if you were trying to get busy, did you reach for Innervisions or Let's Get It On? That's what I thought...

And let's not even talk about political / social songwriting -- What's Going On is Mt. Everest.

That said, if I had to give up one of the box sets, I guess I'd hold on to Stevie.

Solo ability seperates the greats from the immortals. I think it is a clear distinction.

Stevie Wonder VS Prince is a discussion. Stevie Wonder VS Marvin is a slaughter in Stevie's favor. Respectfully, I can't see how Marvin can touch Stevie's level of genius.

Offline Battle

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #25 on: June 15, 2012, 12:49:38 pm »
...or the Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Egg commercial featuring Marvin Gaye's 'Let's Get It On'?


Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #26 on: June 16, 2012, 05:15:55 am »
Curtis' box set question is a good one.  

Practically speaking, I play more Marvin on a regular basis than Stevie, although I play Stevie a lot.  But as I said earlier, I give Stevie credit for more masterpiece albums.  But Marvin's music repeats better.

"Solo" keeps getting mention, and I don't know how you are defining it, but I addressed that issue in an earlier post.

As for the works of R. Kelly, glad you're getting specific.  You put HAPPY PEOPLE up against one of the weakest of Marvin's albums, HERE MY DEAR, since it can't hang against WHAT'S GOING ON, LET'S GET IT ON, I WANT YOU or even the TROUBLE MAN soundtrack.  

12 PLAY against I WANT YOU?  NO.  Kellz does not win.  Maybe from your generational perspective he does, but you will never convince anyone of the Marvin era of that one.

R. Kellz has hits.  IGNITION was a great enough record that it kept him out of jail.  But Marvin's had more hits.  He's got a gang of songs at that level we haven't even brought into the discussion, from his duets with Tammi Terrell to GOT TO GIVE IT UP.  Hit for hit, R. Kelly can't keep up.  

Cultural impact?  Marvin.  The whole world knows the man and his music.  He's got love songs, party jams and social uplift.      

Like Luther Vandross, R. Kelly never crossed over to a mainstream audience.  Doesn't diminish their art, but Marvin did without artistic compromise.  Just another feather in Marvin's cap.

I think Stevie vs. Prince was an earlier Hard Choice.

Offline Princesa

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #27 on: June 16, 2012, 01:38:23 pm »
Marvin easily not just because I hate R Kelly but because I don't like his music. At all.

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #28 on: June 16, 2012, 05:46:20 pm »
I was describing this online debate with the Dean of American music criticism, Nelson George, and the first thing he said was "R. Kelly wouldn't put himself ahead of Marvin Gaye". 


Offline Emperorjones

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Re: Marvin Gaye or R Kelly
« Reply #29 on: June 16, 2012, 06:49:19 pm »
My heart says Marvin, though after reading some of these comments, my brain might be going toward R. Kelly.

For some of the critics, I mean, what's a 'great' album? I thought 12play was a great album, it certainly was seminal, whether you agreed with the raunchiness or not. And R. Kelly put a lot of people on, the most successful being Aaliyah, while helping revitalize Ron Isley's career. Kelly has to be considered a genius of remixing. Whenever I used to buy his singles I knew I was getting two or three songs for the price of one and they were generally all good. He's been an extremely creative and prolific artists, even if perhaps too many of his efforts have been making sex jams.

There is nothing second tier about R. Kelly. Despite his personal issues, on a creative level-and despite the content of some of his work-he is the King of R&B. I don't think Kelly should put himself ahead/above Marvin because so much of who he is came from Marvin Gaye, the Isleys, etc.  And that's not really his role anyway. That's for us fans to debate and decide anyway.

About Luther, he did crossover to some extent, with "Here and Now" and some of his 90s albums. And R. Kelly crossover was "I Believe I Can Fly". His next album had that duet with Celine Dion, and then he did the song for the Olympics. But his legal troubles squelched whatever ideas he might have had regarding more crossovers.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2012, 05:32:21 am by Emperorjones »