Trouble Man (album)

Trouble Man (album)

Infobox Album | Name = Trouble Man
Type = Soundtrack
Artist = Marvin Gaye

Released = December 8, 1972
Recorded = 1972
Hitsville U.S.A.,
Detroit, Michigan
Hitsville West,
Los Angeles, California
Genre = Soul, funk
Length = 38:25
Label = Tamla
Producer = Marvin Gaye
Reviews =
*Allmusic Rating|3.5|5 [ link]
*Robert Christgau (C) [ link]
*"MusicHound" Rating|4|5 [ link]
*"Rolling Stone" (mixed) [ 3/01/73] | Last album = "What's Going On"
This album = "Trouble Man"
Next album = "Let's Get It On"
(1973) |

"Trouble Man" is a soundtrack album by soul singer Marvin Gaye, released December 8, 1972 on Motown-subsidary label Tamla Records. As the soundtrack to the 1972 blaxploitation film of the same name, the "Trouble Man" soundtrack was a more contemporary move for Gaye, following his landmark politically-charged album "What's Going On".


Fresh off the left-field base success of his classic 1971 album, "What's Going On", Gaye was intrigued by Hollywood. Gaye had acted in two films, including "The Ballad of Andy Crocker" and "Chrome and Hot Leather". The singer moved to Los Angeles in 1972 after he accepted the offer to do a soundtrack album.

Like Isaac Hayes and Curtis Mayfield, Gaye took to recording a soundtrack for a blaxploitation film. "Trouble Man", a thriller based in the ghetto, was made solely for the soundtrack Gaye composed and produced himself. Unlike "Super Fly (soundtrack)" and "Shaft", the soundtrack to "Trouble Man" doesn't feature love songs; except for a few vocal jabs by Gaye, it is made up entirely of instrumental pieces. The title track was released in several different mixes. The song was also Gaye's venture into a more blues influenced sound missing from his previous work. According to Gaye, the song was autobiographical to his nature. The vocal version became another big hit for Gaye, reaching #7 on the Billboard Pop Singles Chart in 1973. The song was later covered by long-time Gaye admirer and Motown artist, Chico DeBarge. Critics deemed "Trouble Man" on par with Hayes and Mayfield's albums. Gaye was soon followed by other contemporaries including James Brown ("Black Caesar"), Willie Hutch ("The Mack"; "Foxy Brown") and Barry White ("The Together Brothers").

Track listing

"All songs written by Marvin Gaye."
#"Main Theme From Trouble Man (2)" – 2:30
#"'T' Plays It Cool" – 4:27
#"Poor Abbey Walsh" – 4:13
#"The Break In (Police Shoot Big)" – 1:57
#"Cleo's Apartment" – 2:10
#"Trouble Man" – 3:49
#"Theme From Trouble Man" – 2:01
#"'T' Stands For Trouble" – 4:48
#"Main Theme From Trouble Man (1)" – 3:52
#"Life is a Gamble" – 2:32
#"Deep in It" – 1:25
#"Don't Mess with Mister 'T'" – 3:04
#"There Goes Mister 'T'" – 1:37



*Marvin Gaye: all vocals, drums, keyboards, piano
*Trevor Lawrence: alto, tenor and baritone saxophone
*Dale Oehler: horns
*Gene Page: strings
*Bob Ragland: piano, strings
*James Anthony Carmichael: horns

Additional personnel

*Composed, written and produced by Marvin Gaye
*Arranged by Dale Oehler, Marvin Gaye, Gene Page, Jack Hayes, J.J. Johnson, Bob Ragland and Leo Shunker

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