(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave


(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave

Infobox Single
Name = (Love Is Like a) Heat Wave
B-side = A Love Like Yours (Don't Come Knocking Everyday)
Artist = Martha and the Vandellas
from Album = Heat Wave


Format = 7" single
Released = July 9, 1963
Recorded = Hitsville USA (Studio A); 1963
Genre = Soul/pop
Length = 2:47
Label = Gordy
G 7022
Writer = Holland-Dozier-Holland
Producer = Brian Holland
Lamont Dozier
Last single = "Come and Get These Memories"
1963
This single = "(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave"
1963
Next single = "Quicksand"
1963

"(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave" is a 1963 hit single by Holland-Dozier-Holland made popular by Motown girl group Martha and the Vandellas on the Gordy (Motown) label and later by country rock vocalist Linda Ronstadt from her album Prisoner in Disguise.

Overview

The song was one of several tunes written and produced by the fabled Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting and producing team. "Heat Wave" was the second hit collaboration between the Vandellas and H-D-H, the first being "Come and Get These Memories". The lyrics feature the narrator singing about a guy that has his heart "burning with desire" and "going insane" over the feeling of his love.

Produced and composed with a gospel backbeat, jazz overtones and, doo-wop call and responsive vocals, "Heat Wave" was one of the first songs to exemplify the style of music later termed as being the "Motown Sound". The single was a breakthrough hit, peaking at number four on the Billboard Pop Singles Chart, and at number-one on the Billboard R&B Singles Chart. It also garnered the group's only Grammy Award nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group for 1964, making The Vandellas the first Motown group ever to receive a Grammy Award Nomination.

"Heat Wave's" success helped popularize both Martha and the Vandellas and Holland-Dozier-Holland, and cemented Motown as a musical force. The song has since been covered by several acts, including labelmate The Supremes (on their 1967 album "The Supremes Sing Holland-Dozier-Holland"), The Jam (on their 1979 album "Setting Sons"), The Who in their early concerts and on their second album, A Quick One, Joan Osbourne (her version done for the Funk Brothers documentary "Standing in the Shadows of Motown"), country rock singer Linda Ronstadt (which reached number five on the pop chart), and rocker Bruce Springsteen. The song was also covered by Whoopi Goldberg in the film "Sister Act". It is also featured at the beginning of the film "Backdraft".

In a 2007 DVD entitled "The Lovin' Spoonful with John Sebastian - Do You Believe in Magic," songwriter John Sebastian illustrates how he sped up the three-chord intro from Martha and the Vandellas' "(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave" to come up with the intro to his 1965 hit "Do You Believe in Magic."

Credits

* Lead vocals: Martha Reeves
* Background vocals: Rosalind Ashford and Annette Sterling
* Produced by Brian Holland and Lamont Dozier
* Written by Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Edward Holland, Jr.
* Instrumentation by The Funk Brothers:
** Richard "Pistol" Allen: drums
** James Jamerson: double bass
** Joe Hunter: electric piano
** Robert White: guitar
** Eddie Willis: guitar
** Thomas "Beans" Bowles: saxophone solo


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