1990 (The Temptations album)

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1990
Studio album by The Temptations
Released December 7, 1973
Recorded 1973
Genre Soul, funk, psychedelic soul
Label Gordy
GS 966
Producer Norman Whitfield
The Temptations chronology
The Temptations in Japan
(1973)
1990
(1973)
A Song for You
(1975)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars [1]

1990 is a 1973 album by The Temptations for the Gordy (Motown) label, their final LP written and produced by Norman Whitfield.

The LP was the center of a number of problems. The Temptations were dissatisfied with Whitfield's socially conscious message tracks, which were by now failing commercially, and desired to get back to singing ballads. Whitfield relented some here, placing message tracks such as "1990" and "Ain't No Justice" alongside love songs such as "Heavenly" and "You've Got My Soul on Fire".

The album's first single, the Rose Royce-backed and Dennis Edwards-led funk track "Let Your Hair Down", was its only Top 40 hit. The ballad "Heavenly", sung by Richard Street and Damon Harris, was caught in the center of a disc jockey boycott against Motown. A Motown executive did not thank the United States' DJs while accepting an award for the Temptations at the 1974 American Music Awards, and, as a result, the DJs refused to play "Heavenly". "You've Got My Soul on Fire", another Edwards-led funk track, also stalled out on the pop charts.

The Temptations remained dissatisfied with Whitfield's "slave-driver" like production mentality and his tendency to overshadow the Temptations' contributions to their own records by emphasising his production techniques and creating extended instrumental tracks with only a few verses of vocals. Group leader Otis Williams complained to Motown chief Berry Gordy, who replaced Whitfield with Jeffrey Bowen for their next LP, 1975's A Song for You. Whitfield left Motown soon afterward, and started his own label, Whitfield Records, which released several hits from Rose Royce.

Track listing[edit]

Side One[edit]

All songs written and produced by Norman Whitfield.

  1. "Let Your Hair Down" - 2:40
  2. "I Need You" - 3:05
  3. "Heavenly" - 3:57
  4. "You've Got My Soul on Fire" 3:53
  5. "Ain't No Justice" - 6:08

Side Two[edit]

  1. "1990" - 4:06
  2. "Zoom" - 13:42

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]