Reach Out I'll Be There
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|"Reach Out I'll Be There"|
|Single by Four Tops|
|from the album Reach Out|
|B-side||"Until You Love Someone"|
|Released||August 18, 1966|
|Recorded||Hitsville U.S.A. (Studio A); 1966|
|Four Tops singles chronology|
"Reach Out I'll Be There" (also formatted as "Reach Out (I'll Be There)") is a 1966 hit song recorded by the Four Tops for the Motown label. Written and produced by Motown's main production team Holland–Dozier–Holland, the song is one of the most well-known Motown tunes of the 1960s and is today considered The Tops' signature song. It was the number one song on the R&B charts for two weeks, and on the Billboard Hot 100 for two weeks, from September 24, 1966 to October 15. It replaced "Cherish" by The Association, and was itself replaced by "96 Tears" by Question Mark & the Mysterians. Rolling Stone later ranked this version #206 on their list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. This version is also currently ranked as the 45th best song of all time, as well as the #3 song of 1966, in an aggregation of critics' lists at acclaimedmusic.net.
This song differs markedly from the Four Tops' earlier efforts, due to the highly-contrasting shifts between minor and major, and also major and augmented chords. These contrasting tonal shades form the hook for which the song is so well known. The Four Tops would rely on this formula for several subsequent releases.
- Lead vocals by Levi Stubbs
- Background vocals by Abdul "Duke" Fakir, Renaldo "Obie" Benson, Lawrence Payton, and The Andantes: Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow, and Louvain Demps
- Instrumentation by The Funk Brothers
- Written by Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, and Edward Holland, Jr.
- Produced by Brian Holland and Lamont Dozier
- Show 50 - The Soul Reformation: Phase three, soul music at the summit. [Part 6] : UNT Digital Library
- Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 212.
- "Acclaimed Music Top 3000 songs". 27 May 2009.
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 170. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
"Cherish" by The Association
|Billboard Hot 100 number one single (The Four Tops version)
October 15, 1966 (two weeks)
"96 Tears" by ? & the Mysterians
"Beauty Is Only Skin Deep" by The Temptations
|Billboard Hot R&B Singles number-one single (The Four Tops version)
October 29, 1966 – November 5, 1966 (two weeks)
"Love Is a Hurtin' Thing" by Lou Rawls
"Distant Drums" by Jim Reeves
|UK number one single
27 October 1966
"Good Vibrations" by Beach Boys