Baby Don't You Do It

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"Baby Don't You Do It"
Baby Don't You Do It cover.jpg
Single by Marvin Gaye
from the album How Sweet It Is to Be Loved by You
B-side"Walk on the Wild Side"
ReleasedSeptember 2, 1964
RecordedAugust 1 & 4, 1964
GenreRhythm and blues, soul
Producer(s)Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier
Marvin Gaye singles chronology
"Try It Baby"
"Baby Don't You Do It"
"What Good Am I Without You"

"Baby Don't You Do It" is a 1964 single by American singer Marvin Gaye. Released on the Tamla label, this song discusses a man who is at a standstill with his girlfriend, who he feels is neglecting his love stating "Don't break my heart/...I've tried to do my best".

Featured on the Holland–Dozier–Holland-written and produced track, for the first time on a Marvin Gaye record, were Motown's top session girl group, the Andantes. The song was originally written and intended for the Supremes, but eventually reassigned to Marvin Gaye to record.

In October 1964 Gaye's single peaked at number 27 on both the Billboard Hot 100[1] and the Top 100 singles chart in Cashbox, with Cashbox affording the single a number 14 peak on its R&B chart (Billboard was not maintaining an R&B chart at this time).


The Band versions[edit]

The Band recorded the song numerous times under the title "Don't Do It". The lead singer was Levon Helm, with backing vocals by Rick Danko and Richard Manuel. Different versions, both studio and live, appear on several of their albums and box sets, including the 1972 live release Rock of Ages. "Don't Do It" was the encore performed by The Band in Martin Scorsese's 1976 concert film The Last Waltz, though it was featured first in the film. Although it was not included on the 1978 soundtrack album, the track was included in the 2002 box set edition of The Last Waltz soundtrack.

The version of "Don't Do It" from Rock of Ages was issued as a single, reaching #34 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the autumn of 1972; the track was the second - following "Up on Cripple Creek" - and final Top 40 single for the Band. Billboard called this version a "dynamite dance treatment."[3]

The Who versions[edit]

"Baby Don't You Do It"
Join Together cover.jpg
Single by The Who
A-side"Join Together"
  • 16 June 1972 (UK)
  • 8 July 1972 (US)
RecordedDecember 13, 1971
VenueCivic Auditorium, San Francisco
GenreRock, hard rock

The Who recorded several versions of "Baby Don't You Do It". The first version released was recorded live in San Francisco and released as the b-side to "Join Together".[4] The group had previously played the song in their live performances circa 1964-65, and a studio recording from that time was later released on the 1998 remastered CD of Odds & Sods.

The Who also performed a studio recording of the song on March 16, 1971 at The Record Plant in New York. This version became first available on the 1995 Reissue of Who's Next and featured Leslie West on lead guitar, but was edited to 5:13.[5] The full version (8:21) of the song became available on the Who's Next Deluxe Edition. During the sixth season of That '70s Show when the show's episodes were all named after recordings by The Who, the March 3, 2004 broadcast was entitled "Baby Don't You Do It".

Other versions[edit]

Small Faces' version of the song appears on their 1967 compilation album From the Beginning.

Nicolette Larson remade "Baby Don't You Do It" for her 1978 album Nicolette; this version prominently featured vocalist Valerie Carter.

Humble Pie recorded a version of the song for their 1980 album "On To Victory".


  1. ^ "Marvin Gaye awards". Allmusic. Retrieved 2014-04-14.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Radio Action and Pick Singles" (PDF). Billboard. September 2, 1972. p. 58. Retrieved 2020-08-02.
  4. ^ "Join Together - The Who". Retrieved 2017-11-03.
  5. ^ Who's Next 1995 Reissue Liner Notes Page 20

External links[edit]