Cruisin' (Smokey Robinson song)

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Cruisin' - Smokey Robinson.jpg
Single by Smokey Robinson
from the album Where There's Smoke...
B-side"Ever Had a Dream"
ReleasedAugust, 1979 (August, 1979) (Debuted on Billboard's Soul chart on September 1, 1979)
Format45 RPM
GenreSoul, R&B, adult contemporary
4:11 (7" edit)
LabelTamla (Motown)
Songwriter(s)Smokey Robinson, Marv Tarplin
Smokey Robinson singles chronology
"Get Ready"
"Let Me Be the Clock"

"Cruisin'" is a 1979 single written, produced, and recorded by Smokey Robinson for Motown Records' Tamla label. One of Robinson's most successful singles outside of his work with The Miracles, "Cruisin'" hit #1 on the U.S. Cash Box Top 100 and was also a major Billboard Pop hit, peaking at #4 the week of February 2, 1980.[1] It was a Top Five hit on the Soul chart as well.[2]

The song was co-written by fellow Miracle Marv Tarplin. "Cruisin'" was an even bigger hit in New Zealand, hitting #1 on that country's chart. It is included on Robinson's ninth studio album, Where There's Smoke....

Reportedly, Smokey had a cold when he recorded the song. It was originally intended as a B side for a remake of "Get Ready".

Chart performance[edit]

D'Angelo version[edit]

Single by D'Angelo
from the album Brown Sugar
ReleasedDecember 5, 1995
FormatCD Single, Cassette, 7" vinyl
GenreR&B, Soul
Length3:58 (radio edit)
6:24 (album version)
Songwriter(s)Smokey Robinson, Marv Tarplin
D'Angelo singles chronology
"Brown Sugar"

Neo soul musician D'Angelo recorded a cover of the song for his 1995 album Brown Sugar. The cover was released as the album's second single on October 12, 1995 and was commercially successful charting within the top ten of the US R&B charts.[7][8] the album reached sales of 500,000 copies in the United States by October 1995.[9][10] This version appeared in the third episode of the UPN sitcom, Moesha in 1996.

Composition and arrangement[edit]

"Cruisin", a cover of Smokey Robinson's 1979 hit of the same name, here features a predominant string section.[11] The longest track on the album, it employs violin, viola and cello, as well as shakers and light percussion, while sleigh bells are featured in the chorus.[12] Flutist Lauryn Vivino contributes with piccolo. The track also features steady piano-playing by D'Angelo,[13] with Brooklyn Funk Essentials-member Bob "Bassy" Brockmann playing the trumpet.[14]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Cruisin'"
  2. "Brown Sugar"


Chart (1995) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 53
U.S. Billboard Hot R&B Singles 10

Gwyneth Paltrow and Huey Lewis version[edit]

Cruisin' - Gwyneth Paltrow and Huey Lewis.jpg
Single by Gwyneth Paltrow and Huey Lewis
from the album Duets: Original Soundtrack
ReleasedSeptember 11, 2000
FormatCD single, Cassette, Vinyl (7" 45rpm), Maxi Vinyl (33rpm/45rpm)
GenreSoft rock, adult contemporary
LabelHollywood Records
Songwriter(s)Smokey Robinson, Marv Tarplin

Gwyneth Paltrow and Huey Lewis performed a cover of the song in the 2000 film Duets. The song is included on the soundtrack of the film. The duet spent one week at number one on the Adult Contemporary chart.[15]

The song was an even bigger hit in both Australia and New Zealand, reaching number one on each country's singles charts.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Cruisin'"
  2. "Feeling Alright"
  3. "Beginnings/Endings"


Weekly charts
Chart (2000-01) Peak
Australian Singles Chart [16] 1
New Zealand Singles Chart [17] 1
Polish Singles Chart [18] 29
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks[19] 1
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles[20] 109
Year-end charts
Chart (2001) Position
Australia (ARIA Charts) [21] 27
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ) [22] 12

Other covers[edit]


  1. ^ "Cruisin'" by Smokey Robinson (chart history) – Billboard.
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 497.
  3. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Retrieved 2016-10-14.
  4. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–1993. Record Research. p. 202.
  5. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-07-01. Retrieved 2015-01-03.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ "Top Selling Singles of 1980 | The Official New Zealand Music Chart". 1980-12-31. Retrieved 2016-10-14.
  7. ^ Billboard Singles: Brown Sugar. AllMusic. Retrieved on 2010-05-09.
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Retrieved 2014-03-21.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-10-19. Retrieved 2010-05-09.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  10. ^ Ayers, Anne. "D'Angelo Cruisin' Through His First Tour. USA Today: 14.D. November 1, 1995.
  11. ^ Shapiro (2006), p. 104.
  12. ^ Metal Lungies: Remix Tuesdays - D’Angelo Part 4. Metal Lungies. Retrieved on 2009-02-01.
  13. ^ W & A's Record Reviews: D'Angelo. Retrieved on 2009-02-01.
  14. ^ Discogs: Bob "Bassy" Brockmann Discography. Discogs. Retrieved on 2009-02-01.
  15. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 146.
  16. ^ Hung, Steffen. " - Australian charts portal". Retrieved 2018-06-28.
  17. ^ Hung, Steffen. " - New Zealand charts portal". Retrieved 2018-06-28.
  18. ^ "Cruisin'". Retrieved 2014-03-31.
  19. ^ "Adult Contemporary Music Chart". Billboard. 2000-12-23. Retrieved 2016-10-14.
  20. ^ "17 Movie Stars Who Have Charted on the Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved 2018-06-28.
  21. ^ "ARIA Charts - End of Year Charts - Top 100 Singles 2001". Retrieved 2018-06-28.
  22. ^ "End of Year Charts 2001". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved December 11, 2017.
  23. ^ "Foreward: Album".
  24. ^ "An Interview with Wayman Tisdale".
  25. ^ "Jazz Albums: Hang Time Wayman Tisdale".
  26. ^ "". Amazon.

External links[edit]