Shop Around

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"Shop Around"
Shop Around - The Miracles.jpg
Single by The Miracles
from the album Hi... We're the Miracles
B-side "Who's Lovin' You"
Released September 27, 1960 (regional)
October 15, 1960 (national)
Format 7" single
Recorded Hitsville USA (Studio A)
1960
Genre Soul
Length
  • 3:04 (Detroit version)
  • 2:50 (National hit version)
Label Tamla
T 54034
Writer(s)
Producer(s) Berry Gordy
The Miracles singles chronology
"Way Over There"
(1960)
"Shop Around"
(1960)
"Who's Lovin' You"
(1960)

"Shop Around" is a song written by Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy. It became a popular hit in 1960 when originally recorded by the Miracles, reaching number one on the Billboard R&B chart and number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. A 1976 cover version by the American husband and wife pop duo Captain & Tennille was also a popular hit, reaching number 4 on the Hot 100 chart, number 4 on the RPM chart in Canada and charting at number one on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.

The Miracles original version[edit]

Background[edit]

The original version of "Shop Around" by the Miracles (credited as "The Miracles featuring Bill 'Smokey' Robinson"), was released in 1960 on Motown's Tamla label, catalog number T 54034. The song, written by Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy, depicts a mother giving her now-grown son advice about how to find a woman worthy of being a girlfriend or wife ("My mama told me/'you better shop around'").[1] The original version of the song had a strong blues influence, and was released in the local area of Detroit, Michigan, before Gordy decided that the song needed to be re-recorded to achieve wider commercial appeal. At 3 a.m. one morning, the Miracles (Robinson, Claudette Rogers, Bobby Rogers, Ronnie White, and Pete Moore) recorded a new, poppier version of the song that became a major national hit. The original record label credits Bill "Smokey" Robinson as the writer, with Berry Gordy as producer.

The single was the first Motown record to be released in the UK, on Decca Records' London label. Pictured in the infobox is the subsequent EP release, coupling the "Shop Around" single with its follow-up, "Ain't It Baby". The two singles and the EP were the only Motown releases on the London label.

Reception[edit]

"Shop Around" was a big hit for the Miracles, becoming the group's first number 1 hit on the Billboard R&B singles chart, spending eight weeks at the top, and also hitting No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.[2] "Shop Around" also reached No. 1 on the Cash Box magazine Top 100 pop chart and is also noted for being the first million-selling record for the Miracles and for the Motown Record Corporation,[1] as well as a 2006 Grammy Hall of Fame inductee. The B-side to "Shop Around", "Who's Lovin' You", also saw a plethora of covers, including a version by The Jackson 5 in 1969.

"Shop Around" inspired an answer record, "Don't Let Him Shop Around" by Debbie Dean. Dean's "Don't Let Him Shop Around" charted No. 92 on the Hot 100 in February 1961 and was Dean's only chart entry. Smokey Robinson later recorded a sequel song for his 1987 album One Heartbeat, entitled "It's Time to Stop Shopping Around".

Awards and accolades[edit]

Track listings[edit]

  1. "Shop Around" - 2:50
  2. "Who's Lovin' You" - 3:06

Chart performance[edit]

Personnel[edit]

Captain & Tennille version[edit]

"Shop Around"
Shop Around - Captain & Tennille.jpg
Single by Captain & Tennille
from the album Song of Joy
B-side "Butterscotch Castle"
Released April 1976
Format 7" single
Genre Pop
Length 3:29
Label A&M
1817
Writer(s)
Producer(s) Daryl Dragon, Toni Tennille
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Captain & Tennille singles chronology
"Lonely Night (Angel Face)"
(1976)
"Shop Around"
(1976)
"Muskrat Love"
(1976)

Background[edit]

In 1976, the American pop music duo Captain & Tennille recorded a cover version of the song "Shop Around" for their second studio album Song of Joy issued on the A&M Records label. Toni Tennille changed the lyrics slightly so that they were sung from a woman's perspective. The "Shop Around" single was produced by the duo and featured the song "Butterscotch Castle" as its B-side.

Reception[edit]

Released as the second single of Captain & Tennille from the Song of Joy album, their version of "Shop Around" was a success. The single reached number 4 in Canada on the RPM singles chart and peaked at number 4 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. Their version became a gold record, and also topped the Billboard easy listening chart for one week in 1976.[7]

Track listings[edit]

  1. "Shop Around" - 3:29
  2. "Butterscotch Castle" - 3:19

Chart performance[edit]

Personnel[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • Hits Of The Sixties: The Million Sellers by Demitri Coryton & Joseph Murrells, Batsford Ltd., 1990, ISBN 978-0713458510, (pg 43).

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Gilliland, John (1969). "Show 25 - The Soul Reformation: Phase two, the Motown story. [Part 4]" (audio). Pop Chronicles. Digital.library.unt.edu. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 404. 
  3. ^ "Inductee explorer | Rock & Roll Hall of Fame". Rockhall.com. Retrieved 2016-09-26. 
  4. ^ "The RS 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2008-06-19. 
  5. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-13. Retrieved 2016-03-12. 
  6. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1960/Top 100 Songs of 1960". Musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved 2016-09-26. 
  7. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 45. 
  8. ^ a b Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-2002, ISBN 978-0898201550
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-02-14. Retrieved 2016-07-26. 
  10. ^ "Top Singles – Volume 26, No. 14 & 15, January 08 1977". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved June 13, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1976/Top 100 Songs of 1976". Musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved 2016-09-26. 
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-10-21. Retrieved 2016-06-05. 

External links[edit]