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Ambient/New Age - Released January 1, 1963 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1971 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1974 | UNI - MOTOWN

Though not the artistic success of Renaissance, the Miracles' second LP fared better commercially due to the sinuous "Do It Baby," their first bonafide hit without Smokey Robinson. "Do It Baby" shocked many loyal Miracles fans; they had never recorded a song as sexually explicit as the midtempo romper. It's easy to see why Billy Griffin was chosen to replace Robinson -- his tenor is naturally high like Smokey's, without ranging into falsetto. Some of the songs are too saccharine, almost bubblegum; "Up Again," for example, would have been better suited for a younger group. Willie Hutch's "I Can't Get Ready for Losing You," however, is a guitar-driven smoker that speeds along like a runaway locomotive. For some reason, "What Is a Heart Good For," from the first album, is included here too. ~ Andrew Hamilton
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R&B - Released November 1, 1965 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released September 30, 1970 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1961 | UNI - MOTOWN

The Miracles' first album is a magnificent debut, filled with impeccable vocal performances, inventive and occasionally brilliant songwriting, and an aching romantic aura. "Shop Around" was the big hit on the record, but another highlight is the group's recut version (also available on the old Miracles' Anthology double-disc set) of their single "Way Over There" in a lusher, more beguiling arrangement, which anticipated Phil Spector's "pop symphony" productions with the Crystals, Darlene Love, the Ronettes, and Tina Turner. Smokey Robinson authored or co-authored (with Berry Gordy or fellow Miracle Ronnie White) all but one track here -- all are winners, and songs like the ethereal Robinson-White "Heart Like Mine" are worth the price of the disc. They'd do classier, more elaborate work later on, but the youthful verve of Robinson, Claudette Rogers Robinson, Ronnie White, Bobby Rogers, Pete Moore, and Marv Tarplin on these tracks makes this an indispensable record, even for casual fans. ~ Bruce Eder
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R&B - Released January 1, 1965 | UNI - MOTOWN

A double-LP of 22 of their best early songs that would rank higher if there weren't other far more comprehensive greatest-hits collections available. This one only covers pre-1965 material, but what's here is certainly fine, and not every track commonly appears on other best-of compilations. The exquisite mid-tempo ballad "Would I Love You" is the most notable of the lesser-known tunes. ~ Richie Unterberger
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R&B - Released January 1, 1973 | UNI - MOTOWN

Motown assigned a number of producers to work with the Miracles on their first LP after Smokey Robinson's departure. The resulting patching of efforts excels, as each producer brought his best to the table. Newcomer Billy Griffin joins Ron White, Bobby Rogers, and Pete Moore for some delicious vocal blends. The Marvin Gaye-produced "I Love You Secretly" is comparable to his successful Original productions "Baby I'm for Real" and "Bells." Willie Hutch contributed two numbers, the understated "Wigs & Lashes" and the exciting "I Didn't Realize the Show Was Over"; Griffin sings the former in a lower register than the latter. The most overlooked song here has to be the Mel Larson and Jerry Marcellino production "If You're Ever in the Neighborhood"; Griffin's light, aching tenor and the Miracles' heart-tugging harmonies make for some smooth listening. Sadly, the single releases didn't help propel Renaissance up the charts. "What Is a Heart Good For," written by Leon Ware and Arthur T-Boy Ross (Diana Ross' brother) stiffed, and the sales of "Don't Let It End (Til You Let It Begin)" were disappointing. Both, however, are excellent; Ron White co-leads on the latter and displays a subtle, quality tenor. Pam Sawyer and Leon Ware's "I Don't Need No Reason" was later recorded by Junior Walker & the All-Stars, of all people. Smokey Robinson is credited as executive producer, whatever that means. Maybe he picked the material; if so, he did a helluva job. ~ Andrew Hamilton
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R&B - Released January 1, 1968 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released August 29, 1967 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1963 | UNI - MOTOWN

Motown attempts to cash in on the Miracles' hit "Mickey's Monkey" by releasing an album of dance tunes, resulting in a fair to middling collection. "I Gotta Dance to Keep from Crying," with its call and response opening, shuffling beat, and hot sax break by Thomas "Beans" Bowles, is a gem, as is the Bo Diddley-inspired title cut about a cat named Mickey from out of town. Smokey's self-written "Groovy Thing" is nice filler, but nothing spectacular. Their renditions of dance classics made popular by others -- Major Lance, the Orlons Chris Kenner, the Isley Brothers, the Contours -- are not as compelling as the originals. The huge cartoon character portraying a goofy-looking monkey named Mickey on the cover made this LP a favorite with kids. ~ Andrew Hamilton
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R&B - Released April 28, 1970 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1962 | Motown (Capitol)

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Pop - Released January 1, 1969 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released April 28, 1970 | UNI - MOTOWN

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Ambient/New Age - Released January 1, 1963 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1999 | Motown

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R&B - Released February 22, 1994 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1970 | UNI - MOTOWN

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R&B - Released January 1, 1972 | UNI - MOTOWN

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