Podcasts | Political Beats

Episode 56: Kmele Foster / Marvin Gaye

Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get It On

Scot Bertram and Jeff Blehar discuss Marvin Gaye with Kmele Foster.

Introducing The Band:

Your hosts Scot Bertram (@scotbertram) and Jeff Blehar (@EsotericCD) with guest Kmele Foster, co-host of “The Fifth Column” podcast and a partner at “Freethink,” where he helps produce original content about the people and ideas helping to reshape the word. Follow Kmele on Twitter at @kmele and check out The Fifth Column podcast (whose members Political Beats likes so much that we’ve had literally every single one of them as a guest) here.

Kmele’s Music Pick: Marvin Gaye

This week, Political Beats asks whether they can get a witness as they tell you what’s going on with the incredible, sprawling genius of Motown soul/R&B giant Marvin Gaye. Gaye came to prominence as the original cornerstone of Motown’s pop crossover success (a fact which did not prevent him from constantly butting heads with Motown founder Berry Gordy — not even marrying Gordy’s sister could prevent that) in the Sixties. Then he made his name even more solidly by rebelling against the chop-’em-out Motown factory style and the tyranny of Gordy’s “don’t bore us, get to the chorus” hitmaking formula in the Seventies, beginning first with the legendary What’s Going On and continuing all throughout the decade with a series of fascinating (and often fascinatingly unmediated and painfully honest) records.

Marvin Gaye — the man, his demons, the dizzying heights to which he ascended and the personal lows to which he plunged — is a topic so vast that you might think it impossible to properly throw your arms around the complexity of the man’s work in a mere two hours and change, and yet with the expert assistance of guest Kmele Foster we somehow managed to do justice to every phase of his career. How sweet it is.

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