"I Heard It Through The Grapevine" Which Artist?

Which version do you like best?

Marvin Gaye

Creedence Clearwater

Gladys Knight


I have asked myself the same question many times. I love the Gladys Knight version but I think she misses the tone of sadness. Marvin Gaye really captures the emotion in the lyric so I give the award to him.

Gladys Knight - I think she and the Pips capture the anger and resolve - it seems a big “fuck you” song to me.

Gladys Knight all the way. I didn’t even know I liked that song until I heard her version.

The Marvin Gaye version - I dunno, just never clicked for me.

CCR’s is pretty good.

But damn, Gladys’ version ALWAYS gets my head bobbing. It’s just so much more fun.

I’ll be the first to vote for CCR’s, although it edges out Gaye’s only by the long instrumental part.

Marvin’s is the definitive version. CCR does a great chooglin’ version that I also love. Gladys’ version sucks donkey balls.

Doug Anthony All-Stars, but not Paul McDermott’s solo work.

First off, The Miracles sang it first. Marvin Gaye may have sung it second, but it was released after the Gladys Knight version. I have to go with Gladys Knight, as that’s the one that has the original James Jamerson (of the ubiquitous Funk Brothers) bass line, but Marvin Gaye made it his own.

The California Raisins?

Marvin. I mean really.

(Actually I don’t even remember the Gladys Knight version, so maybe I should give that a listen. But how can it beat Marvin Gaye’s sublime cri de coeur?)

Edited to add: Okay, listening now. Gladys has an amazing voice (no surprise there!) and this is a solid jazzy interpretation. But I miss the melody – if I didn’t know how the song went, it would seem like it has no melody at all. So it’s a good subsequent interpretation for people who already know the song, but for the actual song? Gimme Marvin. His version is more ominous.

Girlfriend sure can wail, though!

The California Raisins version was actually sang by Buddy Miles

I’m going to go with Marvin Gaye. CCR’s was okay but it never really clicked till I heard his version, actually. I think Marvin Gaye had one of the absolute best voices at Motown.

Gaye all the way.

This is one of those songs where every version of it is good. I gotta go with Gladys because of the “solid jazzy interpretation” choie mentions. And the Pips, of course!

And for comparison here’sSmokey Robinson and the Miraclesdoin’ it.

Gladys and the Pips



Just for comparison, here’s Amy Winehouse and Paul Weller

And here’s the Temptations’ version, much closer to Gladys than Smokey.

Marvin Gaye 1000%

I like the Creedence version. This is not to say I’d switch channels if hearing the others.

I’ll listen to them all on the radio but if I had to pick, it will always be CCR.

When I heard the Marvin Gaye version on the car radio, I went out and bought the 45, so I have to go with that one.

I like them all, but CCR rules.

Marvin, Marvin, Marvin.

To my knowledge it was written for Marvin by Norman Whitfield and others but for some reason Marvin couldn’t get to it, so Gladys and the Pips recorded it. When she got a hit with it, Marvin released his and it blew up even bigger.

Gladys is wonderful, but few can surpass Marvin’s delivery of a lyric and Grapevine is no exception.

I enjoy CCR’s and love Fogerty, but I am sure John would acknowledge that Marvin is the master…