Song of the Day: The Temptations, “Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone”

“Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone” was originally done by The Undisputed Truth (“Smiling Faces Sometimes”) in 1972, reaching #63 n the Hot 100 and #24 on the Soul chart. The same year, The Temptations did a verwion that reached #1 on the Hot 100 and #5 on the Soul chart. The single edit was almost seven minutes long, while the full version came in at just over 12 minutes. Most of the aditional five minutes is instrumental added by composer Norman Whitfield.

18 thoughts on “Song of the Day: The Temptations, “Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone”

  1. Odd memory for this song. It appears in an episode of Moonlighting when David Addison (Bruce Willis) is driving his car to a hotel to confront the alleged cheating father of Maddie Hayes (Cybill Shepherd). Every time I hear it, I think of that scene. I guess that’s what I get for growing up in the ‘80’s!

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  2. Great song. Saw them at the Mountain Winery two years ago and they were great, even though there was only one original member left!

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    1. A lot of bands are like that. Blood Sweat and Tears lost their last original member (Bobby Colomby) a couple of years ago, and The Guess Who has one member who had been with the band for some time, but wasn’t an original.

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    1. They’re better known for “Smiling Faces Sometimes.” I think that was as close as they came to a hit on the Hot 100; I believe they had a few more hits on the R&B/Soul chart.

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  3. Probably the top Temptation song to me…and that is saying something. I love psychedelic soul.

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      1. The Temptations really made a change with this one and Ball of Confusion.

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