The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

T Stands For “Trouble Man”: Marvin Gaye Classic Gets Expanded on CD

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At long last, Trouble Man.

With the upcoming 40th anniversary edition of Marvin Gaye’s 1972 album currently slated for November 13 release, each one of the Motown legend’s studio albums between 1971’s seminal What’s Going On and 1982’s Midnight Love has been expanded as a 2-CD set.  (In the case of What’s Going On, an even more deluxe edition was released in 2011.)  Trouble Man, the soundtrack to the 20th Century Fox “blaxploitation” film, turned out to be Gaye’s only excursion into movie scoring.  It followed the enormous success of What’s Going On and earned Gaye a No. 12 Pop/No. 3 R&B chart placement, proving that he could hold his own against the other soul stars-turned-film composers such as Isaac Hayes and Curtis Mayfield – as if there was ever any doubt.

A largely instrumental, soul/jazz soundtrack might not have been the most expected move for Gaye in 1972.  But after emerging triumphant in his hard-won battle for creative control, and with a hefty contract in tow, Gaye was free to follow his muse.  Trouble Man, the film, starred Robert Hooks, whose credits range from A Raisin in the Sun on Broadway to Star Trek III: The Search for Spock on the silver screen.  Hooks’ “Mr. T” is a private detective who’s not afraid to take the law into his own hands even as he becomes embroiled in a power play between rival crime lords.  Paul Winfield (Sounder, The Terminator) and Ralph Waite (The Waltons) joined Hooks as two of those gangland figures, while Paula Kelly (Sweet Charity, The Andromeda Strain) portrayed T’s love interest.  Gaye might have identified with T, crafting much of his score around the character with compositions like “T Plays It Cool,” “T Stands for Trouble,” “Don’t Mess with Mister T” and “There Goes Mister T.”  Gaye recorded the Trouble Man album at Motown’s Los Angeles Hitsville West outpost, with his score arranged by such esteemed personnel as Jack Hayes, Leo Shuken and Gene Page.

Critics weren’t kind to the film Trouble Man; in The New York Times, Vincent Canby noted that “it’s not a bad film” but “represents such a peculiar collaboration of interests that it should be of concern to both black and white film sociologists.  Also, it dramatizes such a wild confusion of values, I’m not sure it wants to be described as cool or uppity.”  Yet Gaye remained rightly proud of his score, which melded funk, jazz, soul and orchestral writing into a seamless and often stunning whole.  Hip-o Select’s 2-CD expansion of the 1972 Trouble Man album should go a long way in furthering even a diehard fan’s appreciation of Gaye’s multi-layered score.  The remastered original LP will be joined by 29 previously unreleased recordings including alternate takes and for the first time anywhere, the original film soundtrack performances as actually heard in the movie.

What else will you find?  Hit the jump!  We’ve also got a full track listing and pre-order links!

Trouble Man: 40th Anniversary Expanded Edition is housed in a digipak which include a generous, 28-page booklet with photo outtakes, rare international picture sleeves, an essay by Dr. Andrew Floray, and track-by-track annotations. Sidebar and additional essays include commentary from film directors Cameron Crowe and George Tillman, Jr., as well as an array of artists including Lenny Kravitz, Joni Mitchell and Christian McBride.

The 2-CD Trouble Man is available for pre-order now at Hip-o Select’s website, with a ship date of November 9.  It should arrive at Amazon just a few days later, on November 13, and can be pre-ordered at the link below!

Marvin Gaye, Trouble Man: 40th Anniversary Expanded Edition (Hip-o Select, 2012)

CD 1

  1. Main Theme From Trouble Man (2)
  2. “T” Plays It Cool
  3. Poor Abbey Walsh
  4. The Break In (Police Shoot Big)
  5. Cleo’s Apartment
  6. Trouble Man
  7. Theme From Trouble Man
  8. “T” Stands For Trouble
  9. Main Theme From Trouble Man
  10. Life Is A Gamble
  11. Deep-In-It
  12. Don’t Mess With Mr. T
  13. There Goes Mr. T
  14. Main Theme From Trouble Man (2) [alternate take with strings]
  15. “T” Plays it Cool [unedited version]
  16. Poor Abbey Walsh, Part 2 Take 1
  17. Poor Abbey Walsh, Part 2 Take 2
  18. Trouble Man [extended version]
  19. Theme From Trouble Man [vocal version]
  20. “T” Stands for Trouble [unedited vocal version]
  21. “T” Stands for Trouble [alternate version]
  22. Main Theme from Trouble Man [vocal version]

CD 2

  1. Trouble Man
  2. Pool Hall
  3. “T” Plays It Cool
  4. Cadillac Interlude/Cleo’s Apartment
  5. Man Tied Up/Jimmy’s West/Conversation with Cleo
  6. Crap Game (a.k.a. The Break In)/Getting Rid Of Body/Talking To Angel
  7. Outside Police Station
  8. Bowling Alley Parking Lot
  9. Stick Up
  10. Cleaners/Cleo
  11. Closing Jimmy’s
  12. Police Break In
  13. “T” Cleans Up/Police Station
  14. Packing Up/Jimmy Gets Worked/Saying Goodbye/”T” Breaks In/MovieTheater
  15. Car Ride/Looking for Pete
  16. Parking Garage/Elevator
  17. Penthouse
  18. Getting Pete
  19. My Name Is “T”/End Credits
  20. “T” At The Cross

CD 1, Tracks 1-13: Original LP (Tamla T 322 L, 1972)
CD 1, Tracks 14-22: Previously Unreleased Bonus Tracks
CD 2, Tracks 1-19: Previously Unreleased Original Film Score
CD 2, Track 20: Previously Unreleased Film Band Bonus Track

Written by Joe Marchese

October 29, 2012 at 08:21

2 Responses

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  1. Finally 🙂 I’m happy with this release

    Sven1987

    October 29, 2012 at 12:56

  2. At last !!! 🙂

    John Blutarski

    October 29, 2012 at 14:41


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