#64: Gladys Knight & The Pips ‘Midnight Train to Georgia’

Gladys-pips-imagination.jpgAfter initially being recorded as a single by Cissy Houston in 1972, Gladys Knight & the Pips took a stab at "Midnight Train to Georgia" in 1973--their second single since leaving Motown for Buddah Records. Their "stab" wound up winning the 1974 Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group or Chorus, becoming the group's signature song in the process. What's most surprising about the song's history is that it wasn't meant to be an R&B hit at all, with songwriter Jim Weatherly originally crafting it with a country vibe. It's title? "Midnight Plane to Houston." Right. Thankfully, the love song about a musician who couldn't cut it on the West Coast and the woman who gave up everything to go with him back to the Southeast made its way to Sonny Limbo, who asked if he could change the name to its current title and, as they say, the rest is history. And history-making, as it was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999. Rolling Stone ranked it #432 on its list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. And amateur singers everywhere are forever thankful for that late-night locomotive, as it always proves a winner at karaoke saloons the world over. Now check the clip below to see how the pros do it.

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4 Responses

  1. Only 64??? I don't know about this one SB, I'll have to see what tops it.

  2. I love Gladys, one of best voices ever! In my opinion there is no voice like her's. I'm glad my folks introduced me to the greatness early, so I would know good music when I hear it.

  3. Hey, Law Diva. On behalf of the rest of the SB crew, I'd like to give you a heads up on the next track. #63 will be "Buy You a Drink (Shawty Snappin)" by the legendary T-Pain and Yung Joc.
    We went SO HARD with this countdown. 🙂


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