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This was written by Smokey Robinson and Ronald White, who were both members of The Miracles. Robinson wrote the lyrics, which were inspired by his wife, Claudette.
In a 2006 NPR interview, Robinson explained that he wrote this with David Ruffin's voice in mind. It was the first Temptations single to feature Ruffin on lead vocals (Eddie Kendricks and Paul Williams sang lead on previous Temptation's singles), and it led to a greater role for Ruffin, as he became their primary lead singer. Robinson went on to write many more hits for The Temptations, who were considered the most talented vocal group at Motown.
The previous year, Robinson wrote "My Guy" for Motown singer Mary Wells. That song carried the same sentiment of unconditional love, but from a female perspective.
This was the first of 4 US #1 hits for The Temptations.
This was used as the title and theme song of a movie starring Macaulay Culkin.
Some of the many artists who covered this song include Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding, Dolly Parton and The Mamas & The Papas.
The Rolling Stones covered this song and released it on their Flowers
compilation in June 1967. The Stones also recorded The Temptations' "Ain't Too Proud To Beg
" and "Just My Imagination
" in 1974 and 1978. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
Michael Glabicki of Rusted Root
Michael tells the story of "Send Me On My Way," and explains why some of the words in the song don't have a literal meaning.
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