Come and Get These Memories

Album: Come and Get These Memories (1963)
Charted: 29


  • This remembrance of a recent lover was the first song that the legendary Motown songwriting team of Eddie Holland, his brother Brian, and Lamont Dozier wrote as a threesome. It was also the first hit for Martha & the Vandellas.
  • Lamont Dozier started writing this song before he teamed up with the Holland brothers. He had a different idea for it musically. "The story itself lent itself to a country and western feeling," he said in a Songfacts interview. "That's the way I envisioned it, but I didn't know how to go about finding Loretta Lynn to convince her to do this song 'Come And Get These Memories.' I had her in mind when I first wrote the song, but I didn't know how to get in contact with her.

    I had written it all out when I was just starting at Motown, before I got with the Hollands, so I had to change it. The way I felt it, it was a country song with twangy steel guitars and a banjo. At Motown, I had to get out a lot of songs in a short time, so I figured I'd just change the arrangement I had in my mind from country to a progressive type of R&B/jazz with a shuffle. That's how it got a jazz type of feeling with the chords, elevenths and ninths and what have you."
  • Martha Reeves recalled to Mojo magazine February 2009 that this song was "part jazz, the way the harmony is structured." She added: "The idea came from Holland-Dozier-Holland. Lamont played the keyboards to teach us the song, Eddie Holland did the vocals for the lead, and Brian Holland added the harmonies for the background. So the three of them working with us, we came up with a beautiful song. Whenever I hear it I always marvel at the ways that everything blends, the voices, the music. There's this instant entrance where you have to count to catch but it works every time."
  • The Holland-Dozier-Holland team incorporated elements of jazz, gospel and country into this song, and also used some unusual chords. They weren't sure if the boss would like it, but when label head Berry Gordy heard it, he gave his approval, saying, "That's different. I like it."
  • Both the Supremes and their lead vocalist Diana Ross recorded covers of this song.

Comments: 2

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 31st 1963, "Come and Get These Memories" by Martha and the Vandellas entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #97, nine weeks later on June 2nd, 1963 it would peak at #29 {for 1 week} and spent 16 weeks on the Top 100...
    It reached #6 on Billboard's R&B Singles chart...
    Between 1963 and 1972 the trio had twenty-five* hits on the R&B Singles chart; with eleven making the Top 10 and two reaching #1, they were "Heat Wave" in 1963 and "Jimmy Mack" in 1967...
    They just missed having a third #1 record on the R&B Singles chart when "I'm Ready for Love" peaked at #2 in 1966...
    * For their last eleven hits on the R&B Singles chart they were known as Martha Reeves and the Vandellas.
  • John from Nashville, TnThis song was covered on the Supremes 1966 album THE SUPREMES A' GO-GO, the first girl group album to hit #1 on the Billboard pop charts. Mary Wilson did a rare lead vocal on this version.
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