Ain't That Peculiar

Album: Moods of Marvin Gaye (1965)
Charted: 8

Songfacts®:

  • This song about the torment of a painful relationship was penned by Smokey Robinson in London with Miracles guitarist Marv Tarplin. The pair were on an European tour at the time with the Motortown Revue, a cavalcade of Motown stars. Smokey recalled to Mojo: "We were on tour and he came to me because he had that guitar riff, which I thought was awesome. And we wrote the song right there. It was specifically for him (Gaye). We wanted to get something to follow up 'I'll Be Doggone.'"
  • British New Romantic group, Japan, covered this on their 1980 album Gentlemen Take Polaroids.

Comments: 2

  • Jennifur Sun from RamonaHow did Smokey get his nick name? anyone
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn December 4, 1965, Marvin Gaye performed "Ain't That Peculiar" on the Los Angeles-based syndicated television program, 'Shivaree'...
    At the time the song was in it's third of three weeks at #8 on Billboard's Top 100 chart, as noted above, that would also be it's peak position on the chart, and it spent twelve weeks on the Top 100...
    And on November 21st, 1965 it reached #1 {for 1 week} on Billboard's Hot R&B Singles chart...
    Between 1962 and 1983 the Washington, DC native had thirty-seven Top 100 records*; thirteen made the Top 10 with three reaching #1, "I Heard it Thought the Grapevine" for 7 weeks in 1968, "Let's Get It On" for 2 weeks in 1973, and "Got to Give It Up - Part One" for 1 week in 1977...
    He just missed having a fourth #1 record when "What's Going On" peaked at #2 {for 3 weeks} in 1971...
    Plus in duets he made the Top 100 eighteen more times; eleven times with Tammi Terrell, three times with Diana Ross, and two times each with Mary Wells and Kim Weston...
    R.I.P. Marvin Pentz Gay, Jr. {1939 - 1984}...
    * His first three releases did not make the Top 100 chart; "Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide", "Sandman", and "Solder's Plea"...
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Daryl HallSongwriter Interviews

Daryl Hall's TV show is a hit, and he's been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame - only one of these developments excites him.

Michael FrantiSongwriter Interviews

Franti tells the story behind his hit "Say Hey (I Love You)" and explains why yoga is an integral part of his lifestyle and his Soulshine tour.

Harold Brown of WarSongwriter Interviews

A founding member of the band War, Harold gives a first-person account of one of the most important periods in music history.

The Girl in That SongFact or Fiction

Billie Jean, Delilah, Sara, Laura and Sharona - do you know who the girls in the songs really are?

Richie McDonald of LonestarSongwriter Interviews

Richie talks about the impact of "Amazed," and how his 4-year-old son inspired another Lonestar hit.

Matthew Wilder - "Break My Stride"They're Playing My Song

Wilder's hit "Break My Stride" had an unlikely inspiration: a famous record mogul who rejected it.