You Beat Me to the Punch

Album: The One Who Really Loves You (1962)
Charted: 9


  • Smokey Robinson co-wrote this song with his Miracles band mate Ronald White. The song is about a shy girl who is afraid to approach the boy she loves until he "beats her to the punch" and comes to her first. When she discovers her new boyfriend is a playboy, she decides to turn the tables on him:

    So I ain't gonna wait around for you to put me down
    This time I'm gonna play my hunch
    And walk away this very day
    I'll beat you to the punch, yes I will.
  • In 1965, The Temptations covered this for their Smokey Robinson tribute album: The Temptations Sing Smokey.
  • Mary Wells continued her reign as "Queen of Motown" with her 1962 hit "You Beat Me to the Punch." Not only was it Wells' first #1 hit on the Billboard R&B Singles chart, but it also made her the first Motown performer to earn a Grammy nomination (it would be the only Grammy nomination of her career).
  • Gene Chandler had a hit with an answer song that was entitled "You Threw a Lucky Punch," which used the same music.
  • The backup vocals were provided by the Love Tones, while the instruments were played by the Funk Brothers, which was Motown's house band. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jerro - New Alexandria, PA, for all above

Comments: 4

  • Jennifur Sun from RamonaElmer you can thank the late James Jamerson for that DEEP bass.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn September 27th 1962, Mary Wells performed "You Beat Me to the Punch" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    At the time the song was at #11 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; a week earlier it had been at #9 {for 1 week}, and that was also its peak position on the chart...
    And on September 16th, 1962 it reached #1 {for 1 week} on Billboard's R&B Singles chart; it was preceded and then succeeded at #1 on the R&B Singles chart by "Green Onions" by Booker T. and the MG's...
    Between 1961 and 1968 she had twenty-three songs on the Top 100 chart; four made the Top 10 with one reaching #1, "My Guy" for two weeks in 1964...
    Sadly, Mary Wells passed away on July 26th, 1992 at the young age of 49...
    May he R.I.P.
  • Elmer from Westville, OkMan, this Mary Wells hit really had a big beat to it! I remember it in the fall of 1962 & sounded super on jukeboxes because of the deep bass. Great song to do the mashed potato to. I became a Mary Wells fan on her big hit prior to this hit. It was "The One Who Really Loves You" from spring 1962. But it was "You Beat Me to the Punch" that got to #1 in my area of eastern Oklahoma. I believe it was #1 (pop) on KAAY-AM radio out of Little Rock, Arkansas that was popular with teens in eastern Oklahoma and western Arkansas at the time. It is a shame that Motown boss Berry Gordy felt he had to cheat and mistreat the late, great Mary Wells out of some of her stardom and financial means when she was still at Motown. Wells is truly "The Queen of Motown."
  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny
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