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motown artist: Undisputed Truth
Undisputed Truth
about the artist

The Undisputed Truth were assembled by Motown Records producer Norman Whitfield in 1970, as a vehicle for the studio experimentation he had already begun on singles by the Temptations and Edwin Starr. Joe Harris, an ever-present member of the group, was originally teamed up with singers Billie Calvin and Brenda Evans, who had previously worked on the Four Tops’ Still Waters. The group debuted with a stunning slice of psychedelic soul, “Smiling Faces Sometimes’, written by Whitfield with his regular lyricist, Barrett Strong. The song was an exercise in urban paranoia, widely interpreted as an oblique comment on President Richard Nixon’s administration, and it allowed Whitfield room to preview new studio techniques which he hoped to use on Temptations” releases. It reached the US Top 3, encouraging Whitfield to use the Undisputed Truth as a laboratory for testing his new material. The group enjoyed a small hit with Whitfield/Strong’s “Papa Was A Rolling Stone’ several months before the Temptations” classic rendition reached the shops, and among their other hit songs were “Ball Of Confusion”, “Friendship Train”, and “Just My Imagination” – all numbers which Whitfield had also recorded with other Motown acts.

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