What's Going On? When Marvin Gaye Went A Little Bit Crazy

By Cyn Felthousen-Post
Soul singer Marvin Gaye performs onstage at Royal Albert Hall in 1979 in London, England. (Photo by David Corio/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

At the end of the 1960s, soul singer Marvin Gaye was among Motown's biggest names. But the "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" singer was quite rapidly losing his enthusiasm for pop music. Motown brilliantly created stars and catchy R&B music in a factory setting, but Gaye was disillusioned with the product. During turbulent times, many musicians were making personal statements through their music, something that interested Gaye more than getting the next big dance hit. To follow his muse, Gaye would need to rebel against Motown. The result was What's Going On?, one of the greatest albums in history, but to make it Gaye had to go to the brink of quitting music altogether.