I suppose NPR's producers for Tell Me More are right when they call Marvin Gaye's classic Trouble Man movie score forgotten, but I didn't forget this masterpiece. As my children will tell you, they've heard it enough on long car trips. Nonetheless, I'm glad that Celeste Headlee reported on the 40th anniversary of the score on NPR because some younger folk may not be familiar with this side of Marvin Gaye.
Headlee began her report with the following information:
Forty years ago, "Trouble Man" debuted in movie theaters. It starred Robert Hooks as a tough guy hustler named Mr. T - not the one from the TV show "The A-Team." Mr. T in this film, makes his living sticking out his neck to help those who can, well, pay him and those who just need his expertise to discreetly solve their problems.It's true. I saw the movie and all I remember is the music.
The film fell well short of blockbuster status. It was even included on one critic's list of the 50 worst films of all time. But it did leave quite a legacy in at least one aspect, the music. That's because the filmmakers made an inspired choice to hire Motown legend Marvin Gaye to write the score.
Read the transcript at NPR's website or listen to the audio here: It's posted at the top of this post. If I were you, I'd listen. :-)