Soul crooner BJ The Chicago Kid has today been announced to commemorate the 45th anniversary edition of Marvin Gaye’s timeless What’s Going On as a posthumous duet with the late singer. It follows the regular Top Dawg collaborator’s breakout sophomore album In My Mind, released earlier this year to widespread critical acclaim and boasting features from some of the elite names in hip-hop including Chance The Rapper, Kendrick Lamar and Big K.R.I.T. The record cemented him as one of the most versatile singers in the game.
As a fellow Motown Records artist, having his voice heard directly alongside perhaps the label’s most legendary and lauded singer is a huge honour. On his joy in collaborating with one of his idols, BJ said, “Marvin Gaye is a huge inspiration to me. The music he graced us with gave the world a little more beauty, and a lot more soul.”
The duet will be a part of the Motown: Reimagined series as an EP released on 10″ vinyl and featuring original mono versions of the title track as as well as God Is Love plus a coffeehouse remix of What’s Going On. Released in 1971, What’s Going On became Motown’s fastest selling single and the album itself spent a total of 53 weeks on the Billboard pop best-sellers charts. Politically-charged and socially-conscious, the song remains one of the best ever written and as relevant today as it was 45 years ago. It will be interesting to see what BJ will add to it but it will be sure to tug at every heartstring.
Set to embark on a world tour beginning in June (although there are no stops in Australia as yet), this latest honour is just another hallmark in a career spanning over 15 years now.
Image: Red Eye