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In & Out of Love

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In and out of Love is a 1967 song recorded by The Supremes for their album "Reflections."

The single was released on October 25, 1967. It was the second single issued with the group's new billing Diana Ross & the Supremes.

It was the penultimate Supremes single written and produced by Motown songwriting/production team Holland–Dozier–Holland and the last single to feature the vocals of original member Florence Ballard.

Song BackgroundEdit

By the time of the recording of "In and Out of Love," The Supremes had become the most successful black music group of all time, with ten number-one pop singles on the Billboard Hot 100 to their credit.

In the midst of their success, conflicts between Supremes members Diana Ross, Florence Ballard and Mary Wilson arose. Florence was uneasy about the group's direction and felt that her role was being reduced in the group she helped found.

Motown's premier production team Holland–Dozier–Holland (H–D–H) recorded the track for "In and Out of Love" originally in Detroit with The Funk Brothers on March 2, 1967 (during the same session for "The Happening" and "Reflections"), but subsequently rerecorded the track six weeks later in Los Angeles.

Diana added her lead vocals on June 12, 1967 with Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard adding their vocals the following day on June 13th. It would be Florence's final session as a Supreme.

By mid-1967, H–D–H also grew increasingly frustrated with their position at Motown.

Lyricist Eddie Holland convinced his brother Brian Holland and their partner Lamont Dozier to stage a work slowdown and for much of 1967, the trio turned out virtually no product.

After one last Supremes single, "Forever Came Today," in early 1968, H–D–H left Motown, prompting a series of lawsuits between the label and the songwriters that lasted over a decade.

By July of 1967, Motown CEO Berry Gordy had fired Florence, replacing her with Cindy Birdsong of Patti LaBelle & the Blue Belles.

One week after her dismissal, the vocals of Florence Ballard and fellow member Mary Wilson were overdubbed by in-house session singers The Andantes and multitracked for the final single.

The Supremes debuted Birdsong and the group's new billing performing "In and Out of Love" live on CBS's "The Ed Sullivan Show" on Sunday, November 19, 1967.

The single proved immensely popular with the fans as it was chosen by "American Bandstand" voters to be the song they wanted for that summer's dance contest.

It remained at #1 for four weeks on the "American Bandstand" chart.

Chart PerformanceEdit

Chart Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 9
U.S. Billboard R&B Singles Chart 16
U.S. Cash Box Pop Singles Chart 10
UK Singles Chart 13

PersonnelEdit

  • Lead vocals by Diana Ross
  • Background vocals by Florence Ballard, Mary Wilson and The Andantes (Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow and Louvain Demps)
  • Instrumentation by Los Angeles musicians

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