If the Miracles' 1965 smash "The Tracks of My Tears" is 2:56 of '60s R&B perfection — and its is, no doubt — then an extended version with more than an additional minute of music would be even more perfect, right?
A newly available version of the Motown Records classic, premiering at USA TODAY, is included in boxed set tied to the public-television rebroadcast of NBC's 1983 "Motown 25: Yesterday Today Forever" special. The seven-disc collection contains two dozen extended versions of familiar Motown hits, include Martha & the Vandellas' "Heatwave," the Four Tops' "Bernadette" and The Temptations' "Get Ready."
"Most often the songs went much longer than the fades we are used to hearing," says MY MUSIC creator/executive producer TJ Lubinsky, who compiled the "Motown: Big Hits and More set," "and sometimes even extra verses were uncovered, like Smokey Robinson and The Miracles ad-libbing the line, 'the tracks of my tears, I've been crying for years,' which has never been heard before, because it was on the original session tapes past the fade-out on the 45."
"Motown 25," which celebrated the 25th anniversary of the legendary Detroit record label, began airing on public television last month. It was the first broadcast in more than 30 years for the special, which featured a reunion of many Motown acts from the '60s and '70s and also introduced Michael Jackson's moonwalk dance step, which, combined with the release of his album "Thriller" a few months before, helped catapult him to a new level of popularity. "Motown: Big Hits and More" is available as a pledge-item premium for viewers who donate to their local public television stations.
Listen to the track here: http://on.freep.com/1Mtv6r2