Check your pulse
The Temptations version of Silent Night dates back to 1968 when it was recorded and was released in 1970. It has been a staple in many homes for 51 years at this writing. It was during the early 70s when I was a teenager that I first heard the tune and it gave me goosebumps and made me cry. I had been singing Silent Night since I was in elementary school each December in church and in school classrooms. I had never, however, heard a rendition like this one. In the 2004 Washington Post article A Mowtown Silent Night That Echoes Down The Years, Neely Tucker said that if you don't get goosebumps you better check your pulse. The Temptations sing the gospel story in such a way that as the old folks used to say it was as if they were "Singing their hearts out". So many people say they have never had a song to give them chills, make them cry, and bring forth goosebumps in the way this version of Silent Night does. You can read Neely's article by clicking on the following link.
Stop, pause, ponder and think on it
I have been in department stores where the Temps Silent Night comes on and as other around me keep going I always stop and pause a moment. This song tells of the glorious night that Jesus Christ was born, a silent, holy night and virgin birth. This is the root of the December 25th holiday. Often I wondered how those around me were not moved by the melody and the words and continued shopping without giving a thought to the song. I was born sensitive to spiritual things and in today's world, I might be identified as an empath, a sensitive, or simply overly emotional. The bottom line is that when I feel, I feel deeply but you don't have to have been born with this gift to be moved by Silent Night. The next time you hear it just stop a moment, take a pause to ponder, and think about what was going on the night Christ came into the world wrapped in human flesh. Silent Night is a Christian church hymn but the melody of the Temptations rendition has caused it to become somewhat worldly.
The Temptations Silent Night was played during Christmas dances during the mid to late 1980's and I never thought much about it until 1988. My husband and I along with other couples were on the dance floor when suddenly we pulled apart at the same time. We both had an ominous feeling and decided to leave. Once at home we discussed how we were doing a slow drag to a church song and mixing the Holy with the profane. There were people at the dance who were drinking and possibly using drugs. Some were not married but while dancing so close on Silent Night they may have been getting in the mood to go home and have sex, some with other people's spouses. The fact that my husband and I were married did not discount the fact that we too were in each other's arms with love on our minds while dancing to a hymn. The musical arrangement to the Temptations song is beautiful and if there were different words it would be an ideal love song but it is what it is.I like to share my tale for those who might not have considered that this is a church hymn that they were bumping and grinding to.
- Eddie Kendrinks and Mevin Franklin: The iconic voices behind Silent Night by “ The Temptations” | Be
Celebrating an iconic rendition of a popular Christmas Carol.
Silent Night history
Silent Night was released on the 1970 album The Temptations Christmas Card. It is the 4th song on side one. Eddie Kendricks sang the beautiful falsetto and sadly was robbed of his voice by lung cancer which he eventually died from in 1992. Melvin Franklin gave his baritone to the second verse and he passed away in 1995 of heart failure. The other singers on the album were Otis Williams, Dennis Edwards, and Glenn Leonard. The famous Funk Brothers provided the background music and as they say the rest is history. I hope as you listen to Silent Night by the Temptations you will also feel the spiritual and emotional tug of the song on your own heart.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Cheryl E Preston