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Floy Joy
Floy Joy
Genres: Pop, R&B


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CD Details

All Artists: Supremes
Title: Floy Joy
Members Wishing: 4
Total Copies: 0
Label: Motown
Release Date: 4/13/1992
Genres: Pop, R&B
Styles: Oldies, Motown, Soul
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 037463544123, 037463544147, 737463544122

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CD Reviews

(5 out of 5 stars)

"Frothy, airy are words that come to mind when I think of this terrific gem of an album from the post-Diana Ross Supremes. This 1972 album generated a lot of renewed interest in the group, and sold well. Smokey Robinson was at the height of his creative powers here to give the Supremes such a new "old" sound. Think "Baby Love" and "Come See About Me" updated. A great girl group sound, featuring two great duets by Jean Terrell and Mary Wilson ["Floy Joy;" "Automatically Sunshine"), and guest spots by Mary and Cindy (yes, Cindy, not Lynda Laurence on this album as another reviewer incorrectly stated, even though it is Lynda on the cover---Cindy was pregnant and ready to leave the group)on the spacey, "psychedelic" "Now The Bitter, Now The Sweet." "The Wisdom of Time" is a pop gem, and the bossa-novish "Precious Little Things" is extremely pretty, one of my favorites, with a very lovely keyboard solo. A cover of the Miracles' "Oh, Be My Love" is wonderfully updated. Cindy Birdsong's pretty soprano is probably featured better than ever on this album--as airy and fluffy as cotton candy. Jean Terrell gives some of her creamiest deliveries, and Mary Wilson is a stunner on her solo, "A Heart Like Mine." This was obviously a love-token from Smokey to The Supremes. I would love to see a re-issued, expanded edition, although I don't believe there were any other songs from these sessions (???)."
Another Lost Classic!
Music Lover | Annapolis, MD | 10/29/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"It is really interesting how a lot of music critics tend to write off the post-Diana Ross Supremes in a few sentences. Of course, they were great with Ross, but they developed a nice style of their own after she left. Much credit goes to producers like Frank Wilson & Smokey Robinson.

Smokey Robinson produced & wrote this entire set. It is a joy from start to finish. "Floy Joy" is a very upbeat, fun song which has a great vocal tradeoff between Mary Wilson & lead singer Jean Terrell. Terrell (no relation to Tammi) has always been underated as a singer. To me, she sounds like a cross between Diana Ross & Dionne Warwick.

The follow up single to "Floy Joy" was "Automatically Sunshine" which had a lot of the same qualities as "Floy" including another shared lead by Wilson & Terrell. A third single, the mildly funky "Your Wonderful Sweet Sweet Love" didn't do well chartwise, but is another good song.

Mary Wilson (I think) gets a full lead on "A Heart Like Mine" a beautiful ballad which has Quiet Storm appeal. The group also does a nice, updated take on Smokey Robinson's old Miracles song "Oh Be My Love".

It is interesting that the music has a rather retro feel for the early 1970s though there are some modern effects thrown in like electric sitar & some echoish productions. Some of the material may sound a little dated today, but that does not keep it from being appealing. A lot of reviewers say & rightly so that the album has a lot of early Supremes appeal to it.

The bossa nova-ish "Precious Little Things" is a delight, sounding like something Stevie Wonder might have put on "Music Of My Mind." The funky-sweet "Now the Bitter Now the Sweet" might go slightly over the top with psychedelic sounds but is still a great song.

Really, some of the music has a sort of 5th Dimension sound (& I mean that as a compliment!).

Unfortunately, this is a very, very hard album to find. I managed to luck into a cassette copy for under $8. Dig around in your local used CD store & you may find a reasonably priced copy. If you have a turntable, you may want to check Goodwill Stores for the vinyl. When ever the CD is available it usually goes for over $100. Maybe Motown will put it out as a re-release maybe as a 2-fer. Some of the songs can be found on the Supremes 70's compilation.

In conclusion, I think it is a shame that Smokey Robinson didn't do another album with the group, who were turned over to Jimmy Webb for their next album. They also did a one-off single with Stevie Wonder (not included here) called "Bad Weather" which is worth hearing. Wouldn't an album produced by Stevie Wonder have been a treat? Anyway, enjoy!
1972 Post-Diana Ross Studio Album
Ian Phillips | Bolton, Lancashire, UK | 02/04/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"The relatively unknown Jean Terrell, sister to heavy-weight boxer Ernie Terrell, took over as lead vocalist of the worlds biggest girl group, The Supremes in January 1970 following months of hype and speculation about Diana Ross' imminent departure for a solo recording career as well as a foray into movies and television.

With Jean Terrell as the new appointed lead vocalist and the intricate backing vocals of Cindy Birdsong (who had replaced The Supremes founder, Florence Ballard back in 1967 after she was fired from the group) and Mary Wilson (who remained the only constant member following a seemingly revolving line-up throughout the 70's), The "New" Supremes (which was how they were referred to for a short period after Ross' departure) clocked up an impressive run of Top 40 Pop/R&B hits including the classics Up The Ladder To The Roof, Nathan Jones and possibly their greatest post-Ross recording, Stoned Love. If anything, The Supremes proved that they could still indeed thrive even minus the distinctive and unique sound of Diana Ross' wonderfully slick and soulful vocal style.

In 1972 Cindy Birdsong became preganant and left the group (though returned briefly in 1974) being replaced by Lynda Lawrence (who along with Diana Ross and Scherrie Payne became part of the disasterous reunion tour, Return To Love in 2000 which became something of an embarassing fiasco, not least to Ross).

So with the new line up of Jean Terrell, Mary Wilson and Lynda Lawrence, The Supremes were teamed with the genius singer/songwriter/producer Smokey Robinson who Bob Dylan once described as "the greatest living poet" for their next studio venture in 1972.

This 1972 entry, Floy Joy, arguably featured The Supremes at their peak before their momentum slowly dissolved following a number of personnel changes within the group, a lack of direction musically and a seeming total disregard from Motown boss Berry Gordy who was more interested in Diana Ross' high flying solo career.

If anything, the Floy Joy Lp welcomingly harks back to their more traditional sound of the 1960's when they were led by the divine Diana Ross and produced by the legendary trio, Holland-Dozier-Holland. Smokey Robinson shrewdly encapsulates that era and blends it into more contemporary sounds and textures.

The albums premier single and opening track, Your Wonderful Sweet Sweet Love was an incredibly catchy affair even though its lyrics were somewhat syrupy. Your Wonderful Sweet Sweet Love became another sizeable R&B hit to their credit though only occupied the lighter reaches of the main Pop charts.

The title track, Floy Joy, was one of The Supremes last truly great classics. This bouncy, contagious number effectively alternates leads between the breathy, seamless soprano of Mary Wilson and the more rich and compelling sound of Jean Terrell. After Ross' departure each member of The Supremes got chance to show off their vocal style and none more so than on this cracking affair. Floy Joy became one of the groups last Top 10 R&B/Pop hits.

The only surviving origanal member of The Supremes, Mary Wilson, heads up front on the smooth, lush ballad, A Heart Like Mine. Wilsons voice brims with emotion coating the warm, mellow orchestrations with ease and style.

Over and Over swerves back into Holland-Dozier-Holland-like terriotry with Terrell putting in a performance that was vastly close to sounding almost identical to Diana Ross' frothy leads of the 60's. Because of that, Over And Over does emerge as one of the albums most catchy numbers.

The soft, sensuous tone of Precious Little Things captures a swirling, Latin-inspired vibe gelled into the Jazz-flavoured arrangements and Terrell once again sounds practically like Diana Ross.

A more psychedelic vibe zooms in on Now The Bitter Now The Sweet, one of the more adventurous offerings that features magnificent vocal trade offs on the striking chrous and another assertive lead from Terrell.

One of the true highlights of the Floy Joy Lp is then unfolded with the delightful, Automatically Sunshine. Though slightly sugary, this bright, breezy Pop/R&B classic contained glorious vocals from both Mary Wilson and Jean Terrell. Automatically Sunshine became one of their last major chart hits and certainly was one of their best post-Diana Ross recordings along with Floy Joy, Stoned Love and Up The Ladder To The Roof.

Yet again you could barely tell Diana Ross and Jean Terrell apart on The Wisdom Of Time. Terrell neatly surfboards along the complex musical arrangements whilst the album grinds to a halt following the sturdy affair of Oh Be My Love where The Supremes shimmering harmonies blend fantastically together.

Floy Joy (1972) is easy-listening Motown and perharps the last distinctive Supremes studio album and certainly amongst one of their best post-Diana Ross efforts. A fair seller, Floy Joy is perharps something of an overlooked gem. Is now something of a rarity and is well worth seeking out for fans of the post-Diana Ross era.

Ian Phillips