In the early sixties, some of the best sounds were coming out of Motown; that is, great music was coming out of Detroit. “You Really Got a Hold on Me” (aka “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me”) by The Miracles is one such example. You can’t beat that for golden oldies music.
From the song, we learn that love is a crazy thing, and even when she treats him badly, he still loves her madly. This song, which was written by legendary singer/songwriter/producer Smokey Robinson is said to have been inspired by Sam Cooke’s song “Bring It on Home Me” where the singer wants the one who left him to return. “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me” a hit for Robinson and The Miracles on the Tamla (Motown) label in 1962-63. The song was also the first track on their 1963 album The Fabulous Miracles. “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me” went to #1 on the R&B chart and #8 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was originally released as the B-Side to “Happy Landing,” but “You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me” become more popular. It is on the list of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. There have been many covers, including one by The Beatles on their With the Beatles album and who also performed it in their movie Let It Be. Other covers included ones by The Supremes, The Temptations, The Zombies, the Jackson 5, Mickey Gilley, She & Him, and Phil Collins.
For this song, The Miracles included Smokey Robinson (lead vocal), Claudette Rogers Robinson (Smokey’s wife), Pete Moore, Ronnie White, and Bobby Rogers. The instrumentation included Marv Tarplin on guitar and The Funk Brothers, the session musicians who performed backup on many Motown recordings.