Here at LCM HQ we love to share some great and timeless classics. This week our LCM Classic is "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone", a psychedelic soul song, written by Motown songwriters Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong and originally released as a single for Motown act 'The Undisputed Truth' in 1971. This version of "Papa" was released as a single in early 1972 and peaked at #63 on the Pop Charts and #24 on the R&B Charts and was included on The Undisputed Truth's 1973 album 'Law of the Land'.
Later that year, Whitfield, who also produced the song, took "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" and remade it as a 12-minute record for The Temptations, which was a number-one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 and won three Grammy Awards in 1973. While the original Undisputed Truth version of the song has been largely forgotten, The Temptations' version of the song has been an enduring and influential soul classic. It was ranked number 168 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, one of the group's three songs on the list. In retrospect, The Temptations' Otis Williams considers "Papa" to be the last real classic the group recorded (it would be the Temptations' last number one hit and would win them their second and final Grammy Award in a competitive category).