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Under the Hood: Smokey Robinson on His Blues Upbringing

The great Smokey Robinson gave us more than his share of hits, both by himself and with his Motown label mates.  How big a role did traditional blues play in his musical education?  Smokey Robinson.

“I grew up in a home where there was every kind of music being played all day long every day. And the blues was a great part of that. You know my mom had B.B. King and Little Walter and Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker and people like that were being played at my house all day long. Along with the spiritual groups the Volunaires and the Five Blind Boys and all that along with Count Basie and Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald and all that along with Bach and Chopin. I just had a great dose of music growing up man and the blues was a big part of that.” – Smokey Robinson