The Shirelles “What Is Love?” (From the LP The Shirelles Greatest Hits Vol II, 1967).
As I get ready for my first ever lecture on girl groups, I’m combing through powerpoint slides and notes and MP3 of who and what mattered most in the girl group era, and I’m humbled that I get to bring Women’s History, Astrology and The Shirelles together (alongside other women underrepresented in music and pop culture) together in a documented way.
It shouldn’t be surprising as I continue down to the wire putting all the puzzle pieces together that in the stream of songs The Shirelles made their presence known with one of my favorite obscurities from their later career. This shimmering strut of anxiety that made their 2nd Greatest Hits LP might have had a chance in hell being an actual hit record had it actually been released as a single prior to being an LP cut in 1967. Then again that would have meant that Florence Greenberg and Scepter would have still had to care about their once prized darlings in 1967 as they did in 1961.