Song Lyric Sunday – Let’s Get It On

The prompt from Jim:

This week a rather different prompt where you are supposed to find songs where somebody is having sex, or talking about it, insinuating sex, or hinting about sex.

In my late teens and early 20s I loved listening to Motown music. This is where I first fell in love with Marvin Gaye’s voice as he sang with Tammi Terrell. I never lost my fondness for him and I was devastated when he was shot and killed by his own father. After surviving a brutal childhood at the hands of his father and being assassinated by him, I was bitter his father never went to prison. Marvin Gaye was killed at 44. Another legendary talent, lost too soon. Those with such talent live on through their music and that makes us the fortunate recipients of their gifts.

“Let’s Get It On” was originally written by Ed Townsend who wrote and sang the great Do Wop song “For Your Love” in 1958. He suffered from alcoholism and the original lyrics for the song were actually about overcoming alcoholism. It was about overcoming tribulations and getting on with life. After some lyric changes, all you need do is listen and watch Marvin Gaye sing the song and you know it’s all about sex.

My favorite scene from a movie that uses this song is from “Something’s Gotta Give”. If you have not seen the movie, Diane Keaton is appalled her very young daughter is dating a very old guy (Jack Nicholson). I love Frances McDormand in this movie – actually I think all the casting is brilliant. This scene sets the premise for the movie and the musical choice here is spot on.

Of course with great music, often comes conflict. Popular singer Ed Sheeran (whom I really like) is currently embroiled in legal battles claiming he plagiarized “Let’s Get It On” in his song “Thinking Out Loud”. There are currently three lawsuits filed in this matter. Copyright laws are complicated when it comes to music and I’m glad I am not in the position of deciding these cases.  I am not sure I would have ever detected this myself, but after watching this video, maybe there is some basis for the lawsuits. It’s tough in the music industry these days, but Sheeran doesn’t help himself by creating a mashup of the two songs in concert.

As I listen to Marvin Gaye sing this song, I cannot help but mourn for a man who struggled with feelings of sexuality because of his upbringing. From all I read, he was able to reconcile these feelings so that he could normalize sexual feelings and overcome his childhood trauma through his own search for spirituality. There is often so much more behind the song and the lyrics than we can ever imagine.

Let’s Get It On
Lyrics from

I’ve been really tryin’, baby
Tryin’ to hold back this feeling for so long
And if you feel like I feel, baby
Then, c’mon, oh, c’mon

Let’s get it on
Ah, baby, let’s get it on
Let’s love, baby
Let’s get it on, sugar
Let’s get it on

We’re all sensitive people
With so much to give
Understand me, sugar
Since we’ve got to be here
Let’s live
I love you

There’s nothing wrong with me
Loving you, baby no no
And giving yourself to me can never be wrong
If the love is true, oh baby

Ooh don’t you know how sweet and wonderful life can be ooh
I’m asking you baby to get it on with me ooh ooh
I ain’t gonna worry
I ain’t gonna push, won’t push you baby
So c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, baby
Stop beatin’ ’round the bush, hey

Let’s get it on
Let’s get it on
You know what I’m talkin’ ’bout
C’mon, baby
Let your love come out
If you believe in love
Let’s get it on
Let’s get it on, baby
This minute, oh yeah
Let’s get it on
Please, please get it on

I know and you know what I’ve been dreaming of, don’t you baby?
My whole body makes that feelin’ of love, I’m happy
I ain’t gonna worry, no I ain’t gonna push
I won’t push you baby, woo

C’mon, c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, darlin’
Stop beatin’ ’round the bush
Oh, gonna get it on
Threatenin’ you, baby
I wanna get it on
You don’t have to worry that it’s wrong
If the spirit moves ya
Let me groove ya good
Let your love come down
Oh, get it on

C’mon, baby
Do you know the meaning?
I’ve been sanctified
Girl, you give me good feeling
I’ve been sanctified

Oh dear I, baby
Nothing wrong with love
If you want to love me just let your self go
Oh baby, let’s get it on

Song Lyric Sunday is hosted every Sunday by Jim Adams. If you would like to join in the fun, check out his blog for the rules and to take in all the other music posted by other bloggers.