I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)

I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)

"I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)" is a 1965 hit song recorded by The Four Tops for the Motown label, later re-recorded by American singer La Toya Jackson in 1995.

The Four Tops version

Infobox Single
Name = I Can't Help Myself
(Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)
Artist = Four Tops
from Album = The Four Tops' Second Album
Released = April 23, 1965
Format = 7" single
Recorded = Hitsville USA (Studio A); 1965
Genre = Soul/pop
Length = 2:46
Label = Motown
M 1076
Writer = Holland-Dozier-Holland
Producer = Brian Holland
Lamont Dozier
Chart position =
*#1 (US Pop Singles)
**#1 (US R&B Singles)
Reviews =
Last single = "Ask the Lonely"

This single = "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)"
Next single = "It's the Same Old Song"

Written and produced by Motown's main production team Holland-Dozier-Holland, the song is one of the most well-known Motown tunes of the 1960s. It was the number one song on the Billboard Hot 100 for two non-consecutive weeks, from June 12 1965 to June 19 and from June 26 to July 3. It replaced "Back in My Arms Again" by labelmates The Supremes, was first replaced by "Mr. Tambourine Man" by The Byrds, then regained the top spot before being permanently replaced by "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" by The Rolling Stones.

The song finds lead singer Levi Stubbs, assisted by the other three Tops and The Andantes, pleadingly professing his love to a woman: "Sugar pie, honey bunch/I'm weaker than a man should be!/Can't help myself/I'm a fool in love, you see." Like most of his lead parts, Stubbs' vocals are recorded in a tone that straddles the line between singing and shouting, similar to the tone of a black Baptist preacher. The melodic and chordal progressions are very similar to the Supremes' Where Did Our Love Go.

"Rolling Stone" magazine ranked the song #415 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. It has been covered extensively since 1965, including a version by Bonnie Pointer and versions done for several television commercials.


* Lead vocals by Levi Stubbs
* Background Vocals by Abdul "Duke" Fakir, Renaldo "Obie" Benson, Lawrence Payton, and The Andantes: Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow, and Louvain Demps
* Instrumentation by The Funk Brothers

* Written by Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, and Edward Holland, Jr.
* Produced by Brian Holland and Lamont Dozier

La Toya Jackson version

Infobox Single
Name = I Can't Help Myself

Artist = La Toya Jackson
from Album = Stop in the Name of Love
Released = 1995
Format = CD Single
Recorded = 1995
Genre = Soul/Dance
Length = 3:30 (Single Version), 4:10 (Album Version)
Label = KOCH Records
Writer = Holland-Dozier-Holland
Producer =
Chart position = Did not chart
Reviews =
Last single = "Let's Rock the House"

This single = "I Can't Help Myself"
Next single = "Don't Break My Heart"

La Toya Jackson covered "I Can't Help Myself" on her 1995 album "Stop in the Name of Love". The single was only released throughout Switzerland, Austria, Germany and Holland, with the album track "Baby Love" (cover of The Supremes' "Baby Love") as a B-side. The single failed to chart.

Other uses

During the 1980s the song (using the original Four Tops arrangement) was featured in a popular commercial for Kelloggs Honey Smacks cereal in the United Kingdom; sung by the cereals (then) mascot, Barey Bee.

On Madonna's Who's That Girl Tour, she sang a few lines of "I Can't Help Myself" during the song "Like A Virgin."

The band Say Anything also uses a few lines from the song on their track "Sure Baby...Hold Back" released on their first album entitled "Baseball".

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