Inescapable Barbed Joy: The Wright Specials, “Ninety-Nine and a Half Won’t Do”

The Gospel According To Gordy

Spawned off the success of the Motor City hit machine Motown records, Berry Gordy’s short-lived subsidiary, Divinity served as an outlet for spiritual and gospel music. Narrowly unleashing four singles: The Wright Specials’ “That’s What He Is To Me” (9904), Gospel Stars’ “Give God A Chance“ (9906), Burnadettes’ “First, You’ve Got To Recognize God (9907) and our favorite, a bona fide pew burner, The Wright Specials second Divinity single, “Ninety-Nine and a Half Won’t Do” (9905). You might be accustomed to the versions by Wilson Pickett and Creedence Clearwater Revival – this fevered take on the gospel spiritual is an open-hearted, savior summoning call to action, a stunning blow to the “Ninety-Nine and a Half Won’t Do” canon.

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