Ball Of Confusion (That's What the World Is Today) is a soul song, written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong and was originally a hit single from the Temptations in 1970. Tina covered it for the B.E.F. album Music For Quality And Distinction (Vol. 1) in 1982 with a very modern sythesizer instrumental background, produced by Martyn Ware and Ian Craig Walsh. Released as a single, it surprisingly charted in Norway. The album was reissued on compact disc in 1991 with a remixed version, which is also available on the box set The Collected Recordings. Tina promoted the song on the Australian tv show Countdown on July 18, 1982.
It’s the very first single from Tina with a music video, filmed as a live performance on stage, together with her female dancers and musicians. In fact, the music comes from tape and Tina is lip-syncing the song. David Mallet, who directed and produced the video, used some special effects like slow-motion. Tina made history with this video as one of the first black artists to appear on MTV when the burgeoning network added it to its programming schedule. Unfortunately, the clip was not released officially until today.
Released in April 1982 in Germany and May 1982 in England from Virgin Records on 7“ vinyl, Ball Of Confusion reached #5 in Norway. The single was not released in America.
A. Ball Of Confusion 3:56
B. Ball Of Confusion (Instrumental) 3:45
Written by N. Whitfield, B. Strong / Arranged and Produced by Martyn Ware, Ian Craig Walsh of the British Electric Foundation / Engineer Assistant: Nick Patrick / Linndrum Programming: Martyn Ware / Roland System 100 Programming: Martyn Ware & Ian Craig Marsh / Saxophone: David Baptiste / Trumpet: Canute Wellington / Trombone: Nathaniel Augustin / Rhythm & Distorted Guitars: Nevil McKreith / Harmonica: Paul Jones / Intro Guitar: John McGeoch
Photo: Lynn Goldsmith