Norman Whitfield's The Temptations
The Chambers Brothers in 1970

"Runaway Child, Running Wild" (shown as "Run Away Child, Running Wild" on the label of the original single) is a 1969 hit single for the Gordy (Motown) label, performed by The Temptations and produced by Norman Whitfield.

- Runaway Child, Running Wild

He has been credited as one of the creators of the Motown Sound and of the late-1960s subgenre of psychedelic soul.

- Norman Whitfield

The single was both the second from their landmark Cloud Nine LP, and the second of their "psychedelic soul" tracks penned by Whitfield and former Motown artist Barrett Strong.

- Runaway Child, Running Wild

Also important were the Temptations and their producer Norman Whitfield, who moved from a relatively light vocal group into more hard-edged and topical material like "Cloud Nine" (1968), "Runaway Child, Running Wild" (1969), and "Psychedelic Shack" (1969).

- Psychedelic soul

1969: "Runaway Child, Running Wild" – The Temptations (US #6, US R&B #1)

- Norman Whitfield
Norman Whitfield's The Temptations

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The "Classic 5" lineup of the Temptations in 1967. Clockwise from top: David Ruffin, Melvin Franklin, Otis Williams, Eddie Kendricks, and Paul Williams.

The Temptations

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American vocal group from Detroit, Michigan, who released a series of successful singles and albums with Motown Records during the 1960s and 1970s.

American vocal group from Detroit, Michigan, who released a series of successful singles and albums with Motown Records during the 1960s and 1970s.

The "Classic 5" lineup of the Temptations in 1967. Clockwise from top: David Ruffin, Melvin Franklin, Otis Williams, Eddie Kendricks, and Paul Williams.
A promotional image of the original early 1960s Temptations lineup. Clockwise from top right: Otis Williams, Paul Williams, Melvin Franklin, Eddie Kendricks, and Elbridge "Al" Bryant.
The Temptations perform on The Ed Sullivan Show in September 1969. Left to right: Otis Williams, Melvin Franklin, Eddie Kendricks, Paul Williams, and Dennis Edwards.
The Temptations on stage at London's Royal Albert Hall, November 2005. Pictured L-R: Joe Herndon, Otis Williams, G.C. Cameron, Terry Weeks, and Ron Tyson.

The group's work with producer Norman Whitfield, beginning with the Top 10 hit single "Cloud Nine" in October 1968, pioneered psychedelic soul, and was significant in the evolution of R&B and soul music.

More Temptations psychedelic soul singles followed in 1969 and 1970—among them "Runaway Child, Running Wild" (a number-one R&B hit), "I Can't Get Next to You" (a number-one pop hit), "Psychedelic Shack", and "Ball of Confusion (That's What the World Is Today)", but the formula began to wear thin when "Ungena Za Ulimwengu (Unite the World)", only went to number 33 Pop in the fall of 1970.