Pip – A small hard seed in fruit.
Grapes have pips, so do loquats as well as mangoes, which like the avocado only has one. Gladys Knight, on the other hand, has three of them, her brother Merald “Bubba” Knight, and cousins Edward Patten and William Guest. They took the name “Pips” from another cousin, James “Pip” Woods. The group signed with Motown’s Soul label in 1966 and quickly rose to prominence with their version of “I Heard It Through the Grapevine”, which boasted more of an uptempo, gospel-style arrangement than Marvin Gaye’s classic version from the following year.
I wonder if Gladys and the Pips thought it funny, pips singing about a grapevine. I’ve never heard an American use the word “pip” in relationship to fruit, it’s always “seed” or “pit.” I get puzzled looks when I use the word.
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