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Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today) is a song by the American Motown group The Temptations. The song is, along with Beauty Is Only Skin Deep, the only single from the group from their heyday, 1964-1973, which was released without an album first. In the first place Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today)appear on Psychedelic Shack, the nineteenth album of the group. Eventually it was decided not to do this, because Ball of Confusion would have not have much in common with the title track, Psychedelic Shack, and thereby would weaken the power of the album. Ball of Confusion would Later be part of the songs on the albumGreatest Hits, vol. 2 appeared.

Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today) was written by Barrett Strong and Norman Whitfield. The latter also produced the song. Like predecessors asPsychedelic Shack and Run Away Child, Running Wild the number in question delves deep in the psychedelic soul atmosphere . What the preceding numbers and Ball of Confusion not have in common is that Ball of Confusion has a political message. The song speaks out against the Viet Nam war, drug abuse and segregation. However, no clear position taken in the number. This is because a different number of the group, was rejected by War, Motown, because it was concerned and thus less to politics would be sold. Incidentally, released later, War by Edwin Starr out there only number one hit with it in depth. Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today) was also a big hit like War . It peaked in the R & B list, the third place in the poplijst of the u.s. and the seventh place in the poplijst of the United Kingdom. With the latter listing the song was the most successful single of the group in Great Britain.

The instrumentation was, as on almost all Motownopnames to 1972, provided by The Funk Brothers. There were two drums used to give more strength to the number.For the same reason, there were also wahgitaren and used a wah- organ . The bass line is throughout the number, except during the two instrumental interludes, the same and was played by Bob Babbitt. Bassist James Jamerson, Motown, another usually played the bass lines, but played on Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today) not because producer Norman Whitfield thought he would keep to the fixed bass line.

On all members Otis Williams of The Temptations after singing lead on the song. When the members saw the sheet music for the first time, they thought they could never pronounce the text because it would be much too quickly. In fact, Dennis Edwards could do a great deal of this and so did it anyway. Ball of Confusion is also one of the few songs by the Group on which Eddie Kendricks sings falsetto tenor not only but also.

Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today) was several times covered by among other artists such as Tina TurnerDuran DuranThe Undisputed TruthThe Neville Brothers and Widespread Panic. Also, the song was used in the film Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit. Among other Whoopi Goldberg and Kathy Najimy then sang along.

The B side of Ball of Confusion (that's What the World Is Today) is it's SummerPsychedelic Shackalbum. Song was Later released as an A-side of a single, with the b-side I'm the Exception to the Rule.


  • Lead: Eddie Kendricks, Dennis Edwards, Paul Williams and Melvin Franklin
  • Background: Otis Williams, Melvin Franklin, Eddie Kendricks, Paul Williams and Dennis Edwards
  • Instrumentation: The Funk Brothers
  • Writers: Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong
  • Production: Norman Whitfield