Thursday, June 25, 2009

Steve Cropper talks about the beginnings of The Memphis Album on AllMemphis Music

Steve Cropper: "I was sitting at home one day, and I was just looking through my emails, and I got an email from a publisher out in Los Angeles, a Universal publisher, a guy named Lance Reed, and he wrote me a little email, and he said, “I just talked to a friend of ours Bob Aird, who represents Universal Music down in Australia, and he says that he has this Australian Idol winner that has had a lot of success, he’s had about 3 albums, he sells a lot of records. He’s got a big following down in Australia, and he has come up with the idea that he’d like to do a, an album filled with Memphis songs, and Lance explained he said “This singer’s going to sing Memphis songs? Why don’t you bring him to Memphis, and maybe call Steve Cropper and get him involved, and maybe you can put together some of the old band members, and cut it for real in Memphis, Tennessee". And that message went back, and next thing you know we’re getting a phone call. And I emailed him back and said “Yeh I’d be interested in this”. So we went back and forth, and they called and they said “Would you really be interested in coming back to Memphis, and putting some of the guys together, and cutting some of these old songs?” and I said “absolutely. If anything it sounds like fun. If it makes it or not. It isn’t really an important thing. The fact that we come to Memphis, and hang out, and go over to our old studio." You know we did a lot of work for Stax at Ardent Studios on Madison. I actually had an office over there at one time after I left Stax. So it was like a home coming week.

And we set it all up and I got Donald Duck Dunn to come in from Florida and Steve Potts who still lives in Memphis, Lester Snell, and we got those guys together. Got some of the existing Memphis horns together, and we went in there and started cutting a little Al Green, a little Wilson Pickett, and a little Sam and Dave, and a little Otis Redding. And the next thing you know we’re about 14 tracks into an album. And everybody who came by said “Who is this kid? Where did you find this guy? and I said. “Hey I didn’t find him. He found me. And he wanted to come to Memphis and make a record”. And they said “We haven’t heard anybody sing like that in years. This is awesome. Wait until we tell people about this”.

The Memphis Album Specialty Show on