Thursday, August 17, 2006

Hey Buddy and Ronnie:


BB & RH:

Carol really wants us to consider Sean Guerrero seriously.
Please listen to his stuff on myspace, see if he fits the catalogue & all suggestions are appreciated!



Aug 14, 2006 5:32 PM
I love your blog. It's great! However, can you change a couple things? The name of the movie is: Love and Suicide.
Not, Death.
Our last name is spelled with one 'R'.
Otherwise, I so much appreciate it!
Good news!!
We have been EXTENDED! We will be playing at the AMC Cocowalk16, Coconut Grove Fl. Aug 18-20.
This is a good sign.
Thanks for any bit of help!

We'll keep you updated!


Hey y'all:
Please, PLEASE, Pretty PLEASE,
check out the clip of LOVE & SUICIDE on the Cuban link above.

Luis Moro is the first American to produce a major motion picture in Cuba since Errol Flynn did CUBAN REBEL GIRLS.

LOVE AND SUICIDE premiered today at the AMC Theatre in Coral Gables.

TODAY is a super important day for Luis and Bobbi Moro.

Please check out Bobbi's site & HELP OUT THE MORO FAMILY ANY WAY YOU CAN!


Roberto Reg

From: "marika preziuso"


Subject: query on cubanidad/cubanismo

Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2006 23:05:16 +02
>hola roberto,>>

I bet we have similar origins, I am Italian although I have lived in the UK long enough to consider myself a naturalized english woman >(smile!).

I was intrigued by one of your posts on your blog on cuba: your mentioning of cubanidad in opposition to cubanismo. I actually struggled to find on line reference to either of these, so if you would be kind enough to share your knowledge with me, I will certainly appreciate it a lot.

i am using both definitions in my phd thesis
>>hasta pronto
>>>>Marika Preziuso
>PhD Student in Comparative Caribbean Literature
>School of English
>University of London

...Calcule tes forces et fais confiance
>a ta fragilite'
>Accepte la vie comme une vague..
>Chaque vague touche
>le destin d'une autre..
>From "Lone Sun" by Clarisse Zimra

RE: query on cubanidad/cubanismo
Fri, 18 Aug 2006 00:27:44 +0000

Muchas para su query.

It got me to thinking. In fact, I'm looking at seven pages of notes.

There's more cubanismo, cubania, cubanidad and lo cubano on Calle Ocho en MeeAHmEE FloWRIThA, the streets of HeeAHLAYuh or Ybor City than you can find on one square inch of Cuban soil outside of the walls of a prison.

There's a whole lot of CUBANIDAD inside the FIDELISTA prisons and when those missionaries of CUBANIDAD get released from Fidel's hellholes, they often vote with their feet and end up on the streets of Miami, Hialeah or Tampa waking up every day in a land where there's always an opportunity to excel EACH MORNING!

In almost every case, absolutely noone should tell the artist what that artist should commemorate. The pursuit of "the artist's intransigent devotion to the pursuit of truth" has been absolutely extinguished in Cuba for over 45 years.

Honesty in Cuba is an utter impossibility.

Under Fidel, complete dishonesty has been required as a primary survival technique[see "The Emporer's New Clothes"].

Please let anyone who's a Fidelista know that they are talking to the wrong person if they think they're talking to Robert Register.

I really do love studying Cuba. If you run into anything concerning El Centro Gallego de Habana y Teatro Nacional
, El Centro Asturiano, the Havana Yacht Club, The Country Club, the Havana Biltmore Club, Vedado Tennis Club, El Gran Casino National,the Prado gambling house[Ernesto Asbert, owner], the Jockey Club, Pete Sazarac and Sloppy Joe's, please forward it to me.

Robert Register

Sun, 13 Aug 2006 01:58:10 EDT
billy gilmore

greetings robert,
i have been reading the letters from billy gilmore's daughters and thought i would pass this along. YouTube - Classics IV - Traces it is a clip from the old upbeat show here in cleveland of the classics iv with billy on bass doing "traces". maybe you could pass this along to the "gilmore girls" if they haven't seen it. let them know that their fathers music has touched more people than they can imagine.
best wishes to them and you,
jim monica.

Thank you so much for forwarding this on!!! Do you know who Jim Monica is?
Cherish [Gilmore]

"robert register"
Mon, 14 Aug 2006 23:46:56 -0400

Papa Don of The Surf Stomp at Pensacola Beach

The Candymen played for Papa Don too.
He didn't pay us all of our money.
I don't forget !
Rodney "THE ROCKER" Justo

Monday, August 14, 2006

Michael Andrew Rainer

Michael Andrew Rainer of Dothan passed away Friday, Aug. 11, 2006.
He was 20.
Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15, in Byrd Funeral Home Chapel with the Revs. Hays McKay and Kyle Gatlin officiating.

Burial will follow in Sunset Memorial Park.

The family will receive friends at the funeral home from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, Aug. 14.

Flowers will be accepted or memorial gifts are requested to be given to Wiregrass Area Food Bank, 382 Twitchell Road, Dothan, AL 36303, or Covenant United Methodist Church Building Fund, 3610 W. Main St., Dothan, AL 36305.

Michael was born March 28, 1986, in Dothan.

He attended Dothan High School and had attended classes at Wallace Community College.

Growing up, he loved sports and was a gifted athlete in baseball, soccer, basketball and football.

One of Michael's greatest joys in life was his many friends.

He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Richard and Mary Rainer and Tom and Emily Sullivan.

He is survived by his parents, Robin and Maiga Rainer; his brother, Tom Rainer, and Tom's special friend Crissi Bond; and Michael's most special friend, Courtney Roberts.

Active pallbearers will be Mark Ferguson, Brandon Thompson, Calvin White, Aaron Rukvina, Austin Wells and Greg Bongino.

Byrd Funeral Home, (334) 793-3003, is in charge of arrangements. Sign the guestbook at


Never thanked you for the two CDs. They got covered up in my inbox. My inbox is another story. Lots of trauma. Muchas!
Viva Nueva Cuba!


Please watch Lance Miccio's film on juke boxes. He's being judged in a film festival in Rhode Island but there is a really kewl Alabama connection. One of the records they feature from a real live juke box (like voted best in Rhode Island or something) is "I'm Your Puppet" and they play both Dan Penn (Dan Penn[ from Vernon,Alabama] & The Undertakers) version and James & Bobby Purify's version [formerly know as the Dothan Sextet;discovered in Pensacola by Papa Don] (WRONG AGAIN!!!! They only play the Purify's version; some guy talks about the Dan Penn version)

This bar in Rhode Island still has ten plays for a dollar.

Please check it out & you will get the information soon on how to vote for Lance.


I need help-please vote 5 for my piece at the Rhode Island film fest for JUKEBOX;Vanishing America
Please vote-today or tomorrow-you to register its free and takes 1 one minute to do it . We need your help Alabama -
Lance Miccio

I screwed up and gave Lance only 3 stars. That's what happens when you ask a po' ass, barefooted rebel son uv a bitch to use the Internet!

Hey y'all:
Befo' I get off into DAN PENN LAND, I wanna include all the Youtube stuff, especially this post on Bill Gilmore!

billy gilmore

greetings robert,
i have been reading the letters from billy gilmore's daughters and thought i would pass this along.
YouTube - Classics IV - Traces
it is a clip from the old upbeat show here in cleveland of the classics iv with billy on bass doing "traces". maybe you could pass this along to the "gilmore girls" if they haven't seen it. let them know that their fathers music has touched more people than they can imagine.
best wishes to them and you,
jim monica.

Re: Something You Might Be Able To Sink Your Patriotic Aussie Teeth Into...

And by the by, Terry Stewart, prez of said RnR Hall of Fame is an Alabama lad from Daphne. Also on that Aussie rock clips mention I am travelling back to hometown Melbourne (Aust) in mid-Sept to do a reformation of my 1967-69 band Cam-pact as part of a series of shows to launch a new book on era called Tomorrow Is Today. We were a soul influenced band that got a little psychy with the main tune of that type having been on a few comp's both in Aust and the UK. We also used to do "Spooky" (a lot) but hadn't planned to reprise that one for the show!


How did you find "Let Love Come Between Us"?

A guy named Fred Stiles played in a band called the Five Minutes. The Five Minutes, out of Muscle Shoals. They were a great little band. And I had Papa Don Surf Stomps every weekend. I had them on Friday and Saturday nights, and Sunday afternoon. I rented this big huge place, a casino, right on the Pensacola beach. And I had Papa Don Surf Stomps. I mean, everybody from the Allman Joys (later know as the Allman Brothers) to the Five Minutes, Dan Penn & the Pallbearers, they all came down and played for me. And Fred Stiles and I got to be good friends…nice guy.
Fred Stiles brought me this song. He said, ‘Man, I found you a hit!’ I think a friend of his wrote it, and Al Gallico published it.
I always wanted to cut a song for Al Gallico’s publishing company. I just loved him. He was a great publisher out of New York. And Gallico did his little number as a publisher, and really helped promote it too.
I was cutting a beach song. I was cutting a Papa Don Surf Stomp song. A real good beach hit. It’s one of my favorite records that I cut on the Purifys.

Front row, left to right: guitarist Eddie Hinton, bassist David Hood, Sonny Bono, CHER, producer Jerry Wexler, background vocalist Jeannie Greene, background vocalist Donna Thatcher and producer Tom Dowd. Back row, left to right: lead guitarist Jimmy Johnson, producer Arif Mardin, drummer Roger Hawkins and keyboardist Barry Beckett. Missing: background vocalists Mary Holiday and Sue Pilkington.
Sonny Bono and Arif Mardin wear t-shirts depicting legendary University of Alabama Crimson Tide coach Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant walking on water underscored by the slogan “I Believe

From Harry Young's liner notes for "3614 Jackson Highway"

Subject: [MFV] jackson highway

tommy thanks for sharing that story ,, pete took me to that old studio one night and we hung out there for awhile , it gave me chills just being in that place and knowing the history behind it , pete took me in little office and told me he layed down "mainstreet" and i think "like a rock" in there ? when he told me that the hair on my head stood on ends , ha ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, there is a pic i think dick has it of mick jagger standing on that back porch
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, slugger

Subject: [MFV] Cher 3614 Cat Tale

Awhile back some of you had posted some stuff about the Cher album "3614 Jackson Highway".
One night after one of the Rod Stewart sessions for his "Atlantic Crossing" album here in Muscle Shoals, we all went out to eat. Tom Dowd who was producing the record started telling old Jerry Wexler stories and told us this funny account of the Cher album sessions.
He said although Sonny was there it wasn't a Sonny and Cher record. The rhythm section was running down a song and had a great feel on the tune when Sonny jumped up and said "I have a great idea for this song. Let's put a Tuba on it doing this 'om pa pa' thing". Well this stopped the pickers and the great groove they had going. Everyone looked at each other and rolled their eyes. Wexler told the musicians to run it again while he and Sonny did the 'back porch test'. For those of you not familiar with the old studio on Jackson Highway, we would stand on the back porch and listen to the playback, and if it sounded good out there it passed the test. Wexler led Sonny to the back door, he opened it to let Sonny walk out. As soon as Sonny walked out on the porch Wexler slammed the door behind him and locked it. This left Sonny outside by himself. The band continued to cut the song without the Tuba.
Dowd said "If you listen real close to that song you can hear Sonny beating on the back door trying to get back in the studio" lol.

Another note about that record. You can see on the album cover the sign over the front door of the studio that reads 3614 Jackson Highway.
At that time there was not actually a sign on the front of the building that said that. But after Jimmy Johnson and the guys saw the pic for the album cover with the address over the door, they thought it was cool so they had one painted and put up there.

Thought I would share this with all you Mighty Fieldhands.
Tommy Patterson

I don't have a scan of the picture, but I have the album, and I cantell you who they are.From the left, Eddie Hinton, Jimmy Johnson, David Hood, Arif Mardin,Sonny Bono, Roger Hawkins, Jerry Wexler, Barry Beckett, Jeannie Greene, Donna Thatcher [later Donna Godcheaux with the Grateful Dead] and Tom Dowd.Dowd, Wexler and Mardin were co-producers, and Dowd was the engineer.

From Harry Young's liner notes for "3614 Jackson Highway"

So Atlantic Executive Vice President Jerry Wexler, Atlantic Vice President In Charge of Engineering Tom Dowd and Atlantic A&R director Arif Mardin produced Cher’s ‘3614 Jackson Highway’ album.

Not coincidentally, the same team had recently produced Dusty Springfield’s ‘Dusty In Memphis’ (Atlantic album SD 8214, released 17 January 1969, Cash Box review 1 February 1969, entered Billboard 15 March 1969, #99). According to ‘Rhythm and the Blues: A Life in American Music’ by Jerry Wexler and David Ritz, all vocals on ‘Dusty In Memphis’ were cut in New York.

Regarding Cher’s ‘3614 Jackson Highway’ sessions, Wexler wrote, “I picked up pneumonia and went to the hospital before the actual singing started, so Dowd and Mardin took over. I never made it to the control room.”

Jerry Wexler did select the songs for Cher’s album, including three controversial tunes from Bob Dylan’s just-released ‘Nashville Skyline’ album (Cash Box review 19 April 1969).

The '3614 Jackson Highway' sessions day by day:

Monday, 21 April 1969: Eddie Hinton’s “Save The Children” (strings, French horn, no backing vocals) and Dylan’s “I Threw It All Away” (Soul horns, gospel backing vocals).

Tuesday, 22 April 1969: Dylan’s “Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You” (Soul horns, no backing vocals).

Wednesday, 23 April 1969: “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man” (assertive, at times indignant lead vocal, Soul horns, no backing vocals), “For What It’s Worth” (male and female backing vocals), “(Just Enough To Keep Me) Hangin’ On” (strings, gospel backing vocals) and the unreleased now lost Laura Nyro cut “Wedding Bell Blues” (Master 17005).

Thursday, 24 April 1969: “(Sitting On) The Dock Of The Bay” (Soul horns, no backing vocals or whistling at end!) and “I Walk On Guilded Splinters” (Soul horns, backing vocals, sizzling organ).

Friday, 25 April 1969: the unreleased and now lost Eddie Hinton-Dan Penn-Wayne Jackson cut “Always David” (Master 17007). Marlin Greene soon produced a hit version of “Always David” by Ruby Winters (Diamond single 265, Billboard review 30 August 1969, Billboard R&B #23). In February 1969 The Sweet Inspirations had recorded "Always David" (Master 16453, 'Sweets For My Sweet,' Atlantic album SD 8225 released 20 June 1969) at FAME with Mardin, Dowd, Johnson, Hinton, Beckett, Hood and Hawkins. The Sweet Inspirations' excellent version of "Always David" (3:26) can now be heard on the Stereo 'Sweets For My Sweets' reissue CD (Spy 46004-2, released 19 November 2002).

Saturday, 26 April to Tuesday, 29 April 1969: Sonny & Cher in California to visit seven-week-old daughter Chastity.

Wednesday, 30 April 1969: “Cry Like A Baby” (Soul horns, restrained backing vocals) and “Please Don’t Tell Me” (strings, no horns or backing vocals). This date also included the unreleased and sadly, now lost Sonny & Cher track “Honey Lamb” (Master 16887).Sonny & Cher then flew to London to appear on ABC-TV’s ‘This Is Tom Jones’ Friday, 2 May 1969. The duo performed “Yours Until Tomorrow” and “Just A Little”, the unreleased Gold Star version of which had been recorded 26 March 1969 (Master 28664). Interviewed by New Musical Express (“Sonny & Cher Kill Old Image”, 10 May 1969), Sonny focused on the ‘Chastity’ film with no mention of Alabama. The couple next traveled to New York for a spot on ABC-TV’s ‘Joey Bishop Show’ Friday, 9 May 1969.

Sonny & Cher returned to Muscle Shoals by Wednesday 14 May 1969 to cut Cher’s “Lay Baby Lay” (“A Whiter Shade Of Pale” organ, no strings, horns or backing vocals).

‘3614 Jackson Highway’ was previewed for Atlantic Records’ promotion and sales departments at the Hilton Plaza Hotel in Miami 23-25 May 1969 and officially presented at summer sales confabs in Chicago, New York and Hollywood 20 June 1969.

Reflecting Atlantic’s high expectations, the vinyl album was unleashed in a Stereo commercial version, an alternate Stereo Promotional version and a CSG (Compatible Stereo Generator) Monaural Sample version. ‘3614 Jackson Highway’ also saw release on cassette, 8-track and reel-to-reel tape. In addition, Atco delivered a seven inch Promotional EP: “(Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay” / “(Just Enough To Keep Me) Hangin’ On” / “For What It’s Worth” / “Please Don’t Tell Me” (Atco EP 4537, Stereo and Mono editions).

The commercial fortunes of Cher’s ‘3614 Jackson Highway’ may have been adversely affected by the album’s packaging. For example, the only colour photo of Cher was hidden in the interior of the flimsy UNIPAK gatefold sleeve. And the all-important song titles were not even listed on the exterior of the album cover.And the entire album concept centered on the address of a brand new, completely unknown studio.

Cher’s 21 April 1969 “Save The Children” date was the first session ever held at Muscle Shoals Sound.

The studio did not generate a hit until the Ahmet Ertegun-produced “Take A Letter Maria” by R. B. Greaves (Master 17634 recorded 19 August 1969, Atco single 45-6714, Cash Box review 27 September 1969, entered Billboard’s Bubbling Under 11 October 1969, #2).

Fred Bevis originally converted 3614 Jackson Highway into a four-track recording studio. Various sources claim the location was formerly a funeral home, casket warehouse or casket factory.In early 1969 Jimmy Johnson (guitar), Barry Beckett (piano, electric piano, organ), David Hood (bass) and Roger Hawkins (drums) purchased the building for $14,000 and upgraded to eight-track. The musicians previously served as the house band at Rick Hall’s nearby FAME (Florence Alabama Music Enterprises) studio in Muscle Shoals.

"A lot of the artists we worked with, especially at first, thought we were black", Hood told the Times Daily. "I was flattered by that, because most of the artists we liked were black. We loved that music, and we felt we had earned the right to play it”.Before founding Muscle Shoals Sound, varying combinations of Johnson, Beckett, Hood and Hawkins had played on major hits like “When A Man Loves A Woman” and “Take Time To Know Her” by Percy Sledge, “I’m Your Puppet” by James and Bobby Purify, “I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)” by Aretha Franklin, “Sweet Soul Music” by Arthur Conley and “Slip Away” and “Making Love (At The Dark End Of The Street)” by Clarence Carter. So in terms of session credits, Johnson, Beckett, Hood and Hawkins were highly respected.But the black and white ‘3614 Jackson Highway’ cover photo buried Cher in a hazy sea of unidentified and mostly unfamiliar faces.Front row, left to right: guitarist Eddie Hinton, bassist David Hood, Sonny Bono, CHER, producer Jerry Wexler, background vocalist Jeannie Greene, background vocalist Donna Thatcher and producer Tom Dowd. Back row, left to right: lead guitarist Jimmy Johnson, producer Arif Mardin, drummer Roger Hawkins and keyboardist Barry Beckett. Missing: background vocalists Mary Holiday and Sue Pilkington.

Sonny Bono and Arif Mardin wear t-shirts depicting legendary University of Alabama Crimson Tide coach Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant walking on water underscored by the slogan “I Believe”.

Many musicians were not shown on the ‘3614 Jackson Highway’ album cover or mentioned in the credits. Cher’s horn section(s) probably involved Andrew Love, Charles Chalmers or Joe Arnold on tenor sax, Floyd Newman or James Mitchell on baritone sax, Wayne Jackson, Gene ‘Bowlegs’ Miller or Ben Cauley on trumpet and Joseph DeAngelis or Earl Chapin on French horn. Cher’s string section would have been directed by Arif Mardin and probably led by Gene Orloff on viola.On 6 December 1968, just prior to the founding of Muscle Shoals Sound, Wexler, Dowd, Johnson, Beckett, Hood, and Hawkins worked with guitarist Duane Allman at FAME on Arthur Conley’s “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da” session (Masters 15812-15817, Atco single 45-6640, Cash Box review 21 December 1968, ‘More Sweet Soul’, Atco album SD 33-276, Cash Box review 15 February 1969).Since Duane Allman played on ‘Boz Scaggs’ (Atlantic album SD 8239, recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound 5-10 May 1969, Variety review 10 September 1969) and Lulu’s ‘New Routes’ (Atco album SD 33-310, recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound 10 September and 2 October 1969, released 16 January 1970, Billboard review 7 February 1970, #88), one might also suspect Allman contributions on Cher’s ‘3614 Jackson Highway’, especially “For What It’s Worth”, “(Sitting On) The Dock Of The Bay”, “Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You” and “Cry Like A Baby”.


ARTHUR CONLEY'S SHAKE,RATTLE & ROLL- released last Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Monday November 17, 2003
Soul Legend Arthur Conley passed away at age 57.
Memorial Service Saturday, November 22, 2003, de Nederlands Hervormde Kerk, Kerkplein 1 Ruurlo.
Funeral and burial de Algemene Begraafplaats, Kerkhoflaan in Vorden.
by Harry Young
A southern Soul singer turned international Pop star, Arthur Conley racked up nine Billboard chart entries from 1967 to 1970. Strongly influenced by Sam Cooke and closely associated with Otis Redding, Arthur Conley was an accomplished songwriter, a talented interpreter and a riveting live performer.

Arthur Lee Conley was born January 4, 1946 in McIntosh, GA. In 1958, he joined The Evening Smiles, an otherwise all-female Gospel group that regularly performed on Atlanta's WAOK radio.

In 1963-64, Conley's band, Arthur And The Corvets, released three singles on Bill Lowery's Atlanta-based National Recording Company label.

In late 1964, Conley joined his father in Baltimore, MD and recorded "I'm A Lonely Stranger" for manager / promoter / booking agent Rufus Mitchell's Ru-Jac label.

In 1965, Mitchell passed a copy of the Ru-Jac single to Otis Redding after a concert at the Baltimore Theater. Redding was thoroughly impressed with "I'm A Lonely Stranger" and before long, Conley was summoned to Memphis to re-record the song at Stax Studios. Jim Stewart produced the session with arranging help from Booker T.

At Redding's direction, Conley recorded two singles in Alabama at FAME Studios. Released on Atco-distributed Fame Records in July 1966, the blazing "I Can't Stop (No, No, No)" was written by Dan Penn ("Out Of Left Field") with drummer Roger Hawkins. The 'B' side, "In The Same Old Way," was a brooding ballad composed by Penn with keyboardist Linden Spooner Oldham.
Recorded October 3, 1966, Conley's second FAME single featured "I'm Gonna Forget About You" and "Take Me (Just As I Am)." Ten months after Conley's version, "Take Me (Just As I Am)" became a Top Fifty Billboard Pop item for Solomon Burke (see The Very Best Of Solomon Burke, Rhino R2 72972, 1998).
Contrary to the ghost-written liner notes of the Sweet Soul Music album, Arthur Conley never met Otis Redding during the Jotis and FAME periods. Otis Redding and manager Phil Walden dealt with Arthur Conley through Rufus Mitchell. But when Conley finally did meet Redding in early 1967, the chemistry was undeniable. Conley moved into the Redding camp, prompting a lawsuit from Rufus Mitchell.

As manager and mentor, Redding helped Conley understand business affairs, encouraged his songwriting and gave him a say in repertoire selection. According to Conley, "Otis always asked what I wanted to do. He never did tell me what I had to do. That's what I liked about him."

"Sweet Soul Music," Conley's first Atco single, was recorded at FAME on or slightly before January 20 and certified Gold on June 23, 1967. "Sweet Soul Music" (Billboard #2; Billboard R&B #2; Cash Box #4; Cash Box R&B #1) was a Top Ten record in Canada, England, the Netherlands and The Philippines. "Sweet Soul Music" was Billboard's #17 Pop record of 1967 & #9 R&B 45. The December 30, 1967 Billboard also named Arthur Conley #11 Pop male artist and #18 R&B singles artist.

In a June 1995 interview on the origins of "Sweet Soul Music," Arthur Conley said, "Sam Cooke was a great inspiration for me. I bought all his albums. And 'Yeah Man' was on his Shake album. When I met Otis Redding, I told him I'd like to record 'Yeah Man.' Otis liked it very much as well. So he got on guitar with me and said, Let's change it like so, and we came up with 'spotlight on the artist' and all those kinds of things. But it was originally Sam Cooke. My idea was just to record 'Yeah Man.' But Otis changed it around and retitled it 'Sweet Soul Music.'"
"Sweet Soul Music" paid tribute to Sam and Dave, Wilson Pickett, James Brown and Lou Rawls. Otis Redding's name was added to the list at Conley's suggestion. In fact, Conley received composer credit on the record for that contribution alone. But Sam Cooke, the song's true author, was not mentioned in the lyrics or credited as composer, a glaring injustice remedied only after complaints from Kags music chief J.W. Alexander, composer of "Let's Go Steady," the non-LP 'B' side of "Sweet Soul Music."
"Sweet Soul Music," a #1 hit on Detroit's WKNR, was a southern Soul manifesto. The "spotlight" did not shine on Motown artists. Ironically, the song that kept "Sweet Soul Music" from Billboard's top spot, "The Happening" by The Supremes, was Motown's sixteenth #1 hit.
Although Stax guitarist Steve Cropper cited Maxwell House coffee commercials in Gerri Hirshey's Nowhere To Run, "Sweet Soul Music"'s ear-grabbing horn introduction came from Elmer Bernstein's theme from the 1960 film The Magnificent Seven as featured in Marlboro Man TV ads.

Invited by headliner Redding, Arthur Conley joined the March-April 1967 Stax-Volt Revue tour of Europe / Scandinavia with Sam & Dave, Eddie Floyd, The Mar-Keys & Booker T. and the MGs. Frequently, Conley received second billing. Later in the year, Conley, advertised as the Prince Of Sweet Soul Music, was back in Europe on the "Soul Explosion" tour with Sam and Dave, and Percy Sledge. Conley also appeared on the French LP Rhythm & Blues Panorama (Stax 3006, 1967) with Otis Redding, Sam and Dave, Rufus Thomas, etc.
Arthur Conley was booked in the United States as a mainstream Pop act. For example, when 13,000 fans attended the Big WAYS Birthday concert in Charlotte, NC on June 8, 1967, they saw Arthur Conley, Percy Sledge, Bobby Vee, Robert Parker, The Royal Guardsmen, Mrs. Miller and superstar Lou Christie.

Conley was back at FAME on or slightly before May 17, 1967, recording "Shake, Rattle And Roll," the follow-up to "Sweet Soul Music." Conley's "Shake, Rattle And Roll" (Billboard #31; Billboard R&B #20; Cash Box #47; Cash Box R&B #18) was a cover of Sam Cooke's version of the Big Joe Turner chestnut. "Whole Lotta Woman" (Billboard Pop #73; Cash Box Pop #92), recorded October 3, 1967, was also drawn from the Sam Cooke catalog. In yet another mix-up, some copies of the "Whole Lotta Woman" single incorrectly credited Conley as composer. "Let's Go Steady," "Get Yourself Another Fool" and "They Call The Wind Maria" were also drawn from the Sam Cooke catalog.
Arthur Conley was in Florida when he learned that his friend & protector, Otis Redding, had been killed in a Wisconsin plane crash (December 10, 1967). Conley was devastated. "I just couldn't believe it," he said.
Operating from the Redwal Building, 535 Cotton Ave., Macon, GA 31201, Phil Walden quickly assumed managerial control of Conley's career. But with Redding gone, Conley was increasingly subjected to record company interference and a notable lack of assistance from more experienced Atlantic / Stax artists.
Still, Conley rebounded. On or slightly before February 5, 1968, he went into American Studios, Memphis, with producer Tom Dowd. The pivotal session yielded six tracks on Conley's 1995 Ichiban CD, including "People Sure Act Funny" (Billboard #58; Billboard R&B #17; Cash Box #41; Cash Box R&B #41), "Get Yourself Another Fool," "Run On" (Billboard #115), the emotion-laden tribute "Otis Sleep On" and the stellar Conley original "Put Our Love Together." The highlight of the session was Conley's mind-blowing tribute to Atlanta's Auburn Avenue, "Funky Street" (Billboard #14; Billboard R&B #5; Cash Box #19; Cash Box R&B #10).
As detailed in Peter Guralnick's Sweet Soul Music, on February 6, 1968, The SOUL CLAN (Solomon Burke, Arthur Conley, Don Covay, Ben E. King and Joe Tex) cut "Soul Meeting" / "That's How It Feels." But Conley claims he was a reluctant participant, adding his vocal to the master tape at the last minute, alone in New York.

On Monday, March 11, 1968, Conley and his seven-piece band began a month-long tour of the UK, Germany, Italy, Sweden and Denmark.
In September 1968, Conley was back in Memphis with Dowd, cutting "Aunt Dora's Love Soul Shack" (Billboard #85; Billboard R&B #41; Cash Box #75; Cash Box R&B #31). "Aunt Dora's Love Soul Shack" spawned Syl Johnson's "Going To The Shack" (1969) & The Temptations' "Psychedelic Shack" (1970).
The Beatles
("white") LP was released in the US on November 25, 1968. On or slightly before December 6, 1968, Jerry Wexler and Tom Dowd had Arthur Conley cut "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da" at FAME. As the liner notes of the More Sweet Soul LP said,
"This tune is part of the beginnings of a new influence in music called 'Rock Steady' that originated in Jamaica. Conley took the song and the beat, added a dash of his special soul treatment and came up with the first 'Soul-Steady' recording."
Many of the musicians from Wilson Pickett's November 27, 1968 "Hey Jude" FAME session, including intrusive lead guitarist Duane Allman, appeared on "Ob-La-Di" (Billboard #51; Billboard R&B #41; Cash Box #74).
On March 1, 1969, Conley performed "Ob-La-Di" on ABC-TV's American Bandstand.
In his final outing with Tom Dowd, Arthur Conley cut "Star Review" at Muscle Shoals Sound Studios in July 1969. Cash Box: "Returning to the formula that produced his 'Sweet Soul Music' smash, Arthur Conley turns his booming talent to a dance fan session with powerhouse prospects on the teen & blues circuit."
Allen Toussaint, the song's composer, wrote many of Lee Dorsey's hits, including "Working In The Coal Mine."
Switching to producer Johnny Sandlin, Conley entered Phil Walden's Capricorn Studios, Macon, GA in December 1969. "They Call the Wind Maria," the best known song from the Broadway show Paint Your Wagon, was timely in light of the Fall 1969 film version. "God Bless" (Billboard #107; Billboard R&B #33; Cash Box #91; Cash Box R&B #42) evoked O.C. Smith's hugely successful "Little Green Apples" (1968).
In his final Atco session, October 7, 1970, Conley recorded "Nobody's Fault But Mine" in Miami with future Millie Jackson producer Brad Shapiro and Dave Crawford. The song, which originally appeared on The Immortal Otis Redding LP (1968), was released as the 'B' side of Conley's questionable Belafonte cover "Day-O."
From May 1971 to 1974, Arthur Conley recorded for Phil Walden's Capricorn label.

In the 1970's, Conley resided in England and Belgium. In 1980, he moved to the Netherlands and legally changed his name to "Lee Roberts." (Roberts was his mother's maiden name.) In 1988, Lee Roberts and the Sweaters released the Soulin' LP (Blue Shadow 4703, recorded live in Amsterdam January 6, 1980).
In 1995, Conley's Art-Con Productions boasted nine divisions, including Sweat Records (w/ the Lang-Lang band, vocal by Lee Roberts), Upcoming Artists Records (w/ Attila's excellent version of "Funky Street"), Charity Records, Lee's Disc Shop, Happy Jack Publishing and the New Age Culture Exchange radio station.
"Sweet Soul Music" remains one of the best-loved Soul Classics of the sixties. Rod Stewart, Jose Feliciano, Sam & Dave, and Run D&C have recorded it. Tom Jones and Bruce Springsteen perform it in concert. "Sweet Soul Music" even served as the theme for the 1992 NBC-TV sitcom Rhythm and Blues.
Spotlight on Arthur Conley, y'all

The Jimmy Conner review must have been paid for by Townsend’s handlers. No doubt, he has a good voice, but it takes more than that to be big in the industry. Don’t forget, Ed Sanford and Steve Stewart (both from Montgomery) co-wrote “Smoke”. I don’t know but that one song Townsend had a hit with, but Ed Sanford also co-wrote “I keep forgettin’ we’re not in love anymore” with Michael McDonald. I believe that was bigger than “Smoke”. Personally, Gregg has the ultimate Southern Rock voice, in my opinion. Hey, we all grew up on black R&B singers. Listen to Dan Penn sometime. Now there’s a real singer!