Booker T. Jones’ historic life in music has brought him international fame, awards (he’s a three-time Grammy winner and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer), and iconic status as one of the architects of American soul music.
Booker‘s Hammond organ is one of the most familiar sounds in pop and soul music. As the teenaged house keyboardist at Stax Records in the 1960s, he applied this sound to dozens of hits, and with the MGs, created a whole new kind of groove. He played on hundreds of Stax singles by legendary singers like Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, Albert Collins, Robert Bell and Eddie Floyd. The MG’s own recordings are classics as well. “Green Onions” (which Booker wrote when he was 17) was a mega-hit that Rolling Stone and others have listed among the greatest songs of all time. The song was given a Grammy Hall of Fame Award in 1999.
With two recent Anti-Records releases, both Grammy award winners, Jones is bringing his trademark organ groove to a new generation in a big way. On his newest album, The Road From Memphis, he collaborated with The Roots to trace his journey from his hometown of Memphis, TN to the world stage, following the evolution of the soul music he helped invent as it traveled from Memphis to Detroit, Philadelphia and beyond. It features guest appearance by Sharon Jones, Lou Reed, and Yim Yames of My Morning Jacket. The album follows Jones’ 2009 release Potato Hole, which he did with the Drive By Truckers and which won the Grammy for “Best Pop Instrumental Album.”
What Other People Have Been Saying...
“After all these years, he remains so soulful, and so good.” – NPR
“…Jones’ ever-sinuous way around his Hammond B-3, which sings, purrs, moans and shouts with often near-human expressivity, under his skilled touch.” – Los Angeles Times
“transports listeners to the ’60s heyday of Stax, where [Jones] and the MGs defined soul music.” – USA Today
“…brilliant reinvention of the MG’s soul chemistry, ramped up for the 21st century.” – MOJO
“…a satisfying return to Booker T.’s classic instrumental soul and funk.” – Boston Globe
“Booker T. Jones sounds more pithy and forceful than ever … Mr. Jones still jabs terse, unhurried melodies that sound as if he knows the lyrics but would never tell.” – Jon Pareles, New York Times
“A bad ass set of MG’s-style instrumentals… [with] Jones’ sweet, thick Hammond B-3 riffs” – Rolling Stone