In The Midnight Hour – Wilson Pickett

THIS DAY IN MUSIC…………………………………….on August 7th of 1965 Wilson Pickett tops the Billboard R&B chart for the first time when “In The Midnight Hour” reaches #1. The song will climb to #21 on the Pop chart, followed by fifteen more hits over the next seven years. Pickett had his first success with a song called “I Found a Love,” which he wrote and performed with his group The Falcons in 1962. That song reached #75 on the Hot 100, and two years later Atlantic Records signed him to a solo deal. His first single with the label, “Come Home Baby” was recorded in New York with producer Bert Berns, and it went nowhere. For a change of sound and scenery, Atlantic sent him to Memphis to record his next single at Stax Records (which had a distribution deal with Atlantic) using their house band. These sessions produced “In The Midnight Hour,” which became Pickett’s breakout hit. He went on to become a soul music legend and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991. Pickett wrote this with guitarist Steve Cropper, who wrote and produced many of the soul classics for Stax Records. Cropper played guitar on the Stax session band, Booker T. and The MGs.  Cropper and Pickett wrote this at the Lorraine Motel, which was located near the Stax studios in Memphis. On April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. was shot there while standing on the balcony. This was produced by Jerry Wexler with Steve Cropper, Al Jackson and Donald “Duck” Dunn from the Stax house band Booker T. & the MG’s playing on the track (keyboard player Booker T. Jones didn’t participate in the session). Booker T. and The MGs played on many soul classics, and even had a hit of their own with “Green Onions” in 1962, and they also backed up Pickett’s hero Otis Redding on many tracks. The song was a bigger hit in the UK where it reached #12.