Soul Man – Sam and Dave

THIS DAY IN MUSIC…………………………………on September 9th of 1967 Sam And Dave’s classic, “Soul Man” is released in the US, where it will rise to #4 by the end of November. The song would be given the 1968 Grammy Award for Best Rhythm & Blues Group Performance, Vocal or Instrumental. This was released on Stax Records, a legendary soul label where Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett and Isaac Hayes recorded. It was written and produced by Hayes and David Porter, and the Stax house band of Booker T. & the MG’s played the instruments, except for Booker himself who was away at college, which is why Hayes was brought in to Stax. Isaac Hayes wanted the record to have rhythmic elements similar to Bo Diddley’s song “Bo Diddley,” and Porter asked singer Sam Moore to give him “the Bobby Bland squall.” Isaac Hayes talked about this song in an interview with National Public Radio: “I got the idea from watching on TV the riots in Detroit. It was said that if you put ‘Soul’ on the door of your business establishment, they wouldn’t burn it. Then the word ‘Soul,’ it was a galvanizing kind of thing for African Americans, and it had an effect of unity, it was said with a lot of pride. So I thought, ‘Why not write a tune called ‘Soul Man.’ And all you had to do was write about your personal experiences, because all African Americans in this country at the time had similar experiences. But we realized that in addition to being an African American experience, it was a human experience, and therefore it crossed over and became very commercial.” The Soul Man was “educated at Woodstock” (sometimes misheard as “educated from good stock”). This was two years before the famous festival; David Porter chose the name “Woodstock” to envision a school out in the sticks. “The word denoted a school that was out in the forest somewhere and they couldn’t come up with the name for the school,” he said. “Trees were cut down the school was made, and they called it Woodstock.” Sam & Dave were Sam Moore and Dave Prater. Moore was in The Melionaires Gospel group, and Prater who was solo artist before they met in 1961. They were signed by Roulette in 1962 and switched to Atlantic in 1965 before recording for Stax. In 1988 Prater was killed in a car crash. They were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in 1992. The song peaked at #24 in the UK.