Producers, songwriters, engineers, and musicians who played a key part in “The Groundbreaking Sounds Of Muscle Shoals” gathered at the Museum in 2011, exploring the fertile creativity and hit songs coming out of Muscle Shoals, Alabama, in the 1960s and early seventies. Panelists include David Briggs, Donnie Fritts, Rick Hall, Jimmy Johnson, Spooner Oldham, Dan Penn, Norbert Putnam, and Candi Staton. Historian and author Holly George Warren, who has written for “The New York Times,” “Rolling Stone,” and “The Journal of Country Music,” moderates.
During "Land Of 1,000 Dances: The Groundbreaking Sounds Of Muscle Shoals," Rick Hall, founder of FAME Recording Studio, shares how he served as producer, engineer, and musician, producing his first Muscle Shoals-bred hit in 1961 with Arthur Alexander’s “You Better Move On.” “Rick Hall whipped us into shape to cut world-class hit records with a bunch of teenagers,” says bass player Norbert Putnam, who played on that session and many others, as one of the original members of the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section.
Songwriter Donnie Fritts recounts how members of the panel met in the early 1960s, collaborating with other aspiring local musicians and songwriters to create landmark hit records. The panel discusses recording Percy Sledge’s “When a Man Loves a Woman,” which became a huge hit.
Singer Candi Staton digs into how she came to work with producer Hall, and how she met and worked with guitarist Duane Allman in Hall’s studio. “It was like being at home around a warm fire,” Staton says of working with Hall. “He was the greatest . . . Rick was after a feel.”
Guitarist Jimmy Johnson shares stories of building Muscle Shoals Sound Studio, and recording Arthur Conley’s “Sweet Soul Music” and the Rolling Stones’ “Brown Sugar” and “Wild Horses.”
Presented in partnership with the Americana Music Association.
Find out more about our public programming: https://countrymusichalloffame.org/plan-your-visit/exhibits-activities/public-programs/
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