Willie Mitchell - '20/75 & Hitch Hike'
If ever Memphis had a theme sound, then this guy created it! As a teenager in the mid-60's I would collect all his singles and albums and was never disappointed. Although most records were saxophone driven instrumentals he actually played the trumpet!
My favortite tracks are the Northern soul classic; "The Champion", "That Driving Beat", "Everything's Gonna Be Alright", "Up-Hard" and "Mercy". A mod school friend at the time, Steve, put me on to this guy and to this day I thank him!
It was later I picked up on all the people he produced; Veniece Starks, Don Bryant, Ann Peebles and later in the 70's his biggest success came with Al Green. 'Hoss' Allen put him on his Nashville TV show, "The Beat!!!" in 1966 but sadly he only mimes/plays along here, but is the only footage I can find of him.
Sadly Willie Mitchell died in January 2010 aged 81, but had been producing right up to the end - Thanks for the great music