Songcraft: Spotlight on Songwriters

Ep. 145 - DAVID PORTER ("Soul Man")

Episode Summary

An inductee to the Songwriters Hall of Fame who was named one of Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time,” David Porter joins us to talk about his history at the legendary Stax Records, his partnership with Isaac Hayes, and his remarkable song catalog that includes “Soul Man,” "Hold On! I'm Comin'," “When Something is Wrong My Baby,” “I Thank You,” “Your Good Thing (Is About to End),” and more.

Episode Notes

Co-hosts Scott B. Bomar and Paul Duncan chat about how they’re continuing to adapt their Songcraft recording sessions for the world of COVID-19 before getting into a discussion about whether they’d take a time machine to Abbey Road Studios in London, Stax Studios in Memphis, Motown in Detroit, or FAME in Muscle Shoals

PART 2 - 12:35 mark
The in-depth interview with David Porter: Named one of Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time,” Porter is best known for his songwriting partnership with Isaac Hayes that helped define the sound of Memphis’s legendary Stax Records. As the first African American staff songwriter at Stax, Porter, along with his partner, wrote and produced songs such as “B-A-B-Y” for Carla Thomas, “Your Good Thing (Is About to End)”—an R&B hit for Mable John that later became a pop and R&B smash for Lou Rawls, and his own recording of “Can’t See You When I Want To.” Hayes and Porter are best known, however, for their work with Sam & Dave, including such classic hits as “You Don’t Know Like I Know,” “You Got Me Hummin’,” “Hold On! I’m Comin’” (which later became a country hit for Waylon Jennings and Jerry Reed), “Soul Man” (which became a hit a second time thanks to the Blues Brothers), “I Thank You” (which was later covered by ZZ Top), and “When Something is Wrong with My Baby” (which was reimagined as a memorable duet between Otis Redding and Carla Thomas, a country hit for Sonny James, and an adult contemporary hit for Linda Ronstadt and Aaron Neville). The list of artists who’ve covered Porter’s songs includes Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, William Bell, Melissa Ethridge, Bonnie Raitt, Garth Brooks, Etta James, Celine Dion, Wilson Pickett, George Benson, Dusty Springfield, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Staple Singers, Solomon Burke, James Brown, Eric Clapton, B. B. King, Tina Turner, Jackie Wilson, and more. His songs have been used as samples in countless recordings by artists such as Jay-Z, Eminem, Wu-Tang Clan, The Notorious B.I.G., Justin Bieber, Mariah Carey, and others. A highly celebrated giant among celebrated songwriters, Porter was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2005. 

American Songwriter Podcast Network