Happy Birthday To Legendary Guitarist Steve Cropper

Steve Cropper

If Yankee Stadium is “the house that Babe Ruth built,” Stax Records is “the house that Booker T, and the MG’s built.” Integral to that potent combination is MG rhythm guitarist extraordinaire Steve Cropper. As a guitarist, A & R man, engineer, producer, songwriting partner of Otis Redding, Eddie Floyd and a dozen others and founding member of both Booker T. and the MG’s and The Mar-Keys, Cropper was literally involved in virtually every record issued by Stax from the fall of 1961 through year end 1970.

Such credits assure Cropper of an honored place in the soul music hall of fame. As co-writer of (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay, Knock on Wood and In the Midnight Hour, Cropper is in line for immortality.

Born on October 21, 1941 on a farm near Dora, Missouri, Steve Cropper moved with his family to Memphis at the age of nine.

The Hit Man: Eddie Kendricks

By Gentle Jones

Eddie Kendricks
Eddie Kendricks
Eddie Kendricks (Edward James Kendrick) was born today (December 17, 1939) in Union Springs, Alabama to Johnny and Lee Bell Kendrick.

Kendricks moved to Detroit at 18 and started a singing group The Primes which performed Doo-Wop and also capably covered Mills Brothers tunes.

Eventually Eddie rose to fame singing first tenor for The Temptations, also often singing with a distinctive falsetto.

Our Ladies of Soul: Wanda Hutchinson & The Emotions

The Emotions
The Emotions

The Emotions’ Wanda Hutchinson was born today (December 17, 1951). The group consisted of Sheila Hutchinson, Wanda Hutchinson, and Theresa Davis.

“Our style is mostly doing harmony. It’s more of a ‘class’ thing,” comments Wanda. “And we use more ‘variety’ in singing.” She then pauses, throwing twinkling glances at her sister, Sheila, and cousin, Theresa. “Daddy [Joseph Hutchinson] doesn’t want us to be established as a certain kind of group that sings a ‘certain’ kind of thing.”