Category Archives: Blog

Jay Geils (2005)

3/11/05 GROTON, MA, JAY GEILS AT HIS HOME. Boston Herald Staff Photo by Patrick Whittemore.


Jay Geils made his mark playing blues and his fortune playing rock and roll. But his first love was jazz.

Jay—who died on April 11, 2017 at age 71—made that clear when I interviewed him at his split-level home in Groton

Wilson Pickett (1999)

“We didn’t go in there bullcrapping around. We meant business.”  – Wilson Pickett








Pop quiz: Name the top three greats of sixties soul.

If you answer James Brown, Aretha Franklin and Otis Redding, you won’t get much of an argument from anyone.

But who comes next on the list?

Dan Penn (1995)



Dan Penn is far from famous, but most everyone – at least most everyone of a certain age – knows his work. Penn produced the Box Tops’ immortal “The Letter” and co-wrote a clutch of stone soul classics (“Dark End of the Street,” “Do Right Woman,” “I’m Your Puppet,” “Cry Like A Baby,” “Sweet Inspiration,” “You Left the Water Running”) covered by a lengthy list of artists including Aretha Franklin, Percy Sledge, Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Janis Joplin, Solomon Burke, Dolly Parton, Etta James, Ry Cooder, Barbra Streisand, Linda Ronstadt, the Flying Burrito Brothers and on and on; his list of credits on All Music Guide runs to 1,262 entries and no doubt there’s plenty missing.

However much a behind-the-scenes player, Penn is a legend among one subset of music aficionados: Southern soul fans.