Going to a 7-Eleven in the middle of the night and hearing the clerk whistling one of my songs – that’s my idea of a great cover version.”


Aretha and Muscle Shoals 

January 24, 1967 ~

Aretha Franklin records her first Top 10 pop hit, “(I Never Loved A Man) The Way That I Love You,” at FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama.The Queen of Soul heads to Muscle Shoals at the behest of her producer, Jerry Wexler, a bigwig at Atlantic Records, her new label. Aretha’s husband/manager Ted White exchanges words with trumpet player Ken Laxton and ends up getting in an altercation with the studio owner.

After the session Aretha and her husband leave, and she never returns to Muscle Shoals. The sound she got during this fateful session is exactly what Wexler is looking for, and the key to making Aretha the superstar she is destined to be. Since Franklin won’t go to Muscle Shoals, he instead brings the musicians to her, flying them up to New York City to finish the album. These guys become her backing band for her next three albums, each time flying to New York on Atlantic’s dime to record with Franklin.

These recordings make Franklin one of the biggest stars of the ’60s, and when word gets out that she’s doing it with musicians from Muscle Shoals, many artists book time to work with them at FAME and later Muscle Shoals Sound Studios including The Rolling Stones, Wilson Pickett, Willie Nelson, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Joe Cocker, Levon Helm, Paul Simon, Bob Seger, Rod Stewart, and Cat Stevens.

Source: Aretha and Muscle Shoals – You Can’t Make This Stuff Up …