Chip Moman was a guitarist who got his start at Stax, then founded his own studio (American Sound Studio), and wrote, produced and/or played on an impressive body of work. You can read the NY Times obit here.
Moman wrote The Dark End of the Street with Dan Penn, and produced James Carr’s recording of it.
It’s one of my favorite songs.
This is such a great song. Carr himself is vastly underrated as a singer but I thought the Flying Burrito Brothers did a great cover on the Gilded Palace of Sin. Parsons had a different word experience than Carr but he brings about the desperation the lyrics imply just as well. I’m a big Hillman fan and just loved his harmonies on this subtle as they are.
Yes, the FBB version was great. So is the Ry Cooder cover, which I think was the first time I became aware of it (though it seems I would have heard the FBB before).
It’s a song you can’t ruin. It’s just too good. Funny, I was listening to a lot of Aretha Franklin yesterday and her version came on. Of course, she made her name working with Moman and the rest of the gang from Muscle Shoals.