Steve Cropper to enter Memphis Music Hall of Fame

Date: June 26, 2019

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The Memphis Music Hall of Fame this year will honor eight artists – including Tina Turner, Steve Cropper and Charlie Musselwhite – for their influence on Memphis music and world entertainment.

Spanning genres as disparate as rock and opera and 100 years of live and recorded music, the 2019 class of inductees includes Dan Penn, Don Bryant, Dee Dee Bridgewater, The Memphis Boys and Florence Cole Talbert McCleave, in addition to Turner, Cropper and Musselwhite.

John Doyle, executive director of the Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum and Memphis Music Hall of Fame, released the list Wednesday at Lafayette’s Music Room in Overton Square.

“The entire city is built on the backbone of legendary musicians who everybody in the world knows. Everybody in the world has sung their hits,” Doyle said.

“Any other city might be able to attempt to do a musical hall of fame if they’re only going to do country, or they’re only going to do jazz. Here in Memphis, Tennessee, we do soul, we do rock, we do blues, we do gospel, we do R&B, we do jazz, we do opera, we do rap, we do hip-hop. We do all of it.”

Turner has won 12 Grammy Awards and Kennedy Center Honors in her 60-year music career. “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical” opens on Broadway this  year.

Cropper, a guitarist and songwriter, helped to craft Stax Records’ early sound as part of the label’s house band, Booker T. & the MGs. He is co-author of Stax hits including “Knock on Wood,” “Soul Man” and “(Sitting on) The Dock of the Bay.”

Bluesman Charlie Musselwhite spent his early years as a performer learning from Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Howlin’ Wolf and other legends of the genre. He’s received seven Grammy Awards and 33 Blues Music Awards.

While Turner, often called the “Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll,” may be the highest profile name on the list, McCleave, who died in 1961, was known in her day as “Queen of the Concert Stage.” The soprano was one of the first widely acclaimed black American operatic performers.

A native of Detroit, McCleave lived in Memphis in later years, where she mentored at Owen College (now LeMoyne-Owen College) and co-founded the Memphis Music Association.

The 2019 Hall of Fame class also includes Dan Penn, who co-wrote “I’m Your Puppet,” “Dark End of the Street” and “Cry Like a Baby” with Spooner Oldham, and songwriter Don Bryant, known for his work at Royal Studios and Hi Records.

Drummer Gene Chrisman, guitarist Reggie Young, pianist Bobby Wood, bassist Tommy Cogbill and organist Bobby Emmons will be inducted collectively as “The Memphis Boys,” the house band for Chips Moman’s American Sound Studios. The Memphis Boys participated on landmark recordings such as Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” Elvis’ “Suspicious Minds,” and Dusty Springfield’s “Son of a Preacher Man.” Chrisman and Wood, the only living members of the band, still perform.

Jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater’s most recent album title proclaims “Memphis … Yes, I’m Ready.” Born in Memphis, Bridgewater was raised in Flint, Michigan, and had a four-decade career before she returned to Memphis for her 2017 release on OKeh Records.

With its first class inducted in 2012, the Memphis Music Hall of Fame is organized by the Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum.

The 2019 ceremony is Nov. 8 at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets went on sale Wednesday, following the official announcement of inductees. Visit the Memphis Music Hall of Fame website.

Steve Cropper & Dave Mason release 3 new tracks

Date: January 17, 2019

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Listen to 3 new songs Recorded by Steve Cropper, Dave Mason, & Gretchen Rhodes!

See Steve and Dave on tour –

Cropper Gets ICON Award From BMI

Date: November 15, 2018

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During the 66th Annual BMI Country Awards (11/13/18) in Nashville, Steve Cropper was given the Icon Award and honored with performances of his classics by John Legend (“(Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay”), Luke Combs (“Knock On Wood”), Maggie Rose (“In The Midnight Hour”), and Lucie Silvas, Mike Farris and Kenny Greenberg (“Soul Man” and “Hold On, I’m Coming”).


Steve Cropper performs “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay” on Conan

Date: June 12, 2018

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OBBB: NYC 11/20

Date: November 7, 2017

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CD Release Performance

The ORIGINAL BLUES BROTHERS BAND is alive and well. Original members hand-picked by JOHN BELUSHI and DAN AYKROYD for a Saturday Night Live skit have assembled the ultimate rhythm and blues review and have emerged as a powerful entity in their own right. Since regrouping in 1988, to the present, the Band has triumphantly performed each year in international venues large and small.

The Last Shade Of Blue Before Black is the 16th release in the Blues Brothers’ catalog, beginning with 1978’s Briefcase Full Of Blues.

Monday 11/20/2017
Doors: 6:30 pm / Show: 7:30 pm


Get Your Copy Now!

Date: October 15, 2017

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Severn Records is proud to release the new album by The Original Blues Brothers Band The Last Shade of Blue Before Black. In addition to original band members Steve Cropper and Blue Lou Marini, The Last Shade features guests Dr John (Qualified.) Matt ‘Guitar’ Murphy ( Don’t Go No Further,) Bluesman Joe Louis Walker (Don’t Go No Further,) Paul Shaffer (Sex Machine) and the legendary Eddie Floyd (Don’t Forget About James Brown and On a Saturday Night.) Packaged in 8 Panel Digipak The Last Shade of Blue Before Black is a must for all Blues lovers.


New OBBB Coming 10/6

Date: August 5, 2017

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Severn Records announces an October 6 release date for The Last Shade Of Blue Before Black, the new album from the legendary Original Blues Brothers Band, featuring guitarist Steve Cropper and sax player “Blue Lou” Marini, with special guests Eddie Floyd, Joe Louis Walker, Paul Shaffer, Dr. John, Matt “Guitar” Murphy and Joe Morton.

“Had anyone told me in 1978 that in 2017 I would still be traveling around the world and playing with the Blues Brothers’ Band, I would have said they were out of their minds,” says “Blue Lou” Marini. “But, amazingly here we are with a new CD and still playing all over the world. This album is a true labor of love and I’m so proud of the organic way it came about. We really wanted to honor our history and to include some of our favorite musicians that we’ve worked with and loved over the years. We have the legends, Eddie Floyd and Dr. John, plus our original band leader, Paul Shaffer and the great bluesman Joe Louis Walker.

“We also have Tom ‘Bones’ Malone playing and arranging, and cameos from Matt ‘Guitar’ Murphy and Joe Morton, a star from our second movie. We are also thrilled to have former members David Spinozza on guitar, Birch Johnson on trombone, and my steady sub, Baron Raymonde on alto sax.”

The Last Shade Of Blue Before Black was produced by Lou Marini, Steve Cropper and The Original Blues Brothers Band and recorded at IWII Studios in Hoboken, NJ, by Jay Messina.

“We wanted to present some new original material and do some tunes that hearkened to our past,” declares Marini. “This is a live CD, with everyone recording at once, mostly first or second takes and live vocals and solos. The only overdubs were some baritone sax parts and a few minor fixes. We were blessed with a fantastic studio that suited us so well, IIWII in Hoboken, New Jersey, and the world’s greatest engineer and friend to all, Jay Messina.

Essentially begun as a one-time musical skit that debuted on NBC-TV’s Saturday Night Live” in 1978 and fronted by John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd as Jake and Elwood Blues, the band became an overnight sensation, spawning numerous TV appearances, hit albums, two blockbuster movies and global touring.

“I think the power and joy of this great band that has been playing together for so many years is evident,” states Marini. “We love each other and love making music together. Everyone played their asses off on this CD and none more so than our wonderful bassist, Eric Udel. Eric died tragically in September from a fall here in NYC. He was a great musician and a sunny, funny man whom we all loved. We dedicate this album to him as well as our other fallen and still greatly missed brothers, Donald ‘Duck’ Dunn” and Alan ‘Mr. Fabulous’ Rubin.

“I’ve often said that the OBBB is the world’s greatest part-time job because of you, our fans. We’ve gotten to see the world and enjoy it in your company. We’ve eaten and drank with you, especially the latter, and you have treated us like kings. Enjoy this music and for God’s sake, PLAY IT LOUD!”

The Original Blues Brothers Band are: Steve “The Colonel” Cropper – guitar; John “Smokin’ John” Tropea – guitar; Eric “The Red” Udel – bass; Lee “Funkytime” Finkelstein – drums; Leon “The Lion” Pendarvis – organ; Rusty “Cloudmeister” Cloud – clavinet, Wurlitzer, piano and organ; Steve “Catfish” Howard – trumpet; Larry “Trombonious” Farrell – trombone; Lou “Blue Lou” Marini – saxophones; Bobby “Sweet Soul” Harden – vocals; Tommy “Pipes” McDonnell – vocals and harmonica; and Rob “The Honeydripper” Paparozzi – vocals and harmonica.