robert cray & hi rhythm

music vinyl

For his latest project, Cray  traveled to Memphis with his friend, renowned Grammy Award winning producer Steve Jordan, to make a classic soul album with Hi Rhythm, the band that helped create that sound.


Jordan and Cray met in 1987 while working on the concert film Hail! Hail! Rock and Roll, a tribute to Chuck Berry. Steve produced Robert's Grammy winning Take Your Shoes Off in 1999, and a number of other albums. He knew of Robert's deep love of O.V. Wright and other Memphis soul legends, and suggested they take up residence at Royal Studios, where Wright, Ann Peebles, Al Green, Syl Johnson, Otis Clay and many others recorded with the venerable producer, songwriter, arranger and engineer, Willie Mitchell. 


The core of Mitchell's Hi Rhythm band used on many of those landmark sessions was still around, though Mitchell himself had passed in 2010. Set inside an old theatre, the funky Royal Studios looks much as it did when Al Green was cutting those classics for Hi Records.  


Guitarist Teenie Hodges has passed away, but his brothers Rev. Charles Hodges (organ and piano) and Leroy "Flick" Hodges (bass), along with cousin Archie "Hubbie" Turner (keyboards), were still there.


"It was a soul, rhythm and blues, fantasy camp for us. Those guys have been playing in that room for 50 years," says Jordan.

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