6/16/17: Wilson Pickett “In the Midnight Hour”
I love the wicked Pickett man! Wilson Pickett’s always been one of my favorites, and he was always wild and raw and just a little bit gospel in his delivery. He used to sing as part of The Falcons, and you may remember a song of theirs called “I Found a Love.” That was Wilson Pickett singing the lead, before he went on to what he’s best-known for: his solo career.
Along with The Falcons, Pickett paved the way for soul music’s future success. His performing skills were second only to his songwriting talent, with classics like “If You Need Me” being credited to him, though popular cover versions would eventually eclipse his originals. For today’s listeners, he’s probably best known for “Mustang Sally,” though it’s songs like “In The Midnight Hour” and “Land of a Thousand Dances” that’ll really show you what kind of performer he was.
Pickett composed songs for Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, the Grateful Dead, Booker T. & the MGs, CCR and a whole bunch of others. His talent for arrangement and songwriting meant that he was never out of work, even when his turbulent personal life made it difficult for him to thrive in the public eye.
I remember that “In the Midnight Hour” was my favorite song for a while. I used to call my hometown radio station in Rockingham and request it every now and then. The host of the afternoon show was Bill Futterer, and he would always find time to work it in for me. Eventually, Bill got ready to go off to college at Carolina, and I auditioned for his job – along with about ten other people – and for some reason, they picked me!
So, I got my very first radio job. The first song I ever played on air was “In the Midnight Hour,” and I remember thinking that Bill was such a popular personality and that I had some big shoes to fill. I guess I did okay, even if I was commuting back and forth to Sandhills Community College in Southern Pines every day, getting back by 4:00 to do the show. All these years later and here I am, still playing music on the radio. Songs like this, artists like Wilson Pickett, and real folks on the air like Bill… they make me feel connected to the music I’m playing, the people I’m playing it for, and the work that I’ve been doing ever since I played this song for the first time for folks other than me.
To read and listen to all of Ron’s Music in My Head entries, click here!
The School of Rock Chapel Hill is a music school for kids of all ages located in the 501 Diner location on Fordham Blvd in front of Eastgate Crossing.
Locally owned, locally operated, locally staffed, locally sourced instruments, and locally built!
Now Open for business, you are invited to stop in for a tour or schedule a free demo session. Their hours are Monday-Thursday 3PM-9PM and Saturday 10AM-4PM!
Learn how to play a real rock and roll song in just 30 minutes!
AND, to kick off a partnership with the Public School Foundation; For every new enrollment through the end of June, they will donate $10 to the local public schools’ music and performing arts programs, and moving forward, they’ll donate 1% of their gross revenue, so help them support music in the local public schools and enroll today!
Sign-up at chapelhill.schoolofrock.com, or call 919-338-1011.
Also, they have some great summer camps, and summer camp spots are filling up fast, so sign-up today!
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