Thursday, February 16, 2012

So We Cruise Past Royal Studios in Memphis...

...and I lean out the window to take a picture.  The little building was ground zero for one of my favorite sounds in the world-- that Willie Mitchell sound that made Al Green and Ann Peebles sound even more amazing than they arleady are.  It's a little brick building that changed my world, yours, even President Obama's we learn recently, in powerful ways.

So I lean out with my camera, and since there are two men conversing in front, I have to ask, "May I?"  And the younger one smiles and says "Go ahead!" and then says "Would you like to see inside?"

Our rental car screetched into the parking lot and we jumped out.  How can you pass on that?

So who is our host?  Boo Mitchell, son of Willie Mitchell, who just the night before, had recorded a couple of the Hodges brothers from the HI Rhythm Section.

He showed us the studio.  He showed us Al Green's microphone ("We make everybody else use this other one,") he showed us the control room and some of the original vintage equipment.  He showed us carboard boxes holding tapes with names like Ann Peebles scribbled on the sides.  He took us to the cluttered office of his grandfather (for whom the street is now named.)

Incredible. 

Thank you Mr. Mitchell. 

(BOTH of you!)


2 comments:

Bob Lohr said...

...awesome!!! I was actually in that same office talking to Willie Mitchell back in '95...

Peter said...

Sometimes I feel blessed. I think it's just lucky, but the feeling is blessed. Willie Mitchell's grandson is as cool as Willie Mitchell's productions.