Booker T & The Mg S – Green Onions
Booker T. Jones (born November 12, 1944) is an American multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, record producer and arranger, best known as the frontman of the band Booker T. & the M.G.’s. He has also worked in the studios with many well-known artists of the 20th and 21st centuries, earning him a Grammy Award for lifetime achievement.
Early life and career
Booker T. Jones was born in Memphis, Tennessee, on November 12, 1944. He was named in honor of his father, Booker T. Jones, Sr., who was named in honor of Booker T. Washington, the educator.
Booker T. Jones, Sr. was a science teacher at the school, providing the family with a relatively stable, lower-middle-class milieu.
Jones was a prodigy, playing the oboe, saxophone, trombone, bass, and piano at school and organ at church. He attended Booker T. Washington High School, the alma mater of Rufus Thomas, and shared the hallowed halls with future stars like Isaac Hayes’s writing partner David Porter, saxophonist Andrew Love of the Memphis Horns, soul singer/songwriter William Bell, and Earth, Wind, & Fire’s Maurice White.
Jones’s first entry into professional music came at age sixteen, when he played baritone saxophone on Satellite (soon to be Stax) Records’ first hit, “Cause I Love You,” by Carla and Rufus (Thomas).
Willie Mitchell had also hired him for his band where he started on sax and moved to bass later. It was here that he met Al Jackson, Jr., who he brought to Stax.Simultaneously, he formed a combo with Maurice White, and David Porter, where Jones played guitar.
While hanging around the Satellite Record Shop run by Estelle Axton, co-owner of Satellite Records with her brother Jim Stewart, Jones met record clerk Steve Cropper, who would become one of the MGs when the group formed in 1962.
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