Al Green Biography
Albert Leornes Greene, also known as Al Green, is an American singer, songwriter, pastor, and record producer best known for a string of soul hit singles in the early 1970s, including “Take Me to the River,” “Tired of Being Alone,” “I’m Still in Love with You,” “Love and Happiness,” and his signature song, “Let’s Stay Together.” Green became an ordained preacher and turned to gospel music when his lover committed suicide. He eventually returned to secular music.
In 1995, Green was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. On the museum’s website, he is described as “one of the most gifted purveyors of soul music.” Green has been dubbed “The Last of the Great Soul Singers.” He has received 11 Grammy Awards, including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. He has also been honoured with the BMI Icon award and the Kennedy Center Honors. He was ranked No. 65 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, as well as No. 14 on their list of the 100 Greatest Singers.
Al Green was born Albert Greene on April 13, 1946, in Dansby, Arkansas, a tiny hamlet near Forrest City. He began singing gospel music with his family as part of the Greene Brothers at an early age.
The Greene Brothers continued to tour on the gospel circuit when the Greene family relocated to Michigan. After being booted out of the family home for listening to Jackie Wilson‘s secular music, Green formed the Creations, which ultimately became Al Greene and the Soul Mates. The Soul Mates had one hit, “Back Up Train,” which helped them land a gig at New York City’s Apollo Theater. After the Soul Mates failed to capitalise on their one hit, the group broke up and Al Green struck out out his own. At this point, he opted to drop the last “e” from his surname.
Green opened for producer Willie Mitchell on the road in Texas in 1968. Mitchell signed Green to Hi Records in Memphis, Tennessee after being impressed by what he heard. Green’s gentle phrasing and falsetto embellishments took soul in a new path as he began working closely with Mitchell.
Green had a popular cover of The Temptations‘ “I Can’t Get Next to You” in 1971, and Mitchell also produced Green’s other huge hits of the 1970s, including the number one “Let’s Stay Together” and “I’m Still in Love with You.” Green became a true star with his ballads, his gifts of long-stemmed roses to female concertgoers, and his golden voice. Green became a Christian while on the road in 1973. Despite his renewed religion, Green kept travelling and releasing songs in the same way he had before, though he did surprise audience members by occasionally halting to sermonise during performances. However, Green’s life was turned upside down on October 18, 1974, when Mary Woodson, a woman who had left her family to be with Green, attacked him in his toilet with a pan of boiling hot grits. Woodson then shot herself to death at Green’s Memphis home.
He devoted himself to his faith during his lengthy recuperation from third-degree burns. When Green was recovered, he purchased a church in Memphis, the Full Gospel Tabernacle, and began leading services there. Green, in addition to becoming a preacher, returned to spiritual music.
Green’s 1977 album, The Belle Album, was self-produced since Willie Mitchell refused to work on gospel music. The song “Belle,” about a guy divided between his love for a lady and his devotion for God, reflected Green’s new course in life.
Green chose to focus on his church and release solely inspirational songs after falling from the stage during a 1979 concert. By the late 1980s, however, Green was performing some of his secular successes alongside his religious music. He later performed duets with Annie Lennox and Lyle Lovett, and even starred on the television sitcom Ally McBeal.
Green released the album I Can’t Stop in 2003, which was produced by Willie Mitchell, a former collaborator. Green also ventured into new musical territory in his 2008 album Lay It Down, working with Roots producer Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and organist James Poyser. He has grown comfortable with both his popular music and his monastic vocation after abandoning the tunes that made him famous. In recent years, the legendary musician has been selected to Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time.”
|Full of Fire|
|Al Green Is Love|
|Al Green Explores Your Mind|
|Livin’ for You|
|I’m Still in Love with You|
|Let’s Stay Together|
|Al Green Gets Next to You|
|Green Is Blues|
|Back Up Train|
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Al Green Most Known For?
Al Green is most known for his work as a soul singer and songwriter. He has released numerous hit songs, including “Let’s Stay Together” and “Tired of Being Alone.” Green has also won eight Grammy Awards.
What Was Al Green’S First Big Hit?
Al Green’s first big hit was “I’m Still in Love with You”, which reached number one on the R&B charts in 1972. The song was written by Green and produced by Willie Mitchell.
What Is Al Green’S Best Album?
Al Green’s best album is his 1972 release, I’m Still in Love with You. The album features the hit singles “I’m Still in Love with You” and “Look What You Done for Me,” both of which are among Green’s most well-known songs. I’m Still in Love with You is generally considered to be one of the best soul albums of all time, and it is certainly one of Al Green’s most essential releases.
How Many Albums Did Al Green Have?
Al Green’s had a total of eight albums.
Who Produced Al Green’S Music?
Most of Al Green’s music was produced by Willie Mitchell. They worked together for many years and had a very successful partnership. Other producers that Green has worked with include Allen Toussaint, Mabon “Teenie” Hodges, and George Clinton.