Legendary Michigan Songs

32.) Let's Stay Together - Al Green

Artist Name: Al Green
Year Inducted: 2009

"Let's Stay Together"  (A. Green, W. Mitchell, A. Jackson) - Al Green;  Hi label,  # 1 Billboard Hot 100, # 1 Billboard R&B - 1972.  Inducted in 2009.

"Let's Stay Together" established Al Green as a major soul music star. The basic music track was put together by producer Willie Mitchell and Al Jackson. Jackson, who was the drummer for Booker T. & The MG's as well as Mitchell's session band, was an important collaborator on Al Green's early 70s recordings. Once the pair gave the music to Green, he completed the lyrics to "Let's Stay Together" in fifteen minutes.

Recording the track, however, was another matter entirely. Mitchell claims they spent over one hundred hours working on the song. The problem was that Mitchell felt that Green was trying to overpower the song. Willie said that he wanted Al to "let the the song happen, let it ooze out".

Mitchell's less is more approach with Green helped turn soul music in a new direction in the 1970s and moved it away from the shouting style of the 1960s. Green's "Let's Stay Together" was an even bigger R&B hit, spending nine weeks at # 1. In 1984, Tina Turner would begin her successful comeback with a hit cover version of "Let's Stay Together".  Al Green's original recording of "Let's Stay Together" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.

YouTube Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSu6tcbMOu0