Muscle Shoals, Alabama nestles on the banks of the mighty Tennessee river. In the 1960s and 70s, the city became synonymous with the “Muscle Shoals Sound”, notably at recording studios Fame Studio and Muscle Shoals Sound Studio.
Both became hit factories churning out a conveyor belt of hit records for artists who defined 20th century popular music. Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Wilson Pickett, Staples Singers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Rod Stewart, Rolling Stones, Bob Seger, Elton John and Bob Dylan, to name but a few.
For London-based soul singer Lynne Jackaman Muscle Shoals represents the Promised Land. She is about to begin a journey that she has been planning all her adult life, a pilgrimage to her musical Mecca. She recently unveiled plans to record her debut LP in Fame Studio. In doing so, Jackaman will become the first British artist for decades to lay down tracks in that special place. She will be assisted by engineer John Gifford, he runs the studio.
She will fulfil a personal dream, entering a building that has played host to the artists that have inspired and shaped her music career. If only the hallowed walls of Fame Studio could speak, what a glorious tale they would tell. Here over the last 50 years every major soul or rock artist worth their salt has recorded albums.
Jackaman is understandably excited about this next step in her musical journey:
“At long last, I’m finally making my debut solo album, and I’m going to be recording it at Muscle Shoals! To say that I’m honoured, thrilled, or sleepless at the thought doesn’t begin to describe it.
“What does Muscle Shoals mean to me? Pure love for music, and I can’t count how many of my heroes have done their best work there – Wilson Pickett, Cher, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bob Dylan, Elton John, Willie Nelson, The Staples Singers, Etta James, and The Rolling Stones, just to name a few. It’s a truly magical place.”
In the last year couple of years Jackaman has choreographed her career moves with military precision. An EP, No Halo, whetted the fan’s appetite. After playing a series of one-off dates in London, she embarked on her first nationwide tour, on a three-band bill supporting of red-blooded rockers The Answer and Dead Daisies. These shows attracted great reviews and secured new fans.
Now, though, the metaphorical gloves are off. Her trip to Muscle Shoals is serious business, recording an LP that she hopes will act as a springboard to greater success. Jackaman’s oft-repeated mantra is, “It’s all about the music”. Muscle Shoals, what better place on earth to prove her right.
To help fund this endeavour, she has teamed up with PledgeMusic to offer unique experiences such as limited edition CD/LP packages and backstage passes. If your wallet can withstand the £1,500 price tag, Lynne will even play an intimate gig in your home.
Please visit the PledgeMusic site to learn more about Jackaman’s project and to pledge your support. http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/jackaman-new-album
Visit Jackaman at http://www.jackaman1.com
Visit Fame Studio at http://www.fame2.com/
Pictures by Simon Reed and Eric Duvet.