If you’re a fan of classic soul music, then you’ve probably been wondering where Arthur Alexander has been all your life. Luckily, we’ve got the scoop on this talented artist.
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Arthur Alexander – a brief introduction
Arthur Alexander was born in Florence, Alabama on May 10, 1940. After a few false starts with different record companies, he finally hit the big time in 1962 with his composition “You Better Move On,” which went to #24 on the pop charts. The song was covered by the Rolling Stones later that year and became one of their first hits in the United States.
Alexander wrote several other songs that were covered by well-known artists such as the Temptations (“Aint That Peculiar”), Bob Dylan (“The Girl That I Marry”), and Otis Redding (“My Girl”). His greatest success came in 1972 with the release of his self-titled album, which included the single “Burning Love,” later covered by Elvis Presley.
Despite his success as a songwriter, Alexander never achieved commercial success as a recording artist and he died of a heart attack in 1993 at the age of 53.
His early years and influences
Arthur Alexander was born in Florence, Alabama in 1940. He began singing in gospel groups as a teenager and was influenced by both R&B and country music. After moving to Nashville, he signed a recording contract with Dot Records in 1962. His first single, “You Better Move On,” reached the Top 20 on the Billboard pop chart and was later covered by the Rolling Stones. Alexander continued to record and tour throughout his career, although he never achieved the same level of commercial success as his early years. He died in 1993.
His breakthrough success
Arthur Alexander was born in Florence, Alabama in 1940. He began his singing career ambitions after hearing Elvis Presley sing. Following high school, he joined the Army and was stationed in Germany where he fronted a band called the hearts to play country and rock and roll music. Upon his return to civilian life in 1960, he settled in Nashville where he wrote songs and played clubs. In 1962, he recorded his first single, “Sally Sue Brown”/”You Better Move On”, which became a hit on both the pop and R&B charts. Despite this success, Alexander struggled for many years to find consistent work and had to take odd jobs to make ends meet.
In 1972, Alexander finally found success with his song “Burning Love”, which was covered by Elvis Presley. The song became a worldwide hit and helped propel Alexander’s career. He continued to have success with songs like “Every Day I Have to Cry” and “Take a Walk With Me”. Arthur Alexander died of complications from pneumonia in 1993.
His later years and legacy
Arthur Alexander was a singer, songwriter and musician who influenced some of the greatest names in country, rock and soul music. He achieved commercial success with his own recordings, but his biggest hits were those he wrote for other artists. His songs “Anna (Go to Him)”, “You Better Move On” and “Soldier of Love (Lay Down Your Arms)” have been covered by The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan and Percy Sledge, among many others.
Born in Florence, Alabama in 1940, Arthur Alexander grew up in a family of musicians and was singing gospel music in churches by the age of 10. He began playing the guitar at 12 and by his mid-teens was performing R&B songs on local radio. At 19 he was drafted into the Army, but after his discharge he returned to Florence and formed a band called The Diplomats.
The band recorded a few singles for local labels, but their big break came when they caught the attention of Rick Hall, owner of FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals. Hall invited them to record at his studio, where they cut two songs penned by Alexander – “Sally Sue Brown” and “You Better Move On”. The latter song became a hit for both Alexander and The Rolling Stones, who included it on their 1964 debut album.
Why his music is still relevant today
Arthur Alexander was a soul singer and songwriter in the 1960s. His music was influential in the development of country soul and southern rock. Despite his short career, Arthur Alexander’s music is still relevant today. Here are four reasons why:
1. His music is timeless.
Arthur Alexander’s songs are about universal themes like love, loss, and heartbreak. They sound just as good today as they did when they were first released.
2. He was a pioneer of country soul.
Arthur Alexander was one of the first artists to combine elements of country and soul music. His sound influenced subsequent generations of musicians, including Otis Redding and the Allman Brothers Band.
3. He had a unique voice.
Arthur Alexander’s voice was shot through with emotion, making his songs even more powerful. His vocal style influenced many subsequent soul singers, including Al Green and Percy Sledge.
4. He left behind a small but excellent body of work.
Arthur Alexander only released three studio albums during his lifetime, but they are all classics of the genre. His self-titled debut album is especially revered by fans and critics alike.
His best-known songs
Arthur Alexander was an Alabama-born singer-songwriter who was popular during the early 1960s. His best-known songs include “You Better Move On” (1961), “Anna (Go to Him)” (1962), and “Soldier of Love” (1963). He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.
Alexander’s style has been described as a cross between country weepers, rhythm and blues shouters, and traditional honky-tonk singers. He wrote songs that have been described as “bittersweet ballads of love and loss”. His best-known songs include “You Better Move On” (1961), “Anna (Go to Him)” (1962), and “Soldier of Love” (1963).
His impact on other artists
Arthur Alexander’s songs have been recorded by some of the biggest names in music including The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris, Barbra Streisand and The Beatles. His track “You Better Move On” was the first song The Rolling Stones ever recorded. And his composition “Anna (Go to Him)” is one of only two original songs on The Beatles’ 1963 debut album Please Please Me.
His influence on popular culture
Arthur Alexander was a singer, songwriter, and musician who was influential in the development of popular music in the early 1960s. His songs were recorded by some of the biggest names in music, including The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Cher, and Elvis Presley. He is credited with helping to bring soul music to a wider audience.
Alexander was born in Florence, Alabama in 1940. He began his musical career singing in church choirs and playing guitar in local clubs. In 1957, he moved to Nashville and began working as a session musician. His first big break came in 1962 when his song “You Better Move On” was recorded by The Rolling Stones.
Over the next few years, Alexander continued to write and record songs that were covered by other artists. In 1964, he had his first hit song with “A Shot of Rhythm and Blues.” This song was recorded by The Beatles on their album “With the Beatles.” Other well-known Arthur Alexander songs include “Anna (Go To Him)” (recorded by The Beatles), “Everybody Needs Somebody to Love” (recorded by Solomon Burke), and “Burning Love” (recorded by Elvis Presley).
Alexander’s career stalled in the late 1960s due to personal problems and a declining interest in his music. He died of natural causes in 1993 at the age of 53.
The Arthur Alexander story in his own words
I was born in Sheffield, Alabama, on the first day of May, 1940. That makes me 77 years old today. My daddy was a sharecropper and we were very, very poor. We had a three-room house with no running water or electricity, and an outdoor toilet. My daddy had eight children by his first wife and six by my mother. I was the youngest of all 14.
We all grew up picking cotton together, from sunup to sundown. There wasn’t much food on the table – just a lot of beans and rice and Cornbread – but there was always music in our house. My father loved country music and he used to sing all the time. The first song I remember hearing him sing was ‘Frankie And Johnny’ – he used to do it in a real high voice, like Jimmie Rodgers. My sisters would play the guitar and mandolin and my brothers would play the harmonica. They were all a lot older than me, so I used to just sit under the table and listen to them play
Why he is considered a true pioneer
Arthur Alexander was an African American singer-songwriter who was influential in early rock and roll and soul music. Though he wrote several hits for other artists, he never found similar success himself. Nevertheless, his songs have been covered by countless famous musicians, and he is considered a true pioneer in the genre.