No Speak Engrish

Is “recording studio” ever included in the metadata these days? Some Muscle Shoals goodies that I keep within close reach:

  1. Otis Redding, “You Left the Water Running" (recorded in 1966; released in 1987)
  2. Don Covay, “I Stole Some Love" (1968)
  3. Etta James, “Just a Little Bit" (1968)
  4. Little Milton, “Blues for Mr. ‘C’" (1998)
  5. Otis Rush, “Baby, I Love You" (1969)


Greg Camalier, Muscle Shoals (2013)
Magnolia Pictures

The navigator’s gangsta rap collection starts repeating along I-89 on the way to Utah.

A request from the back seat: “Maybe we can try the radio?”

For the next fifteen minutes we survey the satellite channels — our first break from hip-hop in three days of driving. For a few tantalizing seconds, I hear Jimmy Rushing singing with Count Basie (“Ha ha, that’s 張’s music”) and then it’s gone. 

With the dial set to channel 50, the navigator pauses to check his phone, and I get to listen to Don Covay’s “See Saw” for a verse and a chorus — until the driver wises up and changes the channel.

But it’s enough. I can remember the bridge, and I listen to it in my head.


Don Covay, “See Saw” (1965)
Atlantic 2301