It's difficult, with any successful musician, to sum up four decades of hard work and noteworthy accomplishments. Here are just a few notes about Amos Garrett.
• Born in Detroit in 1941.
• Raised in Montreal and Toronto.
• Early influences: Hearing Fats Domino, T-Bone Walker, B.B. King and dozens more at Montreal's long-gone Esquire Club on Stanley Street.
• First band: Toronto-based folk group The Dirty Shames.
• First major U.S. appearance: At Carnegie Hall with comedian and JFK imitator Vaugn Meader.
• First choice session guitarist: During the '70s and early '80s, Amos recorded tracks with more than 150 artists — from Stevie Wonder to Bonnie Raitt, not to mention Anne Murray (yes, you can hear him on "Snowbird"!), Bonnie Raitt, Emmylou Harris, Pearls Before Swine and Maria Muldaur (everyone remembers his one-take solo on Midnight at the Oasis), and Jesse Winchester.
• Touring: Worked as a member of Ian & Sylvia's Great Speckled Bird and Paul Butterfield's Better Days; and toured with Maria Muldaur as her bandleader. Has had his own band, The Eh! Team, for more than 25 years.
• Guitar heroes Chet Atkins, Richard Thompson and Mark Knopfler have all praised Garrett's unique style.
His musical partnership with Geoff Muldaur led him to his Stony Plain debut with the release of a laid back album of duets by the pair in the mid '70s. Now sadly out of the catalogue, it was followed by Go Cat Go, Make My Home in My Shoes, Third Man In, and the Juno-winning collaboration with Gene Taylor and Doug Sahm, Return of the Formerly Brothers. A live album with Doug and Gene, recorded in Japan, followed, and Amosbehavin', Off the Floor Live, and Acoustic Album added to the catalogue.
Garrett has long been one of Stony Plain's signature artists, and the thought of recording an album of Percy Mayfield songs was eagerly endorsed by artist and label alike.
After all, there are very few R&B singers who haven't recorded at least one of Percy Mayfield's songs, and that list includes Ray Charles, Etta James, Bobby Bland, B.B. King, Johnny Adams, Jimmy Witherspoon, Junior Parker, Amos Milburn, and Nappy Brown, not to mention more recent interpreters including Mose Allison, Luther Allison and Long John Baldry.
© STONY PLAIN Recording Co. Ltd.