Al Green rose to fame in the early 1970s when he was signed to Willie Mitchell"s influential Memphis record label 'Hi' and subsequently released a string of hits, including "Let"s Stay Together", "Tired Of Being Alone", "Love And Happiness" and "Take Me To The River". His powerful, expressive voice earned him the status as the first great Southern soul singer, and breathed new life into the soul genre, opening the door for a new, more seductive style of soul music.
At the height of his success and popularity in 1974, Al Green was attacked by a former girlfriend Mary Woodson, who broke into his house and threw a bowl of boiling hot porridge over him as he showered, inflicting second degree burns on his stomach, arms and back. After the assault, Woodson shot herself. Deeply shaken, Green, who had always been a keen church-goer, saw the violent attack as a sign from God that he should turn to religion and join the Ministry.
By 1976, Green had bought his own church in Memphis and become a fully ordained Pastor for the Gospel Tabernacle. Green"s popularity and sales both began to slip, and in 1977, he was injured whilst performing on stage, and again interpreted the incident as a message from God. Later that year, Green built his own personal recording studio, and started to begin work of producing his own records, focusing mainly on gospel music releases. From 1981 to 1989, Green won eight soul gospel performance Grammys, but none of his work from this period was very well received by the mainstream record-buying public.
It was with great anticipation and excitement then that news of Green"s return to the R&B sound that had made him famous was received. In 2003, Green released "I Can"t Stop" on the jazz label, Blue Note. It saw Green collaborating once again with producer Willie Mitchell as well as legendary soul guitarist Mabon "Teenie" Hodges, who had co-written many of Green"s "70s hits. "I Can"t Stop" was a revelation, and a true return to form, recalling the glory days of Memphis soul, with Green wailing, crooning and moaning through twelve new original compositions.
Green also began to tour extensively again and in 2006, he headlined the Indy Jazz Festival in Indianapolis, Indiana, an annual celebration of jazz and soul music, which has also seen performances by BB King, Kool & The Gang and Norah Jones. There is no shortage of