Dan Penn Do Right Man on Limited Edition 180g LP
Dan Penn helped shape the development of southern soul music with his legendary songwriting, musicianship and production. A native of Vernon, AL, Penn moved to the Florence/Muscle Shoals area while still a teenager and assumed the role of lead vocalist in a local group calling itself the Mark V Combo. It was around this time that he penned his first chart record, Conway Twitty's "Is a Bluebird Blue." During the early '60s, Penn began working with Rick Hall at Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals, first as a songwriter, and then as an artist under the names Lonnie Ray, Danny Lee, and finally Dan Penn.
Penn's early co-writing collaborations with Spooner Oldham while at Fame included "I'm Your Puppet," which became a hit in 1965 for James & Bobby Purify, and "Out of Left Field," and "It Tears Me Up" performed so memorably by Percy Sledge. He also co-wrote hits for Joe Simon, Jimmy Hughes and Wilson Pickett. Dan became an exclusive writer for Fame Publishing Co. for about three years. "It was sort of an in-house thing, where artists were comin' and goin', askin' for songs, and there was sort of a built-in opportunity to try to be a commercial songwriter."
In 1966, Penn relocated to Memphis and began producing at Chips Moman's American Recording Studio. While at American, Penn and Moman co-wrote "Do Right Woman, Do Right Man," which Aretha Franklin turned into a soul classic, along with "Dark End of the Street," stunningly recorded by James Carr, while Dan and Spooner came up with "Cry Like a Baby" for the Box Tops and later "A Woman Left Lonely," written at Dan's Beautiful Sounds Studio in Memphis, and chosen by Janis Joplin for her classic album Pearl.
1994's Do Right Man finds the iconic songwriter finally recording his own versions of many of the aforementioned soul classics in Muscle Shoals backed by the phenomenal house band for a 10-song set that also served as his first solo album in 20 years. Included here are wonderfully revealing takes on such beloved fare as "The Dark End of the Street," "It Tears Me Up," "Do Right Woman Do Right Man," and "I'm Your Puppet" along with newly penned tracks like "Zero Willpower."