Alabama Music Achievers

Alphabetical Achievers Listing


JOHNNY SANDLIN - Decatur, Alabama
-Joined Gregg and Duanne Allman in 1966 as the drummer for the Southern rock band The Hourglass
-Later became the recording engineer and producer for the Allman's "Brothers And Sisters", "Win, Lose Or Draw", and contributed mixing and mastering to "Filmore East" and "Eat A Peach".
-He also produced albums on Greg Allman, Gregg and Cher, Eddie Kendricks, The Outlaws, Richard Betts, Elvin Bishop, Wet Willie, Bonnie Bramlett, Alex Taylor, Cowboy, Delbert McClinton and many others. He has three platinum albums and seven gold albums to his credit.

RAY SAWYER - Monroeville, Alabama
- Best known as a vocalist with the 1970s rock band, Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show.
- Though primarily a backing vocalist & occasional percussionist on congas, he sang lead on the song "Cover of the Rolling Stone"
- He was a recognizable presence in the band due to the eyepatch & cowboy hat he wore.>

BOB SCHULTZ - Mobile, Alabama
-The "Gulf Coast King of Swing."
-His "Big Band Sound" has been entertaining the Port City and Gulf Coast for 25 years.
-He's a permanent fixture at many Mardi Gras festivities, including the Mobile Carnival Association's Coronation and the Camellia Ball.
-He's performed at America's Junior Miss, at functions welcoming national and international dignitaries to Mobile, at some of the city's finest restaurants and at the inaugural ball for Gov. Don Siegelman.

TOMMY SHAW - Montgomery, Alabama
- Guitarist, singer, songwriter, and performer best known for his work with the rock band Styx.
In between his stints with Styx, he has played with other groups including Damn Yankees and Shaw Blades and has released several solo albums.
-Styx's eighth album, Pieces of Eight, was the breakout album for Shaw's songwriting talent. His rock-oriented contributions "Renegade" and "Blue Collar Man" were the only major hits from this release, reaching #16 and #21 respectively on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart, and they became '70s rock-radio staples and perennial Styx concert favorites
-While with Styx Shaw had a #3 hit, "Too Much Time On My Hands."
- Tommy Shaw was inducted into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame on February 22, 2008

SHENANDOAH - Muscle Shoals, Alabama
- The band was discovered by Rick Hall of FAME Recording Studios playing at a local night club in Muscle Shoals
- Shenandoah has released nine studio albums, of which two have been certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.
- The band has also charted twenty-six singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts, including the Number One hits "The Church on Cumberland Road," "Sunday in the South", "Two Dozen Roses", "Next to You, Next to Me" and "If Bubba Can Dance (I Can Too)".
- The late 1994-early 1995 single "Somewhere in the Vicinity of the Heart," which featured guest vocals from Alison Krauss, won both artists a Grammy Award for Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.

"CECI" SHERMAN - Mobile, Alabama
- Toured the nation as an opera singer in the 1920s and 1930s with the American Opera Company sponsored by George Eastman.
- The soprano sang the lead role in "Madam Butterfly," "Faust," "La Boheme" and "The Marriage of Figaro."
- Performed in a number of Broadway musicals, including "Mr. Strauss Goes to Boston," and "The Curious Savage," in addition to the Broadway play, "Crime and Punishment" with Lilian Gish.
- She was a member of the Mobile Opera Guild, now known as the Mobile Opera, for 20 years. The organization named a scholarship in her honor.

BILLY SHERRILL - Phil Campbell, Alabama
- Record producer and arranger, who is most famous for his association with a number of country artists, most notably Tammy Wynette and George Jones
-Regarded as the defining influence of the "countrypolitan" sound, a smooth amalgamation of pop and country music that was popular during the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s.
-Producer of David Houston, Tammy Wynette, George Jones, Charlie Rich, and Johnny Cash
–Sherrill's work included Shelby Lynne, Marty Robbins, Ray Charles, Elvis Costello, Johnny Paycheck, Tanya Tucker, Johnny Cash, Janie Fricke,Barbara Mandrell, Lacy J. Dalton, Ray Conniff, Bobby Vinton, Bob Luman, Johnny Duncan, Jim and Jesse, Jody Miller, Moe Bandy, Joe Stampley, Charlie Walker, Barbara Fairchild, Andy Williams, Cliff Richard ("The Minute You're Gone"), Mickey Gilley and David Allan Coe.
-Co-wrote "Almost Persuaded" & "Stand By Your Man"
- Sherrill won a Grammy Award in 1975 for Best Country Song for Charlie Rich's version of the song "A Very Special Love Song"

JOHNNY SHINES - Tuscaloosa, Alabama
-World-renowned blues musician who has been declared a "Living Treasure" of Alabama
-Nominated for a Grammy, received the Chicago Blues Living Legend Award, inducted into the Delta Blues Museum, and awarded membership to the "Hot Club Du France"
-Gained fame as one of the innovators of the Chicago Blues Style
- In 1966, Vanguard Records had him record tracks for the third installment of Chicago/The Blues/Today! The album has since become a blues classic and it brought Shines into the mainstream music scene.
-Shines toured with the Chicago All Stars alongside Lee Jackson, Big Walter Horton and Willie Dixon.
-In the late 1960s and 1970s, Shines toured with Robert Johnson's stepson, Robert Lockwood, Jr. as the last remaining original delta blues musicians.

TERRY SKINNER - Detroit, Alabama
- In 1981 The Carpenters released a song co-written by Skinner "Touch Me When We're Dancing" which reached number 16 US and number 1 US AC. Country music
-The group Alabama also recorded a version in 1986 that reached number 1 on the country charts.
-Skinner also co-wrote, the song "Even the Nights Are Better", which became a major hit for Air Supply in 1982.
-Terry Skinner has been a successful songwriter writing some pop hits, but mostly country hits for acts such as The Forester Sisters, David Frizzell and Highway 101.

PERCY SLEDGE - Leighton, Alabama
-"When A Man Loves A Woman" was the first gold record released by Atlantic Records.
It was recorded at Quin Ivy's Norala Studio in Sheffield, Alabama and put the Muscle Shoals music industry in the limelight
- The soul anthem became the cornerstone of Sledge's career a hit twice in the UK, reaching #4 in 1966 and, on reissue, peaked at #2 in 1987.
-It was followed by "Warm and Tender Love", "It Tears Me Up", "Take Time to Know Her" (his second biggest U.S. hit, reaching #11"Love Me Tender", and "Cover Me".
-Sledge charted with "I'll Be Your Everything" and "Ain't No Sunshine" during the 1970s, and became an international concert favorite throughout the world

- An American boogie-woogie style blues pianist.
-His hit tune, "Pine Top's Boogie Woogie," featured rhythmic "breaks" that were an essential ingredient of ragtime music
- On 29 December 1928 he recorded his influential "Pine Top's Boogie Woogie," one of the first "boogie woogie" style recordings to make a hit, and which cemented the name for the style
- "Boogie Woogie" was arranged for big band and recorded byTommy Dorsey & His Orchestra in 1938
- "Boogie Woogie" was so popular during and after World War II[ that it became Dorsey's best selling record, with over five million copies sold.
- Bing Crosby also recorded a version of the song
-He was a pioneer who influenced a generation of musicians
-He was a posthumous 1991 inductee of the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame.

SPEER FAMILY - Double Springs, Alabama
-The group was inducted into the Gospel Music Association's Hall of Fame in 1998, following individual inductions for "Dad" Speer (1971); "Mom" Speer (1972); Brock Speer (1975); and Ben Speer (1995).
-They released over 70 albums
-The Speer Family was the first group to receive the Gospel Music Association's Lifetime Achievement Award.
-Other recognition for the Speers included inclusion in the Alabama Music Hall of Fame, receiving the Southern Gospel Music Guild's Heritage Award, and receiving 14 Dove Awards and 5 Grammy Nominations
-The group's recording of "I'm Standing on the Solid Rock" has the distinction of having the longest tenure as the top song on the Singing News chart of popular Southern Gospel recordings

TOM STAFFORD - Florence, Alabama
-Partners with Billy Sherrill, Kelson Herston and Rick Hall forming Spar Music - Publishing & Recording
-One of the original shapers of the Muscle Shoals music scene
-Many young Shoals area musicians got their first taste of recording – Dan Penn, Spooner Oldham and Donnie Fritts to name a few.

JOHN "JABO" STARKS - Mobile, Alabama
- An American funk and blues drummer.
-He is best known for playing with James Brown. Starks played on many of Brown's biggest hits, either as the sole drummer or in tandem with Clyde Stubblefield
- Starks ranks as one of the most sampled drummers on contemporary hip hop and R&B recordings.
- In his long career, Starks has played with a number of major figures of the blues, including Bobby Blue Bland and B.B. King. Starks appeared on some of Bland's most successful records

CANDI STATON - Hanceville, Alabama
-Received Grammy nominations in both rhythm and blues and gospel categories during her career
-An American soul and gospel singer, best known in the United States for her 1970 remake of Tammy Wynette's "Stand By Your Man" and her 1976 disco chart-topper "Young Hearts Run Free"
-She has been inducted into the Christian Music Hall of Fame and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame
-Shared the stage with Mac Davis, Diana Ross, Teddy Pendergrass, B.B. King, Little Richard, and Johnny Mathis

TERRY STEWART - Daphne, Alabama
- Chief executive officer and executive director of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
- Has served as a member of the board of directors of The Rhythm and Blues Foundation and advisor to the annual Summer Stage Concert Series in New York's Central Park.
- He was a Charter Member of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.

EDDIE STRUZICK - Sheffield, Alabama
-Writter of numerous pop and country hits, "Sharing the Night Together" Dr. Hook
-Vocalist on recordings with Dobie Gray, Mac Davis, Tony Joe White, Debra Allen

SULLIVAN FAMILY - St. Stephens, Alabama
-Bluegrass-Gospel group featuring hard-driving traditional sound highlighted by strong female lead voice and fiddle
-Marty Stuart began his career with group

GENE SULLIVAN - Carbon Hill, Alabama
-Member of Wiley & Gene, one of Country music's most successful duets of the late 1930's & 40's
-Co-wrote "Live and Let Live" and "When My Blue Moon Turns to Gold Again"

SUN RA - Birmingham, Alabama
- He was a, prolific jazz composer bandleader piano and synthesizer player, poet and philosopher known for his "cosmic philosophy," musical compositions and performances.
-Known as a pioneer in the use of electronic instruments
-Was among the first to incorporate film, unique lighting effects, vivid costuming and dance into his performances
-Career spanned over the history of jazz from the pre swing bands to utterly free improvisation
-He is an inductee of the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame and Alabama Music Hall of Fame.

PAT SWINGLE - Mobile, Alabama
- Known primarily as a singer, Mrs. Swingle's range and repertoire bridged the gulf between jazz and classical, but she also was an accomplished actress, stage director, composer/lyricist, writer and voice teacher.
- She performed often with Mobile Opera in productions such as "Madam Butterfly," "Faust" and "The Marriage of Figaro."
- A mezzo-soprano with dynamic range, she sang with symphonies in Mobile, Birmingham, Meridian, Miss., and Wheeling, W.Va., and regional chamber, symphonic and choral groups.
- As a pop and jazz vocalist she appeared at Mobile Jazz Festival, performed with Jim Nabors and the Bob Hope and Ed Sullivan road shows.
- She wrote more than 200 songs some were honored with first prize in the Alabama Federation of Music Clubs Adult Composers Competition.

WARD SWINGLE - Mobile, Alabama
- He was a founding member of the fabled Double six of Paris
- Formed The Swingle Singers, whose early recordings won five Grammies.
- His pioneering ideas in new choral techniques have produced invitations to conduct a wide variety of choral ensembles

Alphabetical Achievers Listing


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