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Muscle Shoals legends Dan Penn & Spooner Oldham embark on a rare UK Tour, July 2015

Posted on 1 May 2015

Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham are two of the most important and prolific songwriters to emerge from the Deep South during the 1960s soul music boom. Now rarely performing outside the US, Dan Penn & Spooner Oldham will play four exclusive concerts in the UK between 12 & 17 July. This is an incredibly rare opportunity to see the truly legendary duo perform many of the songs from their remarkable back catalogue.

Together Penn and Oldham wrote “Cry Like a Baby” for the Box Tops and Penn produced several hits for the Box Tops, including “The Letter”. Penn and Oldham lived and recorded in Muscle Shoals, Alabama at the time when Atlantic Records were bringing artists such as Aretha Franklin, Percy Sledge and Solomon Burke to Muscle Shoals to record in the now legendary FAME studios, which led to Franklin cutting the Penn/Moman classic “Do Right Woman,”. For the next several years, Penn composed songs such as “Dark End of the Street” and the Oldham/Penn songs, “Woman Left Lonely” and “I’m Your Puppet” were recorded by such greats as James Carr, Janis Joplin and Dionne Warwick respectively and Oldham’s distinctive keyboard sound was key to seminal recordings such as “When a Man Loves a Woman” by Percy Sledge and “Mustang Sally” by Wilson Pickett and became soul classics.

Penn & Oldham were also featured in the magnificently sound-tracked 2013 feature length documentary Muscle Shoals, which celebrated FAME studio’s founder Rick Hall and the signature sound which was created in Muscle Shoals at this time which became a cornerstone of American music history.

The UK tour kicks off on July 12 at The Lantern, Bristol then moves to Union Chapel, London on July 14 ,before heading north to Bridgewater Hall Manchester on July 16. The final chance to catch the pair in the UK will be on July 17 at the Tenth Annual SummerTyne Americana Festival at Sage Gateshead.

To coincide with this rare opportunity to see two legendary performers in person, on 13 July Proper Records will be re-issuing the duo’s classic album Moments From This Theatre, which received massive critical acclaim on original release, in a new deluxe edition. The album will be paired with a brand new DVD, featuring 14 songs performed live by Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham in 2006 at St James’s Church Piccadilly. Seven of the songs featured on the new DVD have never been made available before, and this is the only authorised film available of the duo performing together.

Dan Penn & Spooner Oldham UK Tour 2015

July 12 Bristol, The Lantern, Colston Hall
July 14 London, Union Chapel (produced by the Barbican)
July 16 Manchester, Bridgewater Hall
July 17 Gateshead, SummerTyne Americana Festival (Sage Gateshead) By arrangement with SummerTyne Americana Festival.

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