NASHVILLE, TN (CelebrityAccess) — Downtown Music Publishing has announced it had sealed a “multi-faceted” deal with that covers the publishing interests of the iconic musician, songwriter, producer and recording artist Booker T. Jones.
Under the terms of the agreement, Downtown has acquired Jones’s interest in all of his biggest hits, including the iconic 1962 funk hit “Green Onions,” which was written and recorded by Booker T. & The M.G.’s.
The group, which originally consisted of Booker T. Jones (organ/piano), Al Jackson Jr. (drums), Steve Cropper (guitar) and Lewie Steinberg (bass), was hired in 1962 for a studio session with rockabilly legend Billy Lee Riley. While jamming in between recording sessions, Booker and company came to the attention of Stax owner Jim Stewart, who was present in the studio. At Stewart’s prompting, the MGs played the prototype of what would become “Green Onions” and history was made. Over the years, the track has been featured in countless movie soundtracks and television commercials, becoming part of the American soundscape.
The instrumental track also earned Booker T. & The M.G.s a Grammy Hall of Fame award in 1999 and was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2018.
“It is a great privilege to announce this partnership with Booker T. Jones,” said Downtown CEO Justin Kalifowitz. “It is a rare opportunity to work with someone whose storied career built the foundation of popular music and continues to inspire us with his songwriting and artistry today.”
“I’m still in the same place as I was as a teenager who was so excited about making music,” Jones added. “I couldn’t be happier to find an incredible creative team to promote my catalog and collaborate with on my new material, who shares the same excitement in connecting music to people.”
As with many of his peers, Jones started his music career as a precocious sixteen-year-old when he played baritone sax on “Cause I Love You” by Carla and Rufus Thomas. He went on to lead the Stax Records House Band and became key innovators of the iconic label’s distinctive sound. The group also broke other boundaries
as well, including becoming of the first racially integrated rock groups when exclusively African-American groups dominated the soul sound and Memphis scene.
Since then, Jones has recorded with some of the most well-known artists of the 20th and 21st century, including Willie Nelson, Neil Young, Bill Withers, Anthony Hamilton, and The Roots.
Jones was inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992, the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum in 2007, and was honored with a Grammy Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2007.
Earlier this year, Jones announced that he was planning to release a memoir, which is due to be released in the fall of 2019.