I Wrote a Simple Song

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I Wrote A Simple Song
I Wrote A Simple Song.jpg
Studio album by Billy Preston
Released 8 November 1971 (US)
14 January 1972 (UK)
Recorded February, August−September 1971
Genre Soul, rock
Length 40:03
Label A&M
Producer Billy Preston
Billy Preston chronology
Encouraging Words
I Wrote a Simple Song
Music Is My life

I Wrote a Simple Song is the sixth studio album by Billy Preston. Released in 1971, this was his first for A&M Records.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2/5 stars[1]

This album continued Preston's inclusion of gospel-themed songs which had started with the 1967 album Club Meeting. Preston's friend George Harrison supplied dobro accompaniment on the title track.

The instrumental "Outa-Space" won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance in 1973.[2] It was also one of the clarion calls for the coming importance of the Hohner Clavinet in popular music.

Track listing[edit]

All songs by Billy Preston and Joe Greene, except where noted.

Side One

  1. "Should Have Known Better" – 2:28
  2. "I Wrote a Simple Song" – 3:28
  3. "John Henry" (Preston, Robert Sam) – 3:15
  4. "Without a Song" (William Rose, Edward Eliscu, Vincent Youmans) – 4:57
  5. "The Bus" – 3:32

Side Two

  1. "Outa-Space" – 4:08
  2. "The Looner Tune" (Preston, Joe Greene, Jesse Kirkland) – 2:47
  3. "You Done Got Older" (Preston, Bruce Fisher) – 3:08
  4. "Swing Down Chariot" (Traditional; arranged by Billy Preston and Joe Greene) – 4:13
  5. "God Is Great" – 3:32
  6. "My Country, 'Tis of Thee" (Traditional) – 4:27


  • Roland Young - art direction
  • Jim McCrary - photography


Year Album Chart positions[3]
1972 I Wrote a Simple Song 32 9


Year Single Chart positions[4]
1972 "I Wrote a Simple Song" 77
"Outta-Space" 2 1
"The Bus" 43

External links[edit]