Son of a Preacher Man

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"Son of a Preacher Man"
Dusty springfield-son-of-a preacher man s 2.jpg
Single by Dusty Springfield
from the album Dusty in Memphis
B-side "Just a Little Lovin'"
Released November 8, 1968
Format 7"
Recorded American Studios, Memphis, Tennessee: September 1968
Genre Blue-eyed soul, R&B
Length 2:29
Label Atlantic (US), Philips (Canada)
Songwriter(s) John Hurley, Ronnie Wilkins
Producer(s) Jerry Wexler, Arif Mardin, Jeff Barry, Tom Dowd
Dusty Springfield singles chronology
"Don't Forget About Me"
(1969)
"Son of a Preacher Man"
(1968)
"Willie & Laura Mae Jones"
(1969)
Audio sample

"Son of a Preacher Man" is a song written and composed by John Hurley and Ronnie Wilkins and recorded by British singer Dusty Springfield in September 1968 for the album Dusty in Memphis.

Springfield's version was produced by Jerry Wexler, Tom Dowd, and Arif Mardin for her first album for the Atlantic Records label and became an international hit reaching #10 in the United States and #9 in her native Great Britain when it was released in late 1968. The album Dusty in Memphis was released in stereo, though its singles were remixed and released in mono. "Son of a Preacher Man" was to be the last Top Ten chart hit for Springfield for almost 20 years, till she teamed up with Pet Shop Boys for the single "What Have I Done to Deserve This?" in 1987.

Origins[edit]

In 1967, while working at Muscle Shoals, Alabama, songwriters John Hurley and Ronnie Wilkins, who had recently had a hit with "Love of the Common People", were asked by Jerry Wexler to write a song for Aretha Franklin. Remembering the fact that Franklin's father was a preacher, as Wilkins's grandfather had been, Hurley and Wilkins quickly came up with "Son of a Preacher Man". Wexler liked the song and recorded it with Aretha Franklin, but then decided that it did not fit with her other songs and passed the song on to Dusty Springfield for her album Dusty in Memphis.[1]

The song was recorded by Franklin's older sister Erma, who included it on her 1969 Brunswick album Soul Sister. Not till after hearing Springfield's version did Franklin reconsider; when she did release the song herself, including it on her 1970 album, This Girl's in Love with You, her version charted only as a less popular a-side of the b-side hit single "Call Me".

Legacy[edit]

The writers of Rolling Stone magazine placed Dusty Springfield's recording at #77 among The 100 Best Singles of the Last 25 Years in 1987. The record was placed at #43 of the Greatest Singles of All Time by the writers of New Musical Express in 2002. In 2004, the song made the Rolling Stone list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time[2] at No. 240.

In 1994, the song was featured in a scene of the film Pulp Fiction. The film's soundtrack reached #21 on the Billboard 200 and went platinum (100,000 units) in Canada alone.[3] "Son of a Preacher Man" helped to sell over two million units of the album[4] and to help it reach number six on the charts according to SoundScan.[5] Quentin Tarantino has been quoted, on the "Collectors Edition" DVD of Pulp Fiction, as saying that he probably would not have filmed the scene in which the song is featured had he not been able to use it.

The song is also featured in the film Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, during scenes depicting Kenneth Lay, ex-Enron CEO and son of a Baptist minister, and on an episode of Hindsight. In the 2008 television episode of the American series The Office titled "Baby Shower", Jan Levinson, played by Melora Hardin, is filmed singing "Son of a Preacher Man" as a lullaby to her newborn daughter Astrid.[6] Later in the same episode, Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) describes the bizarre scene to his fiancee, Pam Beesly (Jenna Fischer), noting that the song is about "losing your virginity next to a church."

Samples from "Son of a Preacher Man" were used on Cypress Hill's "Hits from the Bong" on their album Black Sunday.

Melissa Manchester has paid tribute to Dusty Springfield by performing the song live in recent years.[citation needed]

The song is also featured in the 2016 video game Mafia III.[7]

Charts[edit]

Chart (1968-1969) Peak
position
Australian Go-Set[8] 6
Ö3 Austria Top 40[9] 10
Belgian BRT Top 30[10] 23
Dutch Single Top 100[11] 4
Dutch Top 40[12] 6
French SNEP Chart[13] 115
German Media Control[14] 38
Malaysian Singles Chart[15] 2
New Zealand Singles Chart[16] 7
Singapore Singles Charts[17] 5
Swiss Singles Top 75[18] 3
UK Singles Chart[19] 9
US Billboard Hot 100[20] 10

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[21] Gold 500,000double-dagger

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

Other recorded versions[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "I Hate Country Music, But Not Country Songs - The Nashville work of Hurley, Putman & Wilkins", Soul-source.co.uk. Retrieved 14 August 2017
  2. ^ "The RS 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". RollingStone.com. Retrieved 2008-11-05. 
  3. ^ Billboard; 1/28/95, Vol. 107 Issue 4, p62, 1/2p
  4. ^ Billboard, 00062510, 4/20/96, Vol. 108, Issue 16
  5. ^ Christian Science Monitor, 08827729, 9/8/97, Vol. 89, Issue 198
  6. ^ The Office [1], Season 5 Episode 3, aired Thursday, October 16. 2008
  7. ^ Makuch, Eddie. "Mafia 3's Excellent Soundtrack Revealed, Contains These 100-Plus Songs". Gamespot. Gamespot. Retrieved 22 March 2017. 
  8. ^ http://australian-charts.com/forum.asp?todo=viewthread&search=Dusty+Springfield&id=21533&pages=4#652042 "Australian charts"
  9. ^ http://austriancharts.at/showitem.asp?interpret=Dusty+Springfield&titel=Son%2DOf%2DA+Preacher+Man&cat=s
  10. ^ http://www.ultratop.be/fr/song/4b/Dusty-Springfield-Son-Of-A-Preacher-Man
  11. ^ http://dutchcharts.nl/showitem.asp?interpret=Dusty+Springfield&titel=Son%2DOf%2DA+Preacher+Man&cat=s
  12. ^ https://www.top40.nl/dusty-springfield/dusty-springfield-son-of-a-preacher-man-11670
  13. ^ http://lescharts.com/showitem.asp?interpret=Dusty+Springfield&titel=Son%2DOf%2DA+Preacher+Man&cat=s
  14. ^ http://germancharts.de/showitem.asp?interpret=Dusty+Springfield&titel=Son%2DOf%2DA+Preacher+Man&cat=s
  15. ^ "Billboard Magazine, March 15 1969". Retrieved June 21, 2018. 
  16. ^ "Billboard Magazine, April 12, 1969". Retrieved June 21, 2018. 
  17. ^ "Billboard Magazine, May 3 1969". Retrieved June 21, 2018. 
  18. ^ https://hitparade.ch/song/Dusty-Springfield/Son-Of-A-Preacher-Man-75
  19. ^ Lazell, Barry (1989). Rock Movers & Shakers. Billboard Books. 
  20. ^ Miles, Barry. The British Invasion. Sterling. p. 98. 
  21. ^ "British single certifications – Dusty Springfield – Son of a Preacher Man". British Phonographic Industry.  Select singles in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Enter Son of a Preacher Man in the search field and then press Enter.
  22. ^ "Svensk mediedatabas". Retrieved 11 May 2011. 
  23. ^ "Svensktoppen". 1969. Retrieved 11 May 2011. 
  24. ^ "RPM Country Tracks". RPM. 10 April 1995. Retrieved 3 March 2010. 
  25. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. p. 36. ISBN 0-89820-177-2. 
  26. ^ Nichols, James Michael (14 March 2016). "'Son Of A Preacher Man' Gets Reimagined As Heartbreaking Gay Romance - A powerful, somber take on the Dusty Springfield classic". Huffington Post, Queer Voices. Retrieved 14 April 2016. 

External links[edit]