Allen Toussaint - Southern Nights LP
(Reprise Records, 1975)
Allen Toussaint is a damn legend. In a long list of artists who have never really gotten their due in the music industry, Toussaint is somewhere near the top. His songwriting and production skills are in large part responsible for the popular success of artists like Dr. John, Labelle, Aaron Neville, Lee Dorsey, and countless other soul and R&B greats, but the list of artists who have had success with covers of Allen Toussaint's songs really gives a picture of his influence, The Rolling Stones, Devo, The Pointer Sisters, Glen Campbell, Bonnie Raitt, Robert Plant and Alison Krauss among them. Toussaint's melding of New Orleans jazz, southern soul and R&B, and 70's rock is possibly the largest contributing factor for the popularization of the southern rock genre, and nowhere is it more apparent than on Southern Nights.