William Bell

2020 National Heritage Fellow, Singer, Songwriter
Headshot of a man.

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2020 National Heritage Fellow Singer/Songwriter William Bell was the first male solo artist signed by the legendary Stax record label in the early 1960s. With his great sense of melody, rhythm, and lyrics as well as one of the best voices in the business, Bell played a pivotal role in creating a new genre of music known as Southern soul or the Memphis sound. In this podcast, William Bell discusses the pivotal role Stax played in his life and the lives of so many kids in Memphis. We talk and listen to some of his biggest hits like “Born Under a Bad Sign,” and “I Forgot to be Your Lover”, his collaboration with Booker T. Jones and his 2016 Grammy-Award winning album “This Is Where I Live” which he recorded under the newly revived Stax label. He is a born story-teller with a voice like velvet and a lifetime in music.