Song of the Week: “The Dark End of the Street” by James Carr

by Douglas Cowie on 16 August 2019

Each Friday I pick a song–new, old, borrowed, blue–that’s been on my mind and in my ears, and write a short post about it.

This is “The Dark End of the Street” by James Carr:

There are roughly a billion recordings of this song, give or take a couple, but I recently heard this, the original James Carr version, while having dinner at a friend’s house, and it made me stop eating or paying attention to anyone else just so I could listen. The song was written by Dan Penn and Chips Moman and this recording was made in 1966, and released in 1967. James Carr’s voice is just unbelievably beautiful, and the arrangement here is about as perfect as it gets, right down to that final quiet guitar chord.

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