LADIES AND GENTLEMEN... Here he is the Wicked Mr. Pickett
Ladies and Gentlemen... "Here's The Wicket (wicked) Mr. Wilson Pickett" was his stage introduction". Wilson Pickett was born in Prattville, Alabama, in 1942, he song in various gospel groups. Wilson Pickett grew up with his family in Detroit. Wilson Pickett was a very rebellious boy, very wild, cocky, and "WICKED". It was 11 in his family. His father wasn't around, and his mother was very strict, she would hit him with anything skillets, stove wood, anything. He was always in trouble. But the only time he was good, was when he was around music. His mother sent him to Detroit, because of his out-of-control ways, she thought he would do better up north in Detroit with his father, she thought he would benefit from his discipline and protecion. Music was everywhere in Detroit, he felt that was where he was suppose to be, Wilson Pickett was going to stay in Detroit for good, he liked the city, and night sounds far, far from the call of Alabama hoot owls. He heard music in Detroit, he never heard down south, because he wasn't allowed to listen to that R&B Music. In Detroit he sanged gospel in church, and was in many gospel groups, the first gospel group he was apart of was "The Violinaires", who became very popular and well-known through the local churches. He grew up idolizing Screamin' Jay Hawkins(that's where he got some of his screaming from), Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers, Clyde McPhatter, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, The Staple Singers, and many other greats.
In Detroit he rubbed shoulders and was friends with some future "Motown and Soul Legends". Little did he know they was going to become "LEGENDS" like himself.
Since he lived in Detroit, he was right around the great "Fox Theater" where all the great singers went of that time, he often skipped school to see these great singers, and learn their style, and put them with his. He would often say his mid-fifties city sound fitted him well. He didn't like those ballads much, he listen to them, and thought groups like The Platters, and The Flamingos were great, but he liked those groups and songs that were less polished, less polite, more sexy, and very danceable, in other words he liked the songs that they played late at night that weren't suited for young teenager boys, songs like "Roll With Me Henry", "60 Minute Man", "Annie Had A Baby", "Let The Good Times Roll".Before joining "The Falcons" and later releasing his first solo single "My Heart Belongs To You" on the US CorrecTone Label.
Wilson Pickett was a very bold, outspoken person. Adults would often say of him the boy is trouble, he had no respect for the old ways and no patience, and no tolerance. He'll let you know in a minute how he felt, what he liked it, and what he didn't like it. He often got in trouble in life, for not keeping his thoughts to himself.
He was very open with women, he'll tell a woman in a minute what he liked on her such as her attributes, and he would say it in vulgar, offending language, and would pinch women butts. In 1959 The Falcons recruited him, He didn't get along with The Falcons much, but he was with them from 1961-1963, he went solo in 1963. After writing and recording one song, "I Found A Love" in 1962 #2, producer Robert Bateman suggest he go solo. His first American Hit was "If You Need Me"(1963) on the US Double-L Records label, he had 2 hits. In 1964, His career took off after recording in Memphis with guitaries/producer Steve Crooper, following which he signed with Atlantic Records, and had two unsuccesful singles. "Jerry Wexler, Atlantic's executive/producer, took Wilson Pickett to Memphis, Tennessee where he recorded with Booker T. and The MG's. Here he established himself internationally with a string of classic hits, "In The Midnight Hour"(UK TOP 20, 1965), "Don't Fight It"(UK Top 30, 1965), "634-5789"(Top 40, 1966), "Land of 1000 Dances" this song was written by Fats Domino and Chris Kenner(a one-hit wonder, who had fame with "I Like it Like That" (Top 30, 1966), "Mustang Sally" (Top 30, 1966), "Funky Broadway" (Top 50, 1967), "I'm A Midnight Mover" (Top 40, 1968) and "Hey Jude" (Top 20, 1969). He had other hits in the 70s, but not as much as his success in the 60s. Wilson Pickett live performances were something else. When you went to Wilson Pickett your not going to sit down, you can't sit down. The girls who walk up in the concert are good girls, very good girls, but during the concert there throwing off their panties, running on stage with Wilson, Wilson Pickett would have them around his waist bumping and grinding, yelling in his mic "ALL YOU WANNA DO IS RIDE AROUND SALLY", the women would faint(and you thought "Jackie Wilson" was the only one who had them throwing their panties and fainting). Wilson Pickett is a great singer/songwriter, he wrote songs for a lot of singers. He was in and out of jail a lot through out the years, He was sentenced to jail for a year, for injuring a pedestrian while driving drunk in New Jersey in 1992. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991. Wilson is the quintessential soul singer.