I have long suffered from chronic foot in mouth disease. You know, that person with unbridled enthusiasm in social situations who just does not know quite what to say, so invariably says the wrong thing. Case in point: the first time that I met legendary songwriter/ guitarist the late Teenie Hodges was at a Talking Heads record release party for Fear of Music in Memphis in 1979. Teenie had sought me out to introduce himself, as he had been told by Warner Bros promotion manager Gene Dries that I had been influential in getting ROCK 103 Memphis to play the Talking Heads version of “Take Me to the River“, the soul classic originally co-written and recorded by Memphis legend Al Green.Quickly I search my memory as I gazed at this smiling gracious man before me who appeared to be not much older than me, mid-twenties then ( I found out later that assessment to be wrong ). “Take Me to the River” had been co-written by a Mabon Hodges, but this guy introduced himself as “Teenie”, so I figure this guy has to be the son. So I blurt out,” That’s so cool that your dad wrote ‘Take Me to the River’ .” His face looks amused, he seems a little perplexed for a moment, then can’t contain himself any longer. “My father??? No, no!” he laughs,” I wrote it!” So now, I feel all of the red from my beard suddenly flush into my face as well!
Before he passed away in June 2014 I was honored to have produced several recording sessions in Memphis during which Teenie Hodges played guitar, and everyone on the sessions revered his presence. He was in my thoughts ( and now prayers ) when several of us took a break from recording and attended the Reverend Al Green’s Full Gospel Tabernacle for Sunday morning services, where they have a unique way of getting people attending the service to not only praise the Lord in song but also with tithes and offerings. Instead of passing the offering plate to seated worshippers, each row is stood up one by one and paraded down to the front altar, where the associate minister watches you place your offering in the plate before God and everyone else. The Lord does have His ways! – Redbeard