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David Porter


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David Porter (born November 21, 1941) is an American soul musician and member of Memphis group Circle O’Fire. Porter is best known as the songwriting and production partner of Isaac Hayes at Stax Records during the 1960s. He later became a Stax recording artist himself.

As house composers for Stax Records, Hayes and Porter penned most of Sam & Dave’s hits, including “Soul Man”, “I Thank You,” “When Something Is Wrong with My Baby” and “Hold On I’m Comin’”. They also wrote material for Carla Thomas (“B-A-B-Y”), Johnnie Taylor (“I Got to Love Somebody’s Baby” and “I Had a Dream”), and The Soul Children. Starting in the late ’60s, Hayes became increasingly involved in his own recording career, eventually leading to the end of the partnership. The Hayes-Porter duo composed 200 songs during their collaboration.

Porter then began recording his own albums for Stax. He also released on other labels under the pseudonyms Little David and Kenny Cain, and had done a single for Stax itself in 1965, “Can’t See You When I Want To”, a remake of which became a Top 30 RB hit for Porter, and he cut several albums for Stax in the early ’70s, including a concept LP, “Victim of the Joke?”.

Porter began working with songwriting partner Ronnie Williams, and later went on to engineer the brief relaunch of the Stax label in 1978, after the bankrupt label’s assets were acquired by Fantasy Records.

He and Hayes received Pioneer Awards from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation in 1999. On June 9, 2005, Porter was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame alongside Bill Withers, Steve Cropper, Robert B. Sherman, Richard M.


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  • supervill4in

    sweat & love needs to be in top albums

    28 Jul 2011 Reply
  • absinthe76

    Why is the 9 minute version of this song so hard to find? - I just purchased masquerade on itunes and it was the edited 4min version - I HATE THAT VERSION - UUURGGH!

    8 Jan 2010 Reply
  • absinthe76

    The masquerade is one of the most emotional and truthful songs i have ever heard! - props to d. Porter for not holding back on this subject. I REALLY HATE that this song has been sampled to DEATH! - Hottest of the Hot - Biggie This song is a standard for what a breakup song should be. Best!

    8 Jan 2010 Reply
  • Fultimate

    i don't know why i love you

    29 Apr 2009 Reply
  • NachoBroadway

    so many hip hop samples on the masquerade is over

    12 Oct 2008 Reply
  • oldmanreedy

    his version of hang on snoopy is jaw-dropping.

    22 Aug 2008 Reply

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