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Booker T. & The MG’s – Green Onions – 1962

About The Song

“Green Onions” is an instrumental R&B hit by Booker T. & The MG’s, released in 1962. The song is characterized by its distinctive Hammond organ riff and tight, soulful groove. It has become a classic in the instrumental rock genre, showcasing the musical prowess of the Memphis-based group.

Five facts about Booker T. & The MG’s “Green Onions”:

  1. Spontaneous Creation: “Green Onions” was largely improvised during a recording session at Stax Records in Memphis. The band, consisting of Booker T. Jones, Steve Cropper, Lewie Steinberg, and Al Jackson Jr., started playing around with a groove, and the result was the iconic instrumental track.
  2. Signature Hammond Organ: The Hammond organ riff played by Booker T. Jones is the defining element of the song. The soulful and catchy organ melody is instantly recognizable and has contributed to the enduring popularity of “Green Onions.”
  3. Stax Records Hit: The song was a major success for Stax Records, reaching number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and number 1 on the R&B chart. It became one of the label’s most famous and enduring hits.
  4. Influence on Pop Culture: “Green Onions” has been featured in numerous films, TV shows, and commercials. Its timeless and versatile sound has made it a go-to track for evoking a sense of coolness and retro style in various media.
  5. Hall of Fame Recognition: Booker T. & The MG’s were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992. “Green Onions” remains their most famous and successful recording, showcasing the group’s ability to create infectious, instrumental grooves that have stood the test of time.



All right people, the rest of the hard working
All star blues brothers are gonna be out here in a minute
Including my little brother Jake
But right now, I’d like to talk a little bit about thi
E you’re hearing this is of course the green onions tune
It was a very big hit in the early sixties in this country
And of course it was composed and recorded in
Memphis, Tennessee, right here
E, United States Of America, you know people
I believe that this tune can be acquainted
With the great classical music around the world
Now you go to Germany, you’ve got your bach
Your Beethoven, your Brahms
Here in America you’ve got your Fred McDowell
Your Irving Berlin, your Glenn Miller and your Booker T & The M.G.’s
Ple, another example of the great contributions
In music and culture that this country
Has made around the world and as you look around
The world today, you see this country spurned
You see backs turned on this country
Well people, I’m gonna tell you something
This continent, North America is the stronghold
This is where we’re gonna make our stand in this decade, yeah
E, I’ve got something to say to the state department
I say take that archaic Monroe doctrine
And that Marshall plan that says we’re supposed
To police force the world and throw ’em out, let’s
Home for the next ten years people
Right here in North America
And enjoy the music and culture that is ours
Yeah, I got one more thing to say
I’m just talking about the music, people and what it does to me
And that is as you look around the world
You go to the Soviet Union or Great Britain
Or France, you name it any country, ev
Dy is doing flips and twists just to get into
A genuine pair of American blue jeans
And to hear this music and we got it all here in America
The land of the Chrysler 440 cubic inch engine