Mack Rice, Luther Ingram – “Respect Yourself – Demo”

Maile Carballo / KUTX

Each week during Left of the Dial, KUTX Music Director, Rick McNulty shares the best song he heard this week.

Mack Rice and Luther Ingram may not have been household names like some of their contemporaries, but many of their songs were. Both were associated with the legendary Memphis label and individually contributed to many all-time soul classics during their careers. Rice’s portfolio included hits like Wilson Pickett’s “Mustang Sally” and Ingram recorded among the most successful versions of “(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don’t Wanna Be Right.”

Around 1970, Mack Rice and Luther Ingram collaborated, and the alchemy produced one of the greatest tracks of the 20th century.

“Mack Rice’s original demo for “Respect Yourself” is a driving one-note stomper more in line with Stax labelmates The Bar-Kays than The Staple Singers, but somehow the latter turned it into a Soul music anthem. It’s amazing to hear the original, unvarnished inspiration before Mavis, Pops, Cleotha and Yvonne reinterpreted it into a stone cold classic.”

-Rick McNulty

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