Home » blog » Booker T. and the MGs (including Donald “Duck” Dunn): “Green Onions”
Rhythm and Blues

Booker T. and the MGs (including Donald “Duck” Dunn): “Green Onions”

Donald (Duck) Dunn: 1941-2012

Donald “Duck” Dunn, who died in Japan this weekend, tended to get overshadowed. It was probably how he liked it. With some exceptions, folks don’t take up bass guitar for fame (though fortune may have something to do with it). Though Dunn never was a superstar, he made them possible. Here is a two minute bio.

This paragraph from his website sums it up pretty well:

Among the timeless recordings Dunn held down the bottom end of Respect, Dock Of The Bay and I’ve Been Loving You Too Long, by Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett’s In The Midnight Hour, and Hold On I’m Coming by Sam and Dave, not to mention sessions with Neil Young, Eric Clapton and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Dunn also was in the band featured in film The Blues Brothers.

The most notable song associated with Dunn is Green Onions, which is featured above. Here is a much more recent version. Other clips include Knock on Wood, One Night-Blues for Elvis, Melting Pot and Hold On, I’m Coming. Some of the video isn’t very good–but the music is great.


Sign Up for TDMB Daily Email Blasts

TDMB offers daily one-video email blasts. A different genre each day of the week. They are quick hits: Just great music and a bit of context.

Sign up below or, for more info, click here.

Here’s What’s Here

The Daily Music Break explores every genre of music, from hip hop to opera. It's simple: Boundaries are dumb. It's all good. Here is more about the site and here is our index:

--A Tribe Called Quest to The Dick Hyman Trio (In other words, A to H)

--Indigo Girls to Queen Ida (I to Q)

--Radiohead to ZZ Top (R to Z)

Reading Music

The stories of the great bands and musicians are fascinating. Musicians as a group are brilliant, but often troubled. The combination of creativity and drama makes for great reading.

Here are some books to check out.

Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.


What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.


The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.