|Genres:||Pop / Rock|
|Tags:||singer-songwriter power pop rock proto-punk 80s alternative american|
|Decades:||1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s|
|Links:||allmusic discogs IMDb lyrics other databases secondhandsongs VIAF wikidata wikipedia|
William Alexander Chilton, 28 December 1950, Memphis, Tennessee, USA. Chilton began singing and playing guitar while still at school and absorbed the raw-edged cry of local soul singers. His first work experience was with Ronnie And The DeVilles, singing Stax-styled R&B. Teamed with multi-instrumentalist Bill Cunningham (whose older brother was in the Hombres and wrote Let It All Hang Out), he fronted the Box Tops on guitar and vocals, mixing pop and soul in equal measure. Producer Dan Penn discovered them and recorded The Letter, released in late summer 1967 on the Bell Records subsidiary Mala. The single reached US number 1 and the UK Top 5. Follow-ups Cry Like A Baby (1968) and Soul Deep (1969) were quintessential blue-eyed soul hits.
In late 1969, the Box Tops broke up. Chilton joined forces with Chris Bell, an old high school buddy obsessed with British beat music, in Big Star. The name...