Last week, the American Songwriters Hall of Fame announced its class of 2011 inductees: John Bettis, Garth Brooks, Leon Russell, Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly, and Allen Toussaint. I've had "Toussaint playlist" on my to-do list for a while and so, with the announcement providing the final nudge, here's a compilation of tracks I could find in the Vault written by Mr. Toussaint (or Naomi Neville, depending on whether he was using his pseudonym at the time). It's an especially impressive list when you consider that it's anything but an exhaustive representation of his compositions, and it doesn't even touch some of the hits he worked on as a producer or arranger.
Read more about the induction on the Songwriters Hall Of Fame's web site here:
And here's what they had to say about Toussaint:
"Allen Toussaint; musician, songwriter and record producer, is one of the most influential figures in New Orleans R-and-B. He has produced, written for, arranged, had his songs covered by and performed with music giants The Judds, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, Elvis Costello, Patti LaBelle, Mac “Dr. John” Rebannac, Aaron and Art Neville, Joe Cocker, The (original) Meters, Glen Campbell, The Band, Little Feat, The Rolling Stones, Devo, Ernie K-Doe, Lee Dorsey, Irma Thomas, Etta James, Ramsey Lewis, Eric Gale and countless others. His songs and productions have been featured in numerous films, and as a result of his stint as musical director for the off Broadway play Staggerlee, the production garnered the prestigious Outer Circle Critics Award. Toussaint got his shot as a solo artist with a record for RCA and two of his earliest tunes, “Java,” which became a mega-hit for trumpeter Al Hirt, and “Whipped Cream,” the Herb Alpert hit, became instrumental standards. Toussaint then went onto team up with Lee Dorsey turning out a string of hits that included “Working In The Coalmine,” “Holy Cow”, “Ride Your Pony” and many others. “Working in the Coalmine” was then recorded by co-wr