Jackie Wilson managed to sell over 100 million records in a career that spanned more than three decades. As the lead singer of the group The Dominoes, he was one of the first artists inducted into the Rhythm and Blues Hall of Fame. However, his solo works have been most memorable for music lovers. In a business where only a few manage to stay relevant for more than 10 years, Wilson’s career spanned way longer than that. He was one of the biggest stars in the decade of the 60s, but his career somehow couldn’t last long enough to see him through till the 80s. Jackie Wilson managed to remain on top right till the end despite all odds. While there were many ups and downs throughout his career, one thing that can be said for certain is that he was enormous and will always remain so. Here we take a look at some of his best songs ever recorded;
10. A Woman, a Lover, a Friend – 1960
A Woman, a Lover, a Friend’ featured in Wilson’s album ‘I Get The Sweetest Feeling.’ It was written by Billy Page and Leon Ware, who also wrote for Marvin Gaye. While it didn’t exactly burn up the charts on its release, the song has since then been a popular addition to many compilation albums. It talks about a man who loves a woman, but not in a passionate way. It is very much within the platonic zone. The two are great friends, which makes it all even more beautiful.
9. Alone At Last – 1970
‘Alone At Last’ was a major hit for Wilson during his late-60s/early-70s period. It is the perfect example of how great a singer he was. Songwriting is mostly credited to this man, who is also largely responsible for many of his biggest hits. It’s been said that Jackie Wilson was among the first black artists to use songwriters, which only goes on to show that his talent was more than just being a great singer. ‘Alone At Last’ is an excellent example of how fantastic he was.
8. My Empty Arms – 1961
My Empty Arms’ was the fourth single to be released by Wilson in 1961. The song is about love and loss without being too depressing. It talks about someone who has lost his lover but still feels her presence everywhere he goes. There is something extremely lovely about this track that makes it a pleasure to listen to repeatedly.
7. Whispers (Gettin’ Louder) – 1966
‘Whispers (Gettin’ Louder)’ is one of Wilson’s best songs ever recorded. Even after 50 years, this song still sounds fresh and alive. The fact that it has been sampled several times down the years proves its quality; many appreciate the beauty of this track. It talks about love and loss with equal poise and deep feelings. There is only one word to describe this gem of a song- Perfect.
6. I’ll Be Satisfied – 1958
‘I’ll Be Satisfied’ is one of the best songs released by Wilson in the later years of his career. Despite being diagnosed with cancer, he still works to give his fans the very best. Closer to the end of his life, this song was a big hit and had since then remained popular. He is in top form here, with his singing bringing out his emotions in all the right ways.
5. Talk That Talk – 1983
‘Talk That Talk’ was the last single released by Wilson under his deal with Brunswick records. The songwriter and musician credits of this track are unknown, which is a shame as they deserve all the credit in the world for coming up with such a brilliant tune. It is very similar to his earlier works, which only shows that he was still at top form even long after retiring from the business.
4. Night – 1960
‘Night’ was Jackie Wilson’s third single after moving from Brunswick to Columbia Records. The song is quite different from other similar songs by other artists, showing how brilliant a songwriter and singer Wilson was. There are several versions of the track available, but all of them have something special in them, so it doesn’t matter which one you pick.
3. Baby Workout – 1962
‘Baby Workout’ is a song originally published by Jackie Wilson in 1963, but it only became one of his biggest hits after reaching the charts in 1972. This version reached number #2 on the pop chart and stayed there for four weeks. It’s hard to understand why this track never made it big at first since it has all the trappings of a classic.
2. Lonely Teardrops – 1962
Lonely Teardrops was another hit released by Wilson in the early 60s. The song reached number #1 on the US R&B chart, which is no surprise since it is one of his best numbers. It’s hard to imagine that this track was not a bigger commercial success, but it did go on to become a signature song for the artist in later years.
1. Higher and Higher – 1967
‘Higher and Higher’ was an instant hit when released in 1967, reaching number #1 on the R&B charts and #3 on the US national chart. The song has an extremely catchy melody, which shows why this tune became so popular across the world. It became one of the most popular songs in history and is still a favorite among fans of all ages.
This list looks at some of the best Jackie Wilson songs that you can listen to. The top 10 tracks are listed above, but there are many other classics available. If you haven’t already, it will be a good choice to check out some of these songs, especially since they come straight from one of the most talented singers ever known. Check out the links above and see them for yourself.