Personnel includes: Wilson Pickett (vocals); Steve Cropper, Chips Moman, Bobby Womack, Duanne Allman, Jimmy Johnson, Reggie Young, Eddie Hinton, Norman Harris (guitar); Packy Axton, Charlie Chalmers, Jimmy Mitchell, King Curtis (tenor saxophone); Floyd Newman (baritone saxophone); Gene "Bowlegs" Miller (trumpet); Joe Hall, Bobby Woods, Ugene Dozier, Lenny Pakula, Isaac Hayes (piano); Spooner Oldham, Barry Beckett, Dave Crawford (piano, keyboards); Thom Bell (organ); Bobby Emmons (keyboards); Donald "Duck" Dunn, Tommy Cogbill, David Hood (bass); Al Jackson, Roger Hawkins, Gene Chrisman, Earl Young (drums); Cissy Houston (background vocals).
The Memphis Horns: Andrew Love (tenor saxophone); Wayne Jackson (trumpet).
Producers include: Jim Stewart, Steve Cropper, Jerry Wexler, Tom Dowd, Tommy Cogbill.
Recorded between 1965 and 1971. Originally released as a 2 LP set.
Personnel: Wilson Pickett (vocals); Cold Grits (vocals); Chips Moman, Jimmy Johnson , Dennis Coffey, Duane Allman, Eddie Hinton, Jay O'Rourke, Norman Harris, Reggie Young , Roland Chambers, Steve Cropper, Tippy Armstrong, Bobby Eli, Bobby Womack (guitar); Don Renaldo (strings); Gilbert Caples, King Curtis, Andrew Love, Ed Logan, Jimmy Mitchell, Charles "Packy" Axton, Charles Chalmers (tenor saxophone); Floyd Newman (baritone saxophone); Gene Miller , Wayne Jackson (trumpet); Sam Reed (horns); Barry Beckett (piano, keyboards); Joe Hall , Ugene Dozier, Isaac Hayes, Lenny Pakula, Spooner Oldham, Bobby Woods (piano); Thom Bell (organ); Dave Crawford , Billy Carter, Bobby Emmons (keyboards); Vince Montana (vibraphone, percussion); Donald "Duck" Dunn, Gerald Jemmott, Ron Baker, Tommy Cogbill, Albert Lowe (electric bass); Earl Young, Gene Chrisman, Tubby Zeigler, Al Jackson, Jr. , Roger Hawkins (drums); Eddie "Bongo" Brown (congas); Jack Ashford (percussion); Cissy Houston, John Utley, Jackie Verdell, Judy Clay (background vocals).
Wilson Pickett was one of the most consistently strong performers of the great soul era of the 1960's, but like most R&B artists of the period he was strongest in his singles, not his albums, and while he cut some fine long-players in his day, a quality compilation is still the best place to get started with The Wicked Pickett's raw but passionate music. Originally released in 1973 as a two-LP set, Wilson Pickett's Greatest Hits got an upgrade to CD in the mid-1980's, and while it's value has since been supplanted by the more efficient The Very Best Of Wilson Pickett and the more thorough A Man and a Half: The Best Of Wilson Pickett, this still pulls together twenty-four stellar performances from Pickett's glory days (including three recordings from his early group The Falcons). A few of the choices are not especially well advised - while not exactly awful, Pickett's versions of "Sugar, Sugar" and "You Keep Me Hanging On" may be best left to history - but can you really argue with an album that includes "Mustang Sally", "Land Of 1,000 Dances", "In The Midnight Hour", "Funky Broadway", and "634-5789 (Soulsville U.S.A.)"? Not the very best Pickett collection, but still a good one, and fine value for money if you should find it in a bargain bin. ~ Mark Deming
Rolling Stone (p.92) - 5 stars out of 5 - "[H]e defined a dramatic sound in which terse horn phrases, an infallible rhythm section and Steve Cropper's spindly guitar lines accentuated the inexorable force of his vocals."