Gilbert Caple, commonly known as Gil Caple, was an influential saxophonist in the soul, pop, and R&B genres. Born in Memphis, Tennessee, a city renowned for its rich musical heritage, Caple’s saxophone style and contributions significantly shaped the sound of the Stax Records era.
Caple’s music career took flight when he joined The Mar-Keys, an American studio session band known for their iconic instrumental hit, “Last Night”. As a part of this instrumental R&B ensemble, Caple’s saxophone served as one of the driving forces behind the band’s success. Their distinct sound, characterized by tight arrangements and punctuated with Caple’s saxophone melodies, provided the foundation for what would later become known as the “Memphis Soul” sound.
Beyond his work with The Mar-Keys, Caple was a highly sought-after session musician. His saxophone skills were featured on numerous recordings at Stax Records, contributing to the label’s reputation as a powerhouse of soul music. He worked with some of the biggest names in the industry, including Otis Redding, Booker T. & the MG’s, and Isaac Hayes, adding his distinctive saxophone touch to these artists’ legendary tracks.
In addition to his session work, Caple was part of the Memphis Horns, a soul and R&B horn section made up of some of the finest session musicians from Stax Records. Their signature sound, with Caple’s saxophone often in the lead, brought an added dimension to the songs they graced, making them one of the most respected horn sections in the industry.
Gil Caple’s significant contributions to the R&B and soul genres and his work with Stax Records and The Mar-Keys helped to define a musical era. His unique saxophone style brought a distinctive sound to the recordings he worked on, creating a lasting influence on the music world.
Page last updated 7/16/2023.