Joe Arnold, born on August 5, 1941, in Memphis, Tennessee, is an accomplished American saxophonist who contributed significantly to the soul and R&B music scene. Known for his skillful playing and soulful sound, Arnold became an important figure in the Memphis music scene, particularly through his work with the legendary Memphis Horns.
Arnold began playing the saxophone at a young age, and by the time he was a teenager, he was already performing with local bands in Memphis. His talent caught the attention of music industry professionals, and in the early 1960s, Arnold began working as a session musician at the renowned Stax Records. During this time, he played with a variety of artists, including Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, and Booker T. & the MG’s, helping to shape the sound of classic soul and R&B music.
In the mid-1960s, Arnold joined the Memphis Horns, a renowned horn section that played a significant role in the Memphis soul sound. The Memphis Horns, which also included trumpeter Wayne Jackson and tenor saxophonist Andrew Love, became an integral part of numerous recordings for Stax Records and other labels. The group provided the distinctive, driving horn sound that became a hallmark of Memphis soul music.
Throughout his career, Joe Arnold recorded and performed with a wide range of artists, contributing his saxophone skills to iconic songs such as “Knock on Wood,” “Soul Man,” and “In the Midnight Hour.” His work with the Memphis Horns, as well as his numerous recording sessions, earned Arnold recognition as a key figure in the development of soul and R&B music.
In addition to his work with the Memphis Horns, Arnold continued to perform and record with various artists, contributing his unique sound and style to a diverse array of musical projects. Arnold’s skill as a saxophonist, combined with his contributions to the Memphis music scene, ensured his place in history as an influential figure in American soul and R&B music.
Though Joe Arnold may not be a household name, his impact on the music industry and his work with the Memphis Horns have left an indelible mark on the world of soul and R&B. Arnold’s soulful playing and innovative contributions to the development of these genres continue to inspire and influence musicians and fans around the world.
Last updated 3/18/2023.