Try a Little Tenderness

Song written by Jimmy Campbell, Reg Connelly, and Harry M. Woods.

- Try a Little Tenderness

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Printer working an early Gutenberg letterpress from the 15th century. (1877 engraving)

Jimmy Campbell and Reg Connelly

Jimmy Campbell (born James Alexander Campbell-Tyrie; 5 April 1903–19 August 1967) and Reg Connelly (born Reginald John Connelly; 22 October 1895–23 September 1963) were English songwriters and music publishers.

Jimmy Campbell (born James Alexander Campbell-Tyrie; 5 April 1903–19 August 1967) and Reg Connelly (born Reginald John Connelly; 22 October 1895–23 September 1963) were English songwriters and music publishers.

Printer working an early Gutenberg letterpress from the 15th century. (1877 engraving)

One of their most successful songs, "Try a Little Tenderness", was written with Harry M. Woods in 1932.

These buildings (47–55 West 28th Street) and others on West 28th Street between Sixth Avenue and Broadway in Manhattan housed the sheet-music publishers that were the center of American popular music in the early 20th century. The buildings shown were designated as historic landmarks in 2019.

Harry M. Woods

Tin Pan Alley songwriter and pianist, he was a composer of numerous film scores.

Tin Pan Alley songwriter and pianist, he was a composer of numerous film scores.

These buildings (47–55 West 28th Street) and others on West 28th Street between Sixth Avenue and Broadway in Manhattan housed the sheet-music publishers that were the center of American popular music in the early 20th century. The buildings shown were designated as historic landmarks in 2019.

Alone, or with his collaborators, he wrote "I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover", "I'm Goin' South", "The Clouds Will Soon Roll By", "Just a Butterfly that’s Caught in the Rain", "Side by Side", "My Old Man", "A Little Kiss Each Morning", "Heigh-Ho, Everybody, Heigh-Ho", "Man From the South", "River Stay 'way from My Door", "When the Moon Comes Over the Mountain", "We Just Couldn’t Say Goodbye", "Just an Echo in the Valley", "A Little Street Where Old Friends Meet", "You Ought to See Sally on Sunday", "Hustlin' and Bustlin' for Baby", "What a Little Moonlight Can Do", "Try a Little Tenderness", "I'll Never Say 'Never Again' Again", "Over My Shoulder", "Tinkle Tinkle Tinkle", "When You've Got a Little Springtime in Your Heart", "Midnight, the Stars and You", and "I Nearly Let Love Go Slipping Through My Fingers".

Three Dog Night, 1972. Back L-R: Joe Schermie, Floyd Sneed, Michael Allsup and Jimmy Greenspoon. Front L-R: Danny Hutton, Cory Wells and Chuck Negron

Three Dog Night

American rock band formed in 1967, with founding members consisting of vocalists Danny Hutton, Cory Wells, and Chuck Negron.

American rock band formed in 1967, with founding members consisting of vocalists Danny Hutton, Cory Wells, and Chuck Negron.

Three Dog Night, 1972. Back L-R: Joe Schermie, Floyd Sneed, Michael Allsup and Jimmy Greenspoon. Front L-R: Danny Hutton, Cory Wells and Chuck Negron
Negron, Wells and Hutton in 1969

The album Three Dog Night was a success with its hit songs "Nobody", "Try A Little Tenderness", and "One" and helped the band gain recognition and become one of the top-drawing concert acts of their time.

Booker T. & the M.G's c. undefined 1967 (L–R): Donald "Duck" Dunn, Booker T. Jones (seated), Steve Cropper, Al Jackson Jr.

Booker T. & the M.G.'s

American instrumental R&B/funk band that was influential in shaping the sound of Southern soul and Memphis soul.

American instrumental R&B/funk band that was influential in shaping the sound of Southern soul and Memphis soul.

Booker T. & the M.G's c. undefined 1967 (L–R): Donald "Duck" Dunn, Booker T. Jones (seated), Steve Cropper, Al Jackson Jr.
Booker T. & the M.G.'s in Tunica, Mississippi, 2002

They played on hundreds of records, including classics like "Walking the Dog", "Hold On, I'm Comin'" (on which the multi-instrumentalist Jones played tuba over Donald "Duck" Dunn's bass line), "Soul Man", "Who's Making Love", "I've Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now)", and "Try a Little Tenderness", among others.

Etting in 1935

Ruth Etting

American singer and actress of the 1920s and 1930s, who had over 60 hit recordings and worked in stage, radio, and film.

American singer and actress of the 1920s and 1930s, who had over 60 hit recordings and worked in stage, radio, and film.

Etting in 1935
Etting in a photo for her CBS radio program sponsored by Oldsmobile.
Etting in the Ziegfeld Follies of 1931
Etting on the cover of the June 1935 edition of Radio Mirror.
Lobby card from No Contest!, 1934

(1933) "Try a Little Tenderness" (U.S. chart position 16) Melotone Records

British dance band leader Jack Hylton, c. 1930

Val Rosing

British dance band singer best known as the vocalist with the BBC in the BBC Dance Orchestra directed by Henry Hall.

British dance band singer best known as the vocalist with the BBC in the BBC Dance Orchestra directed by Henry Hall.

British dance band leader Jack Hylton, c. 1930

He also sang on the Ray Noble Orchestra's version of "Try a Little Tenderness", the first recording of this well-covered song.

Theatrical release poster

Pretty in Pink

1986 American teen romantic comedy-drama film about love and social cliques in American high schools in the 1980s.

1986 American teen romantic comedy-drama film about love and social cliques in American high schools in the 1980s.

Theatrical release poster

The film also includes Otis Redding's "Try a Little Tenderness", to which Duckie lip-synchs in the film, the Association's "Cherish" and Talk Back's "Rudy".

Theatrical release poster

Shrek

2001 American computer-animated comedy film loosely based on the 1990 picture book of the same name by William Steig.

2001 American computer-animated comedy film loosely based on the 1990 picture book of the same name by William Steig.

Theatrical release poster
Mike Myers was re-cast as Shrek after Chris Farley's death.
Eddie Murphy was particularly praised by reviewers for his performance and role as Donkey.

Covers of songs like "On the Road Again" and "Try a Little Tenderness" were integrated in the film's score.

Theatrical release poster by Tomi Ungerer

Dr. Strangelove

1964 black comedy film that satirizes the Cold War fears of a nuclear conflict between the Soviet Union and the United States.

1964 black comedy film that satirizes the Cold War fears of a nuclear conflict between the Soviet Union and the United States.

Theatrical release poster by Tomi Ungerer
John von Neumann promoted the policy of mutual assured destruction.
Wing Attack Plan R, fresh from the cockpit's safe, allows a nuclear strike without the President's authorization.
General Buck Turgidson imitating a low-flying B-52 "frying chickens in a barnyard"
The War Room with the Big Board in the film
The cream pie fight was removed from the final cut.

The opening theme is an instrumental version of "Try a Little Tenderness."

Watch the Throne

Collaborative studio album by American rappers Jay-Z and Kanye West, collectively known as The Throne.

Collaborative studio album by American rappers Jay-Z and Kanye West, collectively known as The Throne.

Jay-Z and West recorded at various locations, including Real World Studios in Wiltshire, England.
Singer Frank Ocean appears on "No Church in the Wild" and "Made in America". Ocean was brought onto the project per the reception of his prior musical ventures.
Stylistically the record features production handled by West largely considered unconventional. It is an aesthetic quality shared with his previous solo album.
The album's lyrics contain braggadocious themes pertaining to opulence, fame, power and the burdens of success in addition to socio-political commentary on the financial struggles of African-Americans in America.
West (left) and Jay-Z (right) on the Watch the Throne Tour, 2011.
Singles from Watch the Throne were performed on the album's corresponding promotional tour.
In 2012, Kanye West and Jay-Z won Grammys for the single "Otis"; West became the rapper with the most Grammys in history following the win.

"Otis" samples Otis Redding's 1966 song "Try a Little Tenderness", manipulating it into a rhythm track with Reddington's vocals and grunts.