Save Me

Album: I Never Loved A Man The Way I Loved You (1967)

Songfacts®:

  • Part of Aretha Franklin's legendary album I Never Loved A Man The Way I Loved You, the composer credit on this song goes to Franklin with her sister (and backup singer) Carolyn and sax player King Curtis. The song, however, is basically a rewrite of the 1966 track "Help Me" by the R&B singer Ray Sharpe, who wrote the song with Curtis and performed it with the King Curtis Orchestra. Also on that original recording: Jimi Hendrix, who played guitar in Sharpe's band.
  • Aretha was 24 years old when Jerry Wexler signed her away from Capitol Records and brought her to Atlantic, where he gave her a great deal of creative freedom and a talented engineer in Tom Dowd.

    The Franklin sisters' gospel roots are apparent on this track, where Aretha sings about a love gone wrong. She was married at the time, but had no problem conjuring up a convincing song of heartache.
  • That's King Curtis playing the tenor saxophone on this song. Curtis performed with Aretha at many of her shows and assisted Wexler on production duties for the album. He died in 1971 at age 37 after he was attacked by a man who stabbed him.
  • The British electronic group OMD sampled this song in a mashup with their 1980 track "Messages" to create a new version of "Save Me" for their 2010 album History of Modern. When we asked Andy McCluskey of OMD about this creation, he told us: "To be honest, I was not a real soul fan growing up. I loved pop then. Synths. Only when I got older did I learn to appreciate other styles. Aretha is, without a doubt, the queen of soul singers."

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