Joseph Alfred Souter, known as Joe South (born February 28, 1940, in Atlanta, Georgia), is a Grammy Award-winning American singer-songwriter. South had mega hits in the late 1960s and early 1970s with songs such as "Don't It Make You Wanna Go Home" and "Walk a Mile in My Shoes". His biggest single was "Games People Play" (1969), which won the "Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Song" and the prestigious "Grammy Award for Song of the Year".
He had met and was encouraged by Bill Lowery, an Atlanta music publisher and radio personality. Recording under the name "Joe South", he began his recording career in Atlanta with NRC, where he served as staff guitarist along with other NRC artists Ray Stevens and Jerry Reed. South's earliest recordings were re-released by NRC in 2004.
Joe South songs have been recorded by other artists. They include Lynn Anderson's 1971 hit "(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden", Billy Joe Royal's #1 song "Down in the Boondocks," Deep Purple's "Hush," and Elvis Presley's Las Vegas-era version of "Walk a Mile in My Shoes."
The suicide of his brother Tommy drove South into a deep depression. Tommy had been his band's drummer and accompanied Joe not only in live performances, but also on recording sessions of South-produced hits for other artists including Billy Joe Royal, Sandy Posey, and Friend & Lover.
Joe South was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1979 and is a member of the Georgia Music Hall Of Fame.