Rock 'n' Roll in Mempis
By: Wade Fallon
How It Began
Sam Phillips opened Memphis Recording Service in 1950. In 1951, he cut a single with Ike Turner's ban featuring Jackie Brenston on lead vocals. This song,"Rocket 88," has been hailed as the first rock and roll record. Rock 'n' Roll got it's start at Sun Studio. With the help of Sam Phillips and people such as B.B. King, Carl Perkins, Booker T. and the MG's, Jerry Lee Lewis, Rufus and Carla Thomas, Johnny Cash, and of course, Elvis Presley.
The Million Dollar Quartet
The Million Dollar Quartet is a recording of an impromptu jam session involving Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Johnny Cash. Made on December 4, 1956 at Sun Record Studios in Memphis, Tennessee. I'm going tell you more about Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash.
Born on January 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi. Elvis Aaron Presley was an American musician and actor. He is often referred to as "the King of Rock & Roll", or, "the King". He received his draft notice in 1957 and was inducted into the Army the following March. After leaving the Army in 1960, Elvis resumed his career and was soon back at the top of the charts. Sometime in the morning of August 16, 1977, Elvis Aaron Presley died of heart failure at the age of 42. It was later ruled that his death was related to his prescription drug use. Elvis helped popularize rock 'n' roll music.
Born on February 26, 1932 in Kingsland, Arkansas, John R. "Johnny" Cash was born. In 1954, Cash auditioned as a solo artist for Sam Phillips' Sun Records in Memphis. He entertained hopes of recording gospel music for the label, but Phillips immediately nixed that idea. By the following spring though, Cash was in the was in the Sun Studios with his band "The Tennessee Three" (Shown Below). Cash's first release for the label, "Hey Porter" had a sparse, but highly effective instrumental accompaniment. Though an impressive single, the song failed to chart. Cash's follow-up release for Sun, however, fared substantially better. "Cry, Cry, Cry" managed to crack Billboard's Top 20, peaking at No. 14. Cash's 4th chart single proved to be his career song. "I Walk the Line" shot to Billboard's No.1 position and remained on the record charts for 43 weeks. in 1980, at the age of 48, Johnny Cash became the youngest living inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame bestowed its honor to Cash in 1995, thus making him one of a handful of of country artists in both organizations. After losing his wife June Carter Cash unexpectedly in May 2003, Johnny Cash passed away on September 12, 2003 at Baptist Hospital in Nashville from complications from diabetes.