STUDIO SESSION FOR THE MILLER SISTERS
05 - "WOODY" - B.M.I. - 1:48
STUDIO SESSION FOR EDDIE SNOW
STUDIO SESSION FOR JOHNNY CASH
"When "No More" and "They Call Our Love A Sin'" were recorded", recalled Haggett, "Sam Phillips was also recording Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins. Their records took off like wildfire. Sam had high hopes for my record when it was released but things changed considerably and very fast. I was left behind and those boys took off. Good for them. But, as an entertainer, I had to come up with something and we went back to Sun for another session and I recorded four songs in the new style".
''Gunsmoke'' make his debuts is an American radio and television Western drama series created by director Norman MacDonnell and writer John Meston. The stories take place in and around Dodge City, Kansas, during the settlement of the American West. The central character is lawman Marshal Matt Dillon, played by William Conrad on radio and James Arness on television. When aired in the UK, the television series was initially titled Gun Law, later reverting to Gunsmoke.
The radio series ran from 1952 to 1961. John Dunning wrote that among radio drama enthusiasts, "Gunsmoke is routinely placed among the best shows of any kind and any time''. The TV series ran from September 10, 1955, to March 31, 1975, on CBS, with 635 total episodes. It was the second Western television series written for adults, premiering on September 10, 1955, four days after ''The Life And Legend of Watt Earp. The first 12 seasons aired Saturdays at 10 pm, seasons 13 through 16 aired Mondays at 7:30 pm, and the last four seasons aired Mondays at 8 pm. During its second season in 1956, the program joined the list of the top ten television programs broadcast in the United States. It quickly moved to number one and stayed there until 1961. It remained among the top 20 programs until 1964.
The series was created and largely written by Nat Hiken, and won three consecutive Emmy Awards for Best Comedy Series. The show is sometimes titled''Sergeant Bilko'' or simply ''Bilko'' in reruns, and is very often referred to by these names, both on-screen and by viewers. The show's success transformed Silvers from a journeyman comedian into a star, and writer-producer Hiken from a highly regarded behind-the-scenes comedy writer into a publicly recognized creator.
"Wedding Gown Of White", coupled with "Defrost Your Heart", it trickled out in January 1956 and sold less than a thousand copies. Listen to either side and they could just as easily have been recorded in Bristol, Tennessee, in 1927, which would hardly recommend them to the chrome dreams of post-war America. That said, they remain stunning artifacts and a ringing endorsement of Sam Phillips' aesthetic judgment at least when he said that Feathers was a hugely talented country singer. "Wedding Gown Of White" was an especially cunning celebration of something which hadn't happened yet and typical of the quirkiness which would define Feathers' life. His singing is purest sound, some miraculous instrument ringing changes, and yet he never loses sight of meaning!
Elvis Presley receives his ''Most Promising Country & Western Artist Award'' from Billboard magazine, Andrew Jackson Hotel, Nashville, Tennessee, November 10, 1955 >
New York City now has seven television stations: the four networks - WABC (ABC, 7 West 66th Street), WABD (DuMont, 205 East 67th Street), WCBS (CBS, 485 Madison Avenue), WRCA (NBC, 30 Rockefeller Plaza) - and three independents - WATV (Empire State Building), WOR(1440 Broadway) and WPIX (220 East 42nd Street).
NOVEMBER 7, 1955 MONDAY
Songwriter/producer Rafe VanHoy is born. Among the songs he write, Patty Loveless' ''Hurt Me Bad (In A Real Good Way)'', Michael Martin Murphey's ''What's Forever For'' and George Jones and Tammy Wynette's ''Golden Ring''.
NOVEMBER 8, 1955 TUESDAY
The Everly Brothers sign their first recording contract with Columbia. In their inaugural session, conducted the following day, they recorded four songs in 22 minutes.
Hank Locklin recorded the George Jones-penned ''Why Baby Why'' at the Methodist Television, Radio and Film Commission in Nashville.
NOVEMBER 9, 1955 WEDNESDAY
The Everly Brothers recorded ''Keep A Lovin' Me'', their first single, with Carl Smith's backing band at the Castle Studio in Nashville's Tulane Hotel.
NOVEMBER 10, 1955 THURSDAY
Elvis Presley left Memphis with Bob Neal and drove to Nashville for the Annual Country And Western Music Disc Jockey Convention at the Andrew Jackson Hotel, 231 6th Avenue North.
From Florida, Mae Boren Axton drove to Nashville with a new song in and, "Heartbreak Hotel", a tune co-written with Tom Durden after he had read a poignant newspaper article in the Miami Herald. Under with a headline: "Do You Know This Man?" was a story describing the suicide of a man who had scrawled a one-line note before his death: "I walk a lonely street". The line became the lyrical focal point for "Heartbreak Hotel", and it was not long before the song was a crucial part of Elvis Presley's contract talks with RCA.
A friend of Mae Boren Axton, Colonel Tom Parker had hired her as a publicist during a number of Hank Snow's tours. She had also been responsible for booking Elvis Presley in Jacksonville, Florida, a number of times. "Mae was a well-known and respected figure in the music business", Johnny Tillotson remarked, "it was only natural for her to approach Elvis Presley with "Heartbreak Hotel".
Axton had witnessed the reaction to Elvis' music, and realized that Elvis Presley held the ticket to great wealth. Johnny Tillotson remembers how excited Axton was over the prospect of Presley recording her song. "She realized early on", Tillotson remarked, "that Presley was going to be a huge act".
By the time Axton brought "Heartbreak Hotel" to Nashville, a demo of the song had already been turned down by the Wilburn Brothers. They thought it was weird. After listening to country singer Glenn Reeves'(1) demo tape of the tune, Elvis Presley told Axton that he loved it. As Elvis Presley practised it, Tom Durden noticed that Presley was copying the demo singer's style exactly. "Elvis was even breathing in the same places that Glenn did on the dub", Durden remarked. "Heartbreak Hotel" was an important song for Elvis Presley; heneeded original songs, and it definitely fit his style".
To make sure that this song was right for Elvis Presley, however, Colonel Tom Parker played the demo for a number of music people. They all agreed it was excellent. The Colonel wasn't convinced, and Mae Axton and Tom Durden were about to take the song elsewhere when Glenn Reeves convinced Parker that the song had enormous commercial potential. The Colonel believed that Reeves had an ear for hit songs and the deal was consummated. To sweeten the deal, Axton and Durden agreed to give Elvis Presley a share of the songwriting credits, a common practice in the music industry in the 1950s. Although Elvis Presley didn't pen one word of this tune, the fact that Mae Axton went so far as to offer Elvis Presley a third of the songwriting credits if he would record it helped increase Colonel Tom Parker's enthusiasm for the song.
For his part, the deal made Elvis Presley nervous because he prided himself on his artistic integrity. Colonel Parker was proving to be too manipulative even at this early point in Presley's career, pressing Elvis Presley to record songs that would add to his royalties. To woo his singer, Colonel Parker expressed confidence that "Heartbreak Hotel" had a special quality, musically speaking; the real reason behind his interest in the song was the extra royalty money that Elvis Presley would collect. In the end, Elvis Presley accepted the Colonel's plea that they had to work with songwriters who would allow them to share in the royalties.
As significant as the drama surrounding the acquisition of "Heartbreak Hotel" for Elvis Presley was, the RCA deal overshadowed the events of the day. As negotiations over the song went on quietly and without fanfare, there were rumours everywhere at the Andrew Jackson Hotel that Elvis Presley was about to sign the most lucrative recording contract in history, rumours which would obscure the fact that the deal Colonel Tom Parker negotiated for his young protege was really rather average.
"Hot dog, Mae, play it again", recalled Bob Neal, "and she played "Heartbreak Hotel" it over and over, it was really different, a little like Roy Brown's "Hard Luck Blues", only this was about a hotel, a heartbreak hotel, where the bellhop's tears kept flowing and the desk clerk was dressed in black. He knew the whole song before he left the room. 'That's gonna be my next record", he said.
NOVEMBER 10, 1955 THURSDAY
Roy Drusky signs with Columbia Records, his second stint with a label. He has four sessions over the next two years but fails to connect commercially.
NOVEMBER 11, 1955 FRIDAY
Elvis Presley's second one-year contract with The Louisiana Hayride takes effect. He receives $200 weekly, the same amount paid to Hank Williams three years earlier.
Songwriter and guitarist Dave Alvin, of The Blasters, is born in Downey, California. The roots-rock band influences the alternate country movement. The band's 1985 song ''Little Honey'' is covered by Kelly Willis for the soundtrack to ''Thelma and Louise''.
Broadway composer Jerry Ross dies of a lung infection in New York. His credits include ''Hernando's Hideaway'', a song from the musical ''The Pajama Game'' that became a country hit the previous year when parodied by Homer and Jethro.
NOVEMBER 12, 1955 SATURDAY
Songwriter Walt Aldridge is born in Florence, Alabama. Among his songs, Heartland's ''I Loved Her First'', Earl Thomas Conley's ''Holding Her And Loving You'', Ricky Van Shelton's ''I Am A Simple Man'' and Ronnie Milsap's ''(There's) No Gettin' Over Me''.
NOVEMBER 13, 1955 SUNDAY
Al Hibbler performs ''Unchained Melody'' on the CBS variety show ''Toast Of The Town''. The song will become a country hit twice, for Elvis Presley in 1978, and for LeAnn Rimes in 1997.
NOVEMBER 14, 1955 MONDAY
Decca released Kitty Well's double-sided hit ''Lonely Side Of Town'' and ''I've Kissed You My Last Time''.
NOVEMBER 15, 1955 TUESDAY
This day was the last day of the option, Sam Phillips got a midmorning call from Colonel Tom Parker notifying Sam that RCA had come up with the money for the sale of Elvis. Parker asked Sam if he wanted the money wired to him, in order to conform strictly to the terms of the deal, but Sam said no, just send it special delivery for arrival by midnight the following night, and sent a telegram to that effect. They would have to get together in the next week or so to finalize all the arrangements, and that would, naturally, take place in Memphis.
NOVEMBER 16, 1955 WEDNESDAY
Guitarist Jack Pruett joins the American Federation of Musicians in Nashville. He goes on to play on such Marty Robbins hits as ''Knee Deep In The Blues'', ''Devil Woman'' and ''El Paso''.
"The white people of Memphis have never understood just what Beale Street really meant and means to my people". W.C. Handy in an interview at his home in New York in theMemphis Press-Scimitar.
NOVEMBER 17, 1955 THURSDAY
Ray Charles is busted backstage in Philadelphia for the use of narcotics. The rhythm and blues singer later makes wave in country with his 1962 album ''Modern Sounds In Country And Western Music'' and his 1985 duet with Willie Nelson, ''Seven Spanish Angels''.
NOVEMBER 18, 1955 FRIDAY
Seven months after the first attempted it, Webb Pierce recorded the single version of ''Yes, I Know Why'' at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville.
With $5,000 in hand, Sam Phillips put in a rush order at all three of his pressing plants for the new Johnny Cash and Billy ''The Kid'' Emerson singles.. Sam also planned Sun releases for Charlie Feathers and Maggie Sue Wimberly, a fourteen-year-old from Florence, Alabama, whom Quinton Claunch and Bill Cantrell had discovered, through fellow former Blue Seal Pal Dexter Johnson, singing with a family group in church, his first in six months, but this time, with Elvis no longer in the picture, with an eye toward finally capturing Carl's contagiously upbeat, shimmering ''bop'' style.
NOVEMBER 19, 1955 SATURDAY
Ivory Joe Hunter recorded ''A Tear Fell'' in New York. In 1977, Billy ''Crash'' Craddock re-recorded the song as a country hit.
Johnny Cash writes ''I Walk The Line'' in Gladewater, Texas, in 20 minutes prior to a remote broadcast of The Louisiana Hayride. Also appearing on the bill, Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins.
NOVEMBER 20, 1955 SUNDAY
Having promised to perform the current country hit ''Sixteen Tons'', rhythm and blues act Bo Diddley instead does ''Bo Diddley'' on ''The Ed Sullivan Show'' from New York. The CBS host never invites Diddley to sing on the program again.
The Perkins Brothers Band, circa 1951, before Clayton or W.S. ''Fluke'' Holland joined Carl and Jay. Informal performance at Hardware store in Jackson, Tennessee. From left: Ramsey Kearney, Carl (with pre-solid body electric guitar), Clayton Perkins (standing behind Carl), Jay Perkins, Benny Coley, and Lindsey Patterson >
The song itself is a conventional country ballads written by Carl with a whole lot of input from Claunch and Cantrell, and it's a good one. Despite its obscurity, it aspired remakes by the next generation of musicians.