CONTAINS 1958 SUN SESSIONS 2

Studio Session for Jerry Lee Lewis, Early July 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jerry Lee Lewis, Before July 9, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jerry Lee Lewis, July 9/July 1958 / Sun Records (2)
Studio Session for Johnny Cash, July 10, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Charlie Rich, July 14, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Charlie Rich, Probably July 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Carl McVoy, July 17, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Johnny Cash, July 17, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Sonny Burgess & Billy Riley, July 22, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Louie Robertson, August 12, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Larry Donn, August 13, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Charlie Rich, August 17, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Louie Robertson, August 21, 30, 31 &
September 4, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Vernon Taylor, August 27, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Roger Fakes, August 28, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Mickey Milan, Probably September 1958 (1) / Sun Records
Studio Session for Mickey Milan, Probably August 8-10, 1958 (2) / Sun Records
Studio Session for Roy Orbison & Ken Cook, September 4, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Roy Orbison, 1957/1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Cliff, Ed & Barbara Thomas, September 12, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Earl Ray, September 12, 1958 (1) / Sun Records
Studio Session for Earl Ray, Probably September 12, 1958 (2) / Sun Records
Studio Session for Ray Smith, September 13, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Gene Simmons, September 19, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jimmy Isle, October 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jimmy Demopoulos, Probably End 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jimmy Demopoulos, October 1, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Carl Mann, October 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Carl McVoy, October 4, 5, 8, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Vernon Taylor, October 27, 31, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jack Clement, October 30, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jerry Lee Lewis, November 5, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Bill Justis, November 10-11, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Charlie Rich, December 4, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Charlie Rich, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Joe Lewis & Jack Nance, 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Warren Smith, Late 1958 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Jerry Lee Lewis, Probably December 1958/  January 1959 / Sun Records
Studio Session for Hayden Thompson, 1958/1961
Live Performance for Johnny Cash, 1958/1959

Biography of Artists (See: The Sun Biographies)
 

 
JULY 1958
 


Advertising for Warren Smith's rock and roll show, July 3, 1958 >

JULY 1958

Although few could have perceived it at the time, July 1958 was a watershed in the history   of Sun Records. Jerry Lee Lewis had returned from England with his career in tatters;   Johnny Cash was just completing his divorce from the label. A few weeks later, Jud Phillips   left to start his eponymous Judd label

Despite the bad news, Sam Phillips pushed forward. Foremost in his mind was his concern   over the recording conditions at 706 Union Avenue: his studio was creeping into   obsolescence. The floor, while larger than many have supposed, was too small to   accommodate the increasingly large groups Sun was recording.

The control room was too   small to install the crucial new multitrack recorders. And the office area, where Sam   rambled around as always among other people's desks, was too cramped to house even his   skeleton staff.
 
 
By 1958 he knew he would have to take his recording operations into new   quarters, even if his own, very good, instincts warned him against it.

Phillips also wanted to diversify into custom recording (hiring out studio time), and   developing Phillips International into an label with diverse brands of music. All of this,   requiring more space, more personnel, and updated technology, was impossible at 706 Union   Avenue.

JULY 1958

Jerry Lee Lewis and his entourage had anticipated that they would arrive back in United   States to find the disclosure of Myra's age and the accompanying news that Jerry's divorce   from his previous wife had not been finalized when he married Myra would have no impact   upon his burgeoning career.

Sam Phillips was dismayed. ''It was stupid damn thing. I think Jerry's innocence back then   and his trying to be open and friendly and engaging with the press, backfired. They scalped   him. It turned out to be a very ghastly and deadly thing. So many people wanted to point a   finger of scorn at rockers and say. we told you so; rockers are no good''.

JULY 1958

In 1958, former Sun recording artist, Andy Anderson and his band mixed local shows with spots on tour packages organized by Dick Clark and Alan Freed. Then, Andy quit the Stones and went home to do what he always said he didn't want, to help run the family business. This was short-lived, however, and he soon back on the rock and roll trail with a new band The Dawnbreakers, and a new record, ''Tough Tough Tough'', the same song he had recorded at Sun. He had his own record label too, Century Ltd. By the mid-1960s, after a period running an electric wholesale company, Anderson switched courses completely, moving to Los Angeles and beginning an acting career. He spent some time in Santa Fe, New Mexico recording as ''The Eagle and The Hawk'' with songwriter J.J. Hettinger. Today, Andy lives back near his roots in Clinton, Mississippi playing occasional jam sessions with friends from the Delta days. He was written a book with Erika Celeste called ''Memories of the Original Rolling Stones''.
 
JULY 1958

The seventeen-year-old Phil Spector went into Gold Star Studio in Los Angeles with his group the Teddy  Bears (Marshall Leib, Sandy Nelson, Annette Kleinbard).  His mission was to cut his first record and, he hoped his first hit. The song, ''To Know Him Is To Love  Him'', had been written by Spector, its title inspired by the inscription on his father's gravestone. Spector also  arranged the music for the session and played all the instruments except drums (which were handled by  Sandy Nelson). And, in a sign of things to come, the song did indeed become a hit, going all the way to  number one on the pop charts.

In the annals of sixties pop music, few behind-the-scene figures had a more profound impact than Phil  Spector. Two years after recording ''To Know Him Is To Love Him'', Spector flew to New York aboard  American Airlines's first commercial cross-country jet and began to mingle with the songwriters and producers who were responsible for what has ill Building Sound. Apprenticing with Jerry Leiber and Mike  Stoller, Spector quickly proved himself, cowriting (with Leiber) ''Spanish Harlem'', a huge hit for Ben E.  King, and playing guitar on the Drifters's ''On Broadway''.

By mid-1961, Phil Spector, still only twenty, had formed his own label, Philles Records, and begun a five-year  run during which he produced enduring classics as ''He's A Rebel'', ''(Today I Met) The Boy I'm Gonna  Marry'', ''Da Dopo Ron Ron'', ''Be My Baby'', ''Walking In The Rain'', ''You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin''', and  ''Unchained Melody''.

During this period, Spector, like Leiber and Stoller before him, further developed the concept of the record  produced as auteur. Working with engineer Larry Levine, arranger Jack Nitzsche, the best songwriters  (Carole King, Gerry Goffin, Harry Nilsson, Doc Pomus, Ellie Greenwich, Jerry Barry, Cynthia Weil, and  Barry Mann), and the best musicians (drummer Hal Blane, pianist Leon Russell, drummer Jim Gordon,  bassist Carol Kaye, among many others), Spector directed each recording as if it were a feature film. He  added string sections, tympani, bells, anything that would help him build his now-famous Wall of Sound, a  cavernous, majestic, echo-enveloped sound in which the singers, like the musicians, were just one aspect of  the overall production.

Phil Spector attempted to top himself with each new single, the productions becoming more complex, more  massive. But when the song he considered his masterpiece, Tina Turner's ''River Deep Mountain High'',  failed to become a hit, Spector decided to call it a day. He shut down Philles, though he did continue on in  the rock world, working with the Beatles on ''Let It Be'', George Harrison on ''All Things Must Pass'', John  Lennon on ''Imagine'' and Plastic Ono Band, Leonard Cohen, the Ramones, and others. The music that  Spector created in the sixties sounds as fresh and exciting today as it did forty years ago, proving there was a  lot of truth in the Philles motto: ''Tomorrow's Sound Today''. In 2009, Spector was convicted of seconddegree  murder in the 2003 shooting death of actress Lana Clarkson in his Alhambra, California home. He is  serving a prison sentence of 19 years to life.
JULY 1958

Still stunning by Jerry Lee Lewis's flame-out, soldiered on as the days lengthened into early summer 1958.  The magnolias and crepe myrtles were beginning to bloom, and the many trees along the main streets and  boulevards were in full leaf. It was warm, but the oppressive heat and humidity of July and August hadn't  come yet.  Jerry Lee Lewis's ''High School Confidential'' was released as planned on June 2, to coincide with the  appearance in movie houses of the film of the same name.

We had a black-and-white sleeve to ship it in,  showing a head shot of Jerry Lee with the stars of the movie in the background. The voluptuous Mamie Van  Doren had the most eye-catching photo among the five cast members.

In the movie, Jerry Lee Lewis, along  with bassist Jay W. Brown, his cousin and father-in-law, and drummer Russ Smith performed on the back of  a truck, personifying the rock and roll music that the teenyboppers loved and their parents hated.
 
 
 
Jay W. took  the place of Roland Janes, who along with Jimmy M. Van Eaton, had quit Jerry Lee's band at this time.  However, in the movie, the music being heard was the original Sun recording with Roland Janes on guitar  and Jimmy M. Van Eaton on drums.

Sun was happily surprised that ''High School Confidential'' climbed to number 21 on the charts. Its lyrics  monotonously chanted, ''Bopping at the high school hop'' and was clearly a song ''manufactured'' for this  movie. Other people much preferred the country-sounding flip side, ''Fools Like Me'', which Jack Clement  co-wrote.

Despite the ban that many radio and TV stations had imposed Jerry Lee, ''High School Confidential'' stayed  on the Billboard Top 100 for eleven weeks. Some of Jerry's fans obviously loved him for his music and didn't  think his personal life defined him. We kept thinking that, if the movie had featured a stronger song, Jerry  Lee might have had a bona fide hit that would have put him back in the big arenas. As it was, just to keep  him working, his manager had started booking small venues at a fraction of what he was making before he  went to England.

Jud Phillips kept obsessing about ways to help Jerry Lee make a comeback. He mentioned he'd like his  writer friend, Helen Bolstad, or someone like her to do a fan-magazine piece with pictures of Myra and Jerry  at home with their parents. ''If they know more about him, show them cooking, playing with their dog, all  that domestic stuff, they'll forget about the past. People do forget. We need to create a new impression of  him''.

He said he'd talked with Sam Phillips about some of his ideas, but Sam wasn't too interested. Even though he  thought Jerry Lee had a chance to make it back in sow business, Sam didn't have any ideas about how to help  him. ''Sam seems to have lost interest in the record business'', Jud confided. ''I'm about to lose my  enthusiasm, too. Without that drive, you can't accomplish anything''.
SUMMER 1958

According to Barbara Barnes, ''Summer also brought a major development to Sun Record Company. At   opening time one Monday morning (this was the day he usually got there early), Sam arrived in a buoyant  mood on 706 Union, eager to convey the good news that he'd bought property at 639 Madison for a new studio. He exclaimed that we would have ample space for staff offices, as well as great new equipment and  two studios for greater technical flexibility in recording. We were going to be an even greater record  company and now, custom recording studio!. He had hired a remodeling of the building he had bought''.

''At noon, some of us traveled the short distance over to Madison to take a look, and we would see it was a   great location, but the building needed a lot of work outside'', Barbara said. ''Naturally, the inside would have  to be entirely redone, because it was a former wholesale bakery. There would be room for parking, which  was a great improvement''.

''The leased 706 location had certainly served well as a place to generate hits, and we managed to conduct   our business there, but the idea of greater comfort and a place to park was really welcome. Despite his other  business interests, Sam intended to keep making records , though he had doubts that rock and roll would  always be so popular, and now he could afford better quarters. One day some months past, Sally Wilbourn  had looked up from her bookkeeping and announced, ''Sam has a million dollars in his bank account''. I wasn't surprise, because the figure three million had been floated as an estimate of our annual gross. I didn't  know much about the money flow'', said Barbara, ''but I was up to date on sales, which had been great since  before I arrived. I also knew that expenses had to be low, with our staff so small and no one making a high  salary''.

Sam Phillips greatest expectation for the new facility lay in custom recording and mastering. Ever on the   lookout for a good investment (he hadn't done badly sinking some cash in Holiday Inns), he felt Memphis  was a magnet for the abundant indigenous talent, and that there was no real competition in recording. One  studio, the Pepper facility, was making commercials, but that marked had room for competition, and only a  few obscure studios were putting out records. But Sam envisioned the Sam C. Phillips Recording Studios as something comparable to the Nashville facilities where almost all of America's country music was produced.  Sam Phillips could even compete with them, as the Sun label had always had a country catalog.

JULY 1, 1958 TUESDAY

The Ash Grove officially opens at 8162 Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. The club raises the profile of blues, folk and country acts, including Mississippi John Hurt, Son House, Earl Hooker, Muddy Waters, and young artists that produced the sixties music revolution. Among those pearls brought to the Ash Grove where, Doc Watson, Pete Seeger, June Carter, Johnny Cash, Jose Feliciano, Phil Ochs, Joan Baez, Johnny Otis, Ramblin' Jack Elliott, Ian and Sylvia, Kathy and Carol, Sonny Terry, Brownie McGhee, New Lost City Ramblers, The Weavers, The Greenbriar Boys, Lighnin' Hopkins, Luke ''Lone Gone'' Miles, Barbara Dane, Holly Near, Arlo Guthrie, Rising Sons, Mance Lipscomb, Guy and Candie Carawan, John Jacob Niles, Bukka White, Howlin' Wolf, Johnny Shines, John Fahey, Willie Dixon, Lonnie Mack and Kris Krisofferson, among others.

JULY 2, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Paramount released Elvis Presley's ''King Creole''.

JULY 3, 1958 THURSDAY

Aaron Tippin is born in Pensacola, Florida. His hard-tipped vocals net him a strong 1990s presence behind such hits as ''That's As Close I'll Get To Loving You'', ''You've Got To Stand For Something'' and ''There Ain't Nothing Wrong With The Radio''.

JULY 5, 1958 SATURDAY

Webb Pierce recorded ''Falling Back To You'' in the afternoon at the Bradley Recording Studio in Nashville, Tennessee.

Harry Warner dies in Hollywood, California. With three siblings, he created Warner Bros. Pictures, a major film company that would also start a record label, which plays a hand in careers of Randy Travis, Faith Hill and Emmylou Harris, among others.

Johnny Cash is a guest on the ABC-TV music series ''The Dick Clark Show''.

Sheb Wooley is a guest on NBC-TV's ''The Bob Crosby Show''.

Actor Joseph Breen is born in Katonah, New York. He is destined to become the fourth husband of Carlene Carter.

JULY 6, 1958 SUNDAY

Elvis Presley picks up a speeding ticket in Fort Worth, Texas.

JULY 7, 1958 MONDAY

Columbia released the Marty Robbins single ''She Was Only Seventeen (He Was One Year More)''.
 

Plenty of desks, office space, two recording studios, each its own control room, and an acetate room will be  included in the new Sun Record Co., now completion at 639 Madison Avenue. Front designed by Denise  Howard by Decor of Denise, is of rough yextured terrazzo. Top floor is include penthouse executive offices  and a sun and dance deck. The new building will be identified as home of the Sun and Phillips International  records by a sign and oversized, multi-colored disks. (Under construction, April 1959) >

SUMMER 1958

639 MADISON AVENUE – In the summer of 1958 Sam Phillips bought a property on Madison  Avenue in Memphis, just a few city blocks from the old studio. At various points in its  history, 639 Madison had housed a Midas Muffler shop and Hart's Bakery. Phillips gutted the  interior and installed two modern recording studios on the ground floor. On the second floor  he laid out the new A&R and promotion offices, and set aside a vault for tape storage. On the  third floor, adjacent to the accounting and publishing offices, Phillips finally gave himself his  own office, complete with jukebox and nearby wet bar, ensuring that he was surrounded by  a few of his favorite things.

The anal touches fire administered by Decor by Denise, who  favored early space age motifs: door handles were housed in miniature sputniks, and the  offices soon took on the look of a late 1950s Buick. Although it had been in use, on and off, since January 1960, the new studio was launched in  a promotional whirl on September 17. The complex was everything that 706 Union was not:  spacious, state-of-the-art, and soulless.

Phillips added to his staff at the new location. By this point, Phillips had separated from his  wife, Becky, and was living with Sally Wilbourn, who had joined Sun in late 1955. She moved  with him as office manager, as did pro-motion person Barbara Barnes (who left later in 1960,  sensing the game was over, to pursue a career in academia). Scotty Moore was brought over  from Fernwood Records in June 1960 and named studio manager and chief cutting engineer;  Charles Underwood, composer of ''Ubangi Stomp'' was hired as air manager and assistant  engineer. Moore and Underwood largely filled the holes created by the departure of Bill  Justis and Jack Clement; together they joined Bill Fitzgerald and Cecil Scaife, who had been  hired shortly before the new studio was finished.

Bill Fitzgerald had been an early partner in Duke Records before it had been acquired by  Don Robey. Fitzgerald then concentrated on building the Music Sales distributorship in  Memphis. After nine years in distribution, he took on the ill-defined role of general manager  at Sun in August 1959, staying until the bitter end.

Cecil Scaife was born in Helena, Arkansas, and had originally planned to parlay hid looks into  a career in movies. He went to Hollywood as a protege of Paramount Pictures, staying a few  months before returning to the South Vreft of his illusions about the movie business. Scaife  joined Hi Records as promotion manager, becoming their first full-time employee; Sam  Phillips was Impressed with his work in getting Carl McVoy off the ground, and phoned him in  the wee hours one morning offering him the job of promotion manager that Jud Phillips had  just vacated. After dinner the following night, Scaife accepted.

STUDIO A - The main studio on Madison Avenue was roughly twice the size of the old studio  floor on Union Avenue, and the console in the control room was arranged in a futuristic V  design. It house a four-track recorder and two single-track machines. Scotty Moore would  later bring in a three-track recorder so that he could be compatible with the studios in  Nashville. Moore and Phillips also installed two state-of-the-art Neumann cutting lathes so  that they could cut their own masters, although the lathes never became fully operational.

The difficulties began to mount even before the tapes started rolling. The studio architect  was drafted, leaving others to pick up the pieces. ''We had problems from day one'', says  Cecil Scaife. ''For a start, the roof leaked because of all the flat surfaces. Every time it  rained 1'd have to go over there with buckets and mops. It delayed the opening for six  month's''.

That was nothing compared to the real problem with the building, untamed acoustics. ''The  room wasn't tuned properly'', asserts Scaife. '' I took some Nashville guys over there to  record, and they walked out. The sound was too hot. Too alive''. Phillips' instincts as an  audio engineer, which had served him so well at the old studio, deserted him on Madison  Avenue. The tightly focused slapback echo at the old studio had been replaced try a  cavernous hollow sound, as the audio signals leaped around the huge floor and off the  corrugated ceiling. To combat the problem, Phillips ordered baffles that could he recessed  into the wall when not in use; but they turned out to he more decorative than functional

The problems ran even deeper than technical and design flaws. The funkiness of the old  studio had been replaced by a high-tech environment. ''It was awful hard to create there's'',  recalls Scaife. .''06 Union had a terrific atmosphere. A creative atmosphere. There was a  naturalness about it. You felt up when you walked in. The new studio had a sterile  atmosphere, it was like a doctor's office''.

Phillips himself seems to have been ambivalent about the new facility. In his first flush of  enthusiasm, he told Edwin Howard, ''Woodshed recordings have had it You've got to have  latitude today, all the electronic devices, built-in high and low frequency equalization and  attenuation, echoes, channel splitting and metered on everything''. But it's doubtful that  Phillips ever truly learned to love the new technology.

Phillips oldest son, Knox, watched his father at work in the new studio. A single-track  machine was run in tandem with the multitrack so that everything could be recorded twice.  Phillips would premix through the hoard to the single-track machineries, as he had at the old  studio, leaving no latitude for rebalancing. The four-track tapes could he used for stereo  middowns and over-dubbing, if necessary. Invariably, though, it was what he captured on the  single-track that Phillips regarded as the ''cut''. ''His concern was to get it on the floor and  capture it on the single-track'', explained Knox. ''He believed that if the feeling wasn't there  on the floor right then, there wasn't any point it in doctoring it up later''.
 

JULY 1958

Johnny Cash appears on the Bandstand TV show before completing his final recording session   for Sun Records. It is announced that he will sign with Columbia Records on August 1. Sun  Records continue to issue his recordings successfully into the early 1960s. Carl Perkins and  Jerry Lee Lewis tour Texas and the Midwest with other Sun artists.

Johnny Cash left Sun Records on the day that Sun artist Ernie Barton's first single ''Raining The Blues'' b/w ''Stairway To Nowhere'' (PI 3528), was released. Perhaps Sam Phillips hoped that Barton would pick up where Cash left off. It so, it didn't happen, although Brian Setzer liked ''Stairway To Nowhere'' enough to cover it in 2005. Both sides of the record were written by Allen and Jo-Ann Wingate. As Allen Page, Wingate recorded for Sun's Memphis competitor, Moon Records. Like Barton, he came from Daytona, so they probably knew each other way back. In 1963, Wingate became an evangelist and traveled the country performing bogus miracles until his death forty years later.

Johnny Cash and Sonny Burgess tour California and the west coast.

Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis tour Texas and the mid-west with other Sun artists.
 
JULY 1958

According to Barbara Barnes, ''One encouraging sign, however, was that more and more mail began coming   in as disk jockeys and some others on my mailing list to respond to Sun-Liners, the golden one-sheet   newsletter I had initiated in May to send to radio station, trade papers, and our distributors''.

''I had asked for news, and in response, I got letters from disk jockeys in Minneapolis (Tom Lynn, WLOL),   Seattle (Dave Neuman, KAYO), Youngstown (Dick Biondi, WHO), Cleveland (Bob Ancell and Phil   McLean, WERE), Augusta, Georgia (Bob Ritter, WGUS), and many others, not all of whom I had space to recognize in the newsletter'', said Barbara.

In July, they put out a similar newsletter for Phillips International, with the name Scandal Sheet, this one on   white paper with blue type. Again, the jocks wrote in to report on how the releases of Sun were doing and to   keep the industry abreast of what they were doing in their market or where they were moving, as disk   jockeys so often did. Barbara noted in this issue that Bill Justis had ''another entry in his catalog of nervous   instrumentals''. He called the tune ''Cattywampus''. Bill, in an ironic comment on tradepub journalese, said   ''It's a new sound for Justis, featuring a soulful sax solo with a rock-solid beat''. He played it on the ABC   Saturday night Dick Clark show on July 26. The B side of ''Cattywampus'' featured a solo by Charlie Rich on   celesta. The tinkly music of this small keyboard instrument was known to jazz fans, but was really a new  sound for Sun.
 


A new arrival at Sun Records, Charlie Rich, had been promised before Jerry's scandal broke that songs he'd written would be used on both sides of the new Lewis single. Rich had "Break Up" and "I'll Make It All Up To You" ready for recording, anticipating that the royalties would keep him in Beefeaters for the next decade. But it was not to be: the single climbed uncertainly up to number 50, then died quickly away. 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JERRY LEE LEWIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION:  EARLY JULY 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT 
AND/OR BILL JUSTIS
 

If ''High School Confidential'' proved hard to pin down, the story behind two subsequent pitches at regaining a place in the pop charts, an ambition now seriously compromised by events in Lewis' private ''life'', is no less convoluted. The first of these, ''Break Up'', forged the first links between the performing talents of Lewis and the writing skills of Charlie Rich. The development of this song over several weeks again raises the question as to whether we are dealing with ''different takes'' or ''different versions'' of a denominated title. Certainly there are several distinctive approaches taken insofar as the opening bars of the song are concerned, including one in which Jerry Lee's intro is lifted cheekily from a contemporary instrumental hit, The Champs' ''Tequila''. Even within the recognisable ''sub-groups'' there is little consistency; Jerry Lee Lewis clearly had difficulty in coming to terms with how best to open proceedings.(*)

The evolution of ''Break Up'' also invites a close examination and re-appraisal of the story of a so-called ''solo session'' in which Jerry Lee Lewis ostensibly performs with no accompaniment, previously identified as having taken place in May 1958, shortly before his departure for England. It is now being argued that several takes of ''Break Up'' had, in fact, already been taped before the song was performed four times during what has hitherto been defined as an isolated session involving Jerry Lee alone. This assertion does, of course, run contrary to the notion, put forward in earlier discographies, that the ''solo'' takes of ''Break Up'' predate all the other alternates of this song. The established chronology id, however, considered highly improbable, certainly if one accepts as valid the dates of July 16, 17, 1958 for the session at which the master of ''Break Up'' was produced, dates which for once were logged in Sun's accounts in accordance with union procedures and which tie-in with the mid-August release date of the record.(*)

As the ensemble first tries to get to grips with ''Break Up'', Jerry Lee at times struggles with fitting the lyrics to the differing tempos applied to the song. However, by the time of the ''solo session'' Lewis is no stranger to ''Break Up''; at this stage in the proceedings he's well versed in the lyrics and he performs the song with great confidence, realising its potential as a medium to show off his pumping piano technique. Moreover, there's also some discussion about the style of the intro itself and apparent approval of a pattern which proves to be close to the arrangement heard on the finished article, as released on Sun 303. In light of this, it's hard to avoid the realisation that the ''solo session'', at least insofar as the recording of ''Break Up'' is concerned, did not take place in May, but was an interregnum during which Jerry Lee was let loose to innovate between sessions involving other musicians.(*)

It's entirely possible that the solo recordings do not, in fact, represent the outcome of one session; much of the evidence points to them being the products of separate engagements when Lewis was alone or was simply rehearsing in advance of the other musicians assembling in the studio. Moreover, several of these tapes, conspicuously those of ''That Lucky Old Sun'', ''Crazy Arms'' and ''Live And Let Live'', testify to the presence of a drummer who is providing some metronomic brushwork to help keep time; they aren't, in the strictest sense, ''solo'' performances as usually credited anyway. The bona fide piano only works do, however, appear to include ''Come What May'' and ''Memory Of You'' and several run-throughs of ''Break Up'', albeit a drummer may still have been present and simply further ''off mike''.(*)

 
1(1) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:27
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - September 1989
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-4 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-13 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

Having questioned the previous assumptions about the unaccompanied work, let's look in detail at the story behind the development of ''Break Up'' itself. As noted above, a number of templates were tried out; first to be heard are successive takes featuring a simple five note cascade down the keyboard for the intro. The two complete takes are differentiated by the drummer switching from a steady beat in the first to a broken beat in the second. What may have been an earlier flirtation with the broken beat rhythm, represented here by a mere fifty seconds of tape, ends unsatisfactorily. Next comes a third complete take with an intro on the same theme but involving double strikes on each of the first four chords, the drummer staying for the time being with the broken beat.(*)
 
1(2) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0:52
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment
Probably recorded as an alternative ending for splicing.
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-14 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
 1(3) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:53
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - April  1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-11-14 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - October 2015   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-15 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
 
1(4) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:32
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-16 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

The ensuing three attempts, embracing one extended false start, feature the ''Tequila'' intro. It's an imaginative experiment, but destined to fail; Jerry Lee's frustration with the arrangement is made all too obvious as he applies this atypical figure for a third and final time.(*)


 1(5) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-B3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-17 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

1(6) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0"26
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - False Start
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-18mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(7) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-19 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

For take 8 we're back to the opening cascade but it is now in a higher key than before and the guitarist initially takes a different course. Following this take, we hear two brief vestiges which share some quirks with complete recordings on either side and which lead us back from the broken beat to the steady rhythm.(*)
 
1(8) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:24
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Unknown Vocal Chorus added at an overdub session on July 1958
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-20 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

1(8d) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:24
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-21 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(9) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0:50
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment
Probably recorded as an alternative ending for splicing.
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-21mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(10) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0:32
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment
Probably recorded as an alternative ending for splicing.
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-22 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

In takes 11 and 12 the opening motif is given another twist, ending on an ascent; it's then repeated in the same key while the snare drum intercedes and strikes eight beats betwixt the two. The template of the intro used in the master is beginning to emerge. These two rapid-fire takes can be separate not only by the divergent piano solos and the rather uncertain vocals to wards the end of take 12, but also by the fact that exceptionally, in the second verse of this same recording, Jerry Lee sings ''...hold you tight'' rather than the routine ''...squeeze you tight''.(*)
 
1(11) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:28
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-23 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
01(12) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:22
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958 - Not Originally
Released: - April  1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-11-15 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-24 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

It's hoped that the foregoing will help listeners at least to distinguish between groups, or pairs, of takes; the work of further subdividing the recordings shouldn't be too taxing given the various twists in phrasing, both vocally and on the piano, that Jerry Lee employs. It all else fails, simply fast forward to the solos in each performance, generally to be found at around the 1.20 mark.(*)

It is believed that this is the juncture at which we would review Lewis' unaccompanied studio work on ''Break Up''. In all four solo takes, Jerry Lee again starts by repeating the five chord cascade, falling at first then rising on the final two beats, followed by hammering eight beats on the same chord. This time, however, the second sequence of falling and rising chords is in a lower key. The idea seems to win approval.(*)

At this juncture we also encounter another change of some significance, which helps us understand the progress of these sessions. The starting point, in trying to determine the correct order of seventeen complete alternates, culminating in the master, is the opening line in the vocal. Listeners will be accustomed to the way in which, on the master itself, Jerry Lee starts proceedings with ''well, who's that guy''. While this phrase is a defining characteristic both of the 'solo session'' takes and the four takes that have been placed immediately ahead of the master, it is not heard in any of the recordings which anticipate the solo work. All these earlier takes start with ''(well), that little guy'', the form of words that Ray Smith used in his March 19, 1958 demo and which Charlie Rich himself sang when he recorded his own song. This factor alone sets apart the early takes from the ''solo session'' and the several takes recorded subsequently which came before the finished master.(*)

 
 Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Probably Roland Janes or   Billy Riley - Guitar
Unknown - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JERRY LEE LEWIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION:  BEFORE JULY 9, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT 
AND/OR BILL JUSTIS

1 - "MEMORY OF YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:07
Composer: - Jerry Lee Lewis
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A1 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-23 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

2 - "COME WHAT MAY" - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Franklyn Tableporter
Publisher: - Tiger Music
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - July 1974
First appearance: - Sun International (LP) 33rpm 6467 029-A10 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - ROCKIN' AND FREE
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-24 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
 

This song recorded here by Jerry Lee Lewis is certainly the most important "forgotten" songs. Written by Franklin Tableporter, the original was recorded by Clyde McPhatter (Atlantic 1185), who had scored a minor hit with it in 1958. McPhatter's recording reached number 43 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart and number 20 on the rhythm and blues chart. The full title of the song is "Come What May (You Are Mine)". Elvis Presley recorded ''Come What May'' on May 28, 1966 at the RCA Studio B. in Nashville, Tennessee, and was the B-side of "Love Letters". Elvis single release never made the charts, but it was listed as "Bubbling Under" at number 109. The song has not yet appeared on an RCA album during Elvis' lifetime. The original master tapes for Elvis' "Come What May" have been lost.

 
3(1) - "JOHNNY B. GOODE" - B.M.I. - 1:52
Composer: - Chuck Berry
Publisher: - Arc Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A7 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-30 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

''Johnny B. Goode'', Jerry here first recorded a brilliant version of this solo (without a band) on this July of 1958, though this probably was never intended for release (it wasn’t issued until Charly’s ''The Sun Years'' box-set 25 years later). He recorded the song again 2 months later with a band, and although this isn’t a bad version, it’s marred by some sloppy “stops and starts” and wasn’t made available until 1969’s excellent ‘Rockin’, Rhythm & Blues’ compilation. The 1963 cut is from the ‘Golden Hits’ sessions in September of that year, and was issued on ‘The Return Of Rock’ 2 years later. Again it isn’t bad, but it’s still probably the low-light of the album, lacking the fire of the other Chuck Berry revivals ‘Roll Over Beethoven’ and ‘Maybelline’. Lastly is the 1973 version from ‘The Session’, recorded in London with various United Kingdom “rock” luminaries. Mostly I’m not so keen on the re-cuts on this album as I find them a bit overblown and bombastic, but in this case the treatment worked perfectly, with The Killer sounding genuinely inspired.
 

Of Course, "Johnny B. Goode" is a 1958 rock and roll song written and originally first performed by Chuck Berry. The song was a major hit among both black and white audiences peaking at number 2 on Billboard magazine's Hot Rhythm And Blues chart and number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song is one of Berry's most famous recordings, has been covered by many artists, and has received several honors and accolades. It is also considered to be one of the most recognizable songs in music history. The song is ranked as number seven on Rolling Stone's list of "the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time".

Written by Berry in 1955, the song is about a poor country boy who plays a guitar "just like ringing a bell'',  and who might one day have his "name in lights''. Berry has acknowledged that the song is partly autobiographical, and originally had "colored boy" in the lyrics, but he changed it to "country boy" to ensure radio play. As well as suggesting that the guitar player is good, the title hints at autobiographic elements because Berry was born at 2520 Goode Avenue in St. Louis. The song was initially inspired by Berry's piano player, Johnnie Johnson, though developed into a song mainly about Berry himself. Though Johnnie Johnson played on many other Chuck Berry songs, it was Lafayette Leake who played piano on this song. The opening guitar riff on "Johnny B. Goode" is essentially a note-for-note copy of the opening single-note solo on Louis Jordan's "Ain't That Just Like A Woman" (1946), played by guitarist Carl Hogan. Neither the guitar intro nor the solo are played at once. Chuck Berry played the introducing parts together with the rhythm guitar and overdubbed later the missing solo runs. Berry has written three more songs involving the character Johnny B. Goode, "Bye Bye Johnny", "Go Go Go", and "Johnny B. Blues"; and titled an album, and the nearly 19 min instrumental title track from it, as "Concerto In B. Goode".

Berry's recording of the song was included on the Voyager Golden Record, attached to the Voyager spacecraft as representing rock and roll, one of four American songs included among many cultural achievements of humanity. When Chuck Berry was inducted into the first Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on January 23, 1986, he performed "Johnny B. Goode" and "Rock And Roll Music", backed by Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. The Hall of Fame included these songs and "Maybellene" in their list of the 500 songs that shaped Rock and Roll. It was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999, for its influence as a rock and roll single.

In the 1984 film ''Threads'', the song is heard three times. The first time is when core characters Ruth Beckett and Jimmy Kemp discuss the future of their relationship before the outbreak of nuclear war, in his car overlooking Sheffield. The second time is when Jimmy is at a pub, drinking with his mate. The last time is fourteen years after the nuclear holocaust, as Ruth and Jimmy's daughter Jane, heavily pregnant, struggles to find a hospital in which to give birth. The song seems to be emanating from a nightclub, pub or brothel within the devastated post-apocalyptic town.

In the 1985 film ''Back To The Future'', Marty McFly performs the song with the fictional band Marvin Berry and the Starlighters during the "Enchantment Under the Sea" high school dance, set in November 1955. Mark Campbell (of Jack Mack and the Heart Attack fame) sang the vocals and Tim May played the guitar, with Michael J. Fox shown miming to both. This scene was revisited in Back to the Future Part II (1989). During Marty's rendition of the song, Marvin telephones his cousin Chuck, to have him hear what might be the "new sound" Chuck is looking for. During his time in World Championship Wrestling, Marc Mero wrestled under the ring name Johnny B. Badd, an homage to the song. This song plays whenever Calgary Flames player Johnny Gaudreau scores, as well as Tampa Bay Lightning's Tyler Johnson.

Country musician Buck Owens' version of "Johnny B. Goode" topped Billboard magazine's Hot Country Sides chart in 1969. Jimi Hendrix had a posthumous hit with "Johnny B. Goode" peaking at number 35 on the United Kingdom Singles Chart in 1972 and number 13 on the New Zealand Top 50 in 1986. Peter Tosh's version of the song peaked at number 84 on the Billboard Hot 100, number 48 on the United Kingdom Singles Chart, number 10 in the Netherlands, and number 29 in New Zealand. Judas Priest's version reached number 64 on the UK Singles Chart in 1988.

 
''That Lucky Old Sun'' here Jerry alone at the piano. Not released at the time, the stunning 1958 cut was first issued on the Charly LP ''Rare Jerry Lee Lewis Volume 2'' in 1974. It's hard to imagine him toppung this, but he did just that during the 1988 re-cut for the ''Great Balls Of Fire!'' movie soundtrack album, with his world-weary voice being far more suited to the song. Over 4 and a half munites (compared to just 3 minutes in 1958) of pure heaven! 

4 - "THAT LUCKY OLD SUN" - B.M.I. - 3:07
Composer: - Beasly Smith-Haven Gillespie
Publisher: - Robbins Music Corporation
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - 1974
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CR 30007-A2 mono
RARE JERRY LEE LEWIS - VOLUME 2
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-1-15 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
 

Jerry Lee Lewis' version of "That Lucky Old Sun" is a 1949 popular song with music by Beasley Smith and words by Haven Gillespie. Like "Ol' Man River", its lyrics contrast the toil and intense hardship of the singer's life with the obliviousness of the natural world.

The biggest hit version of the song was by Frankie Laine. This recording was released by Mercury Records as catalog number 5316. It first reached the Billboard magazine Best Seller chart on August 19, 1949 and lasted 22 weeks on the chart, peaking at  number 1. The recording by Vaughn Monroe & His Orchestra was released by RCA Victor Records as catalog number 20-3531 on 78 rpm and 47-3018 on 45 rpm in the USA and by EMI on the His Master's Voice label as catalog number B 9836. It first reached the Billboard magazine Best Seller chart on September 16, 1949 and lasted 14 weeks on the chart, peaking at number 9. The recording by Louis Armstrong was released by Decca Records as catalog number 24752. It first reached the Billboard magazine Best Seller chart on October 14, 1949 and lasted 3 weeks on the chart, peaking at number 24. Frank Sinatra released his competing version of the song on the Columbia label catalog number 38608. It reached the best sellers chart on October 29, 1949 and peaked at number 16. Included on his ''The Best of The Columbia Years 1943-1952'' album.

 

Other significant recordings are; Pat Boone on the album ''Howdy''! In 1957; The Buffalo Bills, a barbershop quartet, recorded it as a solo for their tenor, Vern Reed; The rhythm and blues singer LaVern Baker released a version of the song in 1955 as the "A" side of a release on Atlantic Records; Jerry Lee Lewis recorded an unreleased solo version at Sun Studios in July 1959; A version by Sam Cooke appeared on his debut LP ''Sam Cooke'' in 1957; The Velvets released their doo wop version of the song on Monument records around 1960-1961; A version by Ray Charles appeared on his 1963 album ''Ingredients In A Recipe For Soul''. (This recording is also included as a bonus track on post-1988 CD reissues of Charles' landmark 1962 album ''Modern Sounds In Country and Western Music''; Aretha Franklin recorded the song for her album "The Electrifying Aretha Franklin" in 1962; George Benson recorded the song for his album ''Goodies'' in 1969; Paul Williams recorded a version of the song for his 1972 album ''Life Goes On''; Willie Nelson recorded a version on the 1976 album ''The Sound In Your Mind'' which was also released as an extra track on the reissued Stardust, ''30th Anniversary Legacy Edition'''; The Jerry Garcia Band performed a version on the ''Jerry Garcia Band'' live album in 1991; American rhythm and blues and boogie-woogie pianist and singer Little Willie Littlefield recorded a version for his 1994 album ''Yellow Boogie And Blues''; Johnny Cash covered it on the album ''American III: Solitary Man in 2000''; Brian Wilson premiered a song cycle inspired by the song entitled That Lucky Old Sun (A Narrative) at the Royal Festival Hall, London, England on September 10, 2007; A duet with Kenny Chesney and Willie Nelson is included on Chesney's 2008 album ''Lucky Old Sun''. This version reached number 56 on the Hot Country Songs chart, based on unsolicited airplay; Dick Haymes covered an version for his album ''Once In A Lifetime''; Chris Isaak recorded a cover version of the song for his 2011 album ''Beyond The Sun'', and Bob Dylan recorded a version for his 2015 Frank Sinatra covers album ''Shadows In The Night''.


5(2) - "CRAZY ARMS" - B.M.I. - 2:40
Composer: - Charles Seals-Ralph Mooney
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A8 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-29 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

The A side of Jerry’s very first single and a minor regional United States hit, he also recorded a couple of playful “solo” (without a band) versions during the first couple of years at Sun. Here a   re-cut released on Sun Box 102, and for ‘Golden Hits’ in 1963, and then again in 1965 (with an uptempo saxophone-led arrangement) for the ''Country Songs For City Folks'' LP. It was cut yet again in 1988 for the ''Great Balls Of Fire''! movie and soundtrack album: most issues featured an overdubbed duet vocal by Dennis Quaid, though some releases (both official and bootleg) include the undubbed version.

6 - "LIVE AND LET LIVE" - B.M.I. - 0:38
Composer: - Wiley Walker-Gene Sullivan
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-27 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

 
7(2) - "CRAZY HEART" - B.M.I. - 3:20
Composer: - Maurice Murray-Fred Rose
Publisher: - Universal Music Publishing
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Chatter - Unknown Take 
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A5 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-26 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

There is some evidence that this title was recorded at the same time as "That Lucky Old Sun". However, it has been placed with the vocal/piano demos. Another possibility is that "Lucky Old Sun" dates from 1958. ''Settin "The Woods On Fire" was overdubbed on July 9, 1958 by Billy Riley on guitar, Stan Kesler on bass, and James M. Van Eaton on drums.

8 - "SETTIN' THE WOODS ON FIRE" - B.M.I. - 2:24
Composer: - Fred Rose-Ed Nelson Sr.
Publisher: - Acuff Rose Music Limited
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - 1976
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CR 30117-B-8 mono
SUN - THE ROOTS OF ROCK - VOLUME 10 - SUN COUNTRY
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-22 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
 

"Settin' The Woods On Fire" is the name of a single and the A-side song by Hank Williams released in 1952. Although it sounds remarkably like a Hank Williams composition, "Settin' the Woods on Fire" was written by Hank's song publisher and producer Fred Rose with an elderly New Yorker, Ed G. Nelson Sr. Williams recorded it with Rose producing at Castle Studio on June 13, 1952 in Nashville with Jerry Rivers (fiddle), Don Helms (steel guitar), and Harold Bradley (rhythm guitar), while it is speculated that Chet Atkins played lead guitar and Ernie Newton played bass.

The song peaked at number 2 on United States Billboard Hot Country Singles chart, while the B-side, "You Win Again," climbed to number 10 on the chart. Author Colin Escott offers that the song "pointed unerringly toward rockabilly''.

Other significant recordings, Jerry Lee Lewis recorded an unissued version of the song for Sun Records in 1958; Johnny Burnette recorded  and released a version in 1958; George Jones covered the song for his 1960 album ''George Jones Salutes Hank Williams''; Porter Wagoner recorded the song for his 1963 LP ''A Satisfied Mind''; and The Tractors recorded the song for their 1994 eponymous debut album.


8 - "SETTIN' THE WOODS ON FIRE" - B.M.I. - 2:24
Composer: - Fred Rose-Ed Nelson Sr.
Publisher: - Acuff Rose Music Limited
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Instrumental Overdubs July 9, 1958. Probably Roland Janes or Billy Riley (guitar), Jimmy M.Van Eaton (drums), Stan Kesler (bass).
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-20 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

9(13) - "BREAK UP AND SETTIN' THE WOODS ON FIRE"" B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Fred Rose-Ed Nelson Sr.-Charlie Rich
Publisher: - ATV Music Publishing - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - False Start To "Settin' The Woods On Fire"
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A9 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-31 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

9(13d) - "BREAK UP" B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Fred Rose-Ed Nelson SR.-Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Instrumental Overdubs July 9, 1958. Probably Roland Janes or Billy Riley (guitar), Jimmy M.Van Eaton (drums), Stan Kesler (bass).
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-22 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

There are a couple more issues worthy of examination in the story of ''Break Up''. First, several tapes in the Sun vaults reveal an assortment of overdubs applied to one of the four solo renditions of the song. Additionally, take 8 was subjected to an experimental overdub, with a male chorus providing a ''shoo-shoowop-bop'' refrain, although the pre-penultimate attempt was embellished not only with a vocal chorus but, in a separate exercise, with supplementary drums, bass and guitar; the latter has found its way into the public domain courtesy of Rhino and Sun Entertainment on random compilations in recent years and is presented on BCD 17254-18-22-23-24. These overdubs may have been no more than trials to prove the integrity of the arrangement ultimately chosen for the production of the release master, before studio time was then booked with all in attendance to complete the recording. Consideration may even have been given to fabricating a master out of the ''solo session'' work by applying an overdub track before a last attempt was made to cut the definitive version in a conventional manner. Conceivably, the master itself may be an example of the overdubbing of bass and/or guitar, with the original tape having been discarded; while thought unlikely, the proposition can't be ruled out.(*)

 
 9(13d) - "BREAK UP" B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Fred Rose-Ed Nelson SR.-Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Instrumental Overdubs July 9, 1958. Probably Roland Janes or Billy Riley (guitar), Jimmy M.Van Eaton (drums), Stan Kesler (bass).
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-23 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

9(13d) - "BREAK UP" B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Fred Rose-Ed Nelson Sr.-Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Instrumental Overdubs July 9, 1958. Probably Roland Janes or Billy Riley (guitar), Jimmy M.Van Eaton (drums), Stan Kesler (bass).
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-24 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

9(2) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:18
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo- Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - November 1986
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 106-8-5 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE ROCKING YEARS - WHOLE LOTTA SHAKIN'
Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-34 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

The most appropriate format for the intro having been arrived at and with the phrasing of the opening line resolved the next session sees the drummer back in evidence. However, on this occasion Sam Phillips may well have insisted that Jerry Lee should initially concentrate on getting the vocal right. Accordingly, at first, he does nothing very flamboyant and he temporarily forsake the opening ''cascade'' riff, making do with setting a ''steady rolling beat'' in its place. It's all a bit tentative as they get used to the new shuffle rhythm, in sharp contrast to the hell-for-leather pace evident in the final two takes at the earlier session with the band. But slowing down the tempo does bring about the benefits sought by Sam. Whereas that earlier session had ended unproductively, with Jerry Lee going at such a rate that he lost his way and stumbled over the lyrics, he now remains firmly in control.(*)

With the moderate pace being adhered to, on the next complete take Jerry Lee sticks to the new beat. But it is immediately apparent how much more action there is with the right hand, hitherto somewhat restrained. The increased intensity and speed is similarly noticeable in fragments of the closing moments of two ''lost'' takes included here. On the fourth complete take Jerry Lee chooses to reintroduce the trademark opening motif. In both this, the penultimate recording, and the finished master itself the drums stay silent in the second part of the intro and all the work is done by the piano, it having been confirmed in the ''solo session'' that this could provide a full enough sound on its own, without the intercession of the drums evident on earlier takes. Also listen to how, in the penultimate take, the drummer comes in with shuffle overlaying the repeat of the opening motif rather than taking up the beat once the intro is nearly over. Apart from this, in most other respects this take is in the same vein as the finished article where, at the last, the sound is filled out by the presence of both bass and guitar. In both examples, unlike on the solo cuts, the repeat of the opening motif is kept in the same register as the initial strikes, but on the master the intermediate series of notes is taken up an octave before the lower range of tones is re-established with the second part of the intro, at the moment the band joins in. We're a long way removed now from the ''steady old rut'' complained of some weeks earlier when trying out the ''Tequila'' arrangement; after all the trials and tribulations it's an unmatched delivery amongst all the various directions taken in recording the song.(*)

9(3) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A4 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-25 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

Apart from the rush-released “comedy” record ''The Return Of Jerry Lee''(with ‘Lewis Boogie’ wasted as a B-side), this was Jerry’s first A-side since the big scandal over his marriage almost ended his career. A top-notch Charlie Rich composition, it deserved to do so much better commercially. The 1963 re-cut (from his debut Smash album ''Golden Hits'') is a bit more driving, and would probably have the edge if it wasn’t for the over-production.

9(4) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0"37
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Fragment
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-36 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

9(5) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:18
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-7-37 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

The final matter is the intriguing possibility that the surviving fragments of ''Break Up'', i.e. the ''incomplete takes'', may have been left aside in anticipation of their possible use in forging saleable merchandise from component parts of two or more alternates. It had proved successful in the case of ''High School Confidential'' and the practice may have been still been in mind when it came to ''Break Up'', although it must be conceded that no hard evident has been found in this instance.(*)


10(1) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 0:24
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Fragment
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A6 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-1 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

10(2) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:53
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - False Start - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A6 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-28 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

10(3) - "I'LL MAKE IT All UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Solo - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-A6 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
 Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

10(3d) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Unknown Vocal Chorus Dubbed, July 1958
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-26 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

10(4) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 0:26
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment - False Start
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-4 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

10(5) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:44
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Guitar and bass overdubbed
Recorded: - Before July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-5 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

Note: 10(4) and 10(5) may have been recorded at the preceding session but with guitar, bass and drums added at an overdub session on July 9.

8 and 9(13) had an instrumental overdub (probably Roland Janes or Billy Riley, guitar; Jimmy Van Eaton, drums; Stan Kesler, bass) added on July 9.

10(3) and 10(5) had a vocal chorus (unknown) added at an overdub session, probably on July 21, 1958.
 
Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Unknown - Percussion

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS -   ©
 

 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS -   ©
 
A concurrent task in hand during these sessions was the recording of the B-side for the release of ''Break Up'', a Charlie Rich ballad entitled ''I'll Make It All Up To You''. At this juncture, Jerry Lee Lewis has made the listener's task a little easier in the appreciation of differences, by starting just about every rehearsal take on which he is at the keyboard with a changed opening chord or flourish. If that alone isn't enough, one doesn't have to proceed too far into the song before coming across a twist in the phrasing, be it in Jerry Lee's vocal or his playing. Although things eventually settled down to the extent that the penultimate take is a reasonably close match to the master, Lewis still obliges with the insertion of a superfluous ''but'' ahead of ''someday'' in the fourth line of the opening verse. However, in the wake of a number of unfulfilling efforts, Charlie Rich has by this been installed on the piano bench, that is to say with effect from take 9, bringing greater consistency to the proceedings and allowing Jerry Lee to concentrate wholly on his vocal.(*)
 
The order in which the first eight readings of ''I'll Make It All Up To You'' were recorded remains far from certain, the source tapes having been found scattered across a number of boxes. However, while the initial three takes are ''solo'' performances (before July 9, 1958 session), those identified here as take 4 of which, regrettably, a mere twenty-six seconds has endured, and the complete take 5 both feature a style of drumming that distinguishes them in turn from takes 6, 7 and 8 (probably July 9, 1958 session). The latter three all exhibit a level of polish and continuity which suggests they are the immediate predecessors to the final three cuts featuring Charlie Rich.(*)
 
Although it's clear that an immense amount of painstaking work into the creation of ''Break Up'' and ''I'll Make It All Up To You'', these recording dates in mid-1958 were not without moments of relaxation along the way. Witness Jerry Lee's insouciant romp through ''Lovesick Blues'' , the ease with which he remodels Chuck Berry's guitar opus ''Johnny B. Goode'' for his own instrument; the irreverent explicitness of ''Big Legged Woman'' (all three early July 1958 session). With or without other musicians in attendance, Jerry Lee Lewis shows us, in these diversion, that he is the master of his art. The solo recordings offer us a precious glimpse of what family and friends would have enjoyed in private over the preceding decade or so, with Jerry Lee, freed of any restraints, putting his own stamp on a wide range of material. There's no drummer here potentially facing condemnation for ''dragging'', no bass to compete with the left hand, neither a guitar with the right; a full rhythm section is brought into being by Lewis's fingers.(*)
 
STUDIO SESSION FOR JERRY LEE LEWIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION:  JULY 9/ JULY 1958 / 2 SESSIONS
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT 
AND/OR BILL JUSTIS

1(1) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:58
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - September 1989
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-3 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
Reissued: - October 2015   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-6 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

''I'll Make It All Up To You'', a beautiful Charlie Rich ballad, this was recorded at Jerry’s first recording session following the big scandal over his marriage to Myra, and was released as the B-side to ‘Break Up’ (also a Charlie Rich song and also recorded at this session). Unusually the piano on this is played by the song’s composer instead of Jerry: long-term fans (such as Chas Hodges of ''Chas & Dave'' fame) always knew this due to the fact that the song is performed in “Eb”, not a key he plays in. The 1963 recut is a little faster and a little higher (key of “G”), and this time most definitely features The Killer himself on piano.
 
01(5d) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:58
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Unknown Vocal Chorus Overdub, July 1958
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-27 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

1(2) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-7 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(3) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - False Start - Unknown Take
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-8 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(4) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment - Charlie Rich piano
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-9 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(5) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 3:06
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take   - Charlie Rich piano
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-10 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(6) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 3:04
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master   - Charlie Rich piano
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-11 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

1(6d) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 3:04
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternative Guitar Overdub, July 1958
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-10 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(6d) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU"* - B.M.I. - 3:04
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Guitar Overdub, July 1958
Unknown Vocal Chorus Dubbed
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-11 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

Charlie Rich took over the helm on "Break Up" and "I'll Make It All Up To You", both sides of Jerry Lee's make-or-break single (Sun 303) which appeared in August, 1958. There is no selfconscious gimmickry here or leftover studio jam boogies. These are both solid outings geared for the marketplace Jerry had been establishing before personal disaster overtook his fortunes.

1(11) - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU" - B.M.I. - 3:03
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 319 - Overdubbed Master   - Charlie Rich piano
Vocals, Additional Guitar Part also Overdubbed
Recorded: - Problaby July 9, 1958 - Overdub July 21, 1958
Released: - August 10, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 303-B mono
I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU / BREAK UP
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-2-26 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

''I'll Make It All Up To You" worked the adult country and western style Jerry Lee Lewis was progressively carving as his niche. The ballad featured some unusual modulations that are now recognizable as the trademark composer style of Charlie Rich. The piano work here was provided by Charlie Rich himself, thus allowing Jerry Lee to concentrate on his impassioned ballad style.

Note: instrumental overdub (probably Roland Janes or Billy Riley, guitar; Jimmy van Eaton, drums; unknown bass) added at an overdub session in July 1958 and a unknown vocal chorus added at an overdub session also in July, 1958, probably July 21, also had a vocal chorus.
 
2(1) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take - Jerry Lee Lewis piano
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - April  1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-9-5 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-12 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(2) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - September 1989
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-2 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
Reissued: - October 2015   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-13 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(3) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0:19
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-14 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(4) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0:26
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-15 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

2(5) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Guitar Overdub - Unknown Take
Only two fragments without chorus overdub found
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - July 1984
First appearance: - Charly Records (EP) 45rpm JLL EP 001-A1 mono
THE FABULOUS JERRY LEE LEWIS
Reissued: -   October 2015   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-16 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

2(5d) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Plus Fragment of Earlier Guitar Overdub, July 1958
Recorded: - July 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -   Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-18-25 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(6) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 0:13
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Fragment
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-17 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

2(7) - "BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - July 9, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - December 1989
First appearance: Sun International (LP) 33rpm LP 1051-A3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE KILLER'S BIRTHDAY CAKE
Reissued: -   October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-18 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano except*
Charlie Rich - Piano (some takes of "I'll Make It All Up To You"
Otis Jett - Drums

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 
STUDIO SESSION FOR JERRY LEE LEWIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION:  JULY 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT 
AND/OR BILL JUSTIS

1(4) - BREAK UP" - B.M.I. - 2:37
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 318 - Master
Recorded: - July 1958
Released: - August 10, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 303-A mono
BREAK UP / I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-2-25 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3
 
2 - "BIG LEGGED WOMAN" - B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Jerry Lee Lewis
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 1958
Released: - December 1969
First appearance: - Sun International (LP) 33rpm LP 107-A2 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - ROCKIN' RHYTHM & BLUES
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-3-30 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

''Johnny B. Goode'', Jerry first recorded a brilliant version of this solo (without a band) on the first July of 1958 session (see above), though this probably was never intended for release (it wasn’t issued until Charly’s ''The Sun Years'' box-set 25 years later). He recorded the song again 2 months later on July here with a band, and although this isn’t a bad version, it’s marred by some sloppy “stops and starts” and wasn’t made available until 1969’s excellent ‘Rockin’, Rhythm & Blues’ compilation. The 1963 cut is from the ‘Golden Hits’ sessions in September of that year, and was issued on ‘The Return Of Rock’ 2 years later. Again it isn’t bad, but it’s still probably the low-light of the album, lacking the fire of the other Chuck Berry revivals ‘Roll Over Beethoven’ and ‘Maybelline’. Lastly is the 1973 version from ‘The Session’, recorded in London with various United Kingdon “rock” luminaries. Mostly I’m not so keen on the re-cuts on this album as I find them a bit overblown and ombastic, but in this case the treatment worked perfectly, with The Killer sounding genuinely inspired.

3(2) - "JOHNNY B. GOODE" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Chuck Berry
Publisher: - Arc Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None – Unknown Take
Recorded: - July 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - December 1969
First appearance: - Sun International (LP) 33rpm LP 107-A6 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - ROCKIN” RHYTHM & BLUES
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-5 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
 Promo ad for Jerry Lee Lewis >

The effect of the scandal on Lewis' record sales was devastating. The virtual airplay backout ensured that records already out in the marketplace would come back by the truckload, and that new ones would be hard to move. After "Break Up" fell stillborn from the presses, Jud Phillips tried to spark some action on the next single, a revival of Moon Mullican's "I'll Sail My Ship Alone", by offering the first 100,000 at the royaltyfree price of 16c, but there were few takers.

"Break Up" was a particularly potent item for the back-to-school crowd; without explicitly pandering to teenage problems, it managed to deal with the fate of many summer romances.
 
Billboard of September 1, 1958 liked both sides "Break Up" and "I'll Make It All Up To You", calling "Break Up" "a rocker that Lewis sells with great drive and spirit". The ballad side was described as "a strong contender and a likely tri-market click". That either side of this disc might have nestled on the Rhythm and Blues charts tells us how far music culture has changed since the fall of 1958.

4(1) - ''I CAN'T HELP IT'' - B.M.I. - 2:52
Composer: - Hank Williams
Publisher: - Acuff Rose Music
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: July 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: 1972
First appearance: Mule Records (LP) 33rpm MRB-LP 201-A4 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - ROCKIN' JERRY LEE LEWIS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rom BCD 15420-1-20 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

Jerry cut several Hank Williams classics at Sun (and quite a few for other labels), including this ''I Can't Help It'' heartfelt performance from this July 1958 session. For several years only available on an 1970s bootleg, it was finally made available officially on Charly's 1977 ''Nuggets Volume Two'' compilation. At one of his final Sun Sun sessions at 639 Madison Avenue in January 1960 Jerry cut several speeded up takes, altering the lyrics ''I Can't Help It (If I'm Still In Love With You)'' to ''You Can't Help It (If You're Still In Love With Me)''! An interesting (and egotistical experiment, they didn't see the light of that until late 1980s.
 
"I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love with You)" is a song, of course,  written and originally recorded by Hank Williams on MGM Records. It hit number two on the Billboard country singles chart in 1951. According to Colin Escott's 2004 book ''Hank Williams: The Biography'', fiddler Jerry Rivers always claimed that Hank wrote the song in the touring Sedan, and when he came up with the opening line, "Today I passed you on the street'', and then asked for suggestions, steel guitarist Don Helms replied, "And I smelled your rotten feet''. The song was recorded at Castle Studio in Nashville, Tennessee, on March 16, 1951, the same session that yielded "Hey Good Lookin'", "My Heart Would Know", and "Howlin' At The Moon". Williams was backed on the session by members of his Drifting Cowboys band, including Jerry Rivers, Don Helms, Sammy Pruett (electric guitar), Jack Shook (rhythm guitar), Ernie Newton or "Cedric Rainwater", aka Howard Watts (bass), and either Owen Bradley or producer Fred Rose on piano. It was released as the B-side of "Howlin' At The Moon" but on the strength of its simple language and passionate singing, soared to number two on the Billboard country singles chart. Hank Williams sang the song with Anita Carter on the Kate Smith Evening Hour on April 23, 1952. The rare television appearance is one of the few film clips of Williams in performance.

Other significant recordings are by Ray Price cut the song on Columbia in 1957; Ricky Nelson recorded a version for Imperial in 1958; Kitty Wells recorded it for Decca; Marty Robbins covered the song for Columbia in 1961; Tennessee Ernie Ford cut the song in 1961; George Jones included the song on his 1960 album ''George Jones Salutes Hank Williams''. In his autobiography, Jones printed the first six lines of the song and stated, "Its lyrics couldn't be more simple, or profound''; Sun Records released an recording  version by Johnny Cash for his 1960 album ''Sings Hank Williams''; Jerry Lee Lewis recorded a version for Sun Records, with characteristic bravado, he changed it to "You Can't Help It (If You're Still In Love With Me)''; Patsy Cline cut the song for Decca; Burl Ives recorded the tune for Decca, and Ferlin Husky recorded it in 1961.

In 1962, Connie Stevens recorded ''I Can't Help It'' for the 1962 album ''The Hank Williams Songbook'', and the son of Williams Sr., Hank Williams Jr. recorded it for his 1963 album LP ''Sings The Songs Ff Hank Williams''; Charlie Rich covered the song in 1963; Dean Martin cut the song for Reprise; Eddy Arnold recorded the song in 1964; Marty Robbins included it on his 1968 LP ''I Walk Alone''; Ernest Tubb covered the song in 1968; Stonewall Jackson recorded the song for Columbia in 1969; ''I Can't Help It'' appears on Roy Orbison's 1970 LP ''Hank Williams The Roy Orbison Way''; Glen Campbell recorded it for his 1973 album ''I Remember Hank Williams''; Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris covered the song in 1974, and the song is featured on the reissue of Willie Nelson's 1975 LP ''Red Headed Stranger'' album as a bonus track. Charlie McCoy recorded it as an instrumental in 1977; Charlie Pride recorded it on his 1980 tribute ''There's A Little Bit Of Hank In Me'' with Loretta in a duet. Conway Twitty recorded ''I Can't Help It'' and was released as flip-side of the 1993 single "Divine Hammer''.

 

5 - "LOVESICK BLUES" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Irving Mills-Cliff Friend
Publisher: - EMI Music Publishing
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - Early July 1958
Released: - April 1971
First appearance: - Sun International (LP) 33rpm LP 125-B1 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS & JOHNNY CASH - SING HANK WILLIAMS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-4-4 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

''Lovesick Blues" recorded here by Jerry Lee is a show tune written by Cliff Friend and Irving Mills. The song first appeared in the 1922 musical Oh, Ernest. It was recorded by Emmett Miller in 1928 and later by country music singer Rex Griffin. The recordings by Griffin and Miller inspired Hank Williams to perform the song during his first appearances on the Louisiana Hayride in 1948. Receiving an enthusiastic reception from the audience, Williams decided to record his own version despite initial push back from his producer Fred Rose and his band.
 

MGM Records released "Lovesick Blues" in February 1949, and it became an overnight success, quickly reaching number one on Billboard's Top Country & Western singles and number 24 on the Most Played in Jukeboxes list. The publication named it the top country and western record of the year, while Cash Box named it "Best Hillbilly Record of the Year". Several cover versions of the song have been recorded. The most popular, Frank Ifield's 1962 version, topped the UK Singles Chart. In 2004, Hank Williams' version was added to the National Recording Registry.

"Lovesick Blues" was originally entitled "I've Got the Lovesick Blues" and published by Jack Mills, Inc. in 1922; Irving Mills authored the lyrics and Cliff Friend composed the music. It was first performed by Anna Chandler in the Tin Pan Alley musical Oh! Ernest and first recorded by Elsie Clark on March 21, 1922 with Okeh Records. Following the recording, Cliff and Friend copyrighted the song on April 3, 1922. It was featured in a show at the Boardwalk Club in New York City in June 1922 and also recorded by Jack Shea on Vocalion Records later that summer.

On September 1, 1925, OKeh Records sent scout Ralph Peer and a recording crew to Asheville, North Carolina. Among the aspiring artists recorded by Peer was Emmett Miller. Accompanied by Walter Rothrock on the piano, Miller cut four sides for the label, including "Lovesick Blues". The single was paired with "Big Bad Bill (is Sweet William Now)" and released in November 1925. On June 12, 1928 accompanied by the Georgia Crackers (Tommy Dorsey, Jimmy Dorsey, Eddie Lang, and Leo McConville), Miller re-recorded the song, which was subsequently released to weak sales. Miller's version was covered by country music singer Rex Griffin in December 1939 on Decca Records. Griffin rearranged the song by using the original chorus - "I got a feeling called the blues", as a verse and turning the verse "I'm in love, I'm in love, with a beautiful gal" into the new chorus.

Hank Williams, who heard both the Miller and Griffin versions, started performing the song on the Louisiana Hayride shortly after joining in August 1948. Horace Logan, the show's producer and programming director for KWKH, reported that the audience "went crazy" the first time Williams performed the song on the show. In light of the live audience's strong positive reaction, Williams decided to record the song. His decision was questioned by his musicians and also his producer, Fred Rose, who felt that the song did not merit a recording. Williams, mindful of the reaction he received live, persisted, and the recording took place during the final half hour of a session recorded at Herzog Studio in Cincinnati, Ohio, on December 22, 1948. For this recording, Williams replaced the jazz musicians with a modern country music band, using a rhythm guitar, mandolin, string bass, drums and a steel guitar. Williams' session band was composed of Clyde Baum (mandolin), Zeke Turner (electric guitar), Jerry Byrd (steel guitar), Louis Innis (rhythm guitar), Tommy Jackson (fiddle) and Willie Thawl (bass). With little time left, Byrd and Turner replicated the musical arrangement they previously used on an Ernest Tubb session for a cover of Jimmie Rodgers' "Waiting For A Train". In the episode of American Masters about Williams, Drifting Cowboy Don Helms recalls, "When they recorded ''Lovesick Blues'', Fred told Hank, 'That song's out of meter! Got too many bars in it. And you hold that note too long'. And Hank said, 'Well, when I find a note I like, I wanna hold on to it as long as I can,' you know, just tryin' to be funny. And Fred said, 'Well, I'll tell you what I'm gonna do. That thing is so much out of meter, I'm gonna get me a cup of coffee and when I get back maybe ya'll have that thing cut.' And they did, but it was still out of meter. So Fred lived with that the rest of his life''. Williams combined Griffin's lyrical arrangement with a two-beat honky-tonk track, borrowing the yodeling and beat drops from Miller's recording. "Lovesick Blues" was recorded in two takes. 

MGM released "Lovesick Blues" on February 11, 1949, coupling it with "Never Again (Will I Knock On Your Door)". The single sold 50,000 copies in the first two weeks. On its February 26, 1949 review, Billboard: "Hank's razz-mah-tazz approach and ear-catching yodeling should keep this side spinning". Based on votes sent to Billboard, the record was rated with 85 points by disc jockeys, 82 by record dealers and 85   by jukebox operators. Between the three, the track scored an overall of 84. In reference to its 100-point scale, Billboard regarded the record as "Excellent". It reached number one on Billboard's Top Country & Western singles, where it remained for sixteen weeks and reached number twenty-four on Most Played in Jukeboxes. The magazine listed it as the "number one country and western record of 1949" while Cash Box named it "Best Hillbilly record of the year". In March 1949, Wesley Rose requested Williams to send him the records by Griffin and Miller to prove that the song was in the public domain. Irving Mills, the original lyricist, sued Acuff-Rose. The suit was settled on November 1, 1949 and it was agreed that Mills and Acuff-Rose would share the publishing of Williams' recording. Mills retained the rest of rights to the song as he had also purchased Friend's rights during the Great Depression.

Following the success of the song, Williams was invited to appear as a guest on the Grand Ole Opry, on June 11, 1949. After the performance, Williams received a standing ovation. "Lovesick Blues" became his signature song, which he used to close his shows. It was also his first number one hit, and garnered Williams the stage nickname of "The Lovesick Blues Boy". In 1949, the singer received second billing behind Eddy Arnold on the list of the "Year's Top Selling Folk Artists". Williams' version of the song was featured in the films The Last Picture Show (1971), Forrest Gump (1994) and The Shawshank Redemption (1994). In 2004, "Lovesick Blues" was added to the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress.

 
 
Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Probably Roland Janes, Brad Suggs, or Billy Riley - Guitar
Unknown - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

JULY 1958

Scandal Sheet editor Barbara Barnes from Sun Records published some adds:  News From Phillips Label - Beginning with this issue, Phillips International Records will  publish every few weeks this newsletter. It is physically impossible for us at Phillips to get  around in person to see all the friends we value so much - so this sheet is an effort to keep  in tough. We welcome news of YOU at anytime. Just send it to your editor - who hopes some  day to scoop even BILLBOARD and CASH BOX.

Comment-Able Items:

Recent anniversary celebration of KFJB, Marshalltown, Iowa, lasted one whole week. Barry  Norris and gang quite enthusiastic over 35 years of the best in broadcasting... Michael  Ruppe, Jr., reports the dirt from WCUE, Akron, Ohio, via a very snappy newsletter... Smokey  Smiths joins KWDM, Des Moines, Iowa. Informs us that he's building a studio in his home and  will do his shows from there... Latest (the not so new) addition to the impressive line-up of...
 
 
...disc jockey talent at WJW, Cleveland, Ohio, is Dick Drury... KONO's Paul Shaefer informs us  that new disc jockey Bill Davis is winning listening friends every day in the San Antonio area.  Bill was formerly with a station in Wichita Falls, Texas. Another KONO disc jockey Bob  Murray, wed the former Miss Jeannine Thompson of Mainsfield, Ohio, in June... John Drozo  writes that WEED, Rocky Mount, North Carolina, is celebrating 25 years of broadcasting this  month... We understand Barbara Wood is doing a fine job as editor of the Nashville  publication, Music Reporter... Mall-time is fun-time, especially when we get letters from nice  people like Jack Morse of WINR, Binghamton, New Yersey. He shot the breeze a bit, then  reported on our tunes, and it would certainly be nice if YOU would take a minute to do the  same... The latest addition to the Lou Oxman family (Pan American Distributors, Denver)  hadn't arrived at the time this goes to the printer, but is expected soon. Now - isn't THAT  nice!

CATTYWAMPUS

Cattywampus is an old Southern usage meaning sort of cockeyed or hap-hazard - and another  entry from the Bill Justis catalog of nervous instrumentals. The maestro says in trade pub  journalese: "It's a new sound for Justis, featuring a soulful sax solo with a rock solid beat".  Yeah, o.k. It's got a melody you can hum, too.

The entire Phillips International staff and kibitzers - local disc jockeys, waitresses in the  restaurant next door, postman, and others who get in their opinions - agree its strong  material - and you'll get to judge for yourself on the Dick Clark Show on ABC-TV Network,  Saturday night of July 26.

On the flip side of PI 3529, there's SUMMER HOLLIDAY - which is sweet and cool and welcome  for a summer refresher, (sound like a frozen daiquiri?). Charlie Rich chimes in with a celeste  solo that gives SUMMER HOLIDAY a distinctive flavor.

Charlie Rich, by the way, is an up-and-coming song writer, vocalist, and pianist, and you'll be  hearing more from him. Sid Manker, co-author of RAUNCHY, is heard on his usual fine guitar.  Billy Riley, guitar, and J.M. Van Eaton, drums, round out the Justis band.

Barbara Pittman
Ernie Barton
Carl McVoy

Phillips International has recently introduced three new artists who should
become increasingly popular as the public learns of their special talents.

Barbara Pittman is a sultry, feline type of redhead who can sob a tune, or belt one, with  equal conviction. She does so on her recent release (PI 3527) which is COLD COLD HEART  b/w EVERLASTING LOVE

Ernie Barton's record (PI 3528) looks like a two-sided hit, if indications from Detroit,  Houston, Memphis, and other key markets are to be counted upon. STAIRWAY TO NOWHERE  is a lively sort of gospel-sounding thing. RAINING THE BLUES gets a message across, with  Ernie singing sort of lonesome-like and a vocal group echoing the refrain.

The kids when wild after Carl McVoy gave his rendition of YOU ARE MYY SUNSHINE on the  Dick Clark Saturday night show some time back. This tune (PI 3526) was first released on Hi  label - and we hope to get out an original record on Carl soon, at which time a big promotion  push will be in the offing.

BUDDY MAC GREGOR

"The Young Scotchman" of KLIF, Dallas, claims the distinction of having the nation's highest  Hooper rating - a whopping 60.1 on a recent survey. This achievement speaks for itself when  the question of Buddy MacGregor's popularity comes up. And the crowds of youngsters who  follow Buddy to his record hops (2000 at a recent bash) further recommend the personality  and appeal of KLIF's three to six man.

Buddy spent several years in radio in his hometown of Kansas City - has been in the business  almost a decade. He lives the life of a contended bachelor and finds relaxation aboard his  cabin cruiser, which is launched on a lake 70 miles from Big D.

We asked Buddy if he were like the Scotchman who found a cough drop and promptly sat in a  draft, and he said, "I'm Scotch all right - but not quite that tight".
 

JULY 1958

As soon as Johnny Cash confirmed that he had signed with Columbia and was moving to the West Coast in  August, Sam Phillips determined to get the most he could from the remainder of his contract. A marathon  session in May and one in July were booked, but with a lack of enthusiasm on the part of Johnny Cash. He  continued to be friendly with Jack Clement, but when he strode through the office, Cash did so with a very  aloof bearing and a grim countenance. Regina Reese termed his carriage and blue-black hair ''dramatic'', but  besides that quality, Barbara Barnes saw stiff-necked Anglo-Saxon pride. He had what appeared to be a scar  on his left check, which made him look a little dangerous and mysterious.

Jack Clement could be counted on to write some original material for the sessions, and a new songwriter that  Bill Justis was working with Charlie Rich, was also recruited for this effort. Charlie had studied music at the  University of Arkansas and was well qualified to prepare lead sheets to go with some of Sun's releases, as  well as playing piano on sessions. He even played piano on some of Jerry Lee Lewis's records when the  chord patterns were too complex for the Killer.

According to Barbara Barnes, ''They were getting used to seeing Charlie quietly noodling at the piano, and  he was ready with some Cash material. Johnny was reluctant to record his own new song, intending them to  launch his Columbia career. They didn't doubt that Johnny would perform well, because he didn't want any  bad records out there any more than we did''.

Sam Phillips was not only determined to call Cash in for the number of sessions specified in his contract, but  also to capitalize on single sales before Columbia could get any product on the market. While ''Guess Things  Happen That Way'' was still selling, Sun put out one Charlie Rich had written for him, ''The Ways Of A  Woman In Love'', in late May. Sun continued to issue Cash singles through the remainder of 1958 into 1960.  Some, if not most, were only moderately memorable, but both Sun and Columbia had entries on the charts,  sometimes were ahead.

Early in the summer, Sun also put out the first of several extended-play albums on Johnny Cash, and it was  quite a good one, ''Johnny Cash Sings Hank Williams'' (EPA 111). The content consisted of four numbers,  and the disk looked just like a 45, but it had more grooves. Sun used a hard cover with Johnny in concert on  the front, and it looked nice. The initial orders were for 17,5000 albums, impressive enough to warrant a  notice in the trade papers.

Barbara said, ''I could see phenomenal growth in Johnny cash as an artist in the year that I had observed him  and listening to his music. For one this'', she said, ''he was learning how to relate to an audience. When Jud  Phillips accompanied him to New York for the Dick Clark show in July, I wasn’t worried about how he  would handle being on camera. For earlier shows, I had suggested to Jud that he try to get the producers to  have him shown with waist or face shots, because he was so rigid. Whether it was stage fright, inexperience,  or an intrinsic inhibited nature, in those days he seemed to move only his mouth and his finger on the guitar  strings when he performed. Being so tall, he almost looked like a statue, and a rather grim one at that''.

His problem had been the opposite of Elvis's. The reason Ed Sullivan wanted that dynamo photographed  from the waist up because of his gyrations. Cash was getting more animated now, so full-body shots could be  effective. He was smiling more, kicking up his heels a bit. He would never be a particularly graceful man,  they thought, but he was loosening up so that he could enjoy audiences and they could enjoy him.

Back in her little office, Barbara had grown accustomed to the sounds of Johnny Cash and his sessions.  Marshall Grant's bass came through the walls in its steady beat even when that's all they could hear. Cash's  recording dates during the last months with Sun Records had yielded ample material for release, and Sam  notified the market of this fast. They were certainly going to miss Johnny cash because they all thought he  was a great talent. Sam said he had more depth than most of the other artists he had worked with and great  potential personally and professionally.

JULY 8, 1958 TUESDAY

Webb Pierce recorded ''Tupelo County Jail'' in Nashville during an afternoon session at the Bradley Recording Studio.

Drummer Fred Young is born in Glasgow, Kentucky. He joins The Kentucky Head Hunters, whose energetic, influential blend of country and rock brings them the Country Music Association's Vocal Group of the Year in 1990 and 1991.

JULY 10, 1958 THURSDAY

Banjo player Bela Fleck is born in New York City. A member of the progressive bluegrass band New Grass Revival and the jazz act Bela Fleck and The Flecktones, he plays on recordings by Garth Brooks, Kathy Mattea, Randy Travis and Ricky Skaggs.

The Everly Brothers recorded a pair of hits, ''Bird Dog'' and ''Devoted To You'', at RCA Studio B in Nashville.

Johnny cash recorded ''The Ways Of A Woman In Love'', ''Fools Hall Of Fame'', and ''Thanks A Lot'' at Memphis' Sun studio at 706 Union Avenue.

''Johnny B. Goode'' songwriter, Chuck Berry, driving his pink Cadillac, is arrested for ''careless and imprudent driving'' in St. Louis, Missouri. He pays a $15 fine.
 


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JOHNNY CASH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: THURSDAY JULY 10, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

Johnny Cash spent most of July, 1958 doing marathon sessions at 706 Union, fulfilling contractual obligations to Sun. Sam Phillips, who intended to continue releasing Johnny Cash records for a long time, despite the artist's defection to Columbia, was busy stockpiling releasable material. It was a bonanza for Sun's stable of composers like Jack Clement and Charlie Rich. The rules were simple: Cash refused to record his best new compositions for Sun because he was saving them for his move to a major label. That meant the call was out for Cash-sounding originals.

Cash's penultimate session for Sun on this day, resulted in three masters being recorded. "The Ways Of A Woman In Love" was the first of three songs composed by Charlie Rich that Cash would record during the last few months of this time with Sun Records. The alternate is boosted by a more rhythmic beat from the drummer and has a couple of noticeable lyric changes. On the released version the line "Friends come by to pick you up" replaced "the girls come by to pick you up" and possibly in an effort to tame the song down the line "the guy who's got you in a spin" replaced this versions "the guy who's got you all worked up".

01(1) - "THE WAYS OF A WOMAN IN LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:24
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 1984
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 103 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - 1990 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15517-3-20 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE MAN IN BLACK 1954 - 1958

01(2) - "THE WAYS OF A WOMAN IN LOVE"** - B.M.I. - 2:13
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 316  - Master
Recorded: - July 10, 1958 - Master Overdubbed with Chorus
Released: - August 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 302-A mono
THE WAYS OF A WOMAN IN LOVE - YOU'RE THE NEAREST THING TO HEAVEN
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-2-23 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

"The Ways Of A Woman In Love" comes closer to the mark, but even here, something has gone wrong. For one thing, Luther's guitar lines need vocal enhancing like a fish needs a bicycle. For another, Jimmy Wilson's piano removes whatever edge this song might have had. It wasn't until later when composer Charlie Rich included this song on his first RCA album that we got an insight into how bluesy and powerful the material could be.

02(1) - "FOOLS HALL OF FAME" - B.M.I. - 2:24
Composer: - Danny Wolfe
Publisher: - Golden West Music
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 1990
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15517-3-21 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE MAN IN BLACK 1954 - 1958
Reissued: - 2007 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-10 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

Documentation from the American Federation of Music shows a comment from Sam Phillips that "Fools Hall Of Fame" should never be released. It is unclear why he would make such a comment although it is possible that it has more to do with publishing rights than Cash's actual performance. The outtakes presented here do not include the guitar overdub which was added much later. Cash must have liked the song as he recorded it again for Columbia the week after he joined the label.

02(2) - "FOOLS HALL OF FAME" - B.M.I. - 2:30
Composer: - Danny Wolf
Publisher: - Golden West Music
Matrix number: - None - False Start & Complete Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-11 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(1) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I - 2:41
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-12 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES
With Cash's recording of Charlie Rich's "Thanks A Lot" we get to hear how the song came together. This session includes eleven takes, not all complete, that includes various attempts at the original undubbed recording, further attempts at overdubbing the vocal chorus and some studio antics with the chorus working on some unused different endings to the song. Also included is the undubbed master. Cash may have been uninterested at this stage of his career with Sun Records but it certainly doesn't show as his commitment to producing good quality material is evident.

03(2) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 0:26
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - False Start - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (VD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-13 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(3) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 2:37
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-14 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(4) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. -2:54
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-15 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES 

03(5) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-16 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(6) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 2:34
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Vocal Overdub - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-17 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(7) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 2:33
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Vocal Overdub - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-18 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(8) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 0:17
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Ending Only Vocal Overdub - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-19 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(9) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 0:31
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Ending Only Vocal Overdub - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-20 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(10) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 0:34
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Ending Only Vocal Overdub - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-21 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(11) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 0:14
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Ending Only Vocal Overdub - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 10, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 163253-22 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(12) - "THANKS A LOT" - B.M.I. - 2:33
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 350 - Master
Recorded: - July 10, 1958 - Overdubbed with chorus (the Confederates) before release
Released: - February 15, 1959
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 316-A mono
THANKS A LOT / LUTHER PLAYED THE BOOGIE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-25 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Charlie Rich responded to the call with "Thanks A Lot", a well constructed self-piying weeper. Cash turned in a solid reading of Rich's material and even the choral overdub was respectable. About the only laughable thing associated with this side is Charlie Rich's original demo of the song. Obviously, some serious attention was directed to Rich's original lyrics, which were worked over before the session. Otherwise, Cash might have following Rich's lead and sung, "You went to see the lawyer / told him I was oh so mean / You told him I was the most no good thing / you had ever seen / He's suing me for everything I've got / Thanks a lot, thanks a lot".

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and Guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano

** - Overdubbed session probably July 1958,  Sun Studio, 706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee

The Confederates
were a barbershop quartet that performed in the 1950s and 1960s. The group formed in September 1953 at a SPEBSQSA chapter meeting in Memphis, Tennessee. 
They consisting of
George Evans - Tenor
Dave LaBonte - Lead
Bill "Bus" Busby – Baritone
Wally Singleton - Bass

The Confederates took first place in the 1956 SPEBSQSA International Quartet Championship after finishing second the year before. They were notable not only for their championship-caliber harmonies, but also for performing in Confederate officer uniforms. The group stopped performing in 1969. 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

 JULY 11, 1958 FRIDAY

Chuck Berry, a future member of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, purchases a two-story house in St. Louis, Missouri, symbolic of his success with such songs as ''Johnny B. Goode'', ''Maybellene'' and ''Thirty Days (To Come Back Home)''.

As for the Sun label, it was, necessarily, a time of retrenchment. Jud Phillips was the first to go. He collected his last paycheck and moved back to Florence, taking with him the customized Greyhound bus that had been such a nagging bone of contention between him and his brother. The bus was a dream that Jud had long had, a kind of rolling hospitality center on which he could freely dispense drinks and favors in all the cities he visited on his never-ending round of promotion tours. So far it had cost Sam close to $8,000 in its two-month life span, which included the installation of velvet-red draperies and carpeting, a lounge equipment with a full-sized television set, an elaborate sound system, two big captain's chairs upfront, a fully stocked bar, and various other sundries and amenities that continued to be added even as the bus continued to undergo one costly repair after another. It was a total, first-class bad bus.

JULY 13, 1958 SUNDAY

June Carter and Edwin ''Rip'' Nix have a daughter, Rosie.

JULY 14, 1958 MONDAY

Decca released Ernest Tubb's ''Half A Mind''.

Charlie Rich has his first recording session for Sun Records in Memphis, Tennessee.
 


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CHARLIE RICH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: MONDAY JULY 14, 1958
PRODUCER - BILL JUSTIS 
AND/OR CHARLIE RICH
RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

01 - "MY BABY DONE LEFT ME" - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 14, 1958
Released: - November 1986
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 106-8-8 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE ROCKING YEAR - WHOLE LOTTA SHAKIN'
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-16 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

02 - "I'LL MAKE IT ALL UP TO YOU" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued / Tape Lost
Recorded: - July 14, 1958

03 - "THOSE PLACES AROUND TOWN" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - July 14, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Charlie Rich - Vocal and Piano

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


Charlie Rich and C. J. Allen, Benton, Arkansas >

One of Charlie Rich's earliest musical experiences involved a sharecropper by the name of C.J. Allen  who worked the Rich family land. C.J. was a blues piano player. Charlie used to sit and watch him  play for hours. "He was the honky tonk piano player for the time, and, of course, there were still  quite a few blues things around Memphis, the plantation was over in Benton, Arkansas, but it was only  about 30 miles from Memphis'', said Charlie Rich.

JULY 1958

By now Charlie Rich and his wife, Margaret Ann had moved to Benton, Arkansas. Their  upgraded facilities included a makeshift studio out in the garage. Margaret Ann recalls, ''We  didn't have a music room or anything. Just a piano and tape recorder in the garage. We used  to go out there in the evenings and sing together. We'd write and harmonize and make  tapes. The were pretty rough but we were having fun.

 
The home sessions Margaret Ann describes persisted at least until Charlie's final days at Sun.  One of these tapes survives in the Sun vaults. It features surprisingly amateurish  harmonizing on ''My Mountain Dew'' and ''It Just Goes To Show You Don't Know About Love''.  Both songs, demoed at home during Rich's final months at Sun, appeared on his first RCA  album released in 1963.

Charlie would often bring these rough demos into Sun and play them for Bill Justis, Jack  Clement or Sam Phillips. If there was anything of promise, they would almost immediately  recut it in the Sun studio as a demo featuring Rich's vocal and piano, perhaps aided by  whoever happened to be hanging around in the studio at the moment. It is this spontaneous  spirist that accounts for the unprofessional and often tentive instrumental support behind  Charlie and his piano on some recordings. Demos made under these conditions can easily be  distinguished from more formal studio efforts featuring Roland Janes on guitar and/or Jimmy  M. Van Eaton on drums.

Jimmy Van Eaton recalls, ''A lot of time we'd get to the session and while we were waiting  for all the guys to show up or while the engineer was taking levels we'd start jamming just to  get loose. Part of that was the way Sun operated. There was no clock. If a session took six  hours, so be it. Nobody cared''.

Charlie Rich played at little night club in a parking garage across from Court Square on Second Street, Memphis, Tennessee, circa 1957 >

Jimmy M. Van Eaton recalls, ''A lot of stuff, some of which you've probably discovered going  through the tapes, was never intended to be released. With Jerry Lee, that was how we did  80%, maybe more of the sessions. You'd just start jamming and Sam has the tape running.  That's why with Jerry Lee there were often no arrangements, no beginnings, no endings.


Charlie's sessions were never that unstructured, but even with him we had that jamming at  the start that could lead to anything''.  The popular conception of the Sun house band as a big happy family has much truth to it.  But there was also a glimmer of trouble in paradise. Some of it indirectly involved Charlie  Rich. As Jimmy M. Van Eaton recalls, ''We had a special nucleus of musicians there: myself,  Roland, Billy Riley, Jerry Lee. We were all about the same age. We really clicked. Charlie  wasn't quite like that.
 
First of all, he was shyer than any of us. But he was also a bit older, a  different kind of musician. Maybe a little more mature, more educated than us. I was still in  high school when I was doing a lot of this. Charlie probably put more thought into what he  was doing than we did''.

''Neither Charlie nor Bill Justis ever said anything to me, but I think both of them thought  they were above what they were cutting. I know Justis did. He thought he had really  lowered himself to record ''Raunchy'', but in fact, that's his claim to fame. If you can get  fame in this world for anything legally, you ought to be glad to have it. Fame isn't easy to  come by so it's ironic that Justis didn't think much of what brought him fame. I don't know if  Charlie felt exactly the same way. I do know he hung around more with Justis than he did  with us. Sid Manker was part of that too. I know they wanted me to put that funky rock and  roll beat behind what they were doing, but they still wanted to be playing more uptown stuff  whenever they could. Even today, jazz musicians look at pop musicians as being a notch or  two below them. The jazz guys still think they're the coolest''.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CHARLIE RICH

CHARLIE RICH HOME, BENTON, ARKANSAS
SESSION: POSSIBLY JULY 1958
PRODUCER - CHARLIE RICH
RECORDING ENGINEER - PROBABLY MAGARET ANN RICH

01 - ""SAIL AWAY" - B.M.I. - 1:47
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Possibly July 1958
Released: - 1998
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-17 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

What we have here is the original home demo of the tune later recorded by Ray Smith, as well as by Charlie and Jerry Lee. This demo, previously thought lost, reveals Charlie overdubbing (rather loosely) a harmony vocal that set the tone for Smith's release. Apparently this tune was conceived as a duet, even in its earliest days. At this point in his career, Charlie was spinning out demos by the dozen and the melodies, lyrics and instrumental licks were starting to blur together. In an unguarded moment, Charlie laughs at the lack of originality in his opening piano figure. Nevertheless, this tune remains one of the best early compositions Rich contributed to the Sun catalogue, even if it is a near perfect anti-love song.

''Give In'', this track is a total surprise: a home demo featuring Charlie's multitracked vocal on a song that has never appeared on any Rich discographies to date. The song is pure Charlie, from its theme to its melodic structure. Most of Rich fans will notice more than a passing melodic resemblance to ''Sail Away''.

02 - "GIVE IN" - B.M.I. - 1:46
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Possibly July 1958
Released: - 1998
First appearance: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-10 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

03 - "I'VE LOST MY HEART TO YOU"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: - Unknown Date

04 - "BIG JACK"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: -  Unknown Date

05 - "MISERY"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: - Possibly July 1958

06 - "LET ME GO MY MERRY WAY"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: -  Unknown Date

07 - "THE INVITATON"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: -  Unknown Date

08 - "WHY OH WHY"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: -  Unknown Date

09 - "THANKS FOR STOPPING BY"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued/Lost
Recorded: -  Unknown Date

10 - "MY MOUNTAIN DEW"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: -  Unknown Date
Released: - November 1985
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CDX 10 mono
CHARLIE RICH - ORIGINAL HITS AND MIDNIGHT DEMOS

11 - "IT JUST GOES TO SHOW"
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Dates
Released: - November 1985
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CDX 10 mono
CHARLIE RICH - ORIGINAL HITS AND MIDNIGHT DEMOS

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Charlie Rich - Vocal and Piano
Margaret Ann Rich - Harmony Vocal

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

JULY 1958

About the same time Carl McVoy started coming in and cutting a few more tunes for Sun, Sam got a call  from Audrey Williams asking if we had any good candidates to play her late husband, Hank Williams, in a  proposed movie. Sam urged her to come to Memphis to look over Carl as a prospect. Never mind that he was  a pianist, not a guitar picker.

Sam asked Barbara Barnes to meet Carl McVoy at the Variety Club to help entertain Audrey. Carl told her  about his experience with the Bill Black Combo and other work he'd done, and then he went to the piano to  sing and play for her. He attempted a little patter between numbers, announcing he was going to do the  honeymoon song, ''It Don't Hurt Anymore''. No yuks on that one. They drifted apart as the evening was  ending, and the next day the word was out that Audrey had ''auditioned'' Carl privately at her hotel.

According to Barbara Barnes, ''It was still early the next day when she came in and plopped herself down in  my office. I just couldn't grasp that I was sitting three feet away from the woman who had inspired all those  wonderful Hank Williams weepers. She wasn't old, in her mid-30s at the time, but her face showed many  miles. Her heavy make-up and bleached hair cancelled out the positive appearance of her nice figure, and the  girlish ruffles and flounces she was wearing were strangely incongruous with her jaded expression. Her  conversation had a flat quality, as if she was there in body only'' Barbara said.

After Audrey Williams went back to Nashville the next day, they never heard any more from her about the  Hank Williams movie. Sam Phillips said in a sort of sheepish way that Audrey had indicated she wanted to  ''audition'' him, too, but he wasn't willing to go that far to advance Carl's career. The tunes Jack Clement cut  with Carl as a followup to ''Tootsie'' were never released, as the first record was a flop. But, Barbara  remained a Carl McVoy fan, partly because in December, only he, among all the artists, thoughtfully sent her  a Christmas card.

JULY 15, 1958 TUESDAY

Julia Lennon, the mother of John Lennon, dies in a car accident in Liverpool, England. The event comes just nine days after Lennon met future fellow Beatle Paul McCartney, with whom he shares songwriting credits on several country hits.

JULY 16, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Marvin Rainwater recorded ''Nothin' Needs Nothin' (Like I Need You)'' in the afternoon at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville.
 


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS -©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CARL MCVOY
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: JULY 17, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

In July, 1958, Carl McVoy cut "Right Behind You Baby", three months after Ray Smith's record had come  out. At that same session, he recorded the Charlie Rich song "Little Girl", presented on his compilation in a  version by Ray Smith. That same July, 1958 session resulted in McVoy cutting "A Woman's Love" - a song  bass player Stan Kesler later placed with Elvis Presley (retitled "The Thrill Of Your Love") on the 1960 Elvis  Is Back album. Again, close, but no cigar.

01 - ''LITTLE GIRL'' – B.M.I. - 2:32
Composer: - Charly Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released:- 1998
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CPCD 8137-16 mono
UNISSUED SUN MASTER

02 - ''A WOMAN'S LOVE (THRILL OF YOUR LOVE)'' – B.M.I. - 2:55
Composer: - Stan Kesler
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2002
Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm SNAJ 713-58 mono
THE SUN RECORDS STORY
Reissued: - 2009 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm SNAJ 743-3-33 mono
SUN ROCKABILLY MELTDOWN
 
 
03 - ''RIGHT BEHIND YOU BABY'' – B.M.I.
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None – Sun Unissued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958

04 - ''LITTLE JOHN'S GONE'' – B.M.I. - 2:30
Composer: - Carl McVoy
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None – Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - May 1, 2011
First appearance: - M.A.T. Music (MP3) Internet Sample mono
VARIOUS ARTISTS - ROCK-A-BILLY - VOLUME 4

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl McVoy - Vocal and Piano
Tiny Dixon - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
Johnny Ace Cannon - Saxophone

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

JULY 17, 1958 THURSDAY

Johnny Cash held his last recording session at Sun before moving on to Columbia Records.  Sam Phillips placed advertisements in the trade papers assuring disc jockey's and distributors  that he had sufficient Cash product to keep the pipeline full for "at least two year". In fact,  prodigious recycling by both Sam Phillips and Shelby Singleton ensured that no one would  ever want for one of Cash's Sun sides again.

Sam Phillips had apparently asked for a chance to match any offer that another company  might make, and he felt betrayed because he had been denied that chance. Bob Neal said in  1973, however, that he had at least informed Sam Phillips of his intentions.

"Sam's  arrangement with all of his artists involved a royalty rate of 3 percent of 90 percent of  retail. When Johnny's contract was set to expire we talked to him. Johnny wanted to get the  standard 5 percent royalty, but Sam maintained that he could not afford to pay it. When the  deal was announced, he was very upset. He said he would have done the whole deal if he'd  thought we'd meant it".

His relationship with Phillips in tatters, Bob Neal folded his management company, Stars  Incorporated, located at 1916 Sterick Boulevard, Memphis, Tennessee, and managed Johnny  Cash and Carl Perkins from his house. Two weeks after leaving Sun, Bob Neal announced that  Johnny Cash was quitting the Opry and that everyone was packing up and moving to the  West Coast, feeling that they could storm Hollywood. As it happened, Cash would have to  wait almost ten years for a decent dramatic role.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JOHNNY CASH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: THURSDAY JULY 17, 1958
SESSION HOURS: 12:00-15:00 / 15:00-18:00
DOUBLE SESSION FILED WITH AFM
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT & CHARLIE RICH

01(1) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 1:07
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Incomplete Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-23 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

Jack Clement's "It's Just About Time" is dominated by piano and on the released version features an overdubbed chorus which added little to the recording. The various undubbed version show how well crafted the song was. It was considered good enough to release, along with "I Just Thought You'd Like To Know", as a single and just scraped into the top thirty on the country charts.

01(2) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 2
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 1990
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15517-3-24 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE MAN IN BLACK 1954 - 1958
Reissued: - 2007 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 163253-24 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

01(3) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 3 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-25 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

01(4) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 4 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 163253-26 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

01(5) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 1:37
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Incomplete Take 5 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 163253-27 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

01(6) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 2:06
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 6 – Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-28 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

01(7) - "IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME" - B.M.I. - 2:05
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 331  - Master
Recorded: - July 17, 1958 - Overdubbed with chorus before release
Released: - November 12, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 309-A mono
IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME / I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rom BCD 15803-3-11 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3
She's back in town for the Jack Clement side of the date, although things have toned down somewhat from the "Teenage Queen" days. "It's Just About Time" is not one of Cash's better outings at Sun Records, nor is it one of Clement's stronger compositions. Cash was on a roll, however, and Billboard gave these sides a Pick Hit, calling both (Sun 309) "strong pop and country and western contenders".

02(1) - "I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET" - B.M.I. - 1:17
Composer: - Charlie Feathers-Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Incomplete Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-29 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" is a song that had previously been recorded by Elvis Presley and would go on to be covered by many more artists. Cash's version features some great piano work and, after Elvis, is probably the best version of this Stan Kesler/Charlie Feathers composition. Along with two complete alternate versions which are close to the released master we also get to hear an early aborted take followed by a brief false start.

02(2) - "I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET" - B.M.I. - 0:17
Composer: - Charlie Feathers-Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - False Start Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-30 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

02(3) - "I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET" - B.M.I. - 2:07
Composer: - Charlie Feathers-Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 2 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 1990
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15517 EH-3-25 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE MAN IN BLACK 1954 - 1958
Reissued: - 2007 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-31 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

02(4) - "I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Charlie Feathers-Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 3 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-32 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

02(5) - "I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET" - B.M.I. - 1:50
Composer: - Charlie Feathers-Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 358  - Master
Recorded: - July 17, 1958 - Overdubbed with chorus before release
Released: - June 2, 1959
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 45rpm standard single SUN 321-B mono
I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET / KATY TOO
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-4-10 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

About the most interesting thing one can observe is that "I Forgot To Remember To Forget" is the last song Johnny Cash recorded at Sun Records. It appears that the search for material had come up dry. When in doubt, resurrect an old Hi-Lo copyright. Economically, this made sense, but artistically, it was not a happy moment. Cash virtually sleepwalks through the take. Instrumentally, it is Charlie Rich's piano and the Gene Lowery Singers that come to the fore. If nothing else, this undistinguished bit of saccharin was enough to keep disc jockey's spinning "Katy Too".

03(1) - "I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW" - B.M.I. - 1:26
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Incomplete Take Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-33 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(2) - "I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 2 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-34 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

This Rich composition is a medium tempo number which stands up well with the material he was recording at this time. Jimmy Wilson plays the piano on the alternate takes and it has all the hallmarks or other Charlie Rich material like "I'll Make It All Up To You". Once again all of the alternate takes are minus the chorus which was overdubbed before release.

03(3) - "I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW" - B.M.I. - 0:53
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Incomplete Take 3 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-35 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(4) - "I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 4 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-36 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

03(5) - "I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 330  - Master
Recorded: - July 17, 1958   - Overdubbed with chorus before release
Released: - November 12, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 309-B mono
I JUST THOUGHT YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW / IT'S JUST ABOUT TIME
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-12 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3
At this point in his career with Sun, Johnny Cash's sessions were in the hands of producers Jack Clement and Charlie Rich. Each has contributed a song here and, in Rich's case, the piano work as well. In fact, Charlie Rich's piano is the dominant force on "I Just Thought You'd Like To Know". Luther's guitar is barely audibly, and what there is of it has been co opted by the bass singer in the chorus. Thankfully, the choral overdub is restrained here, and the bleating soprano seems to have stayed home.

04(1) - "DOWN THE STREET TO 301" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-37 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

"Down The Street Of 301" was the last song Johnny Cash recorded for Sun Records and was not the best song to end his short career with the label. Written by Jack Clement it followed a similar theme to "Ballad Of A Teenage Queen" whilst not being in the same class as that particular track. The two takes, and false start, featured here are attempts at adding piano and there are noticeable differences in the style of playing and tempo of each version. They certainly benefit from the lack of the sugary vocal overdubs that ruined the released version.

04(2) - "DOWN THE STREET TO 301" - B.M.I. - 2:11
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - False Start & Complete Take 2 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - 2007
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16325-3-38 mono
JOHNNY CASH - THE SUN OUTTAKES

04(3) - "DOWN THE STREET TO 301" - B.M.I. - 2:02
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 405  - Master
Recorded: - July 17, 1958
Released: - July 14, 1960
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 45rpm standard single SUN 343-B mono
DOWN THE STREET TO 301 / THE STORY OF A BROKEN HEART
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15804-2-4 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 4

This contain some vintage Jack Clement material. Its apparent that had things worked out better, this song would have captured the momentum of "Teenage Queen" and taken Cash for a posthumous payday at Sun. But such things were not in the cards. Although the production is classic middle America-friendly Clement, the material just doesn't pack the punch of "Teenage Queen". The record caused barely a stir. Sadly, this title was the last thing Cash recorded for Sun before departing for greener pastures at Columbia Records.

When Johnny Cash recorded the last songs for Sun Records he probably hoped that they would never see the light of day and was probably upset to find new Sun singles being released around the same time as his own material for Columbia was being issued.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and Guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano
Johnny Cash's reasons for wanting to leave were complex. He probably saw a pact with Columbia as a hallmark of legitimacy. Columbia also offered him a chance to do a religious album, something Phillips resisted as strongly in 1958 as he had in 1954. The increased royalty was also undoubtedly a factor. A 5 percent royalty would have meant over ten thousand dollars additional income for Johnny Cash in the first six months of 1958 alone. Sam Phillips suggests another potential source of dissatisfaction: "I had given, Carl and Johnny, a lot of time, when they were, getting started. Then I gave Jerry Lee Lewis a lot of time, and they saw it as if we were petting Jerry Lee. They had forgotten that we had brought them along in the same way. They were young people and there was an awful lot of jealousy".

Although Columbia recorded Johnny Cash with the same instrumentation that Sam Phillips used at Sun Records, he never sounded quite as good again. Aberrations like "Teenage Queen" aside, Sam Phillips instinctively knew how to record Cash to minimize the group's shortcomings and take advange of their immense potential. "Luther was the vital player", Phillips contends. "He had real difficulty keeping time; he would lose time or completely mess up during a song, and Johnny would become upset. But I saw something in the plaintiveness of Luther's picking. I said, 'John, it's worth it, you know'. I wanted to make sure that we captured the Luther feel on records and then strengthen it with the slap bass and rhythm. For rhythm we just threaded a little paper through the neck of the guitar and we got a brush-and-snare-drum effect. It was good for Johnny to pick while he sang, because he was innately a high-energy person and he worked much better with that guitar in his hand. It was an energy release. I tried to make Johnny's voice outstanding. The three instruments complemented it. I didn't want anything to detract from the command that Johnny had with just the sound of his voice".

Memphis record producer Jim Dickinson has offered another insight into Phillips' work with Johnny Cash. "Sam told me that the key to producing Johnny Cash was to 'take it off Luther'. Luther was the brunt of all the jokes: if anyone made a mistake, they'd turn and blame it on Luther, which was not totally fair. Luther only played two strings, but he mostly had those covered. Sam said the pressure made Luther tense, and he said that all you had to do was to take that tension off Luther and you had Johnny Cash produced".

No artist, Johnny Cash included, is truly unique. Cash was obviously influenced by other singers who worked the low vocal range with minimal instrumental support, artists like Ernest Tubb and Jimmie Skinner. His increasingly aggressive rhythm guitar playing came from watching Elvis Presley. "Elvis had a good hard driving rhythm on the bass strings in the key of E", Cash told Bill Flanagan. "A good solid rhythm... That's where I was influenced to play that kind of rhythm".

The deadened bass string sound had also been used effectively on Hank Williams' recordings, although Williams had used fuller instrumentation. Cash's achievement was to meld these elements together, using songs that were both haunting and, for the greater part, original. The sun recordings maximized the effective contrast between the hustling rhythm of the bass and acoustic guitar and the ponderous, sparse vocals and lead guitar. Sam Phillips' achievement was to keep Johnny Cash's sound at its bare essentials, and then fatten it up with the use of slapback echo. Subsequent producers and engineers could never quite recapture that formula. Their echo lent distance rather than presence. Worse yet were the early stereo recordings at Columbia, whose primitive separation heightened the unfocused sound.

Johnny Cash's three years of recordings for Sun Records are a wonderful demonstration of just how far a whole can outclass the sum of its parts. Cash's limited vocals, Luther Perkins' woefully limited picking, and Marshall Grant's strictly functional bass playing jelled magically through Sam Phillips' mixing board to produce perhaps the most original and innovative sound in country music since Hank Williams died.

Following Cash's departure from Sun Records, and his signing to Columbia Records, in August 1958 Sun Records continued to release material, much of it stockpiled from the series of sessions held in late 1957- early 1958. Between November 1958 and November 1964 they issued six long play albums and several singles.

Seven days after his last session for Sun, Cash was in Nashville at the Bradley Barn Film & Recording Studio laying his first recordings for his new label.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

JULY 1958

According to Barbara Barnes, ''By July, even though I had been associated with Sun Records only a year, I  felt as if those of who worked had established real bonds. I looked forward to seeing everyone each day  because the people were all my friends and the mix was entertaining. Among the many who drifted in, there  where those whose presence was consistent. I could always count on Regina Reese for companionship and  gossip at lunch. Jack Clement was a continual source of entertainment and fun. Bill Justis's wry commentary  on current happenings were amusing. And we tried to help each other in small ways, as Bill Justis did once  when I commented that I couldn't get through to our TV host, Wink Martindale'', she said.

Wink Martendale's show, the ''Top Ten Dance Party'', aired on WHBQ-TV in Memphis. His looks fir the  Dick Clark stereotype perfectly, earnest wide-set eyes, perfect teeth, and a voice that oozed confidence and  warmth. Wink also had wavy hair with a bit of a receding hairline, leaving a nice widow's peak. He had come  up through radio, starting in his hometown of Jackson, Tennessee. Like Carl Perkins, he had worked for  Aaron Robinson's Dixie network station, in their case WDXI in Jackson. Wink, short for Winston, hooked up  in Memphis with promoter and former Elvis manager Bob Neal, and sometimes was the emcee for his Stars  Inc. live shows that often featured Sun artists.

Then says Barbara, ''I couldn't understand why I could get through to similar dance-show hosts coast to coast  but couldn't get Wink on the phone to ask him to play our records. When I mentioned this to Bill, he said,  ''Oh, you want to talk to Mr. Ho-Hum? We could take Winkie out to lunch, I'll ask him''. Bill's name was  known to Wink, so he took the call and accepted Bill's invitation. He even offered to pick us up at the  studio''.

''I dressed up for the occasion, even donning what she thought was a smart white feathered hat. Bill as usual  had something ironic to say. ''B.B., what have you got on your head? It looks like a frustrated chicken''. But  these little jibes were endearing, no malice there, just letting me know he noticed'', she said.

''Things got off to a good start with my admiring Wink's shiny Thunderbird and congratulating him on his  high ratings in the market. But I put my foot in my mouth by sating that, after all my attempts to reach him, it  was good to meet him. I didn't say it sarcastically, but he immediately clouded with anger. He demanded, ''Is  that what you tell Sam Phillips''? Apparently, Sam's opinion was significant to him. Bill Justis leapt in with a  witticism that smoothed the situation. But I never felt comfortable approaching Wink after that, and soon he left Memphis for Los Angeles and bigger things at KJH. I did give him a couple of plugs in future  newsletters, once noting that his record, ''Deck Of Cards'', had made it to number 7 on the Billboard charts'',  Barbara said.
 JULY 18, 1958 FRIDAY

Bud Hobbs dies of a heart attack at age 38 in Bakersfield, California. The leader of a dance band, The Trailer Herders, he earned three country hits during the prior decade.

JULY 19, 1958 SATURDAY

Jimmie Rodgers joins Georgia Gibbs as guests on NBC's ''The Bob Crosby Show''.

JULY 21, 1958 MONDAY

Warner Bros. Records takes out its first ad in a trade magazine, billing itself as ''the first name in sound''. The company eventually released albums by Randy Travis, Faith Hill, Hank Williams Jr. and Blake Shelton.

Columbia released Charlie Walker's ''Pick Me Up On Your Way Down''.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR SONNY BURGESS & BILLY RILEY
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: TUESDAY JULY 22, 1958
SESSION FILED SATURDAY AUGUST 30, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

Back at Sun, Riley soon defined the groove in which he remained for the balance of his tenure at the label. He cut the occasional single under his own name and worked countless sessions in support of other artists. One of his appearances as a sessionman was on the last single of Sonny Burgess cut on Sun although Burgess - like Riley - would return after testing the waters elsewhere).

"They'd called us", remembers Sonny Burgess, "and told us that we needed to cut something, so we cut six or seven different songs, which is where a lot of those out-takes come from. There were a few instrumentals doing well then, so we came up with "Itchy", which was the slow one. Riley came in after we'd worked it up and put a harmonica on it".

Jack Clement, Billy Riley, and Sonny Burgess were sitting around the Sun studio and the wine was flowing. We can only surmise from the title that it wasn't an important Chardonnay. (Thunderbird was available in supermarkets in quart bottles for under a dollar in 1958). Jimmy Van Eaton and Charlie Rich, rarely an abstainer in those bygone days, joined them for the session. Riley provided the harp; Clement the bass, and Burgess the stinging guitar solos.

01 – "ITCHY" - B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: - Jack Clement-Billy Riley-Albert "Sonny" Burgess
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 321  - Master
Recorded: - July 22, 1958
Released: - August 10, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 304-A mono
ITCHY / THUNDERBIRD
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-1 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Billy Riley is featured on what is probably his strongest instrument, harmonica. On "Itchy" he exhibits a fair amount of Little Walter's influence while Burgess' guitar work on sections of the more laid back "Thunderbird" (named after the wine that flowed during the sessions) is somewhat reminiscent of Link Wray's "Rumble".

"Every session we got drunk", asserted Riley to Bill Millar. "It was fun getting in there and getting drunk. Sam usually got tight with us. We had respect for each other, but we never did get along too well. I didn't appreciate the lack of promotion, but I appreciated his talent. He knew I had the band that could work with anybody, and he needed us".

Things sound pretty spontaneous and chaotic here, except for the fact that two sessions were actually held during the summer of '58, about a month apart. The master versions of "Itchy" and "Thunderbird" were recorded during July. Billboard was pretty impressed with both sides of this outing by "the Burgess combo" and cautioned to "Watch this one. Either side can click". It was wonderful advice but, unfortunately, a poor prophecy.

02 – "THUNDERBIRD" - B.M.I. - 2:18
Composer: - Jack Clement-Billy Riley-Albert "Sonny" Burgess
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 320  - Master
Recorded: - July 22, 1958
Released: - August 10, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 304-B mono
THUNDERBIRD / ITCHY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-2 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

There is some diversity of opinion as to who played on the session, depending on whom you ask. Billy Lee Riley will have it that it was Jimmy Wilson on piano and Jack Clement on bass, Burgess will tell you that it was Charlie Rich on piano, Johnny Hubbard on bass and additionally J.C. Caughron on guitar. The Sun Files   lives the line-up as Rich, Clement and Van Eaton as well as of course Riley and Burgess.
 
This instrumental has been issued in the past both as ''Thunderbird'' and as ''Itchy''. Jack Clement said the original issued version on Sun 304 had been reversed at pressing stage. Sonny Burgess says not and that ''Thunderbird'' is the fater of the two tunes.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Sonny Burgess - Guitar
Billy Riley - Harmonica
Johnny Hubbard or Jack Clement - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson or Charlie Rich - Piano
J.C. Caughron - Guitar

Its true that "Raunchy" had sold well for Sam Phillips and Duane Eddy was in the charts, but "Itchy" and "Thunderbird" were a fair distance from anything that was getting airplay in the Fall of 1958. Incidentally, "Thunderbird" was not a tribute to the automobile so much as the cheap wine that flowered freely at the session.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

JULY 24, 1958 THURSDAY

Johnny cash recorded ''What Do I Care'' in his first Columbia recording session in Nashville, at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio.

JULY 27, 1958 SUNDAY

Pop and country star Sheb Wooley performs ''The Purple People Eater'' on CBS-TV's ''The Ed Sullivan Show''.

JULY 29, 1958 TUESDAY

Johnny and Vivian Cash have their third daughter, Cindy Cash, in Memphis.

JULY 30, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Neal McCoy is born in Jacksonville, Texas. Known for such mid-1990s recordings as ''No Doubt About It'' and ''Wink'', he garners more acclaim for his energetic stage show, earning Entertainer of the Year twice in the TNN/Music City News awards.
 

 
AUGUST 1958
 

AUGUST 1958

When ''Itchy''/''Thunderbird'' came out in August 1958 it was clear which title went which instrumental. ''Itchy'' was the slow side and ''Thunderbird'' (named after the rotgut wine that flowed freely in the studio) was the rocker. After 50 years of reissues, the titling has occasionally gotten confused after Jack Clement said that the titles had been reversed on the original 45s. There's no need for confusion any more. According to Mr. Albert E. Burgess of Newport, Arkansas. ''Itchy''. We recorded that one first. Got a nice bluesy feel on it. Then we did the fast one, ''Thunderbird''. But ''Itchy'' is the slow one. Don't let anybody tell you different''. And there, for the ten of you who still care, is the final word on Sun 304.

AUGUST 1958

Sam Phillips' brother, Jud Phillips, left Sun Records to start Judd Records, although he took   over Jerry Lee Lewis' management from Oscar Davis early in 1959.   After sets up the Judd Records   label, among the 1959 signees are Ray Smith, Roland Janes and Gene Simmons. The label shows offices in New York, Hollywood, and Muscle Shoals. Two months later, Cecil Scaife is hired as Sales Manager, to replace Jud Phillips.

According to Bill Justis, ''One day, just prior to that, Sam came in; Jack and I were working and Sam said, 'Well, boys, I'm a millionaire', and I think that from that day on he wasn't so interest. He had radio stations, lead mines and good accountants. The releases got more and more scare. I think Sam was worried that the musicians were getting too expensive and there were a lot of tirades, although financially he was in good shape. The first break-up in the Sun structure was about six months before Jack Clement and I left. In the fall of 1958 Jud Phillips had a break-up with Sam and started managing Jerry Lee Lewis full-time. Jud had been Sun's promotion man for some time and he deserves a lot of credit for the development of the company. He and Sam were usually at each other's throats... they really had it going. But Jud picked up on Jerry Lee and he really did some fantastic promotion work. He altered the shipments from 30,000 a month in 1957 to hundreds of thousands. It it hadn't been for Jud Phillips, Sun would never have taken off at all. Talent alone is no use. You can't make anything unless you have the promotion right. Sun just didn't promote well. I felt real sorry for Cecil Scaife who was promotion manager after Jud and for Bill Fitzgerald who took over from Sam. They both tried real hard but they had nothing to back them up. Sam had no interest. When you had Sam who was an Ebenezer Scrooge type and Jud who was lighting cigars with dollar bills then it just kinda didn't work out''.

AUGUST 1958

A touching footnote to Sam Phillips' association with Elvis Presley came immediately after  the death of Elvis Presley's mother in August 1958. It showed that Phillips the rural  Southerner could approach Presley on a level that Colonel Parker and his other handlers  never could.

''I called out to Presley's house one day just after his mother died'', recalled Phillips. ''Vernon  Presley told me that there was a problem, that Elvis wanted to go to the funeral home with  his mother's body for the embalming. He didn't want to let her go.

''I went out there with Dewey Phillips and I stayed all night. Elvis was with his mother, who  was laid out, and he wouldn't leave her. After a time I persuaded him to come to the kitchen  and we sat down and I just listened to him. He knew I wasn't going to give him any damn  bullshit or try to make him artificially feel good about it. I just explained explained exactly  what the mortician's field of work was, and I got him to accept what was right and proper  and what the undertaker had to do now. Elvis kept talking abut the body and how he didn't  want to give it up to anyone else.

''I eventually got Elvis away from the casket and we sat down by the pool. I'll never forget  the dead leaves by the pool. I was able to convince him that he should let his mother go. I  knew just enough to know which part of him to touch and in what way''.

Phillips' earlier training as a country mortician served him well that night by the pool at  Graceland. Like Presley, Phillips had just made the quantum leap from borderline poverty to  affluence. Phillips understood why Gladys Presley kept chickens in the gardens at Graceland.  He understood the poor white ethos of the South because he, like Presley, had been born of  it. To Phillips, there was nothing odd in Presley's behavior; that is why he was able to  approach him on a level that few others - certainly not those who saw him simply as a meal  ticket - ever could.

The stop leaves an imponderable question: What would have happened if Sam Phillips had  retained a role in Presley's career? Could he have arrested the sad decline on either a  musical or personal level?

Sun 302 ''The Ways Of A Woman In Love'' b/w ''You're The Nearest Thing To Heaven'' by Johnny Cash released.


Phillips International promo sheet, 1958 >

AUGUST 1958

Radio-TV Mirror Magazine published an add with photo that read:


ONE OF THE OUTSTANDING MELODY GROUPS OF 1958

Pictured from left to right, Ed Thomas, Jr., a 1958 Notre Dame graduate, who has composed  and recorded several hit songs, one of which was their own recording, "I'm On My Way  Home". He plays the piano. Next is their sister, Barbara, who helps in the background along  with Ed. Cliff Thomas, a senior in high school, does the solo vocal and plays the guitar.

They have appeared on the popular TV program Dick Clark's American Bandstand.
Don Law and Johnny Cash review some hymns to record at Columbia 1958 >

AUGUST 1958

In any case, Sam Phillips sat down in his little studio on Union Avenue, probably poured  himself a few more drinks, and started playing through all the sessions he had on Gene  Simmons and company. That means he heard everything we can hear on all the Gene  Simmons sessions and a few more alternates to boot.

And behold, Sam decided it was time to  release a Gene Simmons record on Sun. He decided that the best of the lot was a coupling of  "Drinkin' Wine" and "I Done Told You".

The next day, Gene was called in to sign a contract (it's  notable that all of of this recording had been done without one). Next, the sides were  mastered and 45rpm stampers were ordered. And, thus, SUN 299 was born. The trouble is,  of course, it was born about a year and a half after it was conceived and the outside world,  at least the music business part of it, has changed a lot in that time.

And so Sun and Sam release a single they have precious little chance of selling. Not  surprisingly, it stiffed in the marketplace, receiving virtually no airplay and selling most of  its initial pressing locally, where Gene Simmons had a solid fan base born of regular personal  appearances. Years later, collectors discovered and admired it for the treasure it is. Its  original release number, SUN 299 (released August 5, 1958), was something of a statement:  It was the last of the 200s, the golden era of rockabilly. The 300 series, while surely  including some good releases, reflects the toning down of popular music. More and more,  saxes are in, stinging guitars are out. Worst yet, 'softening' is in - the dreaded Gene Lowery  Singers will bring their shrieking wares to the party as Sun attempts to remain competitive in  the marketplace. Had "Drinkin' Wine" been released when it was made, it would have borne  a number close to SUN 255. That would have made much more sence.

AUGUST 1, 1958 FRIDAY

Johnny Cash sign an recording contract and became a Columbia Records artist. Sam Phillips  placed advertisement in the trade papers assuring deejays and distributors that he had  sufficient Cash product to keep the pipeline full for at least two years. In fact, prodigious  recycling by both Phillips and Shelby Singleton ensured that no-one would ever want for one  of Cash's Sun sides again.
Margaret Ann Rich >

AUGUST 1958
 
Charlie Rich might never have recorded for Sun were it not for two events, both beyond his  control. First, Johnny Cash announced his imminent departure. That spelled the end of one  of Rich's (and Sun's) meal tickets. Rich had placed his songs with Cash during the final  months of his tenure at Sun. Cash would plainly be recording his own material when he  began his career at Columbia.

Rich's second gold mine, Jerry Lee Lewis, had just returned  from England in disgrace, and, with radio plays drastically curtailed, was no longer a prime  target for pitching original material. It was starting to appear that Rich would have to look  elsewhere to find a recording artist worthy of his compositions.

The obvious candidate was staring Charlie Rich in the mirror. It was plain that his talent  extended beyond the jazz tunes of his club dates. Everyone seemed enthusiastic about the  idea except Rich himself.
 
And his reluctance had little to do with the recording studio. The  last thing on earth Charlie Rich wanted was to go on the road, appear on television, have to  face hordes of screaming fans and sing his records over and over. He was simply terrified. He  was also a grown man having to tell his wife, his colleagues and his ''boss'', if that's what Sam  Phillips was, that he harbored such childish fears. Put this in context: there was a lineup of  rockabilly wannabees at Sun's doorstep, pleading for the opportunity that Charlie Rich was  doing everything in his power to sidestep.

Finally, in August, 1958, having squandered every excuse he could muster, Charlie Rich  entered the studio to record his own debut single. What Rich lacked in ambition, his wife  Margaret Ann could more than provide. She co-wrote one side of his single, ''Philadelphia  Bay'' as an investment in stardom.

''I wanted to get Charlie on 'Bandstand' and I figured that song just might do it''. (Dick Clark's  influential TV show American Bandstand' was broadcast each afternoon from Philadelphia).  ''Charlie actually got the booking and we were all quite excited about it. Charlie was very  nervous but we kept telling him that all he had to do was lipsynch the vocals. The day he  was scheduled to appear there was some kind of tragedy and they canceled the show. He  ended up not going on. I can't remember what happened, but I do recall being very  disappointed''.

No one remembers why 'Bandstand' was pre-empted that day, but Charlie made his way to  'Bandstand' almost a year later when he was promoting ''Lonely Weekends'' (See Video Clips),  and his appearance was every bit as nerve wracking as anticipated. Charlie's performance  was flawless, thanks to the miracle of lip synching, but the brief interview between Charlie  and Dick Clark that followed consisted mainly of the host asking painfully simple questions  and Charlie perspiring profusely. Stan Kenton never suffered so much for his art.

AUGUST 2, 1958 SATURDAY

Pre-dating his country hit ''Old Rivers'' by four years, Walter Brennan occupies the cover of TV Guide.

AUGUST 3, 1958 SUNDAY

Cindy Nixon is born in Nashville. She becomes a member of The Girls Next Door, a female quartet that reaches the Top 10 in 1986 with ''Slow Boat To China'', released on Mary Tyler Moore's MTM label.

AUGUST 5, 1958 TUESDAY

The Louvin Brothers recorded the original version of ''If I Could Only Win Your Love'' in Nashville. The song goes on to become a hit for Emmylou Harris.

Songwriter Tim Nichols is born in Portsmouth, Virginia. Among his credits, Keith Whitley's ''I'm Over You'', Chris Young's ''The Man I Want To Be'', Dustin Lynch's ''Cowboys And Angels'' and Tim McGraw's ''Live Like You Were Dying''.

AUGUST 8, 1958 FRIDAY

Carl Perkins performed at the Annual Festival for the Southeast Missouri Farmers and Merchants Association at the Old High Gymnasium in Hornersville, Missouri. Also on the bill were Bud Deckelman, Charlie Feathers, Sun recording star Jimmy Haggett. Special guest of recording fame, such as Jimmy Edwards, Barbara Pittman, and Jody Chastain.

Buck Trent has a son, Charlie Trent.

Johnny Cash recorded ''All Over Again'' and ''Frankie's Man' Johnny'' in Nashville at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio.

Elvis Presley, living in Killeen, Texas, while with the Army puts his ill mother on a train for Memphis. She enters the hospital the next day.

Bing Crosby, who earned a country hit in 1944 with ''Pistol Packin' Mama'', has a son, Harry Crosby, in Hollywood. It's his first child with second wife Kathy Crosby.

The Louvin Brothers begin three days of sessions for the gospel album ''Satan Is Real''. Cut the first day is ''The Angels Rejoiced Last Night'' destined to be remade by Dolly Parton and Sonya Isaacs for ''Livin', Lovin', Losin', ''Songs Of The Louvin Brothers''.

AUGUST 9, 1958 SATURDAY

Bluegrass musician Frank ''Hylo'' Brown recorded his self-titled debut album for Capitol Records at the Bradley Recording Studio in Nashville.

George Hamilton IV guests on ''The Bob Crosby Show'' on NBC-TV, along with Edgar Bergen and The Andrew Sisters.
 

AUGUST 10, 1958 SUNDAY

The single ''Itchy'' b/w ''Thunderbird'' (Sun 304) by Sonny Burgess is released. 

AUGUST 11, 1958 MONDAY

Ferlin Husky recorded ''My Reason For Living''.

Elvis Presley's ''Hard Headed Woman'' is certified gold.

AUGUST 12, 1958 TUESDAY

Faron Young recorded ''That's The Way I Feel'', written by George Jones and Roger Miller, at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville.

Stonewall Jackson recorded ''Why I'm Walkin''' and ''Life To Go''.

Waylon Jennings' second child, Julie Rae, is born.

Elvis Presley leaves basic training in Killeen, Texas, to see his mother in the hospital in Memphis. Gladys Presley is suffering from an undiagnosed liver ailment, and dies two days later.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR LOUIE ROBERTSON
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: TUESDAY AUGUST 12, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

Child prodigies surfaced with a determined regularity when rock and roll was taking its first unsure breaths and Little Louie Robertson was the token boy wonder at Sun. A talented keyboard player, he was fresh out of Alabama and debuted in 1959 on Temple Records with The Del Rays - a sizeable combo that spawned most of Muscle Shoals' finest session men. "I'm Gonna Rock" comes from one of five pilot sessions cut at 706 Union with his schoolboy buddy, Travis Wammack, on guitar.

01 - "I'M GONNA ROCK" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Eddie Bond
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - August 12, 1958
Released: - 1985
First appearance: – Redita Records (LP) 33rpm Redita 125-8 mono
ROCK 'N' FEVER
Reissued: - 2002 Sanctuary Records (CD) 500/200rpm FBUBX002-5-16 mono
50 GOLDEN YEARS 1952 - 2002

02 - "ROCK MY BLUES AWAY''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 12, 1958

03 - "IT WAS A TEARDROP''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 12, 1958

04 - "TEENAGE DOLL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 12, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Louie Robertson - Vocal and Piano
Travis Lavoid Wammack - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

 
Larry Donn Gillihan, at future mother-in-law Ruth Sandefer's house, in Bono, Arkansas about to leave to go perform at the Craighead County Fair, 1957 >

In an interview Larry Donn recalled, ''In September 1957, I met Billy Riley when his band, The Little Green  Men, performed at the Craighead County Fair in Jonesboro, Arkansas, about 9 miles from Bono, Arkansas.  Because my cousin was Riley's neighbor, he and I became good friends. My band and I did an album with  him for Mojo Records in 1979. I played piano and assisted in the production''.

''After I met Riley, I began  singing his songs. The first rock and roll song I say was "Pearly Lee". I sang it at a party and the girls went  wild! I decided then and there that I would do rock and roll from then on. I began to do all rock and roll and  rockabilly in our shows around Northeast Arkansas and Southeast Missouri. For the next few years I was  heavily influenced by Elvis, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Billy Lee Riley, Roy Orbison, Jerry lee Lewis,  Sonny Burgess, Warren Smith and Ricky Nelson.

 
In early 1958, I say in with Bobby Brown and The Curios  at a local club. They were from St. Louis and had been playing in our local area for a few weeks. Bobby was  originally from Arkansas, but had moved to St. Louis several years before. He and I became good friends,  and when my band broke up later that year, I joined his band as bass player. Soon afterwards, Bobby booked  a tour of Canada, and since all musicians had to be over 21, I could not go because I was only 17. After  Bobby left for Canada, Benny, Scotty, and I got back together, and we were joined by Sam Creason, who is  now drummer for Kris Kristofferson. Late that year, we were invited by Billy Lee Riley to go to Sun Records  in Memphis and record. We recorded "That's What I Call A Ball" in the old Sun studio at 706 Union. A  second song was also recorded, but we decided it was not good enough to release, so we went home with  plans to write more songs and finish the record later''.
Larry Donn, 1958 >

And then in the summer of 1958 and according to Larry Donn, ''I hitch-hiked back to Memphis, 65 miles   southeast of Bono, and went to the Sun Studio again to see Billy Lee Riley. Unfortunately, he was out of   town that day, but hadn't told anyone at the studio that he wouldn't be in. Bill Justis was there, and he   suggested that I wait a while, that Riley would probably be coming in before noon, or shortly after. We called   his home, but got no answer''.

''During my wait, I helped Bill fix a loose tile in the floor of the outer office.   Shortly before noon, Johnny Cash, Luther Perkins and Marshall Grant came in. A few minutes later, Justis   turned on the speaker in the office, and I heard "Down The Street To 301", and "Forty Shades of Green".

''I  did not know if it was an actual session, or merely a playback from a previous session, but they played both   songs several times. Later that afternoon, I decided Riley wasn't going to show up, so I left about 3:00pm and   hitch-hiked back to Bono, Arkansas''.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR LARRY DONN
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
STUDIO SESSION: WEDNESDAY AUGUST 13, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER – BILLY RILEY

Larry Donn recorded ''That's What I Call A Ball'', but the second song was several steps removed from the   "greatest" category, and after a couple of cuts, Billy Riley told them to go write another song as good as the   first and Sun would release the record. For one reason or another, they didn't pursue it. Billy Lee has since   told that they rarely erased tapes with finished cuts, so it's possible that the cut of "That's What I Call A Ball"   is still in existence somewhere in the boxes of old Sun tapes. 

01 - ''THAT'S WHAT I CALL A BALL'' - B.M.I.
Composer: - Richard Manning
Publisher: - Arva Music - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 13, 1958

''That's What I Call A Ball'' was written by Richard Manning, who also played piano on Bobby Lee   Trammell's ''Arkansas Twist''. He now lives in Williford, Arkansas, which is near Hardy in the "foothills" of   the Ozarks. Musicians are Richard and Jimmie Coleman on guitar; Gary Creason on drums; Jay Arnold on  upright bass and Larry, were trying to come up with some songs a session at Sun, which was to be produced   by Billy Lee Riley. They band went through a couple of mine, which gave everybody a good laugh, then  Richard told to get out and he would write something. They were rehearsing in a back room at Jimmie's  house in Jonesboro, Arkansas, at 2209 Circle Drive. It was about eight o'clock on a Saturday morning on   August 13, 1958, and they were due at Sun with two good songs at eleven. It took Richard about fifteen   minutes to write it, and another ten to write one called ''Molly-O'', both on an unlined blue writing pad with a   blue ball-point pen. According to Larry Donn, he still have both originals.

02 - ''MOLLY-O'' - B.M.I.
Composer: - Richard Manning
Publisher: - Arva Music - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 13, 1958

Possible more tracks were recorded

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Larry Donn - Vocal, Piano & Guitar
Probably Richard Coleman - Guitar
Probably Jimmie Coleman - Guitar
Probably Gary Creason - Drums
Probably Jay Arnold - Upright Bass

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

AUGUST 14, 1958 THURSDAY

August brought sad news to those of the Sun Records family who had been a part of the launch of Elvis  Presley as the hottest young entertainer in America. Elvis Presley's mother, Gladys, died on this day, bringing  the young star loss that haunted him during his own short life. Gladys was only forty-six when she died, but  she had been in poor health for a long time.

Elvis was in Memphis on emergency leave from Fort Hood when she passed away, but had gone home from  the hospital to Graceland for a short rest. From the time he received the call about his mother's death, Elvis  was beside himself with grief. This news was brought to Sun by some buddies who had been with him at  Graceland. Far from respecting the family in their time of mourning, throngs gathered at Graceland,  Memphis Funeral Home, and Forest Hill Cemetery for a glimpse of Elvis and the events surrounding the  funeral and burial.

At home, Elvis found little consolation in the presence of the friends who gathered there. Sally Wilbourn  reported that Elvis's father, Vernon, had asked Sam Phillips to come and talk to Elvis. When it came time for  the body to be moved from Graceland for the funeral service, Elvis was so bereaved that he refused to let the  funeral home take Gladys casket. He had been sitting beside it in a state of near-paralysis for two days,  utterly desolate.

Sam’s early experience in Alabama working in a funeral home had prepared him for situations like this one.  Elvis trusted him, and Sam could be very persuasive. According to Sally, Sam talked with Elvis several hours  and finally convinced him to go to bed and rest to allow the body to be removed the next morning so that  services could be held as scheduled.

During the funeral and burial service, he struggled to accept that the great love of his life was gone. At the  interment, Cliff Gleaves told the Sun employees later, Elvis became very emotional when her casket was  lowered into the ground. He was near collapse, and they believed he would be the same again because his  mother's demise seemed more than he could bear.

AUGUST 15, 1958 FRIDAY

Release date of Jerry Lee Lewis' Sun 303 ''Break Up''/''I'll Make It All Up To You''.

Buddy Holly marries Maria Elena Santiago in Lubbock, two weeks after they met first.

Elvis Presley's mother, Gladys, is buried at Memphis' Forest Hill Cemetery.  Gladys funeral is held at 3:30pm. Elvis sobbed hysterically while Gladys' favourite gospel group, the Blackwood Brothers, performed at the service in the Memphis Funeral Home, and he was equally inconsolable at her Forest Hill Cemetery grave site, crying out, 'Oh God, everything I have is gone'. Elvis leans over the grave, crying out, inconsolably, 'Goodbye, darling, goodbye. I love you so much. You know how much I lived my whole life just for you'. The mourning continued through the next few days as Elvis was granted extended leave. Evidently his fans were grieving too, they sent him more than 100,000 cards and letters, around 500 telegrams, and more than 200 floral arrangements to express their sympathy for his loss.

AUGUST 16, 1958 SATURDAY

Pop singer Madonna is born in Bay City, Michigan. Coming to prominence via dance music in 1983, she's name-checked in Brooks and Dunn's 1993 country hit ''Rock My World (Little Country Girl)''.
 
AUGUST 1958

According to Barbara Barnes, ''Jud Phillips was in town, though I didn't know if he had come in for Mrs.  Presley's funeral or just to take a break from traveling, and when he came into the office, it was a chance for  me to find out what the plans were for a new artist I was particularly taken with''.

''Charlie Rich has been coming in a lot, writing for Cash. But I've heard him sing, and he sounds good to me.  If we got a strong record and you gave him a big push, I bet he could make it'', I said. I didn't add that I was  getting very worried about Cash, Lewis, and Orbison being either gone or commercial poison. How long  could the back catalog keep us afloat? Jud said, ''Sam doesn't want that. He doesn't want to promote him as  an artist. Charlie is a good songwriter and Sam wants him to concentrate on that''.

''Well, I can't see that he has to do just one or the other'', I objected. This sounded like Roy Orbison all over  again, I thought in disgust. ''I'm not too sold on him, either'', Jud said. ''I don't like his looks''. True, Charlie  didn't look like a teen idol exactly, rather brawny instead with a streak of white running through his hair. To  me, this was sort of romantic'', Barbara said.

Unfortunately, Jud wasn't going to be around to see if Charlie Rich could make it as an artist, because he and  Sam had a disagreement that led to his departure from Sun Records. Sam didn't say anything about it to me,  but Jud later told Barbara that he had asked Sam for the financial settlement they had agreed upon when he  went on the road, and Sam refused to pay him what Jud felt was due. ''Sam said I'd already spent my part'',  Jud avowed.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CHARLIE RICH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: SUNDAY AUGUST 17, 1958
PRODUCER - BILL JUSTIS AND/OR CHARLIE RICH
RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

With this recordings begins the recording career of Charlie Rich, one of the towering figures of contemporary popular music. Certainly there was no one recorded by Sam Phillips who equalled the musicianship of Rich. Whether as a jazz pianist, rockabilly or soul singer, Charlie Rich had no equals at Sun. Ironically, it was his multi-ranging talents that made it difficult to record or merchandize him in a consistent manner.

Charlie Rich had been working as a session pianist and house composer for several months when he began to receive pressure to record his own material. In truth, Rich would have been happy to contribute material and musicianship to other people's records, and never venture forth into the spotlight. But by August 1958, Rich finally entered the magical confines of 706 Union to produce his own release. The man who grew up listening to Stan Kenton found himself composing and singing a piece of teen fluff, consciously geared to Philadelphia in order to secure a gig on American Bandstand.

01(1) – "WHIRLWIND"* - B.M.I. - 2:07
Composer: - David Kelly
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 331 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - August 17, 1958
Released: - October 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3532-A mono
WHIRLWIND / PHILADELPHIA BABY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-11 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Hardly anyone outside of Memphis knew what they were dealing with here. That that sexy virily voice belonged to a guy who could also turn heads and hearts with his blues and soul vocals. And fewer yet had a clue that the driving piano work, especially audible on "Whirlwind", was performed by Charlie Rich himself. Within two more releases, the world would come to know a lot more about Charlie Rich.

01(2) – "WHIRLWIND" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - David Kelly
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Version - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - August 17, 1958
Released: - 1998
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-1-1 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

We can hear the original recording of this tune, before the sax and chorus were added on for single release. Even with the sax and voices, no one would have described this record as overproduced. But hearing just the tight little combo as it sounded at 706 Union Avenue on that for off day in August 1958 is a revelation.

03 - "PHILADELPHIA BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 332  - Master
Recorded: - August 17, 1958
Released: - October 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3532-B mono
PHILADELPHIA BABY - WIRLWHIND
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-12 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

On "Philadelphia", all things considered, the record ain't half bad. The instrumental work is solid, the drumming of Jimmy Van Eaton, yet again, is driving, the harmony vocal work is virile and - best of all - Rich demonstrates to an unsuspecting world that he is possessed of a fine, even startingly good, rockabilly voice. In fact, "another Elvis" was the phrase most often used by critics and disc jockeys to describe both sides of Rich's premier disc.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Charlie Rich - Vocal and Piano
Ronald Janes - Guitar
Billy Riley - Bass
J.M. Van Eaton - Drums

* - Overdubbed version for release with Martin Willis on Tenor Saxophone
Unknown Vocal Chorus

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


 
 
AUGUST 19, 1958 TUESDAY

Billy Riley and his band performed at the Overton Park Shell in Memphis, Tennessee. The Memphis  newspaper headline said: ''Crowd At Overton Hears Season's Final Musicale'' by reporter Ben S.  Parker.

An overflow crowd which spilled over the onto grass turned out last night for the final concert of the  11th season of free summer musicales at the Overton Park Shell. As usual, the last one was a jazz event,  with four local dance bands and combos giving their all.

On the program, in order of appearance, were hillburn ''Pappy'' Graves and his orchestra, Bob Taylor  and his orchestra, Billy Riley and his orchestra, and Colie Stoltz' orchestra. The evening included a  variety of popular music ranging from sentimental ballads to Dixieland, from rhumba to rock and roll.

AUGUST 20, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Using the pseudonym Simon Crum, Ferlin Husky recorded ''Country Music Is Here To Stay'' at the Bradley Recording Studio in Nashville, Tennessee.
 
Overton Park Shell program for August 19, 1958 concert >

Riley's group was responsible for most of the latter , and that seemed to be what the crowd came to   hear. This five-man combo practically tore the stage loose from its moorings, and took the audience   right along with it. Particularly popular was Jimmy Van Eaton, Riley's demon drummer.

Stoltz's widely-known dance orchestra also offered the crowd quite a bit of the kind of torrid tempos it   craved , plus a spot of variety in programming , Mary Martin was this orchestra's comely soloist.

''Pappy'' Graves' group got the program rolling, specializing in Dixieland and sweet music. He also   introduced ''for the first time'', as he said, a composition by Gwenn McEwen, his vocalist. Sung by   ''Pappy'', its title was ''Me Without You'', and was well received.

Bob Taylor and his four-man group brightened the remainder of the first half of the program with   varied rhythms and tempos.
 
 
Vincent E. Skillman, president of the Memphis Federation of Musicians,   was the evening's master of ceremonies. He sorta halfway promised another season of the popular, free  open-air concert next summer. They have been sponsored jointly by the Federation, with an assist   from the Recording Industry Trust Fund and the Memphis Park Commission.

AUGUST 23, 1958 SATURDAY

''Splish Splash'' singer Bobby Darin appears on the NBC summer replacement series ''The Bob Crosby Show''.

AUGUST 25, 1958 MONDAY

Patsy Cline has a daughter, Julia Dick.

Jimmy C. Newman recorded ''You're Makin' A Fool Out Of Me'' in an early-evening session at Nashville's Bradley Film and Recording Studio.

Don Gibson's ''Blue Blue Day'' ascends to number 1 on the Billboard country chart.

AUGUST 27, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Two days after the birth of daughter Julie, Patsy Cline writes about the experience to fan club president Treva Miller, ''I feel like a real woman now''.
 

 
 © - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR LOUIE ROBERTSON
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: SATURDAY AUGUST 21, 30, 31, &
SEPTEMBER 4, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

01 - "WHY GO ON?''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 21, 1958

02 - "ASHES OF LOVE''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 30, 1958

03 - "I'M GONNA ROCK
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 30, 1958

04(1) - "UNKNOWN INSTRUMENTAL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 30, 1958

04(2) - "UNKNOWN INSTRUMENTAL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 30, 1958

04(3) - "UNKNOWN INSTRUMENTAL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 30, 1958
 
05 - "IN YOUR OTHER LOVER'S ARM''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 31, 1958

06 - "PUT ME DOWN''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 31, 1958

07 - "WHITE SILVER SANDS
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 31, 1958

08 - "UNKNOWN INSTRUMENTAL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 31, 1958

09 - "FABULOUS''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958

Note: ''Fabulous'' recorded at the same time as the Ken Cook session of the same day. Possibly similiar personnel.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Louie Robertson - Vocal and Piano
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

 


 

 © - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR VERNON TAYLOR
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: WEDNESDAY AUGUST 27, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - BILL JUSTIS
 
Vernon Taylor doesn't get much respect as a Sun artist. His two Sun releases did not inspire many major reissue projects or invitations to European festivals. Taylor came a little too late and brought too little to the party (a tepid sax-based remake of ''Mystery Train'' wasn't likely to stir up the troops. Too bad some of the other titles he recorded were never released at the time. The verdict might have been different.

01 - ''YOUR LOVIN' MAN''
Composer: - Vernon Taylor
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 27, 1958

02 - ''TODAY IS A BLUE DAY''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - August 27, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Vernon Taylor - Vocal
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

 
 

The years have been kind of Roger Fakes.  He didn't belon g among the tortured souls who made so many of the recordings at Sun. He didn't see music as his one chance for deliverance from a bleakly predictable future on the farm or in the factory. He wasn't prone to crippling bouts of alcoholism or depression. Life held more.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR ROGER FAKES
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: THURSDAY AUGUST 28, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - BILL JUSTIS

01 - "SOMEHOW WE'LL FIND A WAY" - B.M.I. - 2:26
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - August 28, 1958
Released: - 1988
First appearance: - Sun England (LP) 33rpm LP 1036-11 mono
MORE SUNDOWN ROCKERS
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16210-8 mono
THAT'LL FLAT GIT IT - VOLUME 14

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roger Fakes - Vocal and Guitar
Sid Manker - Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano

''Sam Phillips had the unique ability to put people at their ease and get the best out of them'', Roger said in 1986. ''I respect him a lot for that''.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

Elvis Presley and Roger Fakes on stage at Russwood Park, Memphis, Tennessee, July 4, 1956, and Roger Fakes today >

THE STORY ABOUT ROGER FAKES - With just a little lack of luck, Roger Fakes (pronounced FAYkiss)   would not even have been at Elvis Presley's concert of July 4, 1956, in Russwood Park   in Memphis. Living at 219 Rose Road, Memphis, Tennessee, with just a little luck, he was   there and today he still has the diamond-laden ring he won from Elvis as an attendance   prize!

"I was dating a girl named Eleanor McGinnis at the time", Fakes recalls. "We were dating   fairly steady and we were going somewhere that night. It was the 4th of July. I don't recall   we had any place specific picket out. 
 
But a friend of Eleanor's Lynn Williams, had a bunch of   tickets to Elvis' concert. It was a charity event and Lynn's uncle, Jim Robinson, was a  charitable type person and had bought a block of tickets".

 
 
"A big group of us all went together. The seats we had were not exceptionally good. Elvis   sang on a stage out at about the picher's mound at Russwood. The place was packed. I had   no idea Elvis would be giving away a ring as an attendance prize during the concert".

When they announced it was time to draw for the main prize - Elvis' own diamond-studded   ring with the initials EP - one of the crowd poked the 17-year-old Fakes in the ribs and said,   "Better get out your ticket stub. You might win something". Roger Fakes retrieved the stub   from his shirt pocket and was amazed as Dewey Phillips began reading the lucky number 9-7-  3-6. Fakes held his breath. The rest of the numbers matched. He had won Elvis' ring.

"I went down on the stage and Elvis took the ring off his finger and gave it to me". "We   chatted for awhile and I told him I was a musician, too. And then I went back to my seat".   Fakes was attending East High School, the same school as actress Cybill Shepherd, who later   dated Elvis Presley.

"When I got to Memphis State, I wore the ring a lot", said Fakes. "I was a member of the   Epsilon Phichapter of Kappa Sigma fraternity. Wink Martindale was a fraternity brother of   mine, though he had graduated earlier. I would wear the ring and when people asked me   about it, I would either tell them the EP stood for Elvis Presley, or Epsilon Phi, depending on   the situation. It was kind of fun".

After a few years, the novelty of heaving Elvis' ring wore off and the ring went into   safekeeping. Now and then people still ask Fakes if he has the ring. He does. Some, including   his brother-in-law, Scott Fisher, who sometimes does Elvis impersonations for the fun of it at   private parties, have asked to borrow the ring. No doing! It it for sale?

"At the right price, yes", said Fakes. "The problem is, I don't have a fair way of evaluating   what it's worth. It's a nice ring. Heavy. Gold. It's got 17 nice little diamonds in it that form   the letters EP. In and of itself, it's not that valuable. The fact it was once Elvis' $600 ring   (1956 price) makes it valuable".

Roger Fakes had actually met Elvis before the concert. "We used to hang out at the old   Toddle House drive-in on Poplar Avenue", he recalls. "One night Elvis came in there on his   motorcycle. He was just becoming famous then. He didn't seem to be really taken with   himself. He got off his bike and visited with people. He seemed to be the most unassuming   guy in all the world".

Fact is, Elvis played a dance at the old Chisca Hotel one night and Fakes, a guitarist, sat in   with him on stage. "We used to sit in a lot in those days. Not anymore", said Fakes. Roger   Fakes just about appeared on Sun Records. He was part of a group called the Spinners that   sung on some Bill Justis cuts, included a vocal on "Midnight Man", on the flip-side of the Bill   Justis Sun hit, "Raunchy". In June 1957, Fakes, became a session guitarist at Sun Studio, and   Elvis by now at RCA, would come in to visit and chat. Fakes most memorable achievement at   Sun Records was a recording session at Sun with Sid Manker on guitar, Jimmy Wilson on   piano, Billy Riley on bass, and J.M. Van Eaton on drums. Fakes' "Somehow We'll Find A Way"   (Sun Unissued SUN BOX 106) are released in 1997 by Bear Family Records. Its not hard to tell   that rock and roll wasn't Fakes' first love. Harry Belafonte was his idol. Born in Little Rock,   Arkansas in 1938, Fakes moved to Memphis with his family at age 11.

Roger Fakes' singing career got off the ground when he appeared on Top Ten dance Party, a   television show hosted by the Memphis State University fraternity brother, Wink Martindale.   He soon gave up on music, though, "I didn't want to stay in it if I couldn't be as successful as   possible", he said in 1986. "I looked at where I wanted to be in the long term, and music   didn't fit in with my goals".

Roger Fake became vice-president of a company that sells and services washing machines.   "I've no regrets", he said. "I play the Hammond organ at home and sing at church. That's as   close as I want to be to the music business".

Looking back, on July 4, 1956, on Independence Day, he says, "At that time, the ring fit my   ring finger. Now, it's too small for my ring finger; too loose for my little finger".

Elvis Presley spent the remainder of July enjoying a well-deserved vacation. Much of the   time, he relaxed in and around Biloxi, Mississippi. He renewed his romance with June   Juanico, whom he had met when he performed in Biloxi in June 1955.
 


AUGUST 28, 1958 THURSDAY

Olympic skater Scott Hamilton is born in Bowling Green, Ohio. He appears in 2005 in the background chorus on Brad Paisley's hit ''Alcohol''.

AUGUST 29, 1958 FRIDAY

Michael Jackson is born in Gary, Indiana. He recorded the pop hit ''She's Out Of My Life'', which becomes a country duet for Johnny Duncan and Janie Fricke. Jackson also co-writes and helps organise the sessions for USA For Africa's ''We Are The World''.

AUGUST 31, 1958 SATURDAY

Jim Reeves and Bill Haley are featured on ''The Dick Clark Show'' on ABC-TV.
 

 
SEPTEMBER 1958
 

SEPTEMBER 1958

After the payment-break on September 21, 1957 with Elvis Presley, Scotty Moore and Bill Black went their  separate ways, though they stayed in close contact and occasionally worked together on recording projects.  With the newly formed Memphis label Hi Records, a Memphis soul and rockabilly label started in 1957 by  singer Ray Harris, record store owner Joe Cuoghi, Bill Cantrell and Quinton Claunch (formerly producers for  Sun Records), and three silent partners, including Cuoghi's lawyer, Nick Pesce, just getting off the ground.

Payroll checks for Scotty Moore and Reggie Young at Fernwood Records. (1) >

Bill started spending time at the label's headquarters and his recording studio named Royal Recording at  1320 South Lauderdale Street. While doing session work with guitarist Reggie Yound, he often expressed  resentment about the treatment he had received from Elvis. He told Reggie that toward the end of their  association with Elvis, he and Scotty were told not to talk to the star, except onstage.

For the first week after Elvis left, Scotty drew unemployment. Then he entered into a partnership with  Roland ''Slim'' Wallace, the truck driver with whom Jack Clement had built end 1955 a garage studio named  Fernwood Records. ''Slim had two or three microphones and a little mono tape recorder'', says Scotty. ''I took  a few pieces of gear out and we started recording this and that''.

''One day, Thomas Wayne Perkins, Scotty's former paperboy at his old Belz Street address, asked him if he  could stop by the house and audition for him. Perkins's brother, Luther, was the guitarist in the Johnny Cash  Band, so Scotty thought it was worth a listen. The youngster, still a senior in high school, was so nervous  when he arrived at Scotty's house that he sat on Bobbie's glass-topped coffee table and broke it. When he  sang, Scotty liked what he heard, broken glass and all.

Scotty Moore worked with Perkins at Fernwood, but their first demos attracted no interest from the major  labels. At one point, he and Wallace thought Mercury Records was interested in Perkins, but for some reason  a deal never materialized. Without Scotty's wife Bobbie's job at Sears, they would been destitute that  summer. ''I don't remember if Bill had a day job or not, but we were both scratching to stay afloat'', says  Scotty. His work at Fernwood wasn't bringing in much money, but it helped him to keep the faith. Sooner or  later something would break in his favor, he was certain of that.

One day Scotty Moore was walking along the street when he ran into Gerald Nelson, a disc jockey from  Kentucky. They had met some time back in concert. Gerald told Scotty that he and Fred Burch, a college  student, had written a song titled ''Tragedy''. Fred had snatched the title from a course he was taking on  Aristotelian tragedies. Gerald said he had played the song for Chet Atkins, who had told him it sounded like  a hit, but was not a song he could do anything with in Nashville because it wasn't country enough.  Encouraged by Atkin's assessment of the song's potential, they had driven to Memphis, to the very cradle of  rock and roll. ''We played it for Sam Phillips'', says Gerald, ''but he said he couldn't use it either''. As Scotty  stood on the sidewalk and listened, Gerald sang the song to him, playing the music on his ukulele. Scotty  loved it. He told Gerald he knew just the guy to sing it: Thomas Wayne Perkins. Fred and Gerald felt so  encouraged by Scotty's reaction, they moved to Memphis to begin new careers as songwriters.

Unhappy with the technical limitations of Fernwood's garage studio, Scotty looked for a better place to  record songs. In exchange for studio time at Hi Records' studio, Gerald sang background on one of their  sessions. When they went in to record Thomas Wayne's session, they discovered the studio had installed new  equipment; the studio was going to use them as guinea pigs to test the new machine. Thomas Wayne brought  three girls from his high school, his girlfriend and her two friends, to sing background. Scotty and Bill were  the only musicians.

''It was the first time (the tape machine) was used'', says Fred Burch. ''They couldn't get it to work. Finally,  someone licked it and got it going. They cut the song three times and ended up using the first cut. There was  no echo in the studio, so they took the tape to WMPS radio, where they had two Ampex machines.

Using the technique he learned from Sam for adding ''slapback'' to record, Scotty recorded a simultaneous  dub on a master tape at the radio station. This time, instead of offering it to a major label, they put the record  out on Fernwood Records. The A-side was an uptempo song written by Nelson-Burch ''Saturday Date'', the  B-side was Tragedy''.

When ''Saturday Date'' was released in September, it had little impact on radio. But because Scotty believed  in the record, he kept pushing it well into the spring of 1959. Finally, lightning struck. A disc jockey in  Kentucky flipped the record and started playing the B-side in heavy rotation. As a result, phone requests for  ''Tragedy'' started flooding into the radio station. Before Scotty knew what had happened, he had a hit record.
With its understated instrumentation and lush background vocals, Thomas Wayne's macho-breathless  baritone carried the song. ''Tragedy'' was one of those 1950s-type ballads that never failed to get dancers hot  and bothered. It was a Memphis thing; a song written by novices barely old enough to vote, sung by the  producer's former paperboy, with background vocals provided by high school girls, recorded on bartered  studio time. It was the stuff of Which Memphis magic was made.

Payroll checks for Scotty Moore and Reggie Young at Fernwood Records. (2) >

''It was like it happened overnight'', Scotty says. ''We didn't have a dime to promote it'' As the orders started  coming in, they hired a national promotion man, Stevie Brodie of Buffalo, New York, to push the record. ''He  said, 'I can make this a big hit', so we paid him a nickel a record''.

Scotty Moore and Slim Wallace added a third partner, Memphis attorney Robert Buckalew. Their most  immediate problem was getting large orders of record pressed.
 
 
Working together, Buckalew and Brodie  persuaded record pressing plants to give them sixty days credit, since they knew it would be at least that long  before the money started trickling in. Once that happened, Brodie started working the song on radio,  beginning with his hometown of Buffalo. As it climbed the charts there, he focused his attention on larger  markets.

By March, ''Tragedy'' had risen to number 8 on the national charts, making it a million-seller. Ironically,  without trying to compete with Sun Records, Scotty had stolen its thunder. Before ''Tragedy'' hit, only three  records recorded in Memphis had ever scored higher on the pop charts, and they were all Sun releases: Jerry  Lee Lewis's ''Great Balls Of Fire'' and ''Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On'', and Carl Perkins's ''Blue Suede  Shoes''.

Trying only to stay afloat, Scott had made history and a few bucks in the process. ''We grossed about  $600,000'', says Scotty. ''Of course, when the money started coming in and I sat down and started writing  checks, it went (out) pretty fast. I remember writing one check for $150,000 to the pressing plants. Oh, that  hurt''.

After the record hit, Scotty send a copy to Colonel Parker, who responded on April 2 with a letter. ''Have just  returned from a promotion trip on Elvis latest release and LP'', he wrote. ''Thought it only proper to  congratulate you on the fine work you have been done with Mr. Thomas Wayne. My best wishes are with  you and him for a big future''. He signed the letter ''Colonel''.

Scotty paid himself a salary from the record company with the agreement of the two other partners, but most  of the money was funneled back into Fernwood Records. They rented an office downtown in the same  building where their attorney (and new partner) was located. Later, they rented a building on 297 North Main  Street and installed a fully equipment studio. It was located next door to a delicatessen that specialized in  corned beef. What Scotty remembers most about the studio is the plentiful supply of food. ''I've never eaten  so much corned beef in my life'', he says.

That spring and summer, Scotty Moore was on top of the world. He had a hit record and his own recording  studio. It was another one of those rags-to-riches stories of which the music industry is so found. In March he  purchased a C-5 Classic Gibson guitar for $85 from Chicago Musical Instrument Company and a black El  Dorado Cadillac with a red interior.

To promote Thomas Wayne's record, he organized a touring band made of himself, Bill, D.J. Fontana, and  Reggie Young. Scotty was coming and going so fast, he sometimes lost his sense of direction. Reggie  remembers one night when they returned to Memphis at three o'clock in the morning. ''We pulled up in front  of Scotty's house, stopping out in the middle of the street'', says Reggie. ''He just got out, left the car running,  and went into the house and went to bed. Bill or someone slid over and took us home''.

Scotty often booked Reggie Young for sessions at Fernwood. They got to be good friends and usually wound  up the sessions by sitting on the curb drinking cheap wine. Reggie went on to become one of the premier  session guitarists in the country, working in Memphis with literally hundreds of artists including Neil  Diamond, Wilson Picket, and Dionne Warwick, and then later in Nashville with Willie Nelson, Waylon  Jennings, and Johnny Cash. But in those days he was just finding himself as a musician; the Blue Moon  Boys were among his heroes.

''That whole deal of Scotty, Bill and Elvis was unique'', he says.''Scotty and Bill were as much a part of  Elvis's music as he was. No one sounded like that. You always copy records you can play parts to. Scotty's  parts, they weren't real easy to play, but they were playable. They weren't something you couldn't figure out.  I'm sure a lot of would be guitar players sat down with Elvis's records and copied Scotty's licks. He was the  first one to make people want to do that''.

Fernwood Records followed up ''Tragedy'' with a number of Thomas Wayne recordings including  ''Scandalizing My name'', ''Girl Next Door'', ''Just Beyond'', and ''Guilty Of Love'', some of which were  written by Burch and Nelson. One Thomas Wayne release, ''This Time'', was penned by a newcomer to  Memphis, a young Georgian named Chips Moman. Unfortunately, none of Thomas Wayne's subsequent  releases achieved the success of ''Tragedy''.

In the aftermath of ''Tragedy'', Sharri Paullus, a songwriter whose physician husband had started a record  label named Rave Records, took two instrumental ideas to Fernwood. For that project, Scotty asked Bill  Black to play bass and saxophonist Ace Cannon to do the horn work. The finished product, with its gritty,  hypnotic groove, is remarkably similar to records later recorded by the Bill Black Combo. The songs, ''The  Gambler'' and ''It's Not Fun Loving You'', were released on Rave Records. As the year ended, Scotty Moore  reported his highest income to date, $13,547.64, but the money from Thomas Wayne's hit was quickly  petering out at Fernwood.

SEPTEMBER 1958

Phillips International 3548 "Mad  At You" b/w ''Willie Brown'' by Mack Self.

Eddie Cochran scores his biggest hit with "Summertime Blues".
 
The Microchip (integrated circuit), an essential piece of technology used in modern electronics, was created during September of 1958 by Jack Kilby. Kilby, a newly-hired engineer at Texas Instruments, came up with the idea to miniaturize all of the parts of an entire transistor circuit and connect them all together, creating a smaller and easy to produce unit called an integrated circuit. While Kilby was not the only person credited with the idea of an integrated circuit, he was the first to create a working model and file a patent for the technology. The creation of the integrated circuit led to much of the technology our modern computers and electronics are based on today.

SEPTEMBER 1, 1958 MONDAY

Review in Billboard magazine says, ''Break Up'' (Sun 303) is a rocker, and Lewis sells the tune with great drive and spirit. His pounding style of piano is prominent in support. Flip, ''I'll Make It All Up To You'', is a country and western ballad read along traditional lines. Chorus and work support help sell the side. It's a strong contender and a likely market click''.

After Johnny Cash finished his last Sun recordings, Sam Phillips wished him well, and he wished himself well, too, in a letter to the industry that appeared in both Billboard and Cash Box in September 1958. ''Sun Records has patiently recorded Johnny Cash with always potent material'', he pointedly wrote, ''first in the country category and gradually manipulating his material and approach to songs to gain him a fantastic following in the pop field.... Through the help of our Sun distributors and our ever faithful disc jockey friends we have built another artist into a solid commercial performer who sells records one after the other. Sun has always believed in building artists, not just selling a single record. This has been our aim since the beginning and will remain so''.

It was also Sun's aim, Sam Phillips stressed with no less sincerity than selfinterest, to continue selling Johnny Cash records. To that end, ever since learning of cash's intention to sign with Columbia, Sun had spent the last five months ''producing some of the finest sides for future Sun releases on Cash that we have ever had the pleasure of cutting''.

''Please believe us when we say you are in for some tremendous releases on cash on SUN for at least the next two years. Our thanks to Johnny for being a wonderful person to work with during our association. We are going to miss him no end around 706 Union, but our aim is to keep him ''hot'' on Sun 'If the Good Lord's Willing and The Creek Don't Rise'. Appreciatively, Sam C. Phillips, President Sun Record Co.''. For all of those reasons, and others unspoken, Sam put everything he had behind ''The Ways Of A Woman In Love'', the first departure-anticipatory Cash release, which rose to the top of the country charts in October 1958 and even reached number 24 pop, while Columbia's initial release languished in its wake.

The fledgling Warner Bros. Records released its first albums, an  undistinguished . Eventually, the label adds a country division, with hit albums from Faith Hill, Randy Travis, Hank Williams Jr. and Blake Shelton, among others.

Decca released a pair of Webb Pierce hits, ''Tupelo County Jail'' and the flip side, ''Falling Back To You''.

SEPTEMBER 4, 1958 THURSDAY

Hawkshaw Hawkins holds his last RCA recording session.
 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

There were two Mikki's who recorded for Phillips International, which accounts for some measure of discographical confusion. Milan was the first, beating label mate Wilcox by nearly three years. Milan's record, released in 1958, was pure pop music and a thorn in the side of legions of Sun fans who came to the label for a steady diet of rockabilly. In fairness to Bill Justis, who arranged the date nearly a year after "Raunchy" unexpectedly hit the charts, this is a perfectly credible piece of hook-laden 1950s pop music.

Mickey Milan >

Phillips International artist Wayne Powers Cogswell wrote one side of Mikki's single "Somehow Without You", and remembers her as 'an older women'.   Milan's voice is rather strident, in a style not unlike Kay Starr's. In fact, Milan's "The Picture" is quite reminiscent of Starr's song "Half A Photograph". Vocal backing on this track was provided by The Montclairs, a group handled by Cogswell.
 
 
Although she never enjoyed a second release on Sun or Phillips International. Milan did spend considerable time in the studio. At some point she was turned over to Charlie Rich as one of his projects.

STUDIO SESSION FOR MICKEY MILAN
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: PROBABLY SEPTEMBER 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
AND/OR JACK CLEMENT

Charlie Rich provided Milan with "Baby", one of his attempts at pop song writing. Its anybody's guess what Rich thought of Mikki Milan's vocalizing, but they did go through more than a dozen takes of his song over several different sessions.

Untimately, it came to nothing. Over forty years later, you can hear a sample of their work for the first time and decide for yourself whether Sam Phillips' judgement was sound.

01 - "THE PICTURE" - B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Wilson-Hess
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 334  - Master
Recorded: - Probably September 1958
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3533-B mono
THE PICTURE / SOMEHOW WITHOUT YOU
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-14 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Take a deep breath. Mikki Milan makes her first appearance on the PI label with these two pop sides from September 1958. The original label credited her as working with the Bill Justis Orchestra. Either Sam Phillips or Bill Justis had found Mikki in New York, and thought she might fit Phillips International's uptown image. Wayne Cogswell had just appeared at the studio with "Somehow Without You", and either Sam Phillips or Bill Justis thought it suited Mikki's style. "I had my vocal group, the Montclairs, on that one", said Cogswell. "I remember Mikki Milan was an older woman. She never lived in Memphis. Just came down to record a time or two".

02 - "SOMEHOW WITHOUT YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:00
Composer: - Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 333  - Master
Recorded: - Probably September 1958
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3533-A mono
SOMEHOW WITHOUT YOU / THE PICTURE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-13 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Once again, it is best to view this music as lying deeply within the pop tradition. In fact, the simplest view is that Mikki Milan was a poor man's Kay Starr. Certainly Kay's record "Half A Photograph" seems to have cast a large shadow over these proceedings. Even relative to those standards, Mikki tends to be a tad shrill in places. Perhaps she was an acquired taste. More to the point, somebody at 706 Union acquired it. Mikki was back in the studio seven months later for a series of sessions that left not only a follow-up release on PI, but no fewer than 15 unissued titles, suggesting that an album was planned.
 
  Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Mickey Milan - Vocal
Sid Manker - Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
 
The Montclairs

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 
STUDIO SESSION FOR MICKEY MILAN
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: PROBABLY AUGUST 8-10, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
AND/OR JACK CLEMENT

01 - ''AIN'T NOTHING BUT THE BLUES'' - B.M.I. 2:55
Composer: -  Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-2 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

02 - "ALRIGHT, OKAY YOU WIN'' - B.M.I. - 2:42
Composer: -  Sid Wyche-Mayme Watts
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-16 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

03 – "BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:21
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-2-4 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS
Reissued: - 2014 Sun Entertainment Internet iTunes MP3-21 mono
THE DOOR TO BARBARA PITTMAN AND OTHER GIRLS
 
 04 - ''DON'T WORRY 'BOUT ME''
Composer: -  Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958

05 - ''HE WAS GOOD TO ME''
Composer: -  Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958

06 - ''I CAN'T GIVE YOU ANYTHING BUT LOVE''
Composer: -  Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958

07 - ''IT MEANS SO LITTLE TO YOU''
Composer: -  Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958

08 - ''IT'S A SIN TO TELL A LIE'' - B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: -  Billy Mayhew
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-12 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

09 - ''MY BLUE HEAVEN'' - B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: -   George Whiting; Walter Donaldson
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-5 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

10 - ''SENTIMENTAL JOURNEY'' - B.M.I. - 2:31
Composer: -   Bud Green; Homer ?; Les Brown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-9 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

11 - ''SO MANY BEAUTIFUL MEN'' - B.M.I. - 2:38
Composer: -   E.G. White; K. White
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-17 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

12 - "SWEETEST GUY" - B.M.I. - 1:58
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-1-11 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

13 - "THIS LOVE OF MINE"
Composer: -  Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958

14 - "WHERE ARE YOU" - 2:35
Composer: -   Harold Adamson; Jimmy McHugh
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-5-22 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS

15 - "WHILE I'M TRYING" - B.M.I. - 2:38
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-1-10 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS
Reissued: - 2014 Sun Entertainment Internet iTunes MP3-27 mono
THE DOOR TO BARBARA PITTMAN AND OTHER GIRLS

16 - "NOTHING TO COMPARE" - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably August 8-10, 1958
Released: - August 2002
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16609-2-21 mono
MEMPHIS BELLES - THE WOMEN OF SUN RECORDS
 
Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Mickey Milan - Vocal
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 
 



© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR ROY ORBISON & KEN COOK
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 4, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS,
JACK CLEMENT AND/OR STAN KESLER

As a writer, Roy Orbison scored a fleeting Hot 100 hit for Warren Smith with "So Long I'm Gone". He had done even better when Jerry Lee Lewis revamped what he could remember of "Go!, Go!, Go!" as "Down The Line", giving Roy a free ride to the top of the charts on the back of "Breathless". He also submitted a few songs to the departing Johnny Cash, who recorded Orbison's "You Tell Me" during the final crush of sessions that marked his exit from Sun.

Sun fans looking for a fix in October 1958, or simply seeking reassurance that the Phillips International label would occasionally give them some of the real stuff were in a state of ecstasy when this record (PI 3534) appeared in stores. Perhaps more than any previous PI release, this one contained the maniacal raw energy one expected to find in a Sun recording.

01(1) - "I WAS A FOOL" - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 336  - Master  - Duet with Ken Cook
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - October 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3534-B mono
I WAS A FOOL / CRAZY BABY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-16 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

This side, a duet with Roy Orbison, shows that even the ballad - or at least less frenzied side - of a good Sun record can also be inspiring. "I Was A Fool" is a really fine song; its simple, melodic and memorable. After a few listening, you really want to hear that chorus. The amusing thing is that now that Orbison's voice has become a cultural icon, and we've learned its Orbi harmonizing with Cook (something that nobody knew prior to the first wave of Sun archaeology in the 1970s), it seems so obvious. Try listening to the chorus and not focusing on the familiar quality of Orbison singing as loud and clear as he did on "Only The Lonely".

01(2) - "I WAS A FOOL"* - B.M.I. 2:15
Composer: - Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - 1988
First appearance: - Sun England (LP) 33rpm LP 1036-1 mono
MORE SUNDOWN ROCKERS
Reissued: - July 6, 2012 Internet iTunes MP3-14 mono
THE ROOTS OF ROCK - THE MOST BEAUTIFUL 40 ROCK SONGS

02(1) - "CRAZY BABY"* - B.M.I. - 2:22
Composer: - Ken Cook
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - 1985
First appearance: - Sun England (LP) 33rpm LP 1038-3 mono
FEEL LIKE ROCKIN'
Reissued: - 1999 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CPCD 8353-9 mono
SUN ROCK 'N' ROLL - VOLUME 3

02(2) - "CRAZY BABY"* - B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Ken Cook
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 335  - Master
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - October 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3534-A mono
CRAZY BABY / I WAS A FOOL
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-15 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

"Crazy baby" lived up to its title. Everything about it exuded that pent-up madness fans had come to associate with 706 Union Avenue. That opening drum roll by Jimmy Van Eaton, followed by Roy Orbison's guitar figure lays out a powerful riff that grabs you by the collar and commands all your attention. The interplay between Orbison and Billy Riley on guitar is brilliant. Cook, who had done his share of listening to Jerry Lee Lewis records, sings like a man possessed. If his cry of the title phrase isn't passionate enough for you, then Bill Justis' screeching horn takes it to an even higher level. You can just feel the energy on this date. It builds and grows until even Van Eaton is forced to double up the backbeat during the "more more more" sections of Cook's vocal.

03 - "DON'T BE RUNNIN' WILD (PROBLEM CHILD)"* - B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: - Roy Orbison-Sam Phillips
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - October 1976
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CR 30116-A5 mono
SUN - THE ROOTS OF ROCK - VOLUME 9 - MORE REBEL ROCKABILLY
Reissued: - August 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16210-11 mono
THAT'LL FLAT GIT IT! - VOLUME 14

Looking to promote his publishing catalogue for Cook's master session, Sam hauled out the marginally delinquent "Problem Child", a song that Roy Orbison had recorded a year previously. Together the two performers delivered some exceptionally tight harmonies, a feature that inspired several Orbison backtracks to be tried out with Cook's vocal overdubbed.

04 - "I FELL IN LOVE"* - B.M.I. - 2:02
Composer: - H. Hodson
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Vocal Ken Cook - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - 1976
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CR 30105-12 mono
SUN - THE ROOTS OF ROCK - VOLUME - VOLUME 5 - REBEL ROCKABILLY
Reissued: - 1999 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16311-20 mono
THAT'LL FLAT GIT IT! - VOLUME 16

 
 
Ken Cook >

"I Fell In Love" probably stems from Cook's sole Sun session that resulted in a single on the Phillips International label. For his part, Roy Orbison always refused to talk about Cook, so at this point he remains an enigma wrapped up in a tape box.

Ken Cook was primarily a rock artist, but on his only country recording here on this session at Sun he also adapted a country song and the old Carter Family favourite ''I'm Thinking Tonight Of My Blue Eyes'' is transformed into a tribute to ''Jenny''.

Ken Cook is almost completely obscure. All we know is that Roy Orbison brought him   from Texas to Sun Records. Cook had an almost astonishing vocal similarity to Roy, and Sam   Phillips was persuaded to issue one single by him on Phillips International.

 
 
 
   05 - "(I'M THINKIN' OF YOU ALL THE TIME) JENNY"* - B.M.I. - 2:47
Composer: - Ken Cook
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Vocal Ken Cook - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - 1976
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CR 30117-B-5 mono
SUN - THE ROOTS OF ROCK - VOLUME - VOLUME 10 - SUN COUNTRY
Reissued: - July 6, 2012 Internet iTunes MP3-14 mono
THE ROOTS OF ROCK - THE MOST BEAUTIFUL 40 ROCK SONGS

06 - "THINKIN' TO-NITE OF BLUE EYES"* - B.M.I. - 3:42
Composer: - Ken Cook
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Vocal Ken Cook - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Released: - 1985
First appearance: Sun England (LP) 33rpm LP 1026-8 mono
ROCKABILLY TUNES

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ken Cook - Vocal*
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Lead Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Jack Clement - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano
Bill Justis - Tenor Saxophone

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

Sheet of the tape boxes found by Sam Phillips >
 
To his chagrin, later in 1960, Sam Phillips found tape boxes filled almost exclusively with rockers that had been cut at his behest. He gave the stash of tapes to Vinnie Trauth and Scotty Moore, who added some extraneous instruments and a chorus to the masters. They reissued "Devil Doll" together with a complete album of doctored masters titled "At The Rockhouse".

The album justifiably infuriated Orbison, who wnet to see Sam Phillips in 1961 and reportedly demanded, unsuccessfully, that he hand over all of Roy's unissued tapes. The tapes that remained at Sun have been prolifically recycled since the Sun catalog was sold in 1969.

With hindsight, one can hear the roots of Orbison's future success in his phrasing and delivery on the slower Sun cuts, like "Trying To Get To You", "This Kind Of Love", and "It's Too Late". But over the best of these recordings hangs a feeling of missed opportunity, of perhaps the most singular chance Phillips failed to take.

Recalling his 1961 meeting with Sam Phillips in a conversation with Nick Kent, Orbison said, "Sam looked at me and smiled and said, 'You'll be back'. His brother Jud was in the room - he just looked at me, rolled his eyes, and said, 'The hell he will!'".

STUDIO SESSION FOR ROY ORBISON
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1956/1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: UNKNOWN DATES 1956/1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS & JACK CLEMENT

01 - "THE CAUSE OF IT ALL" - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Roy K. Orbison-Sam C. Phillips
Punlisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - 1974
First appearance: - Phonogram (LP) 33rpm Sun 6641 180 mono
THE SUN STORY
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-1-24 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

02(1) - "YOU'RE GONNA CRY" - B.M.I. - 2:05
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - June 1988
First appearance: - Zu-Zazz Records (CD) 500/200rpm Z 2006-4 mono
PROBLEM CHILD
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-1-25 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

02(2) - "YOU'RE GONNA CRY" - B.M.I. - 2”07
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Dubbed Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - 1961
First appearance: - Sun Records (LP) 33rpm SLP 1260-7 mono
ROY ORBISON AT THE ROCKHOUSE
Reissued: - 1984 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDX 4 mono
ROY ORBISON - THE SUN YEARS

03 - "TRYING TO GET TO YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:38
Composer: - Margie C. Singleton-Rose Marie McCoy
Publisher: - Motion Music Company
Matrix number: - None - Dubbed Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - 1961
First appearance: - Sun Records (LP) 33rpm SLP 1260-4 mono
ROY ORBISON AT THE ROCKHOUSE
Reissued: - 1984 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDX 4 mono
ROY ORBISON - THE SUN YEARS

04(1) - "THIS KIND OF LOVE" – B.M.I. - 2:05
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - June 1988
First appearance: - Zu-Zazz Records (CD) 500/200rpm Z 2006-2 mono
PROBLEM CHILD
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-2-8 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

04(2) - "THIS KIND OF LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Dubbed Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - 1961
First appearance: - Sun Records (LP) 33rpm SLP 1260-1 mono
ROY ORBISON AT THE ROCKHOUSE
Reissued: - 1984 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDX 4 mono
ROY ORBISON - THE SUN YEARS

04(3) - "THIS KIND OF LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:03
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - June 1988
First appearance: - Zu-Zazz Records (CD) 500/200rpm Z 2006-10 mono
PROBLEM CHILD
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-2-8 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

05(1) - IT'S TOO LATE" - B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: - Chuck Willis
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - June 1988
First appearance: - Zu-Zazz Records (CD) 500/200rpm Z 2006-3 mono
PROBLEM CHILD
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-1-27 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

05(2) - IT'S TOO LATE" - B.M.I. - 1:59
Composer: - Chuck Willis
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Dubbed Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - 1961
First appearance: - Sun Records (LP) 33rpm SLP 1260-5 mono
ROY ORBISON AT THE ROCKHOUSE
Reissued: - 1984 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDX 4 mono
ROY ORBISON - THE SUN YEARS

05(3) - "IT'S TOO LATE" – B.M.I. - 2:47
Composer: - Chuck Willis
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - June 1988
First appearance: - Zu-Zazz Records (CD) 500/200rpm Z 2006-8 mono
PROBLEM CHILD
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423L-2-9 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

06(1) - "I NEVER KNEW" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - June 1988
First appearance: - Zu-Zazz Records (CD) 500/200rpm Z 2006-3 mono
PROBLEM CHILD
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-1-28 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

06(2) - "I NEVER KNEW" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Dubbed Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/1958
Released: - 1961
First appearance: - Sun Records (LP) 33rpm SLP 1260-8 mono
ROY ORBISON AT THE ROCKHOUSE
Reissued: - 2001 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16423-1-28 mono
ROY ORBISON - ORBISON 1955 - 1966

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Unknown Groups
James Morrow - Electric Mandolin
 
After Roy Orbison left Sun, he went on to enormous success as a vocalist, scoring nine Top 10 hits in the years 1960-1963.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

 
  Roy Orbison and Sam Phillips, December 28, 1961 >

SEPTEMBER 1958

The Nashville music establishment had noticed with dismay and great resistance country's decline and the  rise of rock and roll. They had even just this spring formed a group called the Country Music Association to  promote cohesion in the country field and to promote it more heavily. The RCA offices there had snapped up  Elvis, and now Nashville was after another of Sun's promising stars. 

This time it was Roy Orbison. He had just returned from some dates on the road when next Barbara Barnes  saw him, and this time it was not just to hang around or practice, but to discuss an urgent matter with Sam  Phillips.

While he was touring, he had been on a bill in Indiana with the Everly Brothers. They had asked  him if he had any song to show them, and he obliged. Phil and Don Everly especially liked and committed to  record ''Claudette'', a song that Roy had written as a tribute to his wife.

A part of the deal was that the Everlys wanted him to go through Acuff-Rose publishing in Nashville, but he  was under contract to Sun's publishing arm. They had just had a hit with ''Bye Bye Love'' and now they  wanted ''Claudette'' for the B side of their new release, ''All I Have To Do Is Dream''. This development  caused Roy to be more agitated than usual.

He came into to Barbara Barnes office exclaiming that he'd been trying to get in touch with Sam and Jud  Phillips for about a week and they hadn't called him back. Through the Everly contact, he had met Wesley  Rose of Acuff-Rose, and Rose asked him if he could break his songwriting contract with Sun and go with  him. Roy was very insistent on speaking with someone who could make a decision about the matter.

When Jud Phillips called later that day, Barbara told him Roy's complaint. Jud answered in an angry and  sarcastic manner, ''Tell him to can it or I'll come down there and knock that other eye cockeyed''. Barbara  found Jud's response unhelpful and quite out of character.

Roy Orbison was still hanging around, so Barbara told a little white lie and said Jud wasn't where she could  reach him and that he should wait and talk to Sam. According to Barbara, ''I wasn't in on the negotiations, but  what it came down to in the end was that Roy bought out both his recording and songwriting contracts with  Sun Records and went to Acuff-Rose, and that was the last we saw of Roy Orbison. The Acuff-Rose people  git him a short-term recording contract with RCA Victor, but he didn't stay with them long, soon going to  Monument and resuming his recording efforts.

SEPTEMBER 5, 1958 FRIDAY

David Allan Coe is released from Chillicote Reformatory in Ohio after serving two years for stealing a car.

The Country Music Association is chartered in Nashville. The CMA becomes a major marketing force for country music, best known for its annual awards show.

SEPTEMBER 6, 1958 SATURDAY

Comedian Jeff Foxworthy is born in Hapeville, Georgia. Based on his ''You might be a redneck if..'' routine, Foxworthy emerges as the best-selling comic of the 1990s.

SEPTEMBER 7, 1958 SUNDAY

Buddy Holly trades in his Lincoln for his first new Cadillac on his 22nd birthday, three days before producing Waylon Jennings' first recording session.

SEPTEMBER 8, 1958 MONDAY

Donny Young holds his first recording session, for Decca Records in Nashville. Young will come to prominence under the name of Johnny Paycheck.

SEPTEMBER 9, 1958 TUESDAY

Jim Reeves recorded the Roger Miller-penned ''Billy Bayou'' in the afternoon at Nashville's RCA Studio B.

SEPTEMBER 10, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Waylon Jennings has his very first recording session in Clovis, New Mexico, with Buddy Holly producing. He recorded ''Jole Blon''.

SEPTEMBER 11, 1958 THURSDAY

''Circus Boy'' ends its prime-time run on ABC, with future Monkee Micky Dolenz in the lead role. The Monkees' ''Last Train To CLarksville'' ranks among country's 500 greatest singles in the Country Music Foundation's ''Heartaches By The Number''.

SEPTEMBER 12, 1958 FRIDAY

Lefty Frizzell recorded ''Cigarettes And Coffee Blues'' at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville.

Rod Brasfield dies of a heart attack at his Nashville home. Brasfield had been a Grand Ole Opry comedian since 1947, and gave Hank Williams Jr. his ''Bocephus'' nickname, Brasfield posthumously enters the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1987.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CLIFF, ED & BARBARA THOMAS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 12, OR 21, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
AND/OR JACK CLEMENT

01 - "LEAVE IT TO ME" - B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: - Ed Thomas Jr.
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 330  - Master
Recorded: - September 12 or 21,, 1958
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3531-B mono
LEAVE IT TO ME / SORRY I LIED
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-10 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

On "Leave It To Me" you hear everything you need to know about Cliff, Ed and Barbara Thomas - the good, the bad and the ugly. The verdict on this talented family seems to be a strong thumbs up for Ed's piano playing, as well as his songwriting talents. Similarly, the three voices blend strongly and persuasively; the first six bars of ensemble harmonizing are a powerful way into this record. The biggest problem for most Sun fans is the assertively teenage sounding Cliff. Nobody could blame him for being a teenager, and he certainly grew out of the condition with minimal prodding. Its just that what might otherwise have been astonishingly good outings are diminished or transformed into commercial teen music. Tony Rossini with bite.

02 - "SORRY I LIED" - B.M.I. - 2:13
Composer: - Ed Thomas Jr.
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 329  - Master
Recorded: - September 12 or 21, 1958
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3531-A mono
SORRY I LIES / LEAVE IT TO ME
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-9 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

"Sorry I Lied" shows yet again that the Thomas family could record, with remarkably little outside help, some totally engaging pop music in 1958. Ed's debt to a host of rhythm and blues masters, notably Ray Charles, is evident in every note of this record. It is no surprise that Sam Phillips continued to record the Thomasses. Quite apart from their potential for local promotion, they were genuinely talented people whose musical style had a directness and emotionally that must have brought a smile to Sam Phillips' face each and every time.

03 - "DANCE ON LITTLE GIRL
Composer: - Ed Thomas Jr.
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - September 12 or 21, 1958

04 - ''MEAN OLD WORLD''
Composer: - Ed Thomas Jr.
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - September 12 or 21, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ed Thomas Jr. - Vocal and Piano
Cliff Thomas - Vocal and Guitar
Barbara Thomas – Vocal
Billy Riley – Bass
Jack Clement – Guitar
Jimmy Van Eaton – Drums

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 



Barbara, Ed and Cliff Thomas >

An published note from Barbara Barnes from Sun Records to record dealers was sent  reads:

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 12, 1958

For further information, contact: Miss Barbara Barnes, Phillips International Records, 706  Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee.

"There's not a duck-tail or gyrating pelvis in the group. No heavy-lidded eyes one sensuously  formed lips moaning or mooning. They just open their mouths and sing... and the song is  from the heart. For the hearts of the Cliff Thomas Trio are in the home... and music has  been a staple expression in the Thomas home.

 
 
The Cliff Thomas Trio, Jackson, Mississippi's latest claim to fame, shows, promise of  developing into one of the nation's top musical group. Their latest release on the Phillips  International label is "Sorry I Lied" b/w "Leave It To Me", both original compositions of Ed  Thomas, pianist for the group and a Notre Dame University grad. Company officials predict  that it will make a strong bid for top position in the nation's charts of pop records.

The Thomas family is a big Catholic family and everyone from Mom and Dad on down to the  pre-school children performs in family jam sessions. The Church plans a big part in the  Thomas family, also. They are communicants of St. Mary's Church in Jackson. Monsignor  Francis Quin is their pastor.

Cliff, Ed and Barbara are individually talented and, as a group have everything that it takes  to win fans among the teen set. When they were promoting their first release, the Thomases  made lots of friends at record hops and TV appearances throughout the country. They  appeared on the Dick Clark Show from Philadelphia and were enthusiastically received in  such cities as Chicago, Milwaukee and Memphis.

Cliff, whose husky, appealing baritone takes the lead in the trio, plays guitar and has eyes on  a Notre Dame degree like brother Ed has. After that its a music career or a position with the  family business.

Ed, the pianist and songwriter of the group, graduated from Notre dame in 1958 and is now  selling whole sale drygoods for the family business.

Barbara, in audition to having what the boys cal "The best voice in the trio", adds a bit of  feminine appeal to the group with her dark good looks. She attended St. Mary's Dominican  College in New Orleans for two years, and took her B.A. in English at Millsaps College in  Jackson, Miss. She now works for A.T.V. Station in Jackson in promoting and finds that  particular area of show business almost as much fun as singing.

Her's a refreshing group. Give a listen!


SEPTEMBER 1958

The singles, PI 3531 ''Sorry I Lied'' b/w ''Leave It To Me'' by Cliff, Ed and Barbara Thomas; PI 3533 ''Somehow Without You'' b/w ''The Picture'' by Minkey Milan issued.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

PROBABLY AT SUN STUDIO
STUDIO SESSION FOR EARL RAY
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: SEPTEMBER 12, 1958
STUDIO HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER – UNKNOWN

A member of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa tribe, Earl Ray (known in Pima as Lo-Doc, is a singer, linguist,  and tribal activist and is currently the only person who reads and writes the Salt River Pima dialect.  On his debut recording in 2005 with Canyon Records, ''Traditional Songs Of The Salt River Pima'', Earl  sings a collection of rare and historic songs evoking the rich mythology and cultural pageantry of the The  'Akimel 'O'odham (meaning River People), formerly known as the Pimas, live in the deserts of Arizona on  the Salt River and Gila River Reservations. Earl has spent more than two decades researching the culture of  his people. As a native speaker he understood the loss of his language, which prompted him to learn to read  and write his own Pima dialect at the University of Arizona in 1978-1979 under the instruction of Dr. Ofelia  Zepeda.

Eventually Ray''s work took him to Amsterdam in the Netherlands, where he lived for four and a half years.  There he contributed information to the National Museum of Ethnology, in Leiden, where Pima artifacts  were discovered as a part of the collections of the Hemenway Expedition, in the 1880s. Ray has produced  teaching videotapes and also helped save the Hole-in-the-Rock, a sacred site in Phoenix that was a  prehistoric astronomical observatory used by the Huhukam.

In 2006, Charly Records released via internet several early demo-recordings of Earl Ray, recorded on  September 12, 1958 possible in the Sun Studio in Memphis. This demo recordings can now be fee  downloaded from the iTunes website and digital media player.

01 – ''WALKIN' ON A RAINBOW''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None – Sun Unissued
Recorded: - September 12, 1958

02 – ''FRANKIE AND JOHNNIE'' – B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Boyd Bunch-Bert Leighton
Publisher: - Tell Taylor Music Publisher
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 12, 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP2 iTunes Music 11 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

03 – ''WHISPERING'' – B.M.I. - 2:59
Composer: - John Schoenberger-Richard Coburn-Vincent Rose
Publisher: - Sherman Glay Music
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Recorded: - September 12, 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP2 iTunes Music 1 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

10 UNKNOWN TITLES

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Earl Ray - Guitar
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


PROBABLY AT SUN STUDIO
STUDIO SESSION FOR EARL RAY
FOR SUN RECORDS

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: UNKNOWN DATE(S) PROBABLY SEPTEMBER 12, 1958
STUDIO HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER – UNKNOWN

No Details

01 – ''SHAKE IT, BREAK IT'' – B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: - Charlie Patton
Publisher: - Dorsey Brothers Music
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 6 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

02 – ''SHINE'' – B.M.I. - 1:54
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records Format MP3 Music 5 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

03 – ''DO DO DO, DI-O-DO'' – B.M.I. - 1:30
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 3 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

04 – ''OH BY JINGO'' – B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Lew Brown-Albert Von Tilzer
Publisher: - Sunhawk Music
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 8 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

05 – ''OUT IN THE COLD AGAIN'' – B.M.I. - 2:18
Composer: - Ted Koehler-Rube Bloom
Publisher: - Santly Brother Incorporated
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 7 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

06 – ''IN YOUR ARMS AGAIN'' - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 6 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

07 - ''I WONDER WHEN MY SWEET BABY'S GONE'' – B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 8 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

08 – ''DEEP IN MY HEART'' – A.S.C.A.P. - 2:31
Composer: - Janet McMahan-Wilson
Publisher: - Brentwood-Benson Music
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 5 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

09 – ''MY GAL SAL'' – B.M.I. - 2:19
Composer: - Paul Dresser
Publisher: - Eddie B. Marks Music
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 9 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

10 – ''CAN'T BE BOTHERED 'BOUT ME'' – B.M.I. - 1:30
Composer: - George Gershwin-Ira Gershwin
Publisher: - Chappell Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 4 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

11 – ''GOOFUS'' – B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Wayne King-William Herald-Gus Kain
Publisher: - Hal Leonard Music
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 10 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

12 – UNKNOWN INSTRUMENTAL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None – Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958

13 – ''SWEET GEORGIA BROWN'' – B.M.I. 1:22
Composer: - Ben Bernie-Maceo Pinkard-Kenneth Casey
Publisher: - Jerome H. Remick Music
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 4 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

14 – ''HAS ANYBODY SEEN MY GAL'' – B.M.I. - 1:43
Composer: - Ray Henderson-Sam M. Lewis-Joseph Window Young
Publisher: - Leo Feist Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 9 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

15 – ''DARDANELLA'' – B.M.I. - 1:47
Composer: - Felix Bernard-John S. Black-Fred Fisher
Publisher: - McGartney Fisher Music
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 1 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

16 – ''CHICKEN REEL'' – B.M.I. - 1:26
Composer: - Neil Griffen
Publisher: - Mel Bay Publications
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music c 2 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

17 – ''WRONG WAY BLUES'' – B.M.I. 3:14
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 2 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

18 – ''TIMBUCTOO'' – B.M.I. 1:55
Composer: - Bob Cole-J.W. Johnson
Publisher: - Jos W. Stern Music
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 3 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

19 - ''LOVE SO TENDERLY'' – B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - March 21, 2011
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 10 mono
EARL RAY'S LOVE SO TENDERLY

20 – ''IDA'' – B.M.I. - 2:03
Composer: - Eddie Leonard
Publisher: - Edward B. Marks Music
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - June 20, 2006
First appearance: - Charly Records MP3 iTunes Music 7 mono
EARL RAY SELECTED FAVORITES

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Earl Ray – Guitar
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 



© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR RAY SMITH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 13, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
AND/OR JACK CLEMENT

01(1) - "WHY WHY WHY" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master
Recorded: - September 13, 1958
Released: - November 1986
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 106-10-3 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE ROCKING YEARS - WILLING AND READY
Reissued: - May 29, 2013 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17313-7-3 mono
THE SUN ROCK BOX 1954 - 1955

01(2) - "WHY WHY WHY" - B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 328 - Master
Recorded: - September 13, 1958
Released: - October 25, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 308-A mono
WHY WHY WHY / YOU MADE A HIT
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-10 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3


Ray Smith and Staley Walker (right) >
 
Ray Smith's second Sun record was enough to restore some of the faith of Sun fans who had been traumatized by the last two releases. Smith delivers on both sides (SUN 308). "Why, Why, Why" confirms that the word 'ballad' does not spell disaster. Nor does the addition of a chorus necessarily undercut a recording's power. Billboard had it right when they described this track as a "deeply felt ballad effort by Smith. A soulful delivery in a slow tempo. Worth spins".


Like Elvis Presley, whose ballad style has plainly influenced these proceedings, Ray Smith was also influenced by Dean Martin. It seems a curious observation, but after his move to Ontario, Canada, Smith got plenty of work in local clubs alternating his Presley repertoire with "Dean Martin impersonations", as the local media called them.

 
 
 02(1) - "LIFE IS THE FLOWER" - B.M.I. - 1:59
Composer: - Ray Smith
Publisher: - Charly International APS
Matrix number: - None - Take 1- Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - September 13, 1958
Released: - 1988
First appearance: - Sun International (LP) 33rpm Sun 1009-4 mono
RAY SMITH - I'M RIGHT BEHIND YOU BABY
Reissued: - 1991 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CD SUN 32-5 mono
RAY SMITH - ROCKIN" WITH RAY

02(2) - "LIFE IS THE FLOWER" - B.M.I. - 2:00
Composer: - Ray Smith
Publisher: - Charly International APS
Matrix number: - None – Take 2 – Sun Unissued
Recorded: - September 13, 1958
Released: - 1991
First appearance: - 2009 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16936-3 mono
RAY SMITH - THE SUN YEARS PLUS

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ray Smith - Vocal
Dean Perkins - Guitar
Stanley Walker - Guitar
Stan Kesler or James Webb - Bass
Gary Diamond - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano

19 September 1959, Vocal group overdub by The Confederates on ''Why Why Why''

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

SEPTEMBER 13, 1958 SATURDAY

The Stoney Mountain Cloggers join the Grand Ole Opry, at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee.

SEPTEMBER 14, 1958 SUNDAY

Pop singer/songwriter Tommy Edwards performs ''It's All In The Game'' during ''The Ed Sullivan Show''. The song becomes a country hit for Tom T. Hall in 1977.

SEPTEMBER 15, 1958 MONDAY

Kenny Rogers' first daughter, Carole Lynne Rogers, is born.

Columbia released Johnny Cash's two-side hit, ''All Over Again'' backed with ''What Do I Care''.

Decca Records released Kitty Wells' ''Touch And Go Heart''.

SEPTEMBER 16, 1958 TUESDAY

Terry McBride is born in Taylor, Texas. He becomes the lead singer of McBride and The Ride, which has a series of hits from 1991-1993. As a songwriter, he pens the Brooks and Dunn singles ''I Am That Man'', ''Cowgirls Don't Cry'' and ''Play Something Country''.

SEPTEMBER 18, 1958 THURSDAY

''Cat On A Tin Roof'' opens at New York's Radio City Music Hall. The movie stars Paul Newman and Elizabeth Taylor and sometimes-country singer Burl Ives.

Van Stoneman, of The Stoneman Family, marries Helen Alvey.

SEPTEMBER 19, 1958

Elvis Presley leaves Fort Hood, Texas, with his Army unit. destined for Brooklyn. From there, the troops are headed to West-Germany.

RCA Victor released the Elvis Presley movie soundtrack ''King Creole'' ( RCA Victor LPM-1884).


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR GENE SIMMONS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: SEPTEMBER 19, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

01 - "UNKNOWN TITLES"

Name (OR. No. Of Instruments)
Gene Simmons - Vocal and Guitar
Carl Simmons - Guitar
Jessie Carter - Standup Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

Note: This session are assigned in Sam Phillip's notebook to Gene Simmons, but no furter details could be found.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


Scene of the 72 Hour Musical Marathon, September 22, 1958 at Starlight Club, 3987 Thomas Street, Highway 51 North, Frayzer, Tennessee. From left: Jimmy Wilson, Martin Willis, Billy Riley, Jimmy M. Van Eaton, and Pat O'Neill > 

SEPTEMBER 20, 1958 SATURDAY

Sun 305 ''Sally Jo'' b/w ''Torro'' by Rosco Gordon is released.

SEPTEMBER 21, 1958 SUNDAY

A check for $76.11 is issued to future country producer Jimmy Bowen by Stamford Productions for a television appearance. The document is later used as evidence in the payola trial of rock and roll disc jockey Alan Freed.

SEPTEMBER 22, 1958 MONDAY

Private Elvis Presley leaves America for Germany on the U.S.S. General Randall. An Army band plays ''All Shook Up''.

 
 
With Gracie Allen's retirement from the show business, ''The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show'' airs for the last time on CBS-TV. Burns goes on to recorded the country hit ''I Wish I Was Eighteen Again''.

Columbia released Stonewall Jackson's first hit, ''Life To Go''.

SEPTEMBER 22, 1958 MONDAY

Bill Riley starts with his band a 72 musical marathon at the Starlight Superclub, Highway 51 North,  Frayser, Tennessee. It was the first musical marathon of its kind.

The Memphis-Press reported that after the marathon gig for 72 hour straight, the five men made  music at the Starlight Club, 3987 Thomas. Bill Riley claims his band has the marathon music-making  championship of the world.

He claimed the record at 9:30 last night when a packed house heard the  band tear into ''When The Saint Go Marching In''. When the last second had ticked by, the fellows  jumped over cups and other paraphernalia and headed for beds. ''Man, I'm gonna sleep for a month'',  yawned sax man Martin Willis.

The men took their meals on the stands, drank instant coffee, had no intermission, just the usual rest  between each number. Why did they do it? To set the record, of course. And for the publicity . Left to  right above as they put there names in the musical history books are Jimmy Wilson, Martin Willis,  J.M. Van Eaton, Bil Riley and Pat O'Neill.

SEPTEMBER 24, 1958 WEDNESDAY

''The Patti Page Show'' debuts on ABC-TV.

SEPTEMBER 26, 1958 FRIDAY

The syndicated TV show ''Frontier Doctor'' debuts, with Rex Allen in the leading role as Dr. Bill Baxter.

SEPTEMBER 28, 1958 SUNDAY

Phil Spector's first hit, ''To Know Him Is To Love Him'' by The Teddy Bears, is released. The song is remade as a country hit in 1987 by Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris.

SEPTEMBER 30, 1958 TUESDAY

Marty Stuart is born in Philadelphia, Mississippi. He plays mandolin for Lester Flatt as a teen before building a solo career that features rockabilly-tinged hits and a Golden Globe nomination. He marries fellow Grand Ole Opry star, Connie Smith.

The Stanley Brothers begin two days of recording in Cincinnati, their first session for the King label.

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 1958

Even though he was no longer an Sun employee, but Jud Phillips was not gone from the scene. He made a  personal management deal with Jerry Lee Lewis and continued to book and promote him. He also had  lingering hopes of remaining attached to Sun through some artists he wanted to get recorded. One afternoon  a was an conversation in which he was pitching some of them to Sam Phillips. None of the names meant  anything to as he reeled them off, bur for every one that he proposed, Sam would shake his head. The one  Jud was hyping the most had a whimsical name, Cookie and the Cupcakes.

 
 
Scene of the 72 Hour Musical Marathon, September 22, 1958 at Starlight Club, 3987 Thomas Street, Highway 51 North, Frayzer, Tennessee. From left: Jimmy Wilson, Martin Willis, Billy Riley, Jimmy M. Van Eaton (back), Pat O'Neill and  unidentified >

 
 
Jud was saying that they were an rhythm and blues, or what later heard called swamp-pop, group from Lake  Charles, Louisiana, and that they'd had good radio play and sales in the area around the Louisiana and Texas  border. Jud thought that with the right recording and promotion, they could generate national sales and  compete with East Coast doo-wop groups.

Jud had been booking them as an opening act for Jerry Lee Lewis's shows, and they could grab a crowd, he  said. He continued, stressing that they had a good beat for dancing and were a well-behaved group. ''You  won't have any trouble with these guys, they're professionals'', he said.

Sam again shook his head to signify a categorical ''no''. ''So you don't want,'' and then repeated the names of  all the acts he was pushing, concluding with ''and you don't want Cookie and the Cupcakes''. Jud stated this  ironically, with a look of disdain on his face to convey how pigheaded and wrong his brother could be.

Jud and Sam Phillips were a great team, each without peer in his specialty in selling records. But their  relationship was always at the point of eruption, perhaps there was a strong element of sibling rivalry in their  relationship. In fact, once Jud told he wasn't the favored son, Sam was. At the same time, a recognized an  unbreakable bond of blood and love, as well as respect for the talents of the other. Not too long after this  conversation, a 45 record showed up in the Sun office with a blue label bearing the name Judd. Employees  had heard rumors Jud was starting how own label, and here was the proof, ''Mathilda'', by Cookie and the  Cupcakes. It made it to number 47 on the Billboard charts, and Jud booked them on American Bandstand and  on an Alan Freed tour. They continued to open for Jerry Lee Lewis, and put out a follow-up to ''Mathilda'',  but they never did make it big.
 

 
OCTOBER 1958
 

OCTOBER 1958

Jud Phillips takes over the management of Jerry Lee Lewis, but the artist remains with Sun. Sam Phillips re-signed Jerry Lee Lewis to a new five-year contract at the beginning of September 1958, with a 5 percent artist royalty rate (up from the 4 to which he had agreed just nine months earlier) and recognition of a yet-to-be established publishing company in Jerry Lee's name.

The second Ray Smith release on Sun came in October 1958, coupling ''Why Why Why'' with   ''You Made A Hit''. Both songs had been recorded some months before, but the decision to   lead with a ballad, ''Why Why Why'', was recorded again that September, after which a vocal   chorus overdubbing session by The Confederates was hastily arranged.
 
 
Billboard'   recommended the disc, describing ''Why Why Why'' as a "deeply felt ballad effort" with a   "soulful delivery in a slow tempo''. They found ''You Made A Hit'' to be a "good rockabilly   blues effort" and again compared Ray's vocal style to that of Elvis Presley. Despite this, the   record did not become anything more than a regional hit in some territories. It helped Ray   get some more exposure but it didn't catapult him into the really big time.

The singles,  PI 3534 ''Crazy Baby'' b/w ''I Was A Fool'' by Ken Cook; PI 3535 ''Bop Train'' b/w ''String Of Pearls-Cha Hot Cha'' by Bill Justis and His Orchestra all issued.
 
 
 
Eddie Bond, who'd recorded at Sun without seeing a release by this point, starts Stomper Time Records from his office at 64 Flicker Street, Memphis.

Sam Phillips released the first Charlie Rich single on the Phillips International label titled  PI 3532, ''Philadelphia Baby'' b/w ''Whirlwind'', and it wasn't a very good record, a song Margaret Ann had helped shape with the explicit aim of getting Charlie on Dick Clark's Philadelphia-based American Bandstand, with an equally undistinguished pop artifact on the B-side. Both songs were marked by un-sun-like modulations, adept piano playing, and a throbbing voice that would have been more suited to more throbbing material. The record did get Charlie Rich booked on American Bandstand, but then the appearance was canceled at the last minute. The record didn't really sell, and, Sam Phillips had to admit, it didn't deserve to sell.
 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

After being signed to Sun Records, Jimmy Isle was brought to Memphis to record one session (from which two singles were drawn) with Jack Clement at the helm. Once again, Isle's music is geared to the white teenager marketplace. Its biggest selling point remains the rhythmic hook Isle and company have borrowed from Bo Diddley.  Again Billboard was cautiously impressed, assigning both sides (SUN 318) a three star rating. They credited Isle with singing "with spirit and style" and said the sides "should be watched". it is likely that more people watched them than listened to them.

Jimmy Isle >

Sun 332 is the last of Jimmy Isle's three Sun singles. By virtually any measure, it is the least effective of the lot. Once again, Isle hangs his hope on a rhythmmic riff but softens the impact of the disk with some sweet girlish voices. The truth is, not many Sun fans ever made it through the first couplet of "What A Life".
 
 
 
Its hard to imagine Warren Smith or Billy Riley with growing pains shooting through their veins. If they ever had them, its a cinch they never whined about them like this. And be assured you're listening to the only Sun record featuring repeated use of the word "strife".

STUDIO SESSION FOR JIMMY ISLE
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: UNKNOWN DATE OCTOBER 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

 01 - "WITHOUT A LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:00
Composer: - Jimmy Isle-Ronnie Isle
Publisher: - Kenny Marlow Music - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 353  - Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - March 23, 1959
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 45rpm standard single SUN 318-A mono
WITHOUT A LOVE / TIME WILL TELL
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-4-3 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

02 - "TIME WILL TELL" - B.M.I. - 2:19
Composer: - Jimmy Isle-Ronnie Isle
Publisher: - Kenny Marlow Music - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 352  - Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - March 23, 1959
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 45rpm standard single SUN 318-B mono
TIME WILL TELL / WITHOUT A LOVE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-4-4 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

03 - "WHAT A LIFE" - B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: - Jimmy Isle-Ronnie Isle
Publisher: - Kenny Marlow Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 380  - Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - September 15, 1959
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 45rpm standard single SUN 332-A mono
WHAT A LIFE / TOGETHER
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15804-1-7 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 4

 04 – "TOGETHER" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Jimmy Isle-Ronnie Isle
Publisher: - Wonder Music - Kenny Marlow Music
Matrix number: - U 381  - Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - September 15, 1959
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 45rpm standard single SUN 332-B mono
TOGETHER/ WHAT A LIFE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15804-1-8 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 4

Things don't improve much on this side. "Together" is Isle's entry into the Frankie Avalon sweepstakes, which probably wasn't a bad idea in the fall of 1959 when this record was released. In any case, SUN 332 stiffed big time, thereby ending Isle's one year association with the label.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jimmy Isle - Vocal
Bill Riley - Guitar
Pat O'Neill - Bass
Tommy Ross - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano
Martin Willis - Sax
Unknown Vocal Chorus

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

Anita Wood and Jimmy Demopoulos >

Jimmy Demopoulos was son of a Greek immigrant, Nick Demopoulos, who ran the local American Legion Restaurant in Memphis. He first came to prominence at age 18 when he won a singing contest at the 1956 Mid-South Fair. He sang "Moonglow: and told everyone that Eddie Fisher was his favorite artist, as if we couldn't guess.  Later that year, he started a course in dentistry, went on the Ted Mack TV show, and auditioned for Lawrence Welk. No surprises there, either.

In 1958, he finally persuaded Bill Justis to take a chance on him. "The thing that worried us", Justis told the Memphis Press Scimitar in January 1959, "is that we were afraid his voice was too good, too clean. He's great. Is he commercial?". Mercifully, the answer was "No!".

 
 
 
 STUDIO SESSION FOR JIMMY DEMOPOULIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: PROBABLY END 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT
MUSICAL DIRECTOR - BILL JUSTIS

01 - "HOPELESS LOVE" - B.M.I. - 1:56
Composer: - Gwen McEwen
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 339  - Master
Recorded: - Probably End 1958
Released: - February 1959
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3537-A mono
HOPELESS LOVE / IF I HAD MY WAY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-21 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

This track, released simultaneously with Jack Clement's "The Minstrel Show", completed the coup de grace for many Sun fans who were sampling the waters on the PI release schedule. "Hopeless Love" indeed. It's not so much that this is a bad record; it just shouldn't be a Sun record.

02 - "IF I HAD MY WAY" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:45
Composer: - Kendis-Klein
Publisher: - Paul Pioneer
Matrix number: - P 340  - Master
Recorded: - Probably End 1958
Released: - February 1959
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3537-B mono
IF I HAD MY WAY / HOPELESS LOVE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-22 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Bill Justis chose "If I Had My Way", a 1913 song popularized by barbershop quartets (and revived by Bing Crosby as the title song for a movie in 1940), as the A-side. Sales were probably good among Memphis' Greek community, but insufficiently good to persuade Sam Phillips to take another chance on him. Demopoulos went on to record for Pepper Records before being inducted into the Army as a dental assistant. He later changed his name to Jimmy Damon and worked as a nightclub singer in Chicago for a few years before disappearing from view.

03 - "CAREFUL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably End 1958

04 - "SOMEWHERE IN THE WORL''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Probably End 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jimmy Demopoulos – Vocal
Charlie Rich - Piano
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 



© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JIMMY DEMOPOULOS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: PROBABLY END 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT
MUSICAL DIRECTOR - BILL JUSTIS

01 - "SOMEWHERE IN THE WORLD''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - October 1, 1958

02 - "JUST LIVE FOR YOUR LETTERS''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - October 1, 1958

03 - "BABY LET'S ROCK''
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - October 1, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jimmy Demopoulos – Vocal
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

OCTOBER 1958

Just southwest of Huntington, Tennessee, an unmarked dirt road leads to a logging camp Carl   Mann was born on that road, and returned there after a bizarre odyssey that brought him   near the top of the charts and to the ocean playgrounds of the rich and famous. He was   playing local radio stations when he was thirteen and had his first hit when he was sixteen,   but by the time he was nineteen the party had ended and Mann had taken the bottle for a   friend.

Sun's promotion manager, Cecil Scaife, took the initiative to sign Mann. ''We had invited this   guy in from Jackson, Tennessee, but his car blew up on him, so we just had the backing   group: Carl Mann, Eddie Bush, and W. S Holland. Carl did a beat arrangement of ''Mona Lisa''.   He was playing it on the piano and faking a lot of it. I turned the machine on and I remember   thinking. ''This ol' boy has the potential of cutting a hit if we can get it right''.

''I couldn't watt for Sam to hear ''Mona Lisa'', but he wasn't interested in it. Weeks and   months went by, and then Conway Twitty was on his way into town and called to see if I had   any material in our publishing catalogs for him to record. He was coming off ''It's Only Make   Believe'', and I had helped get that song off the ground because we had been old friends   from Helena. I played Conway the arrangement of ''Mona Lisa'' and he got excited. I said,   'You can borrow the arrangement if you put it out on an LP. I still have hopes of putting it out   as a single''. Conway put it out on an LP and then MGM pulled an EP from the album and   ''Mona Lisa'' started getting a lot of play in the Midwest.

''I took the charts to Sam and said, We're losing a hit', but Sam said, 'We don't put out   mediocre product'. There was a disc jockey convention coming up in Miami and I said, 'Sam,   unless you tell me not to put out ''Mona Lisa'', I'm gonna put it out and do a promo number in   Miami that everyone will remember'. So I put it out, and hired a model to stand in the hotel   lobby with a a sash saying 'Ask Me abut ''Mona Lisa''', handing out promo copies. I was telling   everyone that we had the original, even though Conway's version had come out first. It was   Dick Blonde, who was a top-rated disc jockey in Buffalo, who broke the record for us. He   laid on it till it started to cut loose''.

Mann's reveal of ''Mona Lisa'', a Nat King Cole hit from 1951, may not have had the visceral   quality that Phillips cherished, but it benefits from an unusual contrast. Mann delivers his   vocal straight as an arrow with good range and clear diction: against that vocal is juxtaposed   the eccentric guitar of Eddie Bush. Many talented pickers had set up their amps in the old   Sun studio and, in his way, Bush was as good as any of them. His fills and solos were   harmonically and technically advanced, and he allied sheer technique with a brilliant   musical imagination.

''Mona Lisa'' took off, eventually peaking at number 25 on the Billboard charts. Whisked from   Huntingdon into a promotional vortex, Mann was booked into New York, and then onto the   1959 Summer Dance Party tour. The Winter Dance Party earlier that year had claimed the   lives of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper. As Mann, Skip and Flip, Jo Ann   Campbell, and the rest of the performers followed in the footsteps of the earlier tour, they   took grim notice of Holly's autograph scratched onto changing room walls.

Phillips' delight was compounded by the outrage he encountered from the publisher of the   song, who tried to deny Sun a mechanical license after they'd heard Mann's unorthodox   rendition. Phillips had now been a thorn in the side of the industry, a role he relished, for   almost a decade.

OCTOBER 1, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Private Elvis Presley arrives in Bremerhaven, West Germany, where he's greeted by an estimated 1,500 fans. He will reside in Europe for the next 17 months, serving out the remainder of his military tour of duty.

OCTOBER 2, 1958 THURSDAY

Roy Drusky recorded his debut single, ''Just About That Time''.

OCTOBER 2-10, 1958

Jerry Lee Lewis performs in Texas with Carl Perkins.

OCTOBER 1959

The innovative guitar style of Eddie Bush underpins the music of Carl Mann who deserved to achieve more than one major hit, ''Mona Lisa''. His first disc for Phillips International quickly elevated Mann to Phillips' best-selling artist, although the competition was admittedly thinner at the time. The lighter and undeniably prettier sound that Mann adopted contrasted sharply with the darker tones that Phillips had nurtured in his earliest artists. However, Mann was indisputably the right horse for the course as the 1950s drew to a close and, in retrospect, it is surprising that he only managed one hit of epic proportions. The follow-ups did well but none could quite recapture the fleeting success of that first Phillips International single.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CARL MANN
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: UNKNOWN DATE OCTOBER 1958
THIS SESSION WAS PAID FOR ON FRIDAY JULY 3, 1959
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - CECIL SCAIFE AND/OR JACK CLEMENT

Carl Mann's scenario is at variance with Cecil Scaife's account. Scaife had been hired as promotion manager shortly after Sam Phillips brother, Jud, left Sun in mid-1958, and he told Billboard (August 10, 1959) that the audition had been arranged for Eddie Bush but that he became interest in Carl's arrangement of "Mona Lisa". Twenty-five years later, Scaife said that the audition was scheduled for Rayburn Anthony, but, Anthony failed to show so the group decided to play for their own amusement.

''Mona Lisa'' was written for the 1950 movie "Captain Carey, U.S.A.", in which it was heard in fragments and only in Italian. It won the Oscar for Best Song.

01(1) - "MONA LISA" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:21
Composer: - Jay Livingston-Ray Evans
Publisher: - Famous Music Corporation
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - 1993
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15713-1-23 mono
CARL MANN - MONA LISA
Carl Mann >

This version here was the first take in one of the boxes - and may well have been Carl's first stab at it. The consistency in the approach is hardly surprising in view of the fact that Carl Mann and his group had been performing the song for years. Eddie Bush had heard the Nat Cole version while he was stationed in Hawaii and, after joining Mann's group, he would sing the song straight (ie. in Cole's ballad style), then Carl would rock it up, and the contrast would usually get a big hand.

"Carl did a beat arrangement of "Mona Lisa", says Scaife. "it was one of my favourite songs, and Carl was playing it on the piano with two fingers of his left hand and three on his right. 

He was faking a lot of it, but I turned the machine on and I remember thinking, 'This ole boy has a potential of cutting a hit if we can get it right".  Scaife couldn't wait to play "Mona Lisa" for Sam Phillips, but Sam wasn't interest. Weeks and months went by, and then Conway Twitty breezed though town on his way to Nashville to cut a session.
 
 
He was short a song or two and called in at Sun to see if Scaife (whom he knew because they had grown up together in Helena, Arkansas) had anything sitting around in the publishing companies he could use. "I told Conway we didn't have anything we owned", remembered Scaife, "but we had an arrangement on "Mona Lisa" that sounded great. I played him Carl's arrangement and he got real excited. He said, 'I don't believe you're gonna give this to me'. I said, 'You can borrow the arrangement if you put it on an LP. I still have hopes of putting it out on Carl as a single".

01(2) - "MONA LISA" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:28
Composer: - Jay Livinston-Ray Evans
Publisher: - Famous Music Corporation
Matrix number: - P 343 - Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - March 15, 1959
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3539-A mono
MONA LISA / FOOLISH HEART
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15806-1-1 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 6

01(3) - "MONA LISA/ROCKIN' LOVE" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:45
Composer: - Jay Livingston-Ray Evans
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
''Rockin' Love'' with False Start released on BCD 17313 by mistake
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - May 29, 2013
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17313-7-15 mono
THE SUN ROCK BOX 1954 - 1959
Mona Lisa >
 
There was a story that appeared in The Phillips International Scandal Sheet that Conway Twitty came by on the day that Carl Mann was recording "Mona Lisa", but Carl doesn't it remember it that way and its likely that the timeframe was telescoped in the interests of a better story. Twitty memorized Carl's arrangement and taught it to the pickers in Nashville on February 18, 1959. He was also more-or-less true to his word - he didn't put out "Mona Lisa" as a single, but it was pulled from the album for the lead cut on an EP, and it started getting good play in several markets.

"I took the charts to Sam", said Scaife, "I told him, 'We're losing a hit'. Sam said, 'We don't put out mediocre product'. I thought on that for a while, then there was a disc jockey convention coming up in Miami''.

''I just hated to lose the hit. I said, 'Sam, unless you tell me NOT to put out Carl's version of "Mona Lisa" I'm gonna put it out and do a promo number down in Miami...
 
 
...that everyone will remember', so I went to Miami and I hired a model to stand in the hotel lobby with a sash saying "Ask Me About Mona Lisa". She was handing out promo copies too. Then I persuaded Sam to let me put out an advertisement in Billboard with the same girl, and I was telling everyone that Carl had the first version even though Conway's had come out first".

"I took Carl out on a whirlwind promo trip through Atlanta, Charlotte, Baltimore and New York. Dick Biondi was in New York at the time and Dick called me when I got back and told me he was gonna lay on it 'til he broke it. And he did. Sam Phillips still didn't hear Carl Mann, but he heard the telephone ringing with orders - and that was good enough. Sam also responded to Eddie Bush who had much of the essential weirdness that he cherished in a performer. "Right after Twitty's version came out Sam called me down to sign the contracts", says Carl, acknowledging that he would never have got a Sun contract without Twitty trying to steal his thunder.

"Mona Lisa" had lain around, her mystic smile shunned since 1950 when Nat King Cole had scored the biggest hit of the year with it. Tunesmiths Jay Livinston and Ray Evens had written the song for the movie "Captain Carey Of The U.S.A.", and it won the Oscar for Best Song that year. It was covered for the country market by Moon Mullican, but Carl says it was the Nat King Cole version he remembered.

Against Sam Phillips' better judgement, "Mona Lisa" was released on March 15, 1959 on his Phillips International subsidiary. He didn't own the publishing, and had a fight with Livinston and Evan's publisher over Carl's arrangement, but in the end money greased all the wheels and everyone was happy. Carl Mann was all of sixteen when "Mona Lisa" was released, and he already had six years of performing experience under his belt, but nothing he'd done in those six years would prepare him for what followed.

Sun expert Stuart Colman recalled, ''I first had the pleasure of meeting and working with Carl Mann, by way of a European tour in 1978. Although extremely laid back as a person, he surprised a lot of audience in the way he so accurately recreated his Phillips International material live on stage. Not surprisingly his callingcard, the distinctive "Mona Lisa", was a highlight of the set. We were reacquainted in September 1984, when Carl explained the circumstances that lead up to the recording of his biggest hit.

02 - "INTERVIEW CARL MANN" - B.M.I. - 1:07
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Sanctuary Records (CD) 500/200rpm FBUBX002-8-13 mono
50 GOLDEN YEARS 1952 - 2002

"Foolish One" is recorded over out-takes of "Look At That Moon", suggesting that "Look At That Moon" was cut at the same time or before "Mona Lisa" and "Foolish One".

03 - "FOOLISH ONE" - B.M.I. - 1:47
Composer: - Carl Mann
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 344 - Master
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - March 15, 1959
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3539-B mono
FOOLISH ONE / MONA LISA
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15806-1-2 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 6

In many ways, it is unfortunate that the attention accorded "Mona Lisa" detracted from the flip side, "Foolish One". As well as being an original its an extraordinarily melodic and spirited outing. It builds considerable tension during the verses shuttling between the 1 and 6-minor chords, all of which is deftly shattered during the release. Its a simple yet beautiful constructed song which allows both Eddie Bush and W.S. ''Fluke'' Holland to shine.
 
W.S. Holland had a lot of success playing drums behind singers named Carl who came from Jackson, Tennessee. His first successes came with Carl Perkins; later he teamed up with Carl Mann. And this track, the B-side of ''Mona Lisa'' connects these two parts of Holland's work at Sun.
 
One side of Carl Perkins' final single at Sun was ''Lend Me Your Comb''. That silly teen-oriented song had a Latin feel attached to it because it used the tresillo rhythm, a pattern that originated in Cuba. That Latin rhythm played behind most of the record- verses and guitar solo. But when the song gets to the release the first time, the rhythm shifts to strait rock and roll. W.S. Holland did most of the work in establishing both those rhythmic patterns on ''Lend Me Your Comb'', but his drumming wasn't prominently featured on that record.
 
Well, that was the end of the Perkins era at Sun. Fast forward 13 months and we're at the beginning of the Carl Mann era. The era begins with ''Foolish One'', a song that, like ''Lend Me Your Comb'', uses the tresillo rhythm in the verses and a straight rock and roll rhythm in the release. But on ''Foolish One'', W.S. Holland is on top of it and his drums is right in front of the recording. He establishes the tresillo rhythm as the tracks begins, and basically stays in command of the record. It's his drum that carries that tresillo rhythm all through the verse; the guitar just provides enough chords to keep the harmony together. The band becomes more like a team rhythmically in the releases and solos. And Holland's surprising way of ending the record is exciting and totally unexpected.

04 - "LOOK AT THAT MOON" - B.M.I. - 1:32
Composer: - Carl Mann-Carl Perkins
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date October 1958
Released: - 1973
First appearance: - Phonogram Records (LP) 33rpm 6467 027 mono
SUN ROCKABILLYS - VOLUME 3 - PUT YOUR CAT CLOTHES ON
Reissued: - 1993 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15713-1-24 mono
CARL MANN - MONA LISA

Name(Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Mann - Vocal and Piano
Eddie Bush - Guitar
Robert Oatsvall - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland – Drums

Eddie Bush with a fan >

"The first indication we had that "Mona Lisa" was breaking was when, Sun promotion assistant, Barbara Barnes phoned me", remembered Carl Mann. "She asked me how it felt to have a hit record. I said I didn't know because I'd never had one. She said, '"Mona Lisa" was breaking in New York or Buffalo. I said, 'That's tickles me to death. That's what I've always wanted".

Cecil Scaife and Sam Phillips hooked Carl Mann up with the GAC Booking Agency that placed him on a tour of the Midwest following in Buddy Holly's footsteps.

"It was right after Buddy got killed", says Carl. "A lot of dressing rooms had Buddy's autograph in them. It was a weird feeling.  They wouldn't let us fly anywhere. There was Skip and Flip, the Addrissi Brothers and Dicky Doo and the Don's. One band backed us all up. We were all basically on the same level riding our first hits. I think Jo-Ann Campbell topped the bill most nights".

 
It had been almost one year to the day since Jerry Lee Lewis had been drummed out of England and Sam Phillips had sat helpless while his prime asset suddenly became an albatross around his neck. A few weeks later Johnny Cash had quit the label followed by Warren Smith and Roy Orbison. "Mona Lisa" was the best news Sam Phillips had heard in a year, and he was quick to capitalize upon it. He was also quick to guard against it touring very sour very quickly as Lewis' success had done. He sent Cecil Scaife along with Carl Mann to ensure that the young singer did noting inappropriate.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 



© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS -©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CARL MCVOY
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: OCTOBER 4, 5, 8, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

01 – ''YOU'RE THE ONLY STAR IN MY BLUE HEAVEN'' - B.M.I. - 2:18
Composer: - Gene Autry
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None – Sun Unissued
Recorded: - October 4, 1958
Released: - February 10, 1998
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CD  8318 mono
SUN ROCK 'N' ROLL VOLUME 2

02 – ''LONELY HEART''
Composer: - Carl McVoy
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None – Sun Unissued
Recorded: - October 4, 1958

"I'll Be Satisfied" is the last song that Carl McVoy cut for Sun Records before moving back to Hi Records to  concentrate on production work - as engineer and studio musician. The track is a good blend of sanctified  gospel and pop music. This kind of hybrid - with its i - 6 minor chord riffs - had great staying power within  rock and roll. (It's black equivalent was a career-launcher for The Isley Brothers). Even cousin Jerry Lee  dabbled in the genre with "It Won't Happen With Me", SUN 364, but by the time Jerry Lee's record appeared  in 1961, cousin Carl was working across town behind the scenes at Hi Records.

03(1) - "I'LL BE SATISFIED" - B.M.I. - 1:43
Composer: - Carl McVoy
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 5, 1958
Released: 1998
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CPCD 8318-20 mono
SUN ROCK 'N' ROLL - VOLUME 2
Reissued: - August 2000 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16405-18 mono
THAT'LL FLAT GIT IT! - VOLUME 17

03(2) - "I'LL BE SATISFIED" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Carl McVoy
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - October 8, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl McVoy - Vocal and Piano
Unknown Musicians

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

OCTOBER 4, 1958 SATURDAY

Elvis Presley's father and grandmother arrive in West Germany, where Elvis is serving with the Army. Elvis has dinner with his father in Bad Homburg.

''American Bandstand'' host Dick Clark, destined to play a founding role in the Academy of Country Music, appears on the cover of TV Guide.

OCTOBER 5, 1958 SUNDAY

While watching the World Series on TV in his East Peoria, Illinois, home, Lee Stoller hears his wife singing in the kitchen. He convinces her to pursue music for a living, launching the career of Cristy Lane.

Barty Brown, the father of Musical Brownies Milton and Derwood Brown, dies. Both sons served as leaders and original members of the band, one of the influential acts in the development of western swing.

Sometimes-country singer Burl Ives guests on NBC's ''The Dinah Shore Chevy Show''.

OCTOBER 6, 1958 MONDAY

Columbia released Lefty Frizzell's ''Cigarettes And Coffee Blues'', written by Marty Robbins.

OCTOBER 7, 1958 TUESDAY

Singer/songwriter Rex Griffin dies in a New Orleans hospital. Though he recorded for Decca in the late-1930s, he's best remembered for writing Eddy Arnold's ''Just Call Me Lonesome'' and Hank Penny's ''Won't You Tide In My Little Red Wagon''.

OCTOBER 8, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Kraft Music Hall is an umbrella title for several television series aired by NBC in the United States from the 1950s to the 1970s in the musical variety genre, sponsored by Kraft Foods, the producers of a well-known line of cheeses and related dairy products. Their commercials were usually announced by "The Voice of Kraft," Ed Herlihy.

The original Kraft Music Hall was a radio series aired from 1933 to 1949. It was one of the most popular programs of its type, particularly during the period (1936–1946) when it was hosted by Bing Crosby, then by Al Jolson (1947-1949). However, unlike similar programs, it did not make the transition directly to network television; Kraft's early ventures into that field entailed the sponsorship of a famed series of dramas, initially broadcast live, under the title Kraft Television Theatre.

By 1958, Kraft was prepared to revive the Music Hall for television from October 8, 1958 till September 1, 1971. The first host was "Mr. Television", Milton Berle, who had become television's first superstar by hosting an earlier NBC program, the Texaco Star Theater. An alternate summer host in the program's early period was the English comedian and singer Dave King. The program achieved its greatest success while being hosted by Perry Comobeginning in 1959.

In 1966, the program was a summer replacement for The Andy Williams Show, known as the Kraft Summer Music Hall, with singer John Davidson as the host. Comedian George carlin was a featured regular.

Beginning in 1963, Kraft Music Hall specials hosted by Como were presented about once a month, through 1967. During the 1963-1964 and 1964-1965 television seasons, Kraft Suspense Theatre (co-produced by Como's "Roncom Films") was broadcast in the same time slot during the remaining weeks.

In the fall of 1967, the Kraft Music Hall returned as a weekly series, but without Perry Como who abruptly ended his association with Kraft Foods after the 1966-67 season. A policy of guest hosts was implemented, employing some of the leading figures in the U.S. entertainment industry at the time, including Rock Hudson, Lorne Green, George Burns, Dinah Shore and Woody Allen. In 1968, the practice of regular hosts was reinstated, with programs starring, in succession, country singer Eddy Arnold, John Davidson (again) and Ed McMahon. Arnold's programs all featured an appearance by comedian/impressionist John Byner.

Other leading performers who appeared on the Kraft Music Hall on a reasonably frequent basis were Don Rickles, Alan King, Steve Lawrence, Eydie Gorme, Mitzi Gaynor, Bobby darin, Roy Rogers, Dale Evans, Wayne Newton, Johnny Cash and Simon and Garfunkel.

 
OCTOBER 9, 1958 THURSDAY

Buck Owens recorded his first charted record, ''Second Fiddle'', during an evening session in Hollywood at the Capitol Tower.

OCTOBER 10, 1958 FRIDAY

Tanya Tucker is born in Seminole, Texas. After emerging as a teenager, she becomes one of country's more feisty females, with a gritty vocal style netting such hits as ''Delta Dawn'', ''Texas (When I Die)'' and ''Down To My Last Teardrop''.

''77 Sunset Strip'' make his debut, is an American television private detective series created byRoy Huggins and starring Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Roger Smith and Edd Byrnes. Each episode was one hour long.

The show was the subject of an ownership battle between Roy Huggins andWarner Brothers, which was the proximate cause of Huggins' departure from the studio. The series was based on novels and short stories written by Huggins prior to his arrival at Warner, but, as a matter of legal record, derived from a brief Caribbean theatrical release of its pilot, ''Girl On The Run''. The show ran from October 10, 1958 – February 7, 1964.

 
OCTOBER 11, 1958 SATURDAY

Marty Robbins recorded ''The Hanging Tree'', the theme song for a Gary Cooper movie, during the early-morning hours at Hollywood's Radio Recorders,  7000 Santa Monica Boulevard, Los Angeles, California.

OCTOBER 13, 1958 MONDAY

The Everly Brothers recorded ''Problems'' in Nashville at RCA Studio B.

Decca released Jimmy Martin's ''Rock Hearts''.

OCTOBER 14, 1958 TUESDAY

Roy Acuff arrives in Frankfurt, West Germany, where he performs for American troops at the beginning of a two-month USO tour of Europe.

OCTOBER 15, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Jackie Wilson recorded ''Lonely Teardrops''. The song later becomes a country hit when it's re-recorded by Narvel Felts.

OCTOBER 17, 1958 FRIDAY

Alan Jackson is born in Newman, Georgia. The first artist signed to Arista Records' country division in 1989, he becomes a traditional icon thanks to such hits as 'Don't Rock The Jukebox'', ''Chattahoochee'', ''Gone Country'' and ''Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning)''.

Jimmie Skinner recorded ''dark Hollow'' at the Bradley Recording Studio in Nashville.

OCTOBER 19, 1958 SUNDAY

Brenda Lee recorded ''Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree'' at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville.

OCTOBER 20, 1958 MONDAY

Jay Perkins dies from a brain tumor, with his brother, Carl Perkins, holding his hand. Jay played guitar along with Carl on ''Blue Suede Shoes''.

Capitol released Tennessee Ernie Ford's ''The Star Carol'' album.

Ray Price's ''City Lights'' becomes the first song written by Bill Anderson to hit number 1 on the Billboard country singles chart.

OCTOBER 21, 1958 TUESDAY

Buddy Holly recorded ''True Love Ways'', ''Raining In My Heart'' and ''It Doesn't Matter Anymore'' at Pythian Hall in New York. ''True Love Ways'' becomes a country hit for Mickey Gilley in 1980.

RCA Victor released Elvis Presley's two-sided hit ''One Night'' and ''I Got Stung'' ( RCA Victor 47-7410).

Following the show-business retirement of his wife, Gracie Allen, ''The George Burns Show'' debuts on CBS. The comedian becomes a country singer in 1979, with his recording of ''I Wish I Was Eighteen Again''.

OCTOBER 22, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Butch Baker is born in Sweetwater, Tennessee. He lands a number of singles on the country chart for Mercury during the 1980s and joins Hank Williams Jr. on the 1988 multi-artist hit ''Young Country''.

The Jordanaires take a guest slot on ''The Milton Berle Show'' on NBC.
Jay Buck Perkins >

OCTOBER 22, 1958 WEDNESDAY

With his career as a rock singer fading fast, Carl Perkins turned back to the honky tonks. He  also turned to the bottle. His alcoholism was  precipitated  by the death of his brother Jay from  a malignant brain tumour on this day. The respect in which Jay was held was evidenced by  the artists who performed at a memorial concert held in Memphis on November 14.

Johnny  Cash organized the event and enlisted the help of Jerry Lee Lewis, Webb Pierce, Dickey  Lee, Ernest Tubb, Hawkshaw Hawkins, Sonny Burgess, Slim Rhodes, Thomas Wayne, Curtis  Gordon, Merle Travis, Lefty Frizzell, the Collins Kids and Joe Maphis. The event raised over  $4000 for Perkins' widow.

By the end of 1958, Carl Perkins had severed his ties with Bob Neal who had moved to  California with Johnny Cash. He was booked through the Jim Denny Artist Bureau in  Nashville who also handled his music publishing via Cedarwood.
 
 
The growing affiliation with  Nashville began to be reflected in the direction his music was taken. After recordings a hasty  album of rock and roll cover versions, Perkins began to orients his music increasingly  towards the country mainstream. The maudlin element in his writing and performance which  had kept under control by Sam Phillips began to assume a higher profile.

OCTOBER 23, 1958 THURSDAY

Elvis Presley attends a Bill Haley concert in Frankfurt, West Germany.

OCTOBER 25, 1958 SATURDAY

Mark Miller, of Sawyer Brown, is born in Dayton, Ohio. He becomes the lead singer for the group, which begins earning hits after winning ''Star Search'' in 1984. The band claims the Country Music Association's Vocal Group of the Year award in 1977.

The cover of TV Guide features comedian George Burns, destined to net a country hit with his 1979 recording of ''I Wish I Was Eighteen Again''.
 
 
The singles Sun 306, Jimmy Isle's ''I've Been Waiting'' b/w ''Diamond Ring'';   "Born To Lose" b/w ''(Nothing Can Change) My Love For You'' (Sun 307) by Ernie Chaffin and  Sun 308, Ray Smith's  ''Why, Why, Why b/w ''You Made A Hit'' are released.

OCTOBER 26, 1958 SUNDAY

The Wilburn Brothers recorded ''Which One Is To Blame''.

OCTOBER 27, 1958 MONDAY

Kitty Wells recorded ''Mommy For A Day'' during the afternoon at Nashville's Bradley Film and Recording Studio. She also recorded ''All The Time;;, a Mel Tillis song destined to become a hit for Jack Greene.

OCTOBER 28, 1958 TUESDAY

Buddy Holly holds his final recording session, three months before he dies in a plane crash. Holly had become the first person to produce Waylon Jennings, and his song ''True Love Ways'' would later become a country hit for Mickey Gilley.
 

Ron Hemby, of The Buffalo Club, is born. He serves as lead singer for the group, which earns a hit in 1997 with the smooth ''If She Don't Love You''. The act breaks up before a second album ever made.

OCTOBER 29, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Bill Haley and His Comets perform in Stuttgart, West Germany. In the audience is private Elvis Presley, watching Haley for the second time in less than a week.

OCTOBER 31, 1958 FRIDAY

Mel McDaniel makes money for performing for the first time when he appear at a talent contest in school in Okmulgee, Oklahoma.

Songwriter Sandy Knox is born. Her credits include the Reba McEntire and Linda Davis duet ''Does He Love You'' and McEntire's ''She Thinks His Name Was John''.
 
 


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

Perhaps more than anything else, these recordings by Vernon Taylor help define the kind of music Sun was contributing to the pantheon of rock and roll in late 1958. Sam Phillips had seen Taylor, then based in Washington, D.C., on American Bandstand and brought him to Sun records, and that in itself was an indication of changing times at Sun. Gone is the frenetic energy pf previous years. In its place is a more controlled kind of enthusiasm. There is something about Taylor's voice to suggest he might have been a wildman under different circumstances, but there was nothing about this October, 1958 date organized by Jack Clement that would coax any wildness from Taylor.

STUDIO SESSION FOR VERNON TAYLOR
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: MONDAY OCTOBER 27-31, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

01 - "BREEZE" - A.S.C.A.P.
Composer: - MacDonald-Joe Goodwin-James Hanley
Publisher: - Shapiro Berhstein and Company
Matrix number: - None
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: - Sun Unissued

01(2) - "BREEZE" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:05
Composer: - MacDonald-Joe Goodwin-James Hanley
Publisher: - Shapiro Berhstein and Company
Matrix number: - U 332  - Master
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: - November 12, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 310-A mono
BREEZE / TODAY IS A BLUE DAY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-13 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

But all is not lost. This side is unexpectedly good. Given that Clement's tune was the focus of most promotional effort, it is curious that Sam Phillips would allow a song he did not own, "Breeze", to be used in a supporting role.

It was Taylor's choice, he had first heard "Breeze" on Cowboy Copas' 1948 hit recording, although it was a pop song principally authored by James (Zing Went The Strings Of My Heart) Hanley and Joe (When You're Smiling) Goodwin. Taylor made in the centerpiece of a wonderfully understated arrangement.
 
 
Vernon Taylor >

There is a marvellous bluesy tension to this side. the 1-4 chord shuttling between verses creates a fine groove and Taylor's vocal is just right, avoiding all the pitfalls for over-emoting. The guitar work during the chorus ("It's an ill wind...") is striking and moody.

 
 
Billboard got on the case in short order, giving this record a Pick Hit in November, 1958. They said that Taylor had a "refreshingly distinctive style" and predicted that "with exposure, the lad could have himself a two sided winner". Those are strong words, but the marketplace turned a deaf ear, and so have Sun fans. It may by time to reassess. True, this is no "Miss Froggie", and Taylor's isn't Warren Smith, but "Breeze" is a damn fine record in its own right.

03(1) - "TODAY IS A BLUE DAY" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take 1- Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: - 1995
First appearance: - Eagle Records (CD) 500/200rpm EA-R 90120-15 mono
VERNON TAYLOR - THERE'S ONLY ONE... YOUR LOVIN' MAN   
 
The popifies folk-country version of ''Today Is A Blue day'' that was released on Sun 310 gave no hint of the unissued versions in the vault that lay awaiting discovery. Vernon Taylor was one of Jack Clement's projects and, truth be told, one of his successful ones. Of greatest interest here is the powerful drumming by Jimmy M. Van Eaton that drives the alternates takes. In particular, the way the drums come thunderling in for the second half of the verse (''Maybe there will be..'') brings this alternates to life.
 
Although Van Eaton was also around for the session that spawned the issued version, none of the energy that happens here so effortlessly appears there. If you know Sun 310, you can't help but marvel at what was passed over in the interest of catering to a changing marketplace that wanted the edge taken off its music. That seems to have been a major loss in general, but especially at Sun.

03(2) - "TODAY IS A BLUE DAY" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take 11 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: - 1995
First appearance: - Eagle Records (CD) 500/200rpm EA-R 90120-29 mono
VERNON TAYLOR - THERE'S ONLY ONE... YOUR LOVIN' MAN
 
03(3) - "TODAY IS A BLUE DAY" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Alternate Take 3 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: - 1995
First appearance: - Eagle Records (CD) 500/200rpm EA-R 90120-26 mono
VERNON TAYLOR - THERE'S ONLY ONE... YOUR LOVIN' MAN

03(4) - "TODAY IS A BLUE DAY" - B.M.I. - 2:00
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 333 - Master
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958 - Vocal Chorus Overdub
Released: - November 12, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 310-B mono
TODAY IS A BLUE DAY / BREEZE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-14 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

On "Today Is A Blue Day", Jack Clement has written his own entry in the Don Gibson sweepstakes, emulating such hits as "Blue Blue Day". You can hear the quirky edge to Jimmy Van Eaton's drumming and wish it were more prominent, but its too deep in the mix to offset the effects of Clement's high string guitar (another bow to Don Gibson's record), and the choral overdub. This is just going to be a pop record, no matter how much you wish it would cut through and rock.
 
 04(1) - ''YOUR LOVIN' MAN'' - 1 - B.M.I. - 1:54
Composer: – Vernon Taylor
Published: – Hi-Lo Music Incorporated:
Matrix number: - None - take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: 1975
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm CR 30147-6 mono
RAUNCHY ROCKABILLYS
Reissued: -1986 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm Charly 36-19 mono
THE BEST OF SUN ROCKABILLY - VOLUME 2
 
''Your Lovin' Man'' is vintage Sun rockabilly that could have been recorded two years earlier than its October 1958 session date, might have made Taylor a star. The guitar solo has echoes of the ''Love My Baby'' sound. But what makes the track a lock is the stellar drumming of Jimmy Van Eaton. His thundering rim shots take the song's release (''Why should I worry....'') to a whole other level.
 
If this session had taken place in 1956, there seems little doubt that one of the multiple takes of ''Your Lovin' Man'' would have seen the light of day. But this was the end of 1958 and Jack Clement was running the show. Clement had his eyes on the price and with Frankie Avalon, the Kingston Trio and the Teddy Bears on the charts, it's unlikely that straight-ahead rockabilly with heavy drum work like this was going to make it on to Sun's release schedule.

04(2) - ''YOUR LOVIN' MAN'' - 2 - B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: - Vernon Taylor
Published: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Take 2 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: 1995
First appearance: - Eagle Records Germany (CD) 500/200rpm EA-R90120-18 mono
VERNON TAYLOR - THERE'S ONLY YOU... YOUR LOVIN' MAN
Reissued: - February 2017 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16273-23 mono
GREAT DRUMS AT SUN

05(1) - ''BLUE DAY TOMORROW'' - B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: - Vernon Taylor
Published: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - October 27-31, 1958
Released: 1996
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CPCD 8236-11 mono
ESSENTIAL SUN ROCKABILLIES - VOLUME 4

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Vernon Taylor - Vocal and Guitar
Cliff Acred - Bass
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jack Clement - Guitar
Jimmy Wilson - Piano

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

OCTOBER 1958

In a late-1958 issue of the Phillips International Scandal Sheet, Barbara Barnes spotlighted an exciting  single, ''Tom Dooley'', that Capitol had issued by the Kingston Trio. The bay Area group sang an updated  version of an old North Carolina ballad, recorded with an energetic guitar and banjo backing. It eventually  made it to number 1 on the Billboard charts.

The success of ''Tom Dooley'' encouraged her to think that Jack Clement might have a chance with the  emerging folk-music audience that was forming in New York's Greenwich Village and a few other scattered  locations. On February 17, 1958, Jack Clement had recorded ''Ten Years'', which had a balled feeling, he had  traveled to RCA's Nashville studio to get the sound he wanted on his second release, ''The Black Haired  Man''. He produced both records, but while in Nashville he renewed acquaintance with Chet Atkins, the  celebrated finger-picking guitar pioneer and ''Nashville Sound'' producer, who incidentally felt him out about  working for him at RCA.

''Ten Years'' didn't catch on, but Sun hoped the next release would do better. For ''The Black Haired Man'',  Sun prepared a special flyer intended to depict both the collegiate and country-folk sides of Jack Clement.  Bill and Joy Webb, a husband-and-wife team Sun patronized when they needed nice pictures made,  photographed Jack sitting beside a large rustic-looking fireplace that conveniently happened to be in the  apartment Sandra Pirtle and Barbara Barnes were renting at that time. He was wearing an L.L. Bean-looking  plaid shirt and khakis. They had gone to Lulius Lewis to get the shirt, and Barbara suggested the buttondown  collar, hoping that this would look both a little preppy and a little country with the plaid. Barbara  Barnes says, ''He got a nice haircut that showed off his wavy hair, but I had neglected to mention shoes, and I  thought the effect was marred a little by the sandals he showed up in. The photos turned out to be just right  for the outside of the flyer, which bore the legend, ''Inside Lies the Story of the Black-Haired Man'', with  ''Sun 311'' in the corner. We got nice reviews in the trades and a great feature article in the Memphis paper''.

''I bore down so hard on our distributors to buy the record that Willie Roessner, the promo man for our  Kansas City distributor, asked me if Jack were my boyfriend'', Barbara says. ''Some of the pop stations put it  on their lists, as did several country stations, but the record just didn't take off. As with Bill Justis and his  releases, Jack couldn't leave his day-to-day job in the studio to go on the road for the exposure. Whether this  promotion would have helped, I can't say, but as it was, the record was a big disappointment.

It was ironic that Jack Clement written hits for Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis and other songs for Roy  Orbison and others, but he couldn't find many listeners for his own work. But he had so many irons in the  fire and wasn't worried that his records didn't become hits.
 

 
SUN-LINERS - Jack Clement is a name that followers of the music industry associate with the  hit songs he has written - "Ballad Of A Teenage Queen" and "Guess Things Happen That Way"  (recorded by Johnny Cash); "It'll Be Me" and "Fools Like Me" (recorded by Jerry Lee Lewis);  and many others.  We predict that Jack Clement will soon be known as a big name among record artists.  His  new release "The Black-Haired Man" has all the components of a hit record - original  material, "finished" arrangement and production, an interesting sound, and a truly talented  artist. The flip "Wrong" is a typical Clement tune - simple melody, single message, a very  appealing ballad.

Jack's tunes somehow ring 'true'. They're obviously the product of a basically sincere ongwriter. Although his lyrics are not at all sophisticated, they make very good sence; the  words, not only the sound, mean something. In spite of a lot of good-natured kidding by his  co-workers, Jack has delved seriously onto a study of traditional folk ballads as a background  for his efforts at creating new stories to be told in up-dated folk style.

 
 
Jack's first release on Sun, "Ten Years", was a ballad. Introduced with a minimum of fanfare,  the tune quickly made the "most played" Country and Western charts.

We know the disc jockey's and fans who made "Ten Years" a success will welcome Jack  Clement's new release, and we hope those not already acquainted with this rising new artist  will take time to hear "The Black-Haired Man".


''In spite of a lot of good natured kidding from his co-workers, Jack has delved seriously into a study of traditional folk ballads as a background for his efforts at creating new stories to be told in updated folk style''. 

Thus wrote Sun's promotion staffer Barbara Barnes in an attempt to sell Jack Clement as part of the great continuum of folk balladry. He was obviously straddling two stools, country music and the ersatz folk revivalism of the Kinston Trio and their lik. As a story-song this does have a great deal of merit and hardly justifies the hours of research that Ms. Barnes seemed to think Clement had devoted to it. Quite simply, it sounds as though Clement had concocted the tune for Johnny cash and then decided to record it himself. He kept the chorus under control and there is an undeniable drive to the song but its prettiness was very markedly different from the country music that Phillips had recorded in the same studio a few years earlier.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JACK CLEMENT
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: THURSDAY OCTOBER 30, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

Its anybody's guess why this record wasn't a hit in the folkcrazed, country crossover market of 1958. Billboard concurred. They gave both sides a four star rating and, in classic Billboardese, said of Clement "The cat has real talent, both as to cleffing and chanting". Despite their admonition to "Watch this one", the record went nowhere.

01 - "THE BLACK HAIRED MAN" - B.M.I. - 1:57
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 334 - Master
Recorded: - October 30, 1958
Released: - November 20, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 311-A mono
THE BLACK HAIRED MAN / WRONG
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-15 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

This is a fast, rhythmic development of the Johnny Cash beat, a gunfighter ballad of real class and a fairly successful record. The flip, "Wrong" is light, singalong country pop with a prominent acoustic guitar from Jack. This sound was ahead of its time and is not too different from Clement circa 1986.

"The Black Haired Man" has been saluted by the trade publications as a potential best-seller. Billboard reviewed it as a "Scoop Of The Week". Already it has been picked for "spotlight" play on radio stations in Boston, Kansas City, Omaha and Baltimore. Written by Jack Clement, it is in the currently popular folk vein of "Tom Dooley" and "Travelin' On". The publisher is Jack Clement Music Incorporated, the guitar accompaniment is by him, and the other instrumental parts were arranged by him.

His RCA Victor single, "Edge Of Town", works the same theme as "The Black Haired Man". Unlike many folk morality tales, Clement chooses to end this opus on a cliffhanger. We have no idea who will survive the battle: the slick stranger or the half drunk character with the shaking hand. These are not good odds, a fact made even clearer by the final resolution to a minor key - a deft and unusual bit of arranging.

In addition to his talents as a singer/songwriter, Jack Clement could claim a high degree of studio savvy in the role of recording engineer. During an interview in the early week of 2002 in Nashville, he outlined the everyday circumstances of a Sun studio session. His technical speciality was without doubt the art of microphone placement and here he explores the largely untested world of overdubbing, by adding harmonica an percussion after the main track had been recorded.

02 - "INTERVIEW JACK CLEMENT" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Sanctuary Records (CD) 500/200rpm FBUBX002-8-2 mono
50 GOLDEN YEARS 1952 - 2002

03 - "WRONG" - B.M.I. - 1:54
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Jack Clement Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 335 - Master
Recorded: - October 30, 1958
Released: - November 20, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 311-B mono
WRONG / THE BLACK HAIRED MAN
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-16 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

This must have stood a fair chance of success in the pop sweepstake. The prominently mic'd brushwork provides a fine drive to the record in much the same way that the deadened acoustic guitar underpinned many of Johnny Cash's best recordings with a similar sound.

"Wrong" might have been an ideal follow-up to "Guess Things Happen That Way", and, in Cash's hands, it might have been a hit. Clement seemed obsessed with the idea to tall dark strangers moving into town and threatening to take his baby away. The man had obviously seen lots of movies or lived in a really bad neighbourhood.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jack Clement - Vocal, Guitar, Harmonica and Drums
Billy Riley - Guitar
Brad Suggs - Guitar
Cliff Acred - Bass
Unknown Chorus

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

 
NOVEMBER 1958
 

NOVEMBER 1958

Johnny Cash holds a housewarming party in Encino, California.  Tex Williams, Merle Travis, Lefty Frizzell and others are on hand to welcome him to the west  coast.

NOVEMBER 1, 1958 SATURDAY

Review from UK Disc magazine says ''I'm not one of those who decried Lewis's work after the unfortunate tour, I never did like his singing anyway. Not that this has ever caused him to lose any sleep because a lot more people do like him. And listening to this extended play ''It'll Be Me'', ''Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On'', ''Great Balls Of Fire'', ''You Win Again'' (London RE-S1140), I can begin to see why. I still don't like his singing, but he plays some good,  beauty piano  on numbers like ''You Win Again''. Certainly all Lewis fans will want this collection of four top Jerry Lee Lewis hits''.

NOVEMBER 4, 1958 TUESDAY

Roger Peterson receives a pilot's license that does not allow him to fly at night. Peterson, however, will take off near midnight two months later piloting a plane that crashed, killing ''True Love Ways'' songwriter Buddy Holly.
 
 
 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JERRY LEE LEWIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 5, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT
AND/OR BILLJUSTIS

During these sessions the time was found to recorded new versions of ''Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee'' and ''You're The Star In My Blue Heaven'', neither of which was at the time deemed worthy of release.(*) 

1 - STUDIO CHATTER - 0:33
Recorded: November 5, 1958
Released:  - April 1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-9-16 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-24 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
1(1) - "DRINKIN' WINE SPO-DEE-O-DEE" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Stick McGhee
Publisher: - Leeds Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958  - Not Originally Issued
Released:  - April 1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-9-16 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued:  - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-25 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

Granville ''Stick'' McGhee, in the military, Granville often played his guitar and one of the songs, that McGhee was best known for his co-written song "Drinkin' Wine, Spo-Dee-O-Dee". The original lyrics of the song were as follows: ''Drinkin’ that mess is our delight, and when we get drunk, start fightin’ all night. Knockin’ out windows and tearin’ down doors, drinkin’ half-gallons and callin’ for more. Drinkin’ wine motherfucker, drinkin’ wine! Goddam! Drinkin’ wine motherfucker, drinkin’ wine! Goddam! Drinkin’ wine motherfucker, drinkin’ wine! Goddam! Pass that bottle to me''! This song was one of the earliest prototypical rock and roll songs and was covered by Jerry Lee Lewis for his Sun International LP ''Monsters'' (Sun 124, April 1971) and Mike Bloomfield's Electric Flag (as "Wine"). The song lent its name to the alcoholic fruit drink, spodi.

 

In 1946, Granville and Brownie McGhee collaborated and modified the song into a clean cut version for Harlem Records. The song was released a year later in January 1947 at the price of 49 cents. The song did not get much airplay time until two years later, when Granville recreated the song for Atlantic Records. As a result, it rose to number 2 on the Billboard Rhythm And Blues chart, where it stayed for 4 weeks, spending almost half a year on the charts overall.

 

His songs attracted countless covers over the years. The first cover was by Lionel Hampton featuring Sonny Parker, then Wynonie Harris, and lastly, Loy Gordon and His Pleasant Valley Boys with their hillbilly-bop rendition. His song "Drinkin' Wine, Spo-Dee-O-Dee" maintained its popularity throughout the 1950s by various artists, including Malcolm Yelvington, recorded on October 10, 1954 for Sun Records (Sun 211), and Johnny Burnette (Coral 9-61869) in 1957.

 
01(2) - "DRINKIN' WINE SPO-DEE-O-DEE" - B.M.I. - 2:34
Composer: - Stick McGhee
Publisher: - Leeds Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-7-B9 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-8 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

2(1) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:06
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - 1982
First appearance: - Accord Records (LP) 33rpm SJA-7903-B3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - DOIN' JUST FINE
Reissued:  - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-27 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

Jerry Lee Lewis also sounded very much at ease in November 1958 when recording Moon Mullican's 1950 hit ''I'll Sail My Ship Alone'', a song which he is said to have determined to release as a single even though no-one else at Sun much faith in the idea. The first of the seven takes stands alone on the basis of relatively sparse instrumentation; the saxophone player wasn't involved at this early stage. On the next they're still experimenting with the arrangement; the last twenty seconds or so of this take has a definite ''swing'' feel. Each one of the succeeding five takes features an unplanned vocal nuance somewhere in the second half of the first verse which sets it apart from the others.

 
2(2) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:14
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - False Start - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958
Released: - October 2015  - Not Originally Issued
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-28 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

In take 3 it's a ''but'' at 0:25, allowing for the false start, ahead of ''I guess''; in take 4 the superfluous ''but'' precedes ''I have built'' at 0:26; in take 5 Jerry Lee puts the ''love we shared'' in the past tense with ''was'' in place of ''is''; in take 6, the recording selected  for original release, there's an inadvertent stutter on the word ''guess'' at 0:25; in take 7, rather than having ''planned'' all his dreams, exceptionally he sings ''to plan'' at 0:28. It is to be hoped that the listener can be persuaded at an early stage that these are all distinct recordings and may then simply revel in what follows rather than having to count the glissandi, or note the lack of them, in the solos.(*)

 
2(3) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958  - Not Originally Issued
Released: - November 1986
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (LP) 33rpm BFX 15211-11-11 mono
THE SUN COUNTRY YEARS
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-29 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(4) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:16
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - April 1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-7-23 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-30 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(5) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:13
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958  - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-8-A1 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-31 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
2(6) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE" - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master
Recorded: - November 5, 1958  - Not Originally Issued
Released: - 1986
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (LP) 33rpm BFX 15211-11-11 mono
THE SUN COUNTRY YEARS 1950 - 1959
Reissued: - February 15, 2013 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17311-6-31 mono
THE SUN COUNTRY BOX 1950 - 1959

Originally recorded and written by Moon Mullican (an early Jerry Lee Lewis inspiration), the Sun cut (and several alternate takes) feature an unnecessary saxophone honking away but it is otherwise a very good mid-tempo country-rock performance. Jerry recorded the song again for his 1966 live album ''By Request (More Of The Greatest Live Show On Earth''), this time with his road band including some tremendous drumming from the legendary Morris ‘Tarp’ Tarrant (a drummer who taught not one but two Lewis family members how to play the drums!).
 
2(6) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:06
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 337 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - November 5, 1958
Released: - November 20, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 312-A mono
I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE / IT HURT ME SO
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-17 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

After "Break Up" fell stilborn from the presses, Jud Phillips tried to spark some action of the next single of Jerry Lee Lewis, a revival of Moon Mullican's "I'll Sail My Ship Alone", by offering the first 100,000 at the royalty-free price of 16c, but there were few takers.  It was at Jerry Lee's insistence that this record (SUN 312) was cut and released on Sun. If nothing else, it should put to rest any doubts about the influence Moon Mullican had on the Killer's style. Resurrechting "I'll Sail My Ship Alone" may have been a fine tribute to Mullican, bit it did little to energize Jerry Lee's career. In truth, it is not a particularly good record. The appearance of Martin Willis' sax is a first for Jerry Lee, although it is hardly here are Jerry himself, and the guitar player, who sounds more like Billy Riley than Roland Janes. Jerry turns in one of the most distracted sounding vocals of his recorded career. The pitch wavers, the intonation is sloppy; in short, it sounds like Jerry was paying too much attention to his piano work and let the singing go to hell. Unfortunately, the guitar work is strident and unfocussed. During the instrumental break, it sounds as if the guitar player assumed the second eight bars were his, only to find Jerry Lee still ticklin' them ivories. From the brief taste we get of what that solo would have sounded like, its a mercy the guitar stays submerged.

2(7) - "I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE"* - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Moon Mullican-Lois Mann-Henry Bernard-Henry Thurston
Publisher: - Lois Music - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
 
Released: -  March 1985
First appearance: - Sun International (EP) 45rpm JLL EP 002-A1 mono*
THE FABULOUS JERRY LEE LEWIS - VOLUME TWO
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-8-33mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

* - Limited edition produced for the International Jerry Lee Lewis Fan Club, not on general sale.
 
3(1) - "YOU'RE THE ONLY STAR IN MY BLUE HEAVEN"* - B.M.I. - 0:57
Composer: - Gene Autry
Publisher: - Shapiro Bernstein Music
Matrix number: - None - 3 False Starts
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-8-A5 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued:  - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-1 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
3(2) - "YOU'RE THE ONLY STAR IN MY BLUE HEAVEN"* - B.M.I. - 1:48
Composer: - Gene Autry
Publisher: - Shapiro Bernstein Music
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-8-A1 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued:  - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-2 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
 3(3) - "YOU'RE THE ONLY STAR IN MY BLUE HEAVEN"* - B.M.I. - 1:48
Composer: - Gene Autry
Publisher: - Shapiro Bernstein Music
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - September 1989
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-11 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

Of course, "I'll Sail My Ship Alone" is a 1950 song written by Moon Mullican (sometimes credited as "Morry Burns"), Henry Bernard (sometimes credited as "Henry Glover"), Lois Mann (sometimes credited as "Sydney Nathan") and Henry Thurston. The song was Mullican's most successful release, reaching number one on the Country and Western chart for a single week, and spending a total of nine months on the chart. "I'll Sail My Ship Alone" crossed over to the pop chart, reaching number seventeen. Patsy Cline also recorded this song on her last recording session, before she died in a plane crash. It was recorded by Jerry Lee Lewis in 1958 and by many others since such as Hank Williams, Skeets McDonald, Patsy Cline, Tiny Hill, Ferlin Husky, George Jones, Slim Whitman, Patrick Wall, Mickey Gilley and Leon Russell. 

"I'll Sail My Ship Alone" is also an album title for several Moon Mullican original albums and more recent compilations. Irish blues singer Patrick Wall also called his 2011 CD "I'll Sail My Ship Alone" too. 1990s band Beautiful South released a song called "I'll Sail This Ship Alone". However, this song is lyrically and melodically unrelated although the title may have been inspired by "I'll Sail My Ship Alone".

 
 3(1) - "STUDIO CHATTER - 1 / IT HURT ME SO" - B.M.I. - 3:19
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-8-A3 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: - September 1989 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15420-5-10 mono
CLASSIC JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE DEFINITIVE SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1963

3 - STUDIO CHATTER - 2 - 1:36
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-8-A4 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued:  - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-6 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 

''I'll Sail My Ship Alone'' was paired on Sun 312 with a Bill Justis and Charlie Rich composition ''It Hurt Me So'', upon which Sam, mindful of the difficulties encountered with ''I'll Make It All Up To You'', again asked Rich himself to take over the piano, thereby investing the song with an untypical sound for a Lewis title. The early experiments involved trying out a change of key but once things settled down, the ensemble produced four very similar sounding takes. With Charlie adhering closely to his own score these can best be distinguished by examining Jerry Lee's delivery, at around 0:25, of the line ''to see you with another boy'' which invariably involves a shift in the emphasis on one word or another in successive takes. A male vocal chorus was overdubbed onto the last of the four to produce a master for a release which, given Rich's influence, was barely recognisable as a Jerry Lee Lewis' record.(*)


3(2) - "IT HURT ME SO" - B.M.I. - 2:14
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - January 1983
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 102-8-A4 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-7 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

3(3) - "IT HURT ME SO" - B.M.I. - 2:41
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - April 1993
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/22rpm Sunbox 4-9-18 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-8 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

3(4) - "IT HURT ME SO" - B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - April 1987
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CD Charly 70-9 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - RARE AND ROCKIN'
Reissued: -  October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-9 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

3(5) - "IT HURT ME SO" - B.M.I. - 2:42
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - None - Unknown Take
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - April 1993
First appearance: - Charly REcords (CD) 500/200epm Sunbox 4-11-19 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS - THE ULTIMATE - THE SUN YEARS
Reissued:  - October 2015  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-10 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS

3(6) - "IT HURT ME SO" - B.M.I. - 2:40
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - None - Undubbed Master
Recorded: - November 5, 1958 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - October 2015
First appearance: -  Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17254-9-11 mono
JERRY LEE LEWIS AT SUN RECORDS THE COLLECTED WORKS
 
3(6) - "IT HURT ME SO"** - B.M.I. - 2:37
Composer: - Charlie Rich-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music
Matrix number: - U 336 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - November 5, 1958
Released: - November 20, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 312-B mono
IT HURT ME SO / I'LL SAIL MY SHIP ALONE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803-3-18 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

On this side, the label credited "Jerry Lee Lewis and his Pumping Piano". the label lied. The not-very pumping piano was played by Charlie Rich, who also co-composed this song with Bill Justis. The material is very heavy into self pity, and engages the more maudlin side of Jerry's vocal stylings. This would not be the last time Jerry Lee's flair for the melodramatic surfaced in his recorded work
 

''It Hurt Me So'' was recorded by Charlie Rich's as demo of the song that Jerry Lee Lewis recorded for his seventh Sun single. Actually Charlie contributed both the song and the piano work to Jerry Lee's release, leaving the Killer free to concentrate on his singing. Listening to their versions side by side is quite revealing. Without question, Charlie mines a stronger blues vein than here Jerry - which is doubly impressive considering that Charlie was not offering a finished performance for release, but merely a look at the song for another artist to evaluate and learn. 

Name (Or. No Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes - Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Cliff Acred - Bass
James M. Van Eaton  - Drums
Jeff Davis - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano on some takes of "It Hurt Me So"
* Martin Willis - Saxophone

* * Unknown chorus overdub added at an overdub session in November 1958.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

NOVEMBER 1958

Studio session for Bill Justis with his orchestra. ''Technically'', said Stan Kesler, ''Bill was better than most of the musicians at Sun. He was more of an educated musician than a feel musician..., but he wasn't that hung up being technically correct''.

NOVEMBER 7, 1958 FRIDAY

George Morgan recorded ''I'm In Love Again''.

NOVEMBER 10, 1958 MONDAY

Johnny Horton recorded ''When It's Springtime In Alaska (It's Thirty Below)'' during the evening at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville.

''Bring It On Home To Me'' songwriter Sam Cooke and Lou Rawls are injured in a car accident near Marion, Arkansas. The car's driver is killed in the mishap.

Columbia released Carl Smith's ''The Best Years Of Your Life''.
 

 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR BILL JUSTIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: TUESDAY NOVEMBER 10-11, 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER – BILL JUSTIS
RECORDING ENGINEER – STAN KESLER

Not wanting to lose the momentum of "Raunchy", Sam Phillips was quick to issue yet another follow-up after "College Man" did its kamikaze imitation. This one was closer to what the doctor ordered. It didn't really make anybody rich, but it did re-establish some credibility for the label and the artist. 

01 - "STRING OF PEARLS - CHA HOT CHA" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:27
Composer: - Jerry Gray
Publisher: - Mutual Music
Matrix number: - P 338   - Master
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (s) 45rpm standard single PI 3535-B mono
STRING OF PEARLS - CHA HOT CHA / BOP TRAIN
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-18 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

On the session reels, you can be heard between takes Justis said: "OK, girls, The cha cha is hot. We've got our roots in the big band era. Let's take that big Glen Miller hit "String of Pearls" and transform it into a cha cha. Can't miss, right?".

The band must have had fun recording this one. It certainly comes closer to big band music than anything ever recorded at 706 Union Avenue. Why, Justis even had to bring in a trombone player and a trumpet for the date (at Union scale). And he didn't just bury them in the mix. That's Richard Mateller's trumpet, not Justis' sax, during the first solo. And just listen to Charlie Rich playing those soulful piano fills during the last verse! Forget following up "Raunchy". Let's have some fun!

02(1) - "BOP TRAIN" - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958
Released: - November 1986
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 106-12-9 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE ROCKING YEARS - RAUNCHY
Reissued: - May 29, 2013 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17313-8-22 mono
THE SUN ROCK BOX 1954 - 1959

02(2) - "BOP TRAIN" - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 337   - Master
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3535-A mono
BOP TRAIN / STRING OF PEARLS - CHA HOT CHA
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805-4-17 mono
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

"Bop Train" is another matter. Hidden on the B-side here and rarely reissued, this track is a gem that truly captures the hybrid spirit of Justis' music. The trouble is there's really nowhere to go after the first 12-bar verse. Its all been said. All that remains is to swap the soloing around until the clock on the wall tells us its time to wrap. In a true tough of class, rather than fade on somebody's solo, they return to the original guitar figure and the "Bop Train" rolls along the tracks until its out of sight. Fine work, girls.
 
The other nice story about ''Bop Train'' is a strange record that doesn't seem quite sure what it wants to be. It begins with a lovely, countrified 4-bar guitar intro in the key of B. Not many songs are in the key and there might not be another one on Sun. Then the band comes in playing a 120bar blues at a lazy rolling tempo with pleasant sax work by Justis in the style of Billy Vaughn. Only now they're in the key of A-flat. Huh? We never lose that 12-bar structure from here on. It's a train, rolling down the track, although the journey doesn't come to close to ''bop'' by anyone definition. (Then again, neither did Elvis when the critics called his music ''hillbilly bop'' back when he started). The first verse is led by the mellow sax. The next two-verses feature a lead guitar with a lot more edge and sting than any playing that comes before. This is as close to rock and roll as the record gets. Then there's one more sax-led verse (the Vaughn sound again) and we're out, back to that lovely hillbilly figure we started with.

03 - "MY DANCE" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958

04 - "BEGIN THE BEGUINE" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958

05 - "PARADIDDLE" - B.M.I. - 2:02
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958
Reissued: - January 26, 1999 Collectables (CD) 500/200rpm COL-CD-6018-4 mono
VERY BEST OF BILL JUSTIS - RAUNCHY
Released: - 2006
First appearance:   - 2006 Charly Records (MP3) Internet Sample-20 mono
BILL JUSTIS - SELECTED HITS

06 - "FARAWAY" - B.M.I. - 3:47
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - November 10-11, 1958
Reissued: - January 26, 1999 Collectables (CD) 500/200rpm COL-CD-6018-13 mono
VERY BEST OF BILL JUSTIS - RAUNCHY
Reissued: - 2006 Charly Records (MP3) Internet Sample-1 mono
BILL JUSTIS - SELECTED HITS

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Roland Janes - Guitar
Cliff Acred - Bass
Billy Riley - Bass
Richard Mateller - Trumpet
Jackie Thomas - Trombone
Vernon Drake - Saxophone
Sid Manker - Guitar
Keith Vann - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

NOVEMBER 12, 1958 WEDNESDAY

The single, ''I Just Thought You'd Like To Know'' b/w ''It's Just About Time'' (Sun 309) by Johnny Cash, barely scratched the country Top 30, and  ''Breeze'' b/w ''Today Is A Blue Day'' (Sun 310) by Vernon Taylor both issued. 

NOVEMBER 13, 1958 THURSDAY

Sun SLP 1235 ''Sings The Songs That Made Him Famous'' by Johnny Cash issued.

Hank Snow's Cadillac is impounded in Gallipolis, Ohio, pending the settlement of a $2,250 lawsuit filed by the owner of the Downtown Coaches' Club. Snow had shown up an hour late for a November 4 concert when the car broke down, and the club reimbursed ticket-holders in his absence.

Carl Smith recorded ''Lonely Girl''.

NOVEMBER 14, 1958 FRIDAY

Johnny Cash, Sonny Burgess, the Collins Kids, Jerry Lee Lewis, Webb Pierce, Dickey Lee, Ernest Tubb, Hawkshaw Hawkins, Joe Maphis and Merle Travis performed in   Memphis for the benefit concert for Jay Perkins widow. Stew Carnall, who was managing   Johnny Cash and nursing an infatuation for Lorrie Collins (with whom he later eloped), gave   Sonny Burgess one hundred dollars and told him to come to Los Angeles to work back-up on a   television series that Cash was to host. A few days later, Cash sent Sonny a telegram   confirming the agreement. "We sat around here for a few days, and got to thinking about it",   said Sonny, "and decided we didn't want to go. So I sent Cash his hundred dollars back".

On one of his swing out west, Sonny Burgess started looking for another recording contract.   Bob Neal had got him a demo session with Challenge, and on the same trip Sonny went to   Wynn Stewart's house and cut some more demos - but neither led anywhere. Market   conditions were changing and he was probably too raw to stand a chance. "Sam always said   he didn't know what to do with us", said Sonny Burgess. "We didn't fit any category. We'd   have made a few changes if we'd had any sense, but like most musicians...".
 
NOVEMBER 16, 1958 SUNDAY

Ferlin Husky recorded ''Draggin' The River''.

NOVEMBER 17, 1958 MONDAY

Decca released Bill Anderson's first hit, ''That's What It's Like To Be Lonesome''.

NOVEMBER 18, 1958 TUESDAY

Ray Price recorded Bill Anderson's ''That's What It's Like To Be Lonesome'' in a midnight session at the Bradley Film and Recording Studio in Nashville, Tennessee.

NOVEMBER 19, 1958 WEDNESDAY

George Jones portrays a bartender on the NBC western ''Bat Masterson''.

The Kingston Trio, destined to win the first country Grammy award, appear on NBC's ''The Milton Berle Show''.

NOVEMBER 20, 1958 THURSDAY

Songwriter Wade Kirby is born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to future session guitarist Dave Kirby. The son goes on to pen Easton Corbin's ''All Over The Road'', Parmalee's ''Already Callin' You Mine'', Blake Shelton's ''Doin' What She Likes'' and George Strait's ''I Saw God Today''.

"Black Haired Man" b/w ''Wrong'' (Sun 311) by Jack Clement is released.

"I'll Sail My Ship Alone" backed ''It Hurts Me So'' (Sun 312) by Jerry Lee Lewis is released, but is not a hit despite a   profit-free gimmick price offered by manager Jud Phillips and meanwhile was building up his business from his home on 1154 Hermitage Drive in Florence, Alabama.  Jerry Lee's single is a wonderful rollicking tribute to one of the few piano players Jerry ever acknowledged as an influence, ''hillbilly boogie'' pioneer Moon Mullican. 

NOVEMBER 22, 1958 SATURDAY

Jason Ringenberg is born in Kewanee, Illinois. He fronts Jason and The Scorchers, earning mention in the Country Music Foundation's 2003 book ''Heartaches By The Number'', which cites ''Absolutely Sweet Marie'' among country's 500 greatest singles.

NOVEMBER 23, 1958 SUNDAY

Pam Lewis is born in Rhinebeck, New York. She works for MTV in New York and RCA in Nashville before becoming the co-manager of Garth Brooks in 1988, continuing the association until a nasty with her partner, Bob Doyle, in 1994.

A benefit show is held in Jackson, Tennessee following the death of J.B. Perkins. Artists   appearing include Homer and Jethro, Lefty Frizzell, Joe Maphis, The Collins Kids, Merle   Travis, Johnny Cash, Slim Rhodes, Hawkshaw Hawkins, Charlie Feathers, Dickey Lee, Sonny Burgess, Thomas   Wayne, Ernest Tubb, Porter Wagoner, Webb Pierce and Jerry Lee Lewis.


NOVEMBER 24, 1958 MONDAY

SUN-LINER - Sam Phillips sent an add to record distributors in the country that read:

Dear Sun Distributors,

This is to notify you of a special promotion arrangement in re. Jerry Lee Lewis' newest single  release - SUN 312/SUN 312, "It Hurts Me So" b/w "I'll Sail My Ship Alone".

Sun Record Company has authorized Jud Phillips, personal manager of Jerry Lee Lewis, to  sell the regular Sun distributors copies ( a total of 100,000) of this release, specially  numbered SUN 312.

At a cost of 16 cents per record. Jud Phillips will take orders for this  specially prized record at his business office, 1154 Hermitage Drive, Florence, Alabama, or  by phone EA 3-2361.

 
You will have an option on a percentage of the 100,000 records idential to the percentage of  records you sold of the total volume of "Great Balls Of Fire". That is, if you sold 5% of the  total volume of "Great Balls Of Fire", you will have an option on 5% of the 100,000 - or 5000  records. "Great Balls Of Fire" is Jerry Lee Lewis' greatest-selling record to date. (Offer  applies to 45s only).

The artist has agreed to forego royalties for this promotion, and the 16 cents price covers  pressing cost, excise tax, mechanical licenses from the publishing firms and union trust fund  payments.

Sun Record Company regards purchases made under this provision as separate and apart  from the usual sales procedure. There will be no 2% discount. There will be no return  privilege on these records. Purchoses will not count toward return privileges. Orders for SUN  312 - at the usual prize - may by phoned in to Sun or otherwise placed as usual.

Orders, as stated, will be taken by Jud Phillips only. The three Sun manufacturers - Monarch,  Modge, and Plastic Products - will not ship on SUN 312. A billing will be from the Sun office.

Thanks - and Good Luck!

Sincerely. Sam C. Phillips.
NOVEMBER 24, 1958 MONDAY

Decca released Brenda Lee's holiday classic ''Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree''.

NOVEMBER 26, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Songwriter Tiny Bradshaw dies in Cincinnati, Ohio, two years after Johnny Burnette recorded his song ''The Train Kept A-Rollin'''. Burnette's cut ranks among country's 500 greatest singles in the Country Music Foundation's ''Heartaches By The Number''.
 
A dozen years after he joined Red Foley on the country charts, Lawrence Welk is grand marshal of the Santa Clues Lane parade in Hollywood, featuring 20 floats, 16 marching bands and some guy named Santa.

NOVEMBER 27, 1958 THURSDAY

While serving the Army in West Germany, Elvis Presley is promoted to private first class.

NOVEMBER 29, 1958 SATURDAY

Conway Twitty performs on ''The Perry Como Show''.

NOVEMBER 30, 1958 SUNDAY

''Dear Oakie'' performer Doye O'Dell has a guest role on a riverboat-themed episode of James Garner's ABC-TV series ''Maverick''.
 

 
DECEMBER 1958
 

DECEMBER 1958

"To Know Him Is To Love Him" by the Teddy Bears (written by Phil Spector and sung by   Spector and two schoolmates) is knocked off the top of the charts by the novelty hit, "The   Chipmunk Song".

DECEMBER 1, 11958 MONDAY

Review from Billboard magazine says, ''I'll Sail My Ship Alone'' (Sun 312) Lewis' first disk in a spell is set in medium rhythm framework with a boogie woogie piano by Lewis against his good vocal. The flip ''It Hurt Me So'' a slow side for Lewis, with a great heartache type vocal by the cat. Chorus supports the effort. It has a bluesy quality and will Appeal''.

Actress Charlene Tilton is born in San Diego, California. She gains fame for her role as Lucy Ewing on ''Dallas'' and is at her peak in popularity when she meets and marries Johnny Lee. The marriage lasts two years in the early-1980s.

Ricky Nelson is featured on the cover pf Life magazine

Bill Monroe recorded ''Gotta Travel On'' in Nashville, Tennessee.

Maria Elena Holly gives her husband, ''True Love Ways'' songwriter Buddy Holly, a gold watch for an early Christmas present. Barely two months later, the timepiece is found in the rubble of his fatal plane crash.

Decca released The Wilburn Brothers' ''Which One Is To Blame''.

Columbia released Ray Prices ''That's What It's Like To Be Lonesome''.

DECEMBER 2, 1958 TUESDAY

Jimmy Stoneman, bass player for the Stoneman Family, welcomes a daughter, Jeanette Joyce Stoneman.
DECEMBER 3, 1958 WEDNESDAY

A letter from Don F. Owens to Sun promotion assistant Barbara Barnes that read: >

December 3, 1958

Miss Barbara Barnes
SUN RECORDS, INC.
706 Union Street
Memphis, Tennessee

Dear Barbara,

Enclose please find copies of the flyer we want to send to our D.J. mailing list. Please approve and return a copy as soon as possible. Vernon was in Richmond, Virginia, yesterday and the D.J.'s there seem quite encouraging. As you know, when a disc jockey believe in a record, you are far better off than when he ''plays'' the record while you're at the station as just a jester to the guest. I think they will continue to lean on the record heavily. And Vernon will be going to Roanoke for ALLEN DISTRIBUTING.
 
We also intend to hit Baltimore and Philadelphia within the next week too.

We have sent records out to leading TV D. J.'s all across the country plus all the local D.J.'s from Philadelphia to Norfolk. Naturally, there was some dual coverage from people you already services, but I think on some of the really important D.J.'s this will help instead of hinder.

I will call Bill Emerson this week and ask him to help us and I am sure he will and I will appreciate it if you will keep in close contact with me and let me know any areas the record is showing any action. Thank you again for your interest and consideration, I am, 

Sincerely,

DON F. OWENS

DFO:c

 
© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CHARLIE RICH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: THURSDAY DECEMBER 4, 1958
PRODUCER - BILLJUSTIS AND/OR CHARLIE RICH
RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

01 – "STAY"* - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - December 4, 1958
Released: - 1998
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-2-21 mono
LONELY WEEKEND - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

02 - "I'VE LOST MY HEART TO YOU" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None – Instrumental - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - December 4, 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Charlie Rich - Vocal and Piano
Unknown Group

* - Overdubbed with male vocal chorus

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

DECEMBER 4, 1958 THURSDAY

Eddy Arnold recorded ''Chip Off The Old Block'' at RCA Studio B in Nashville.

DECEMBER 7, 1958 SUNDAY

Don Gibson recorded ''Who Cares'' in the morning at RCA Studio B in Nashville, Tennessee.

DECEMBER 8, 1958 MONDAY

The Country Music Association hires its first employee, secretary Jo Walker-Meador, in Nashville. She later ascends to executive director, ultimately joining the Country Music Hall of Fame.

DECEMBER 17, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Johnnie and Jack recorded the standard ''Ashes Of Love''.

Carl Belew recorded ''Am I That Easy To Forget''.

DECEMBER 18, 1958 THURSDAY

For his 15th birthday, Keith Richards receives his first guitar. He goes on to play with The Rolling Stones, whose ''Honky Tonk Women'' is judged among country's 500 greatest singles in the Country Music Foundation book ''Heartaches By The Number''.

DECEMBER 21, 1958 SUNDAY

Roy Acuff lands in New York following a two-month USO tour in which he performed for American troops in West Germany, Italy and France.

NBC-TV's ''The Dinah Shore Chevy Show'' welcomes musical guests Burl Ives and John Raitt.


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR CHARLIE RICH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: UNKNOWN DATE 1958
PRODUCER - BILL JUSTIS AND/OR CHARLIE RICH
RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

01 - "BLUE SUEDE SHOES" - B.M.I. - 1:02
Composer: - Carl Perkins
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - 1974
First appearance: - Bopcat Records (LP) 33rpm BLP 200-13 mono
WE WANNA BOOGIE
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-24 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

02 - "JUICEHEAD BABY" - B.M.I. - 1:05
Composer: - Williams-Daylie
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - 1974
First appearance: - Bopcat Records (LP) 33rpm BLP 200-12 mono
WE WANNA BOOGIE
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-6 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

On at least one occasion, Charlie Rich expressed passing annoyance that anyone would consider releasing unpolished material of his like this. Surely, he mused, anyone could see that this was just a rough late night moment in the studio. And that is precisely why it, along with his hip, irreverent reading of "Blue Suede Shoes" (complete with blown lyric) is a fine, unguarded moment to share with his deepest fans. This title originally appeared on Capitol in 1945, performed by Eddie Vinson with the Cootie Williams band. Rich recalled seeing it performed in a club by a vocalist whose name eluded him nearly twenty years later. What he did remember was seeking out the sheet music so he could learn the piece and make it part of his act, during a period that pre-dated his Sun years.

03 - "CHARLIE'S BOOGIE" - B.M.I. - 1:27
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - November 1986
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 106-8-6 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE ROCKING YEARS - WHOLE LOTTA SHAKIN'
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-12 mono
LONELY WEEKENDS - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

04 - "I'VE LOST MY HEART TO YOU" - B.M.I.
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued / Tape Lost
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958

05 - "HOW BLUE CAN YOU BE" - B.M.I. - 1:31
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - 1998
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-23 mono
LONELY WEEKEND - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

This and "I'm Making Plans" are an essential part. They may not be everybody's favorite selections, but they were an undeniable part of the man who came to work at Sun Records in 1958. Material like this, demoed by Rich during his first year at Sun, was a fundamental part of who he was musically. A gig at the Vapors and the Sharecroppers might contain these songs, back-to-back with Jimmy Reed's "Big Boss Man". That kind of eclecticism or, if you will, musical schizophrenia remained central to Charlie Rich until the end. These demos are arguably among the best but there are at least half a dozen more titles in the same genre that remain unissued.

06 - "I'M MAKING PLANS" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Sun Entertainment Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - 1998
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16152-3-33 mono
LONELY WEEKEND - THE SUN YEARS 1958 - 1962

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Charlie Rich - Vocal and Piano

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 



Joe Lewis recorded twice for Sun. There was a demo, ''Life's Too Short To Live'', cut at Sonny Burgess's first session on May 2, 1956, and seven song session here with Jack Nance. According to Nance, the seven songs were to be overdubbed, but never were. 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR JOE LEWIS & JACK NANCE
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: UNKNOWN DATE 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT

Sun detail hounds may care to note that shortly before joining Conway Twitty's band, members of Sonny Burgess band, Joe Lewis and Jack Nance recorded some unreleased songs a cords under the name "Joe and Jack". Producer Jack Clement intended to overdub them for release, but they remained as bed tracks. One title, "My Baby Loves Me", has been included here for a taste.

01 - "MY BABY LOVES ME" - B.M.I. - 2:30
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Released: - 1991
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15525-2-27 mono
SONNY BURGESS - THE CLASSIC SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1959

02 - "PRETTY BABY"
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958

03 - "SO EASY"
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958

04 - "LOVE YOU LIKE YOU WANT"
Composer: - Unknown
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Sun Unissued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Joe Lewis - Vocal and Guitar
Jack Nance - Vocal and Piano
More details unknown

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 



Joe Lewis and Conway Twitty >
 
JOE LEWIS - Joe E. Lewis was born in the Pennington community near Newport, Arkansas, on January 4,  1937. Pennington doesn't figure on most maps, but it's in the same country, Jackson, as Newport. Lewis’s  father and grandfather played at church socials, high school dances and picnics. Aged thirteen, Lewis was in  a western band that played Rural Electrical Association concerts in Jackson County. He graduated from  Newport High School in 1957. 

In Sonny Burgess account, he auditioned at Sun soon after working with  Elvis Presley at Newport's Silver Moon club, and was told by Phillips that he needed to upgrade his band.  Burgess promptly hired Lewis and Jack Lance from another band. Back then, Burgess band was called the  Moonlighters, and at Lois’s suggestion they renamed themselves the Pacers after the Piper Pacer airplane.

 
 
Sonny Burgess and the Pacers scored a pretty big non-charting hit on Sun with ''Red Headed Woman''. It  would be the biggest record they ever had. The Pacers' recordings make it easy to visualize their bruising act.  They formed human pyramids; Lewis, as the tallest and strongest, was on the bottom. They's do the Bug  Dance, tossing imaginary bugs on each other before tossing them into the crowd.

On the ferry back to Arkansas after some dates in Mississippi, the Paces met Harold Jenkins who was on the  point of reinventing himself as Conway Twitty. When bookings dried up for the Pacers, Lewis and Nance left  to join Twitty, whose career appeared to be on the upswing. Right away, they took off for Canada. Joe Lewis  stayed with Conway Twitty through his rock and roll years and his rebirth as a country star. He switched  from guitar to bass, sang harmony, and did the on-stage patter after Twitty decided that he would remain  enigmatically silent. That was until April 15, 1976 when Lewis died in an automobile wreck. According to  his girlfriend at the time, Carol Braddom, Lewis had borrowed her red Corvette because she thought he'd be  safer in a car than on his motorcycle. Braddom's girlfriend was in the car with him as they drove from Percy  Priest Lake to a local store to get some food for a cookout.

Joe Lewis is buried in Newport's Walnut Grove cemetery, quite close to Jack Nance.
 

JACK NANCE – Richard Jackson Nance born April 22, 1935 in Newport, Arkansas, native. In addition to Conway Twitty, Nance worked with top  entertainers including Dionne Warwick, Paul Revere and the Raiders, the Monkees, the Moody Blues, the  Fifth Dimension, the Rolling Stones, Three Dog Night, the Temptations, Herman's Hermits and others. The  "others" included a group of youngsters called the Jackson Five as they rose to prominence. One of them, 12  at the time, went on to become the most famous of pop stars, Michael Jackson.

Jack Nance behind the drums at the Flamingo Lounge, Ontario, Canada, 1958 >

The name Jack Nance doesn't ring a bell with most folks the way some of Jackson County, Arkansas' more  famous musicians do, and that's a shame, because Nance made as many contributions to the world of rock  music as anyone who came out of the small town of Newport, and some of the others became famous  worldwide, Newport Depot Days festival organizer Henry Boyce said. ''Nance'', Boyce said, ''never got the  recognition from the public that he deserves, although...
 
 
...he did become well-known among music producers,  promoters and other musicians''. Boyce, the district prosecutor, has an extensive knowledge of Jackson  County communities' influence on shaping the new kind of music in the early days of rock and roll and  makes sure the annual Depot Days reflects that 1950s flavor.

Richard Jackson "Jack" Nance, was Conway Twitty's drummer during Twitty's rock and roll years of 1957 to  1965, died on April 7, 2000. Four years earlier, Nance had started writing a book about his life with author  James Schefter, and the quotes from Nance in this article, unless otherwise noted, are from that manuscript,  which was never completed due to Shefter's death. The title of the book was to be "It Was Never Make  Believe", a play on words of Nance's song, the classic "It's Only Make Believe", which he was writing while  on a tour in Canada when Twitty dropped by and helped finish the lyrics. Nance wrote the music and they  co-wrote the lyrics.

"Harold Jenkins, later known as Conway Twitty and the Rock House (Rockhousers). That was his group'',  Nance said. "Harold had a voice. When he was on, hairs prickled on the back of your neck. He could croon a  slow song that would break your heart and he matched Roy Orbison on high notes that sounded like a silver  spoon on crystal. Of course, none of us knew much about silver spoons or crystal in those days. What we  knew was Dr Pepper, Mason jars and music. What we learned later was that we were midwives at the birth of  rock and roll''.  Nance went to Arkansas State Teachers College (now the University of Central Arkansas) in Conway in 1953  to study music and engineering, then on to Arkansas Tech University in Russellville. He was 18 when he left  for college on a scholarship, and after four years he was back in Newport where the real music was.

''Newport was 1,000 people, seven nightclubs and when I was growing up it only had two things going,  music and booze'', Nance said. ''We were the only wet county in any direction and the booze brought the  music''. It also had illegal backroom gambling "sort of tacitly allowed" by authorities, Boyce said he has  been told. The gambling, which many of the musicians may not have known about, helped pay the big  money the bands got for playing the honkytonks. "You (an entertainer) could get $500 a night at the Silver  Moon in Newport, when they might get $50 or $100 in Memphis," Boyce said.

When Nance blew back into Newport from college, he joined five others in a rock and roll band called the  Pacers , headed by Sonny Burgess, "playing any club in Arkansas, Mississippi or Tennessee that would let us  in the back door'', Nance said.

Nance was assistant band director at Newport High School for one year after returning from college. At that  time, the Silver Moon in Newport was the largest club in Arkansas. Elvis Presley's group consisted only of  himself, Scotty Moore on guitar and Bill Black on doublebass. Nance, at Elvis' invitation, sat in on drums  whenever Elvis played area clubs such as Porky's Rooftop and the Silver Moon. (The original Silver Moon  burned down about 1980 and the new Moon, on the recently renamed Rock And Roll Highway 67, is a  family friendly center now where no booze is sold.)

"Sam Phillips even gave us (the Pacers) a recording contract with Sun Records, but not much ever came of  it'', Nance said. "Still, I was a musician and with any luck, I was on my way. That was how I first performed  with Elvis Presley, sat in with Carl Perkins and Buddy Holly, played behind Roy Orbison and met Harold  Jenkins''. The two met when Jenkins, who was performing often at Porky's Rooftop near KNBY radio  station, visited the Silver Moon just down the street every chance he got, to watch the Pacers perform. The  problem with Harold was his choice of songs. He and the Rock House cut a single for Decca Records and it  went nowhere. Right after that he called me and asked me to be his drummer, do some arranging, maybe  write a little music. He also said he was changing his name. That was nothing unusual, it happened all the  time (with performers). 'So, Harry, what's your name gonna be,' I asked. 'Something good?' " 'It better be,' he  laughed, 'cause it sure is different. You're now talking to Conway Twitty''', Nance said.

The story of how Twitty selected his new name is legend, while looking at a map, he picked Conway from  Conway, Arkansas, and Twitty from Twitty, Texas. At least, that's the most popular story. Twitty and his band  were rock and roll artists then.

As a songwriter Nance produced an extensive book of songs. "It's Only Make Believe" earned gold record  sales in the United States four separate times, beginning with Twitty's version in 1958. Recordings of his  songs hit the charts in Britain, across Europe, in Canada, Africa and Australia and were featured on movie  soundtracks and television shows. Glen Campbell's version of "It's Only Make Believe" went to number 1 on  three different charts in 1970 and Ronnie McDowell's version later went to number 6. After being diagnosed  with cancer just months before his death, Nance created "The Jack Nance Songbook'', which contains sheet  music and lyrics of 27 songs he wrote or co-wrote that were recorded, along with introductory comments for  each.

"In 1957, I was playing drums for Conway Twitty. We were in a tavern in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada named  the Flamingo Lounge. We played there for nine straight weeks... The Flamingo Lounge was being remodeled  while we were playing there and, since we didn't use a piano, they had moved theirs upstairs. Being so far  away from my home and family, I guess I was a little homesick and would go upstairs during breaks (we  would play for 30 minutes and then have a 30-minute break) and monkey around on the piano. On one  particular night I started a song, ''It's Only Make Believe'', just as it was time to go back on stage. I told  Conway, 'I had a good song started, and that I would like him to hear it. During the next break we went  upstairs and I played piano and sang him what I had. Conway picked up, the lyrics, where I had stopped and  we finished it. It took a total of seven minutes to write it. Conway didn't want to go as high as I had written  it, but I convinced him that it needed to build to a climax. This was the first and most successful song that we  wrote together. Conway's musical background was in country and gospel music while mine was in big band  and jazz. The combination was good and we wrote some wonderful music together for the next three years'',  Nance said.

However, even Twitty and Nance were convinced the best of four songs recorded on May 7, 1958 at Owen  Bradley Studio in Nashville was "I'll Try" rather than "It's Only Make Believe'', so "I'll Try" was put on the  A-side of the single and "It's Only Make Believe" on the B-side. The single was released during the summer  and "I'll Try" went nowhere. "We were really disappointed'', Nance said. "We felt that we had given it our  best shot and that if this wouldn't sell, nothing we could write would. We decided to give up the music  business, go back home and do something else. "We had been at home about two weeks and I was really  feeling down and defeated when Conway called. He was really excited and shouting, 'We've got a hit  record''!

"A disc jockey in Columbus, Ohio, named Dr. Bop had flipped the record over and played ''It's Only Make  Believe''. The people had liked it and bought it and it had become number 1 in Columbus'. The song was rereleased,  so new records had to be pressed and new ads published in trade magazines. The band went to  Columbus to perform and do radio interviews to push the record. The people treated us like stars, with  thousands of fans flocking to the concerts and mobbing the group's car in the streets'', Nance said. "That was  something new and exciting and a feeling I'll never forget. The song slowly worked its way up the charts  until on November 24, 1958, "It's Only Make Believe" became the number 1 record in the United States. It  went on to become No. 1 in all of the free world countries'.

Nance's widow, Newport native Vicki Lowery Nance, and stepdaughter Melissa, both of Cabot, said recently  that as impressive as Nance's achievements in the music world are, they pale in comparison to him as a  person. "He never, ever had a bad thing to say about anybody'', Mrs. Nance said. "He was so thoughtful. He  always wanted to give people recognition (they deserved). Jack helped so many entertainers. He was so  humble. He was so intelligent. He never bragged on himself''. Nance also has a son, Richard Nance, and  daughter, Melanie Nance Anderson. His sister, Franchelle Nance Harrell, still lives in Newport.

After Twitty switched to country music in 1965, Nance left the band to spend more time with his family, but  after a brief time away from music, was called by Dick Clark for a job in concert tour management and  promotion for Dick Clark Productions, followed by similar jobs with Concerts West and Motown Records.  "... Jack was smart enough to get into the business end of the music'', Boyce said. For many years, Nance  worked with top entertainers including Dionne Warwick, Paul Revere and the Raiders, the Monkees, the  Moody Blues, the Fifth Dimension, the Rolling Stones, Three Dog Night, the Temptations, Herman's  Hermits and others. The "others" included a group of youngsters called the Jackson Five as they rose to  prominence. One of them, 12 at the time, went on to become the most famous of pop stars - King of Pop  Michael Jackson. Later, the King of Pop called on Nance to be road manager for his 1984 Victory Tour (USA  and Canada) and the world tours that followed.

In 1996, Nance and his wife Vickie were in a K-Mart when she spotted a Conway Twitty tape on a rack. She  handed it to him. "I don't think you have this one'', Vickie said. "Want it''? Nance looked at the back of the  cassette box, where 10 songs were listed. "You know what''? Nance mused. "I wrote eight of these songs and  I played drums on all 10. Yeah, I want it''. That same year, Nance sadly recalled Twitty and his bandmates  from those years. "They're all dead now. There were four of us riding the charts to the top. Conway was the  name and the voice. I was the drummer. Newport native, Joe Lewis was on guitar. I was 13 and he, Lewis,  was 12 when we first played together. He was good. ... Good enough to go for a long ride in the world of  rock and roll. Blackie Preston was on bass.... He looked good onstage; he was a showman. They died too  young. Blackie drowned in a boating accident. He was maybe 40. Joe died in a car crash at 42. Conway was  57 and had a lot of music left to sing when an aneurysm checked him out in 1993. A lot of others died, too.  Elvis is gone. Roy Orbison is gone. You know about Buddy (Holly), the Bopper (J.P. Richardson, known as  the Big Bopper), Ritchie Valens (who all died when their airplane crashed in an Iowa cornfield on February  3, 1959)... 'the night the music died.' "But the music didn't die. The rest of us kept it alive'', said Nance. He died April 7, 2000 in Nashville, Texas, as a result of long cancer.
 



© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

STUDIO SESSION FOR WARREN SMITH
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: LATE 1958
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS
AND/OR JACK CLEMENT

01 - "SWEET, SWEET GIRL" - B.M.I. - 2:19
Composer: - Don Gipson
Publisher: - Acuff Rose Music
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Late 1958
Released: - 1992
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15514-26 mono
WARREN SMITH - THE CLASSIC SUN RECORDINGS 1956 - 1959

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Unknown group, possibly included Billy Riley - Guitar

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 

LATE 1958

In late 1958, Slim Willet talked to Joe Johnson at Challenge Records. Johnson was looking for a saxophonist to replace Chuck Rio in the Champs, and the Champs had heard about Jimmy Seals from a local promoter-songwriter, Danny Wolfe. Willet sold Johnson on the idea of hiring Seals together with former Sun artist Dean Beard on piano, and Dash Crofts on drums, but Beard was soon fired and returned to Texas in 1959. The promised salary of $900 a week hadn't materialized, he told Wayne Russell, and he realized that he was in a band on the downslide.
DECEMBER 1958

December rolled around in Memphis, the Salvation Army bell ringers took their places at store entrances, the   decorated lamps posts glittered in the early dusk, and it began to get really cold. Regina Reese answered the   phone, ''Merry Christmas, Sun Records''.

The grouchy postman brought us cards and gifts from among our many contacts. Regina and Barbara Barnes   asked Sally Wilbourn for many to buy a Christmas tree, but she reported that Sam Phillips refused the   request, sating they could use the tree from last year that was in the storage room. Digging among the boxes   of returns, they retrieved it. The tree had been fresh once, but now it was truly disgusting, brown with   needles falling off. But Sam said to use it, so they did. It was about two feet tall, just the size for a table they   brought to the front office. For decorations, they used whatever was at hand. Jack Clement and some of the   musicians helped Regina and Barbara hang on paper clips, old pink memos, cigarette butts, a broken 45, and   any other trash they could find. For the tip-top instead of a star they placed an empty beer can.

The next morning Sally reported that Sam Phillips was very disgusted and angry, demanding in profane   language that they get rid of that sick Christmas tree immediately. He wasn't Scrooge entirely, though,   because the day before Christmas he came in laden with gifts for everyone.

DECEMBER 22, 1958 MONDAY

Hank Snow recorded ''Chasin' A Rainbow'' at Nashville's RCA Studio B.

Columbia released Johnny Cash's ''Don't Take Your Guns To Town''.

DECEMBER 23, 1958 TUESDAY

Gram Parson's father, Cecil ''Coon Dog'' Connor, commits suicide with a 38-caliber pistol at his home in Waycross, Georgia.

DECEMBER 25, 1958 THURSDAY

The Everly Brothers begin a 10-day appearance at Manhattan's Loew's Theater in ''Alan Freed's Christmas Rock And Roll Spectacular'', joined on the bill by Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley and Jackie Wilson.

Elvis Presley, serving with the Army in West Germany, receives an electric guitar from his father for Christmas.

DECEMBER 26, 1958 FRIDAY

Johnny Cash, Tex Ritter and The Sons Of The Pioneers open at the showboat Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.

DECEMBER 27, 1958 SATURDAY

Ricky and David Nelson share on the cover of TV Guide.

The Rosalind Russell movie ''Auntie Mame'' appears in theaters. A decade after his country hit with ''Dear Oakie'', Doye O'Dell has a bit part in the picture.

DECEMBER 28, 1958 SUNDAY

Joe Diffie is born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Emerging in 1990, he melds traditional country with borderline-novelties to create a string of hits that includes ''Ships That Don't Gome In'', ''Honky Tonk Attitude'' and ''Third Rock From The Sun''.

Mike McGuire, of Shenandoah, is born in Haleyville, Alabama. As the drummer for the group, he contributes to such hits as ''The Church On Cumberland Road'', ''Two Dozen Roses'' and ''I Want To Be Loved Like That''.

Decca released Bill Monroe's ''Gotta Travel On''.

DECEMBER 31, 1958 WEDNESDAY

Buddy Holly anonymously plays drums for country piano player Moon Mullican at a New Year's Eve show on Odessa, Texas.
 


© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©
 
  STUDIO SESSION FOR JERRY LEE LEWIS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR SUN RECORDS 1958/1959

SUN RECORDING STUDIO
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
SUN SESSION: PROBABLY DECEMBER 1958/JANUARY 1959
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - JACK CLEMENT
AND/OR BILL JUSTIS

Jimmy M. Van Eaton recalls, ''A lot of stuff, some of which you've probably discovered going through the tapes, was never intended to be released. With Jerry Lee, that was how we did 80%, maybe more of the sessions. You'd just start jamming and Sam has the tape running. That's why with Jerry Lee there were often no arrangements, no beginnings, no endings.
 
Still trying to bail out Jerry Lee's sagging career, the folks at Sun came up with two solidly crafted contenders for the pop-teen market. There were no concessions to Jerry Lee's country leanings this time.  Instead, Sam Phillips went outside his stable of composers and copyrights in search of potent material for his erstwhile moneymaker. The problem is, most top songwriters were reluctant to submit their best work to an artist who was being blacklisted by disc jockey's all over North America.

1(1) - ''LOVIN' UP A STORM" - B.M.I. - 1:54
Composer: - Allyson R. Khent-Luther Dixon
Publisher: - Figure Music
Matrix number: - None - Chatter - Unknown Take