Warren Smith
"BLACK JACK DAVID" - B.M.I. - 3:08
Composer: - Warren Smith
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 218
Recorded:- Unknown Date August 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 250-A mono
BLACK JACK DAVID / UBANGI STOMP
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-19 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Al Hopson - Guitar
Marcus Van Story - Bass
Johnny Bernero - Drums
Brad Suggs - Guitar
Smokey Joe Bauch - Piano

Once again, Sam Phillips hedged his bets by coupling a rockabilly anthem with a hillbilly tune. Reportedly originating in Scotland circa 1600, ''The Gypsy Laddie'' began: ''The gypsies they came to my lord's castle/And O but they sang so bonnie/They sang sae sweet and soe complete/That down came our fair ladie''. And of course off went the lady. The first to chronicle the song's tortuous history was Francis James Child in his nineteenth century tome ''English And Scottish Popular Ballads''. After crossing the ocean with the early settlers, it changed in the hollows of Appalachia. Bits of another song called ''Seventeen Come Sunday'' were added as the woman lost her nobility along with her virginity. The first recording was by a folklorist, Professor I.G. Greer and his wife, in 1929. Another folklorist, John Jacob Niles, recorded ''The Gypsy Laddie'' for RCA in 1939. Cliff Carlise cit it that year, although he said he learned it from T. Texas Tyler, and Tyler copyrighted it in August 1939, one month after Carlise's recording. The Carter Family recorded it in 1940. Tyler's adaptation became the first post-War recording, and probably led to Warren Smith's recording. While unaware of the song's origins, Smith was undoubtedly aware that it was far from original. In fact, his lyrics were considerably less salty than the Carter Family's. In a 1956 interview in the Memphis Press Scimitar' Smith hurriedly pointed out that, even though ''Black Jack David'' was a rake and philanderer, ''the lyric is fixed so there's time enough that she could have gotten a divorce or something before she goes with him''. Of course, Warren. This is a stellar performance that needs no apologies. Sparse, achingly pure, and haunting in the best tradition of hillbilly music. A standout cut on every front. And, as on Johnny Cash's ''Folsom Prison Blues'', the hook is provided by a repeated guitar solo, in this case played by Bradd Suggs or Buddy Holobaugh.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 250-A 45rpm



Warren Smith
"UBANGI STOMP" - B.M.I. - 1:58
Composer: - Charles Underwood
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 219
Recorded: - Unknown Date August 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 250-B mono
UBANGI STOMP / BLACK JACK DAVID
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-20 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Al Hopson - Guitar
Marcus Van Story - Bass
Johnny Bernero - Drums
Brad Suggs - Guitar
Smokey Joe Bauch - Piano

Charles Underwood, then a student at Memphis State University, contributed "Ubangi Stomp".  ''I didn't like it, you know'', recalled Warren Smith. ''Then one night we were cutting, it was around 12:30 at night and I was up against the wall, really biting the bullet trying to find the fourth song. Charles came through the door and he changed four or five things I didn't like in the song and we went to work on it''. In a later era, Charles Underwood became a producer at Sun and, even later, engineered ''The Monster Mash'' and Herb Alpert's debut hit ''The Lonely Bull''. In 1956 he was a struggling student. He seems to have cheerfully assigned a common dialect to American Indians and Africans (''...heap big jam session'') and in all honestly, the song is as close to denigrating as anything released on Sun. However, it entered the Memphis charts and helped to sustain the momentum of ''Rock And Roll Ruby''. Rather than make a big splash, it appears to have sold over 100,000 copies throughout an eighteen month period. The guitarist is Brad Suggs, stalwart of the Slim Rhodes Show, and the drummer is Johnny Bernero. Other musicians are somewhat unclear although the bassist may be Jan Ledbetter. Smith's interpretation of the song has all the contagious enthusiasm of pure rockabilly which has enabled it to survive the years well, and even survive a beleaguered and belated cover version from Alice Cooper.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 250-B 45rpm



Roy Orbison & The Teen Kings
''ROCKHOUSE" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Harold Jenkins-Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 221
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 251-A mono
ROCKHOUSE / YOU'RE MY BABY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-22 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Johnny Wilson - Guitar
James Morrow - Electric Mandolin
Jack Kennelly - Bass
Billy Pat Ellis - Drums

Roy Orbison makes a return engagement as a rockabilly singer here, but failed to capitalize on the momentum of "Ooby Dooby". Despite his prowess as a songwriter, Orbison turned to outsiders for this both sides of this disc. Its plain that he knew his way around the bluesy stop rhythm of "You're My Baby". In contrast, there is nothing funnier in the Sun archives than listening to Johnny Cash stumble his awkward way through the original demo of this tune.

There was a welcome surprise on MCA's recent Conway Twitty box: the original version of "Rockhouse". It really existed, and it revealed, among other things, that Roy Orbison had earned his half-share of the composer credit. He had more-or-less rewritten Twitty's themesong, although that did nothing to stop Twitty from griping at the time and for years after. The tune became the title track for Orbison's lone LP on the original Sun label, a compilation the singer reviled to his dying day. (CE)
 

Sun 251-A 45rpm



Roy Orbison & The Teen Kings
''YOU'RE MY BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:05
Composer: - Johnny R. Cash
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 220
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 251-B mono
YOU'RE MY BABY / ROCKHOUSE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-21 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Johnny Wilson - Guitar
James Morrow - Electric Mandolin
Jack Kennelly - Bass
Billy Pat Ellis - Drums

Like Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison was unable to find a follow-up to his first hit. He recorded "Rockhouse", a song that another aspiring Sun act, Harold Jenkins (a.k.a. Conway Twitty), had worked up as a theme song for his group, the Rockhousers. It was coupled with Johnny Cash's execrable song, "You're My Baby", originally "Little Woolly Booger". Billboard once again was effusive in its praise of Orbison's "sock showmanship", but its recommendation failed to take account of the fact that "Rockhouse", released in September 1956, was already behind the times. (CE)
 

Sun 251-B 45rpm



Kenneth Parchman
"LOVE CRAZY BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:03
Composer: - Kenneth Parchman
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - None - SUN 252 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1987
First appearance: - Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm SUN 6 mono
THE SUN CD COLLECTION - ROCK AND ROLL ORIGINALS - VOLUME 2
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-23 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Kenneth Parchman - Vocal and Guitar
Ronnie Parchman - Guitar
Jerry Lee Smith - Piano
R.W. Stevenson - Bass
Probably Jimmy Lott - Drums

Sun 252-A Unissued

Kenny Parchman came achingly close to having a record on Sun. Two songs were cut, publishing contracts were signed, recordings were mastered, assigned an issue number, scheduled... then cancelled at the last moment.

For years the mystery of what was intended to be SUN 252 beguiled collectors. Then a Sun master number listing seemed to indicate that it was to be Kenny Parchman, and then a safety tape of compiled masters for SUN 251, 252, and 253 put the issue beyond doubt.

No one knows why SUN 252 was canned, leased of all Parchman. He said that his manager skipped town just before the record was due to be released, and perhaps Sam Phillips didn't want to release a record by an artist with no management. Perhaps.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 252-A 45rpm Unissued



Kenneth Parchman
"I FEEL LIKE ROCKIN'" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Kenny Parchman
Publisher: - Knox Music Limited
Matrix number: - None - SUN 252 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1987
First appearance: - 1987 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm SUN 6 mono
THE SUN CD COLLECTION - ROCK AND ROLL ORIGINALS - VOLUME 2
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-24 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Kenneth Parchman - Vocal and Guitar
Ronnie Parchman - Guitar
Jerry Lee Smith - Piano
R.W. Stevenson - Bass
Probably Jimmy Lott - Drums

Sun 252-A Unissued

With nearly 40 years' hindsight, it is clear that these sides would have broken no new ground for Sun. Parchman's style is credible, if a bit mannered and lightweight. The truth is, if a Sun record from the 250 series had to be lost, better this than "Ubangi Stomp". Parchman came back to 706 Union to record again, although release of his work had to wait for Sun archaeologists a quarter century later.
 
 
The version of "Love Crazy Baby" clearly comes probably from another session. The guitar is to the fore on this version, which probably dates from early 1957.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 252-B 45rpm Unissued



Barbara Pittman
"I NEED A MAN" - B.M.I. - 2:52
Composer: - Barbara Pittman-Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 204
Recorded: - April 15, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 253-A mono
I NEED A MAN / NO MATTER WHO'S TO BLAME
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-25 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Buddy Holobaugh - Guitar
Marcus Van Story - Bass
Smokey Joe Baugh - Piano
Johnny Bernero - Drums

Still very much in her teens, Barbara Ann Pittman earned her professional grounding in familiar Memphis nitespots such as the Eagles Nest and the Cotton Club. She fronted an outfit led by local drummer Clyde Leoppard and several of his sidemen were on hand when her inaugural recordings were made at 706 Union. There was little doubting what she had in mind with this title, to wit, the light soprano she'd been displaying on stage was convincingly replaced by a hot-blooded growl.

Not many Sun labels have borne the names of women. One side of Barbara Ann Pittman first Sun single (several records later appeared on Phillips International) was a conscious attempt to expand the boundaries of rockabilly to include female vocalists or, as Billboard called it, "the backshack sound, female style". Along with Janis Martin, Wanda Jackson and several others, Barbara Pittman has been dubbed a "female Elvis". She was indeed a chum of the King, but as an artist she was much more.

"I Need A Man", was an obvious attempt by Sun to climb onto its own rockabilly bandwagon with a female artist. Driven by a slap bass, this track helped challenge rockabilly's 'men only' bias. Billboard magazine responded colorfully by saying "Here the back shack sound, female style".   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 253-A 45rpm



Barbara Pittman
"NO MATTER WHO'S TO BLAME" - B.M.I. - 3:09
Composer: - Stanley Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 205
Recorded: - April 15, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 253-B mono
NO MATTER WHO'S TO BLAME / I NEED A MAN
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-2-26 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Buddy Holobaugh - Guitar
Marcus Van Story - Bass
Smokey Joe Baugh - Piano
Stan Kesler - Steel Guitar
Johnny Bernero - Drums
John "Ace" Cannon - Tenor Sax
Bill Taylor or Hank Byers - Trumpet

This track presented here in its original as well as several alternate forms, offers an interesting and unusual blend of styles. The sound of 1950s pop is obvious in the vocal chorus and Hank Byers trumpet solo, but it is blended with some Memphis country (Stan Kesler's steel guitar is prominent). The final surprise is Barbara's unexpectedly sultry, late-night voice, which takes this under-rated record to a whole different level. Few records in 1956 were as unassumingly hybridzed.

In contrast, this song, which is rarely discussed or reissued, is an underestimated gem. Pittman's smokey vocal is showcased by a striking hybrid sound of Stan Kesler's steel and Bill Taylor's trumpet. Taylor's 8-bar solo is a standout. Sun fans seeking nothing but heavy breathing rockabilly will inevitably be disappointed; those with an open mind for hybrid music will discover the charms of this underrated side.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 253-B 45rpm



Ray Harris
"COME ON LITTLE MAMA" - B.M.I. - 2:14
Composer: - Ray Harris-Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 200
Recorded: - June 20, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 254-A mono
COME ON LITTLE MAMA / WHERE'D YOU STAY LAST NIGHT
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-1 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ray Harris - Vocal and Guitar
Winston Wayne Cogswell - Guitar
Joey Reisenberg - Drums
Unknown – Bass

There is a priceless anecdote about Ray Harris, practicing his vocal craft in a non-air conditioned Memphis  apartment in July, standing in his overalls, dripping with sweat, bellowing his heart out to his undeserving  neighbors. Folks living blocks away got to preview an a cappella version of these sides, which Billboard later  called "dangerous".

All the practicing apparently paid off for Harris, whose voice Billboard described as "extreme" and "emotion  packed". In his more staid later life, Ray Harris spent years as the resident engineer at the Hi Records studio  across town.

In its original 45rpm form "Come On Little Mama" proved to be a serious challenge for the avid listener as  the single was pressed on particularly low grade vinyl. Only in recent years, with the advent of the digital  format, has it been possible to soak up the full impact of what Ray Harris first set out to archieve. As a point  of interest, his right hand man was a fine guitarist by the name of Wayne Gogswell who saw success of his  own when he penned "Teensville" for Chet Atkins.

"Come On Little Mama" was one of the original Holy Grail Sun singles... and with good reason. Its one of  the most berserk records of the era. Ray Harris took his song to Sun. Sam Phillips, surely knowing that he  couldn't sell Harris to the mass market, nevertheless responded to his maniacal energu. "I'll never forget it, he  was so intense", says Phillips. "Ray was a very intense person. He really put himself into it. He looked like  he was going to have a heart attack every time he played. 'Rack 'em up, boy, let's go!. That was Ray's  saying".

"Come On Little Mama" was a definitive statement of supercharged rockabilly: a word apart from country,  but not identifiably rhythm and blues or pop. The lyrics were virtually unintelligible, the musicianship  limited, and the production sparse, but the performance was irressistible. "Come On Little Mama" apparently  sold well locally, and Ray Harris was invited back to cut a follow-up.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 254-A 45rpm



Ray Harris
"WHERE'D YOU STAY LAST NITE" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Ray Harris-Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 201
Recorded: - June 20, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 24, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 254-B mono
WHERE'D YOU STAY LAST NIGHT / COME ON LITTLE MAMA
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-2 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ray Harris - Vocal and Guitar
Winston Wayne Cogswell - Guitar
Joey Reisenberg - Drums
Unknown - Bass

Ray Harris' unbridled enthusiasm comes through on both sides of his debut Sun single. The instrumental  work on these sides, while spirited, is thin - even by Sun's spartan standards. If there was a bass player on  this session, he might have been in Taylor's Cafe next door when they nailed these takes.

Tall and imposing, with sharp, angular features, Ray Harris carries about him a frightening intensity, and  speaks with an impenetrable accent that almosy demands subtitles for a listener not from Mississippi. He sat  in his wife's Chrysler one humid summer night a few years ago, holding a cassette of a band he had just  recorded. As it played, his eyes burned as it reached the parts he liked. He stabbed at the cassette deck.  "There! There! I tell you, them boys have got it!. As abruptly as it had arise, though, the energy subsided.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 254-B 45rpm



The Miller Sisters
"TEN CATS DOWN" - B.M.I. - 2:18
Composer: - Bill Cantrell-Quinton Claunch
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 212
Recorded: - Unknown Date Summer 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 3, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 255-A mono
TEN CATS DOWN / FINDERS KEEPERS
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-3 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Elsie Jo Miller - Vocal
Mildred Wages - Vocal
Buddy Holobauch - Guitar
Jan Ledbetter - Bass
Johnny Bernero - Drums
Johnny "Ace" Cannon - Tenor Sax
Stan Kesler - Steel Guitar
Bill Taylor - Trumpet

Here was a prime opportunity for Sun to tap into the growing teenage market rather than service a faltering country audience. Sax replaced fiddle as the sidemen, this time largely made up of players from Johnny Bernero's band, worked hard to make the track jump accordingly. Vocally-speaking the girls exude a great deal of savvy which gained them an entirely new mantle, far removed from the indigenous harmonies that had set the standard on their earlier releases.


"Ten Cats Down" was about as close as the Sisters ever came to rock and roll. They were, first and foremost, a country act and while they had an admirable feeling for the blues (listen their version of "Got You On My Mind") they were never fated to climb onto the emerging rock bandwagon. Even Ace Cannon's sax meanderings sound curiously stilted.

And of course, Sam Phillips hedged his bets on the Miller Sisters last record by pairing the lovely ballad ''Finder Keepers'' with the girls one attempt at a solid rocker. ''Ten Cats Down'' was as close as the ladies came to rockabilly but their sound was really illequipped for it. It seems as though women and rockabilly have always had an unsteady romance, despite notable exceptions such as Wanda Jackson and Janis Martin. Arguably, the Miller Sisters were too country, too pure sounding to sound convincing on this type of song. The song needs a raging river and the girls are like a crystal stream. Nevertheless, this track is of considerable interest because it represent a previously unissued alternate take of the version issued on Sun 225. If anything, this version is closer to jazz than rock and roll and pushes the proceedings in the direction of western swing, which was surely not Phillips' intension in 1956. It marked the end of Quinton Claunch and Bill Cantrell's association with Sam Phillips, and Cantrell remembered it with a wince.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 255-A 45rpm



The Miller Sisters
"FINDERS KEEPERS" - B.M.I. - 2:54
Composer: - Bill Cantrell-Quinton Claunch
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 213
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 3, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 255-B mono
FINDERS KEEPERS / TEN CATS DOWN
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-4 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Elsie Jo Miller - Vocal
Mildred Wages - Vocal
Buddy Holobauch - Guitar
Jan Ledbetter - Bass
Johnny Bernero - Drums
Johnny "Ace" Cannon - Tenor Sax
Stan Kesler - Steel Guitar
Bill Taylor - Trumpet
 
Possibly the Miller Sisters' best side. This is a simple yet beautiful pop/country ballad that surely belonged in the charts in 1956. The  girls offer their usual seamless vocal with crystalline harmonies. The backing is an unorthodox combination of sounds. Stan Kesler's beautiful played steel guitar predominates and is abetted by Bill Taylor's totally affecting trumpet which shines through in an unexpected 4-bar solo. There is an interesting similarity between this record and ''No Matter Who's To Blame'' by Barbara Pittman which appears in the same release schedule. That song also featured an unusual trumpet/steel guitar mix. Both also had their sights firmly set on the pop and country charts and failed to reach either.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 255-B 45rpm



Slim Rhodes
"TAKE AND GIVE" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Ronny Hesselbein-E.C. Slim Rhodes
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 216 – Vocal Sandy Brooks
Recorded: - August 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 21, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 256-A mono
TAKE AND GIVE / DO WHAT I DO
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-5 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Slim Rhodes - Guitar
Sandy Brooks - Vocal
Brad Suggs - Guitar
John Hughey - Steel Guitar
Speck Rhodes - Bass
Johnny Bernero – Drums

Slim Rhodes was really a misnomer on the Sun label. Sandy Brooks, aka Ronnie Hesselbein, is the artist of note. Slim was nothing if not a survivor. Here, his aggregation makes a valiant effort to come to terms with country music's crossover into pop ballads and rockabilly. Although Brooks offers credible emotional and breathy warbling on this both sides of the record, the band's capacity for teen music is streched to the breaking point. The ballad side, "Take And Give", reveals steel player John Hughey, who later joined forces with Conway Twitty, to be an engaging and inventive musician. Drummer Johnny Bernero adds a wonderful, if underrecorded shuffle rhythm to the proceedings, and contributes a memorable rimshot just before the first steel solo. Few Sun records employed as many minor chords as "Take And Give".

The record itself has a commanding presence from its driving intro to the final major 7th chord. It features a surprisingly pounding rhythm, virtually none of which is due to the drumming! What the drummer does contribute is a memorable but almost throwaway rimshot on the snare right before the first steel solo. The steel playing throughout is delightful, with swelling chords complementing Brooks' vocal. The song features an almost completely expendable lyric, but a full assortment of 6-minor chords to give it that haunting quality that might have carried it over into popular success.

For some reason, Billboard was quite unimpressed with both sides, calling the material "ordinary" and "quite thin". These sides made the Memphis charts with little effort, but evaporated into obscurity outside the limits of Rhodes TV show. These days, Hesselbein sell tires in Jackson, Mississippi. (CE)(HD)(MH)
 

Sun 256-A 45rpm



Slim Rhodes
"DO WHAT I DO" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Slim Rhodes-Ronny Hesselbein
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 217 – Vocal Sandy Brooks
Recorded: - August 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 21, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 256-B mono
DO WHAT I DO / TAKE AND GIVE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-6 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Slim Rhodes - Guitar
Sandy Brooks - Vocal
Brad Suggs - Guitar
John Hughey - Steel Guitar
Speck Rhodes - Bass
Johnny Bernero – Drums

''Do What I Do'' is out-and-out rockabilly. Sandy Brooks contributes another strong vocal and Brad Suggs turns to the Carl Perkins guitar manual for his solo. Slim was obviously intent upon being a survivor and he was probably featuring rockabilly acts ob his new WMC-TV show. This is unrecognisable as a Slim Rhodes record of yore but, taken on its own terms, is a fine record for its time and season. It was the last time the names Slim Rhodes or Sandy Brooks appeared on a Sun record. The last anybody checked, Ronnie Hesselbein had gotten into the family business selling tires in Mississippi, a concern that has since expanded to include franchises in Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. There turned out to be a lot more money in selling tires than singing rockabilly. (CE)(HD)(MH)
 

Sun 256-B 45rpm



Rosco Gordon
"SHOOBIE OOBIE" - B.M.I. - 2:57
Composer: - Rosco Gordon
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 224
Recorded: - October 25, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 21, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 257-A mono
SHOOBIE OOBIE / CHEESE AND CRACKERS
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-7 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Rosco Gordon - Vocal and Piano
Phillip Walker - Guitar
L.W. Canty - Bass
Joe W. Payne - Drums
James Jones - Tenor Saxophone
Lionel Prevost - Tenor Saxophone

When Rosco Gordon made his trumphant return to performing in Memphis in 1981, ''Shoobie Oobie'' was one of his featured numbers. He turned in a dazzling performance and, as he must have done in Phillips' studio, he left his trademark ''blood on the keys'' from playing so hard. The first twelve bars of this track are incessant and memorable. It's a but surprising that all of this musical tension and power abates so soon and the song resolves itself into a playful and scat-nonsense lyric with the band joining in the backing vocals. This track, and its utterly bizarre flipside, ''Cheese And Crackers'', attracted a fair bit of southern attention during its original release in January 1957. Billboard noted that it ''had some flash'' and was ''good for a few spins''. There had been seismic changes in blues, rhythm and blues and popular music in general in the six years since Gordon first recorded at Sam Phillips' studio. His shambolic, loping rhythms were framed differently... but not much differently. The core of his music was still essentially and delightfully the same. (HD)(CE)
 

Sun 257-A 45rpm



Rosco Gordon
"CHEESE AND CRACKERS" - B.M.I. - 2:50
Composer: - Hayden Thompson
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 225
Recorded: - October 25, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 21, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 257-B mono
CHEESE AND CRACKERS / SHOOBIE OOBIE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-8 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Rosco Gordon - Vocal and Piano
Phillip Walker - Guitar
L.W. Canty - Bass
Joe W. Payne - Drums
James Jones - Tenor Saxophone
Lionel Prevost - Tenor Saxophone

Rosco Gordon used his larynx more as an instrument than as a vocal attribute: Witness his gargling fluid delivery on "Cheese And Crackers". Even more oblique is the rolling piano intro, which conjures up the accompaniment to a silent movie - the part where the villain makes his entrance. There must have been a permanent high at Sun cutting records like this.

"Chessie And Crackers", gives full vent to Rosco's zaniless. As Billboard noted, "Cat is on a real screaming kick here". The story goes that Hayden Thompson left the lyrics (or most of them, anyway) on the piano at Sun, and Rosco found them and worked them up into the song we know. Its an engaging tale if true, and almost too bizarre not to be true.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 257-B 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"TRAIN OF LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:21
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 226 - Take 3
Recorded: - May 8, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 21, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 258-A mono
TRAIN OF LOVE / THERE YOU GO
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-9 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and Guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant – Bass

It was a long seven months before Johnny Cash's next record hit the marketplace. Such was the continuing success of "I Walk The Line", that Sam Phillips wanted to wring every last play and sale it afforded before releasing Cash's next effort. The wait was worth it. This is a truly superb two-sided record, revealing all the dimensions of Cash as a performer and composer.

"Train Of Love" establishes Cash's love of train songs and rhythms better than virtually anything in his catalogue. His tiny, barely functional band turns in a taut performance and Phillips has miked the trio for maximum effect. Cash has written himself a perfect melody line replete with flatted thirds, within which his lonesome voice can soar without revealing its limitations. (HD)

 

Sun 258-A 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"THERE YOU GO" - B.M.I. - 2:16
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 222 - Take 2
Recorded: - May 8, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 21, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 258-B mono
THERE YOU GO / TRAIN OF LOVE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-10 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2
Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and Guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant – Bass

Likewise, "There You Go" is a flawless affort by all. The song is plainly a more conventional 'pop' outing, yet Cash's unique sound and integrity as a country artist are never compromised. In his later career, Johnny Cash may have occasionally reached this level of artistic success, but he never surpassed it. A gem. (HD)
 
 

Sun 258-B 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis
"CRAZY ARMS" - B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Charles Seals-Ralph Mooney
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 229
Recorded: - November 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 259-A mono
CRAZY ARMS / END OF THE ROAD
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-11 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes - Guitar off-mic on "Grazy Arms".
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Billy Riley - Guitar last note on "Crazy Arms"

In 1956 Ray Prize had a number one country hit and million-seller with "Crazy Arms" (Columbia 21510) produced by Don Law. The song, which was written by Ralph Mooney and Chuck Seals, peaked at number 27 on the Top 100 chart. Mooney wrote "Crazy Arms" after his wife temporarily left him because of his drinking. In 1963 Marion Worth had a number 18 country hit with his rendition (Columbia 42703). On this track Elvis and Jerry Lee Lewis sang a few lines of "Crazy Arms" during this Million Dollar Quartet session on December 4, 1956. Just three days earlier, Sun Records released "Crazy Arms" as Lewis's first record (SUN 259).

"Crazy Arms" must have sounded decades old the moment it was released, for Ray Price spends the whole record on the edge of a pure Jimmie Rodgers yodel and the fiddles and steel guitar belong to another era, one in which Elvis and Little Richard are barely conceivable, much less standing at center stage. On the other  hand, the concept of the pop star as a person on the edge of insanity has some of its most important roots in just this kind of country record, in which the singer confesses - and genuinely seems to feel - that his behaviour is a form of madness, that he has little or no control over what his body is going to do even though his mind (or at least, his conscious moral sense) urges him in a more godly (or at least sensible) direction. You tell me the difference in attitude between that posture and many random heavy metal band's.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 259-A 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis
"END OF THE ROAD" - B.M.I. - 1:46
Composer: - Jerry Lee Lewis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 230
Recorded: - November 14, 1956
"End Of The Road" probably recorded at a later date
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1, 1956
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 259-B mono
END OF THE ROAD / CRAZY ARMS
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-12 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes - Guitar
James M. Van Eaton - Drums

"End Of The Road" was the flip side of Jerry Lee Lewis's first record at Sun Records (SUN 259), which was released on December 1, 1956. The A side was "Crazy Arms". Lewis sang "End Of The Road" (his own composition) during this Million Dollar Quartet session on December 4, 1956, accompanying himself on piano. Elvis and Carl Perkins did not participate in this song.

Moments like this in music history don't come about very often. what Billboard called ''distinctively smart waz'' launched a career that has transcended time, style and personal tragedy (HD)(CE)
 

Sun 259-B 45rpm



Billy Riley & His Little Green Men
"FLYING SAUCER ROCK AND ROLL" - B.M.I. - 2:02
Composer: - Ray Scott
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 233 - Take 10
Recorded: - December 11, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 23, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 260-A mono
FLYING SAUCER ROCK AND ROLL / I WANT YOU BABY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-13 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

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

Note: "Flying Saucer Rock And Roll'' (misprinted as ''Saucers"" on the record label.

When Sam Phillips pressed the red button on his Ampex tape machine to record Billy Riley's single, he was taking the plot of a sci-fi drive-in movie and turning it into a mesmeric rock and roll classic. The elements that he'd gathered together were right on target. Riley's hoarse throat vocal, Jerry Lee's freestyling at the studio upright and Roland Janes, with his eerily-echoed whammy bar, were enough to frighten anyone's horses. No wonder they were dubbed "The Little Green Men".

Billy Riley performs what has become a rockabilly anthem. His raspy vocal on "Flying Saucer Rock And Roll" soars over a frenetic musical sound anchored by newly recruited session pianist Jerry Lee Lewis. The guitar breaks by Riley and session man Roland Janes have become models for aspiring rockabilly guitarists, but it is James M. Van Eaton who steal the show with some of the tastiest drumming in rockabilly history. His work during the spacy four bar intro, with that brief foray on to the tom-tom are permanently ingrained in the consciousness of most Sun fans. Similarly, the last ten seconds of this record are an eye-opener. The snare roll during the last sustained chord might have been enough, but the unexpected bass drum stomp raises the record to brilliance.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 260-A 45rpm



Billy Riley & His Little Green Men
"I WANT YOU BABY" - B.M.I. - 1:52
Composer: - Billy Riley
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 234
Recorded: - December 11, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 23, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 260-B mono
I WANT YOU BABY / FLYING SAUCER ROCK AND ROLL
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-14 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

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

If you were a song, even one as sweet as ''I Want You Baby'', how'd you like to get stuck on the flipside of  ''Flying Saucer Rock And Roll''? Talk about being invisible! It is very easy to underestimate to this record.  The lyrics won't make anybody forget about Cole Porter. The sound has that "live in the studio, cooked up  spontaneously" quality. The results are endearing but just as easy to discount. Sun couldn't havepicked a  more perfect B-side for ''Flying Saucer Rock And Roll''. It would have been a rare disc jockey who listened  to this and decided to divert his attention from the A-side.

Ask yourself: What category of music is this? Everyone knows that Sun produced hybrids, but how would  you label this track? Is this country? Rock and roll? Pop? A large part of that confusion stems from  Roland's wonderful guitar playing. Some of the alternate takes push the results closer to either country or  rock, but the original 45 contains just the perfect measure of confusion.

On the master of "I Want You Baby", Riley and company also shine on this undervalued midtempo gem.  The smooth guitar work and pleading vocal reveal an exceptionally talented performer. Once again, it is  James Van Eaton, whose tasty licks and accenting raise this fine record to excellence.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 260-B 45rpm



Carl Perkins
"MATCH BOX" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Carl Perkins
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 231
Recorded: - December 4, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 23, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 261-A mono
MATCHBOX / YOUR TRUE LOVE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-15 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Perkins - Vocal and Guitar
James Buck Perkins - Rhythm Guitar
Lloyd Clayton Perkins - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland - Drums
Jerry Lee Lewis - Piano

According to Carl's biography, it was his father Buck who suggested (at the recording studio just after ''Your True Love'' had been completed) that the band do this 1927 Blind Lemon Jefferson song of which Buck remembered only the chorus (about wondering ''would a matchbox hold my clothes''). So Carl cobbled together a few other stock blues verses and thus was one of Carl's greatest records born. What Carl recorded contains two additional verses with lyrics that appear on most Top Ten lists of blues cliches (e.g., ''Let me be your little dog...''). Indeed, wondering whether a matchbox will hold your clothes goes back at least to Ma Raney's l 924 record of ''Lost Wandering Blues''. Songs resembling Lemon Jefferson's and using something like his record's title (''Match Box Blues'') got recorded many times in the 1930s and 1940s, both by black blues and white country singers. Carl was part of a long tradition when he recorded ''Matchbox''. Its a tradition that has continued since Carl's record, including versions by the Beatles, Sleepy LaBeef and Warren Phillips & The Rockets.

In a way, it's disappointing that Perkins did not learn the song directly from the old 1927 Blind Lemon Peterson record. It's fun to picture Carl sitting alone in the wee hours, playing an old Paramount 78, transcribing lyrics on a potato sack. But it just didn't happen that way.

This songs recording date, listed as December 4, 1956, was Carl's first experience with the young session pianist Jerry Lee Lewis impressed Carl as cocky and arrogant, a point of view borne out by Jerry Lee's performance on the one alternate take present here. His piano-styling intends more to be attention -grabbing and showy than to fit into a Carl Perkins record. And so there are numerous glissandos, gratuitous high-key doodling, and ''Hey listen to me!'' moments. Sadly, one of thorn occurs when he gets lost in the harmonic complexities of a 3-chord 12-bar blues in the chorus between the two guitar solos. Somehow. Carl and company tamed Jerry between takes - to our everlasting benefit.

The Beatles recorded "Matchbox" which was no more from Perkins' pen than it was from Lennon and McCartney's. However, they attributed the song to Perkins  because they had learned it from his "Dance Album". Thus, Perkins began receiving astronomically high airplay and publishing royalties from a song that had been a thrwaway flipside to perhaps his least creditable Sun single. In view of the sums of money at stake, it is surprising that no-one was slimy enough to contact the surviving relatives of Blind Lemon Jefferson who had recorded "Matchbox Blues" back in October 1927, thereby creating a protracted and messy court battle.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 261-A 45rpm



Carl Perkins
"YOUR TRUE LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Carl Perkins
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 235
Recorded: - December 4, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 23, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 261-B mono
YOUR TRUE LOVE / MATCHBOX
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-16 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Perkins - Vocal and Guitar
James Buck Perkins - Rhythm Guitar
Lloyd Clayton Perkins - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland - Drums
Jerry Lee Lewis - Piano

The tale of "Your True Love" being speeded up for release has often been told. Whether teens were fooled by the Chipmunk-sounding 'youthful' chorus is hard to tell. The record did sell in sufficient quantities for Perkins and Sam Phillips to see crossover potential lying within their grasp. However, this was Perkins' last serious flirtation with the pop charts. To their credit, Sun did not follow the Fats Domino model and release a neverending series of speeded up singles in order to attract the teen market. If it had been more successful, though, they might have.

"You True Love" climbed to number 67 on the pop charts before running out of steam. Ironically, it was the flip side that would reap the big pay-off, albeit ten years later.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 261-B 45rpm



Ernie Chaffin
"FEELIN' LOW" - B.M.I. - 2:34
Composer: - Murphy "Pee Wee" Maddux
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 227
Recorded: - December 10, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 23, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 262-A mono
FEELIN' LOW / LONESOME FOR MY BABY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-17 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ernie Chaffin - Vocal and Guitar
Murphy "Pee Wee" Muddux - Acoustic Guitar
Ernie Harvey - Steel Guitar
Leo Ladner - Bass

Chaffin began his Sun recording career with a standout performance. The instrumental intro establishes the 1-6 minor chord sequence, although the song actually begins on the 50chord. From there it shuttles back and forth between 1 and 5 until Ernie hits the powerful line ''Might as well...'' and the chords run from 1 to 4 behind him. The title phrase is anticipated by a descent into the 6 minor, giving the song its catchy, almost cowboy-like sound. Billboard described ''Feelin' Low'' as folky and noted that Chaffin's voice possessed an ''Elvisy'' character. Interestingly, Ernie Harvey's steel solos almost always focus conventional swelling chords. Apparently, the song garnered some unexpected pop interest in the north east states but, for whatever reason, Sun failed to capitalise on it.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 262-A 45rpm



Ernie Chaffin
"LONESOME FOR MY BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:05
Composer: - Murphy "Pee Wee" Maddux
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 228
Recorded: - December 10, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 23, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 262-B mono
LONESOME FOR MY BABY / FEELIN' LOW
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-18 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ernie Chaffin - Vocal and Guitar
Murphy "Pee Wee" Muddux - Acoustic Guitar
Ernie Harvey - Steel Guitar
Leo Ladner - Bass

In this song, Chaffin first established the use of the flatted 7-chord in his material. We don't have to wait too long for it. ''Pretty girls all around'' and we've slipped from A to G. The song features a repeated 1-5, 1-5 musical riff throughout that serves a every bit as much of a hook as the title phrase.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 262-B 45rpm



Sonny Burgess
"RESTLESS" - B.M.I. - 2:38
Composer: - Mitt C. Addington
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 238
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/57
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 24, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 263-A mono
RESTLESS / AIN'T GOT A THING
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-19 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Sonny Burgess - Vocal and Guitar
Joe Lewis - Guitar
Johnny Ray Hubberd - Bass
Russell Smith - Drums
Ray Kern Kennedy - Piano
Jack Nance - Trumpet
Band Chorus

"Restless" was Sonny Burgess his first stab at a balled. The lyrics were written by Mitt Addington, a consulting pyschologist in Memphis who had demo'd a number of songs at Sun over the years - and even had two cut by Big Memphis Marainey, and another by RCA artist Wade Ray. Jack Clement handed Sonny a little sheet of paper with Addington's lyrics, and Sonny Burgess set them to music, for which he thought he would receive a fifty percent share of the song, a share that never materialised. The record died on the vines, and Burgess was disappointed - but there was worse in store.

Perhaps there was even greater sales potential on the lilting flipside "Restless". Sonny Burgess' whistling, the subdued and effective male chorus, and a rolling tempo might have made for big crossover sales, but nothing materialized. Burgess would take two more shots at fame and fortune on the Sun label, but this defeat was dispiriting for everyone involved.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 263-A 45rpm



Sonny Burgess
"AIN'T GOT A THING" - B.M.I. - 2:07
Composer: - Jack H. Clement-Sonny A. Burgess
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 239
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1956/57
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 24, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 263-B mono
AIN'T GOT A THING / RESTLESS
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-20 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Sonny Burgess - Vocal and Guitar
Joe Lewis - Guitar
Johnny Ray Hubberd - Bass
Russell Smith - Drums
Ray Kern Kennedy - Piano
Jack Nance - Trumpet
Band Chorus

Sonny Burgess still rocked on "Ain't Got A Thing", although not at the frenetic pace of his previous outing. In addition, the track featured a clever, not to mention intelligible lyric. The key modelation during the instrumental break lets Burgess soar during the final verse.

Sonny Burgess believed that his second record, "Ain't Got A Thing", would break through. The lyrics had the anarchic throwaway humor of Chuck Berry and Louis Jordan: "I got a check, but it won't cash. I hot a woman, ain't got no class". It was catchy and melodic, featuring a nicely worked up modulation during the break, but all to no avail. Sonny Burgess later thought it might have flopped because it was a little too fast for dancing.  (HD)(MH)
 
 

Sun 263-B 45rpm



Glenn Honeycutt
"I'LL BE AROUND" - B.M.I. - 2:46
Composer: - Glenn Honeycutt
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 240
Recorded: - December 28, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 24, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 264-A mono
I'LL BE AROUND / I'LL WAIT FOREVER
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-21 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Glenn Honeycutt - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

In some ways, this is one of the strangest Sun Records ever. Not strange bad like Winnie The Parakeet, but strangely unexpected. After nearly six months of demoing rockers in the Sun studio, Glenn Honeycutt marched on this day and recorded two ballads. Both bear the unmistakable stamp of the Presley ballad style. In that way, they are standard Memphis fare for the day and time. What makes the record curious is that both sides feature slow songs. A two-sided mellow record, Memphis style circa 1956. Because his style is molded so closely on Elvis Presley's, Honeycutt brings an undeniable gospel sound, or what Billboard called "a touch of sacred feeling" to the proceedings. (HD)
 

Sun 264-A 45rpm



Glenn Honeycutt
"I'LL WAIT FOREVER" - B.M.I. - 2:36
Composer: - Glenn Honeycutt
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 241
Recorded: - December 28, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 24, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 264-B mono
I'LL WAIT FOREVER / I'LL BE AROUND
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-22 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Glenn Honeycutt - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

"I'll Wait Forever" is actually a very powerful song. Honeycutt is aided by female voices that remained anonymous for many years, until a mid-1980s interview with the Millers' career, Sam Phillips used them as studio singers twice. Their impressive efforts with Cast King on country gospel material sadly remained unissued until Bear Family's Sun Country Box (BFX 15211). Their work here is the only issued sample of their backup style. Honeycutt returned to the Sun studio once more in early 1958, but this remains his only Sun release. (HD)
 

Sun 264-B 45rpm



Roy Orbison & The Roses
"SWEET AND EASY TO LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips-Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 423
Recorded: - December 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 24, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 265-A mono
SWEET AND EASY TO LOVE / DEVIL DOLL
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15082-3-23 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Unknown - Bass
The Roses, Vocal Chorus
Consisting of Robert Linville, Tenor;
Ray Rush, Baritone; David Bigham, Bass

Roy Orbison sought to rectify that problem when he returned to the studio to cut his third Sun single, "Sweet And Easy To Love", backed with "Devil Doll". Taking his cue from Elvis Presley and The Jordanaires, Orbison had brought a vocal group, the Roses, in from Odessa, Texas for the session. The group consisting of Robert Linville, tenor; Ray Rush, baritone; and David Bigham, bass. They performed at high school dances, community events and on local television.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 265-A 45rpm



Roy Orbison & The Roses
"DEVIL DOLL" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Sam C. Phillips-Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 424
Recorded: - December 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 24, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 265-B mono
DEVIL DOLL / SWEET AND EASY TO LOVE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-3-24 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Unknown - Bass
The Roses, Vocal Chorus
Consisting of Robert Linville, Tenor;
Ray Rush, Baritone; David Bigham, Bass

The midpaced ballad "Devil Doll" allowed Orbison's true musical soul to come up for air for the first time. By this point, Roy Orbison and the Teen Kings had parted company and Roy was working with session musicians and Sun's new engineer, Jack Clement.

During the rehearsals for "Devil Doll" and "Sweet And Easy", Roy Orbison split with the Teen Kings. "It happened right in the studio", recalled Sam Phillips. "They had some difficulty among themselves, and the band broke up then and there. Really it was nothing more than their being extremely young" "We had a commenwealth drawn up", assert James Morrow, "in which the royalties would be split equally five ways. At first the group was to be called 'The Teen Kings', but Sam Phillips and Bob Neal wanted it as 'Roy Orbison and the Teen Kings'. Bob also did not want an equal five-way split of royalties, and evidently Roy didn't want it either. We hand't actually signed anything, and that was where the disagreement arose. Jack, Billy Pat, Peanuts, and I went back to West Texas and formed another group for a few months".   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 265-B 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"DON'T MAKE ME GO" - B.M.I. - 2:27
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 244
Recorded: - April 4, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 266-A mono
DON'T MAKE ME GO / NEXT IN LINE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-1 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2
Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal, Guitar and Percussion Effect
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass
Jack Clement - Guitar
Jimmy M. Van Eaton – Drums

There are not many tapes left intact that contained every take of a particular song but this is the case with "Don't Make Me Go", recorded in April 1957 and issued as a single later that month. It is interesting to note that none of these outtakes are like the released version, which featured some simple acoustic guitar work and a second guitar playing single note runs. Jimmy Van Eaton was also on hand and appears on some of these outtakes although they were destined to remain in the vaults. There are a number of false starts and incomplete versions witch seem to prove that this was not an easy song for them to put down on tape.

On the master here of  "Don't Make Me Go", Cash offers a beautiful acoustic guitar-led balled which, again, was a departure from his established style. The marketplace continued to be impressed with Cash's work, although the heights reached by "I Walk The Line" remained elusive. (HD)
 
 

Sun 266-A 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"NEXT IN LINE" - B.M.I. - 2:44
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 245
Recorded: - April 4, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 266-B mono
NEXT IN LINE / DON'T MAKE ME GO
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-2 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal, Guitar and Percussion Effect
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass
Jack Clement - Guitar
Jimmy M. Van Eaton – Drums

Powerful as it is, this is one of Johnny Cash's least typical Sun records. Neither side features the classic oom-chicka-boom sound. "Next In Line" comes close, but the open acoustic guitar sound is quite different from the purely percussive style heard on "I Walk The Line" or "Train Of Love".

Billboard was also impressed with this outing, calling "Nest In Line" a "dirge-like theme with haunting guitar backing" and its flipside "another plaintive tune with hypnotic beat". They noted, accurately, that Cash delivered both sides with "sincerity and heart", characteristics that would remain intact for most of his Sun output. (HD)
 

Sun 266-B 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis
"WHOLE LOT OF SHAKIN' GOING ON" - B.M.I. - 2:55
Composer: - Dave "Curly" Williams-Sunny David (aka Roy Hall)
Publisher: - Marlyn Music - Robert Mellin Music
Matrix number: - U 247
Recorded: - February 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - March 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 267-A mono
WHOLE LOT OF SHAKIN' GOING ON / IT'LL BE ME
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-4 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

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

Rockabilly pianist Roy Hall, who, under the pseudonym of Sunny David, wrote ''Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On'' with black musician Dave Williams, also recorded his own version, before Lewis inspired a generation of teens by injecting the song with his inimitable brand of boogie-woogie, country, gospel and rhythm and blues-infused hellfire. Released in May 1957, the single rose to number eight in the United Kingdom, reached number three on what was then known as the Billboard Top 100, and became an rhythm and blues and country chart-topper. In the process, it launched the career of the piano-pounding, rocket-fuelled wildman whose manic, overtly sexual live performances provoked parental nightmares. As it happens, the self-described ''Killer'' only enjoyed four Top 20 hits before the scandal of his marriage to a 13-year-old cousin brought the successes to a screeching halt. Yet, courtesy of a wide-ranging career that has now spanned seven decades and comprised an impressive body of work, Lewis’s legend has remained intact, and the tale of how he first came to prominence is, like the man himself, quite unique.

After four recordings, disc jockey Johnny Littlefield received Roy Hall's latest Decca release in the mail in the fall of 1955. He immediately began playing the record in the air. He also began singing the song in his nightclub, the Wagon Wheel also called the Music Box in some sources). One of the members of his house band was piano player Jerry Lee Lewis. Reportedly, Lewis began begged Littlefield to allow him to sing the song in the club. Lewis has said that he first remembers hearing "Big Mama Thornton's recording of "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" sometime in 1955. Obviously, Lewis meant Big Maybelle, not Willie Mae Thornton. In any case, Jerry Lee Lewis incorporated "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" into his act. On April 15, 1957, Jerry Lee Lewis appeared "Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On" on the Steve Allen show.

Jerry Lee didn't write many songs but he sure did breathe new life into virtually everything he performed. "Whole Lotta Shakin'" is a case in point. Listen to earlier versions of the song by Roy Hall or blues shouter Big Maybelle. What Jerry Lee has brought to this massive hit is truly worthy of composer credit.

Note: Later releases gave the title of the Jerry Lee Lewis hit as ''Whole Lotta Shakin''', but the label of the original release read ''Whole Lot Of Shakin' Going On''.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 267-A 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis
"IT'LL BE ME" - B.M.I. - 2:47
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 246
Recorded: - February 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - March 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 267-B mono
IT'LL BE ME / WHOLE LOT OF SHAKIN' GOING ON
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-3 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes - Guitar
Janes M. Van Eaton – Drums

On the single's release, Sam Phillips had higher hopes for the other side, "It'll Be Me", a song that Jack Clement had concocted on the toilet while contemplating the possibility of reincarnation. Before recording, the line, "If you see a turd in your toilet bowl, baby, it'll be me and I'll be starin' at you" had become "If you find a lump in your sugar bowl"; sex may have been in, but scatology was definitely out. Released in mid-March, the record wasn't fully promoted until Jerry returned from the tour in May, and by that time, Sam Phillips had ascertained that "Shakin'" was the side to watch. With Dewey Phillips behind it, "Shakin'" was sitting atop the local charts in Memphis, and on June 12 it entered the national country charts. Two weeks later, it entered the Hot 100 at number 70.

Clement hit the big time by placing his composition on this flipside of Jerry Lee's second single. "It'll Be Me" is rockabilly's ode to reincarnation. A comparison with other known takes of this song reveals just how different and truly unusual the arrangement of the issued version is. All it took was a life performance during the summer of 1957 on Steve Allen's network TV show, and the Killer's career was up and running. In Billboard's words, "This platter by Lewis is taking off like wildfire".   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 
 

Sun 267-B 45rpm



Warren Smith
"SO LONG I'M GONE" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Roy Orbison-Sam Phillips
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 248
Recorded: - Unknown Date January/February 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 268-A mono
SO LONG I'M GONE / MISS FROGGIE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-5 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Al Hopson - Guitar
Marcus Van Story - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Johnny Bernero - Drums
Roland Janes - Guitar
Wil Hopson - Bass

This breezy mid-tempo rocker provided Warren Smith with his only Hot 100 entry. It was neat synthesis of the pounding rockers and restrained country ballads that had represented the two extremes of Smith's recording career to that point. This is short, deftly executed and profoundly catchy which probably accounted for its success. 

The ragged instrumental work had been tightened up and Smith's vocal is supremely confident. This song also gave Roy Orbison his first chart entry as a songwriter.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 268-A 45rpm



Warren Smith
"MISS FROGGIE" - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Warren Smith
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 249
Recorded: - February 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 268-B mono
MISS FROGGIE / SO LONG I'M GONE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-6 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Al Hopson - Guitar
Marcus Van Story - Bass
Jimmy Lott - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Roland Janes - Guitar
Wil Hopson - Bass

This was the B-side of Warren Smith's only Hot 100 entry but the generations of rockabilly fans it was the A-side to end all A-sides. To the question what is rockabilly? this is the answer. Smith could sing uptempo numbers such as this without coarsening his voice or screaming. His deftly controlled excitement is matched note-for-note by Al Hopson's dazzling guitar and Jimmy Lott's drumming. Hopson's solos are truly lightning in a bottle. The man was possessed on the day he cut this side. The group concocted the song while driving back from Dallas one night, although Smith took sole composer credit. Both Hopson and Lott were on sparkling form. ''I always had problems playing the shuffle that Johnny Bernero used on ''Rock And Roll Ruby'', Lott told Colin Escott, ''and my drumming on ''Miss Froggie'' was almost unsyncopated. The inspiration for my playing was Al's guitar. The kick-off was unbelievable. It could have put Bo Diddley out of business''. One can trace the lyrics back to a clutch of blues standards but, in the final analysis, it doesn't matter because Smith and his group had come up with something stunningly original that is an entire dimension beyond its roots and head and shoulders above its derivatives. Classic then, classic now.   (MH)(HD)(CE)
 

Sun 268-B 45rpm



Wade and Dick – The College Kids
"BOP BOP BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Wade Lee Moore-Allen Richard Dick Penner
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 250
Recorded: - December 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 269-A mono
BOP BOP BABY / DON'T NEED YOUR LOVIN' BABY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-7 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Wade Moore - Vocal
Dick Penner - Vocal and Guitar
Don Gilliland - Bass
Bob Izer - Guitar
Probably Roger Berkely – Drums

If Wade Moore and Dick Penner are remembered by Sun fans, it will not be for this recording. The Collage Kids primarily remembered for writing the immortal "Ooby Dooby", brought to fame on Roy Orbison's first Sun record.

As vocalists, the duo offer an appealing blend, although Dick Penner's high voice predominates and works against the sterotyped virile Sun style. In fact, both sides of this recording have a minor key sound not typically associated with Sun artists. North Texas State University in Denton was their seat of learning and part of their daily routine was to lie in the sun on the frat house roof and write songs for sun.. This  session was taped during the Yuletide vacation of 1956

"Bop Bop Baby" lives up to its name with a solid stop-rhythm and excellent instrumental work. The side is unusual in that it flirts with being in a minor key throughout. Minor key rockers were uncommon on Sun's or anyone release schedule. The guitar work on the first solo is sparkling and nicely complemented by the electric bass. The second solo forsake minor key magic and borrows liberally from the melody line of "Roll Over Beethoven". (HD)
 

Sun 269-A 45rpm



Wade and Dick – The College Kids
"DON'T NEED YOUR LOVIN' BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Wade Lee Moore-Allen Richard Dick Penner
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 251
Recorded: - December 14, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 269-B mono
DON'T NEED YOUR LOVIN' BABY / BOP BOP BABY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-8 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Wade Moore - Vocal
Dick Penner - Vocal and Guitar
Don Gilliland - Bass
Bob Izer - Guitar
Probably Roger Berkely – Drums

The flipside "Don't Need Your Lovin' Baby" is really a solo vehicle for Dick Penner. The guitar work has a distinctive oriental flavor to it, yet it rocks in a solid bluesy groove. Again, there are enough flatted thirds to keep the song;s key signature ambiguous. What is quite clear here is the marvellous interplay between the lead guitar and an unidentified drummer. Not since Jerry Lee and Jimmy Van Eaton, has such rapport been heard on a Sun record. Billboard was also impressed and touted this "wailing minor blues" in its May 27, 1957 review.

Although Dick Penner was back in the Sun studio two months later as a solo act, this is Wade and Dick's only appearance on this session. (HD)
 

Sun 269-B 45rpm



Jimmy Williams
"PLEASE DON'T CRY OVER ME" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Jimmy Williams
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 236
Recorded: - Unknown Date / Probably July 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 270-A mono
PLEASE DON'T CRY OVER ME / THAT DEPENDS ON YOU
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-9 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jimmy Williams - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Bill Riley - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

For some reason Jimmy Williams has never grabbed his share of mythic status given most minor Sun artists. Perhaps the vocal gimmick on "Please Don't Cry Over Me" was enough to alienate most Sun fans, who wanted a bit more bite to their music. But that doesn't explain why the flipside hasn't become more of a collectable item.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 270-A 45rpm



Jimmy Williams
"THAT DEPENDS ON YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Jimmy Williams
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 237
Recorded: - Unknown Date / Probably July 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 270-B mono
THAT DEPENDS ON YOU / PLEASE DON'T CRY OVER ME
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-10 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jimmy Williams - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Bill Riley - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

"That Depends On You" offers a lot to love. The song is bluesy and surprisingly melodic, despite its conventional 12-bar structure. A deeper look at the melody reveals that Williams has borrowed liberally from "I Almost Lost My Mind", marking the second time Ivory Joe Hunter's classic has been co-opted by a Sun artist. The first was Walter Horton's instrumental gem, "Easy". Jimmy Williams voice may be thinner than most rockabillies, but there is an undeniable tension and broodiness to this side that might have won Williams more fans, if not commercial success.

Quite apart from the vocal, the instrumental work on this quiet; understated side is to kill for. Roland Janes' guitar and J.M. Van Eaton's drumming are thoroughly engaging, even in their minimal roles. In fact, the Little Green Men turned a throwaway B-side into an undiscovered Sun treasure.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 270-B 45rpm



Rudi Richardson
"WHY SHOULD I CRY" - B.M.I. - 2:49
Composer: - Organ-Johnson-Walker
Publisher: - Golden West Music
Matrix number: - U 253
Recorded: - Unknown Date / Probably March 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 271-A mono
WHY SHOULD I CRY / FOOL'S HALL OF FAME
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-12 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Rudi Richardson - Vocal and Guitar
Unknown Musicians
Vocal Chorus - Jimmy Hart, Steve Spear, Mike Gardner,
James Tarbutton, David Beaver

The first person to wonder what Memphis-born Rudolph Richardson Riles moved to Chicago and debuted on the Miracle label in 1946. He was back in Memphis a decade or so later, is doing in the middle of the Sun release schedule for Spring, 1957. This record is a total anomaly. Taken on its own merits, it is not a bad record. Smooth, modern black vocal harmony: a latter day Ink Spots or Four Knights with a slight doowopping nod toward 1950s rhythm and blues. This is the kind of backup singing that Roy Orbison might have achieved on "Devil Doll" had his singers not been so, well, white.

Whatever the charms of this recording, it is hard to understand what its doing rubbing shoulders with "Miss Froggie" on one side and "Red Hot" on the other. The redoubtable Sun session file offers only 'unknown' next to the date, backing group or location of these recording. It seems clear that Rudi Richardson was black, and that he, his quartet, and instrumental combo (piano, guitar, bass and drums) were tight. It also seems a safe bet that these sides were not recorded at 706 Union. Six months after Rudi's single was released, Rudi died of drug and alcohol abuse in a Memphis hotel room. (HD)
 
 

Sun 271-A 45rpm



Rudi Richardson
"FOOL'S HALL OF FAME" - B.M.I. - 2:37
Composer: - J. Freeman-Danny Wolf
Publisher: - Golden West Music
Matrix number: - U 252
Recorded: - Unknown Date / Probably March 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 271-B mono
FOOL'S HALL OF FAME / WHY SHOULD I CRY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-11 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Rudi Richardson - Vocal and Guitar
Unknown Musicians
Vocal Chorus - Jimmy Hart, Steve Spear, Mike Gardner,
James Tarbutton, David Beaver

To further complicate the puzzle, we also know that Johnny Cash, of all people, attempted a version of "Fool's Hall Of Fame" while at Sun, and so did Roy Orbison. After the Cash session, Sam Phillips wrote across the tape box "Never To Be Released", although his words later went unheeded. Even Elvis Presley wanted to record it.

Rudi Richardson remains an enigma to Sun Records fans. His 1957 release ("Fools Hall Of Fame") seemed stylistically out of place at the time, although 50plus years have allowed a more charitable view of Richardson's music. With some hindsight, it is easy to see how Sam Phillips was drawn to the slick professionalism and retro (1940s) sound he heard here.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 271-B 45rpm



Ray Harris
"GREENBACK DOLLAR, WATCH AND CHAIN" - B.M.I. - 2:54
Composer: - Ray Marris
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 254
Recorded: - May 1957 or Probably April 7, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 272-A mono
GREENBACK DOLLAR, WATCH AND CHAIN / FOOLISH HEART
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-13 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ray Harris - Vocal and Guitar
Wayne Cogswell - Guitar
Joey Reisenberg - Drums
Unknown - Piano
Red Hensley - Vocal and Steel Guitar
Unknown - Bass
Wayne Cogswell, Red Hensley, Roy Orbison - Vocal Chorus

Casting around for material, Ray Harris lighted upon the old hill country ballad "Greenback Dollar", and he worked up a surprisingly commercial version of the song. There was a contagious party atmosphere on the record, highlighted by whistles and hollers during the instrumental breaks. "A lot of people though I was gonna have a big one", recalled Harris, "so I got carried away and went and bought a new Mercury. Ended up diggin' ditches for six months to pay for it".  Harris provides hos own epitaph on his Sun career: "I never did get a hit. Probably had too much country in my style. I tell everyone I sure had a good time trying', though".

Ray Harris' second single, "Greenback Dollar, Watch And Chain", comes from the folksy end of public domain and features a young Roy Orbison in the chorus.

"Greenback Dollar" is a loony tune, and no less lovable. And what a mixture of styles!. A doo wop chorus, and more of the wild and woolly guitar / drum sound from the flipside. Only this time around a piano and slap bass player have been added. A truly overproduced record by Sun's delightful 1957 standards.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 272-A 45rpm



Ray Harris
"FOOLISH HEART" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Ray Harris-Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 255
Recorded: - May 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 272-B mono
FOOLISH HEART / GREENBACK DOLLAR, WATCH AND CHAIN
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-14 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ray Harris - Vocal and Guitar
Wayne Cogswell - Guitar
Joey Reisenberg - Drums
Unknown - Piano
Red Hensley - Vocal and Steel Guitar
Unknown - Bass
Wayne Cogswell, Red Hensley, Roy Orbison - Vocal Chorus

"Foolish Heart" is a wonderful loony tune of a record. A doowop chorus welded onto a minimalist bluesy ballad. Other than the voice, the sound is not appreciably different from Harris' previous outing (SUN 254), which was markedly under produced even by 1956 standards. Wayne Cogswell and Joey Reisenberg are all over this record. Every empty space is a personal challenge to be filled by guitar and drums. Their playing is so assertive that the missing bass player is hardly noticed.

Ray Harris contributes here on this session a fine vocal, even for a self-professed non-singer. The party atmosphere adds a delightful touch and enhances both instrumental breaks. The unknown piano player is suitably high spirited, although his style is notably un-Jerry Lee-like. If things weren't sufficiently off-the-wall, this record ends on a drum roll. Not exactly an everyday occurrence, made doubly bizarre by the studio fade. Precious few Sun record ended with fade-outs, despite how commonplace the practice was elsewhere. When we finally get a Sun fade, it focuses not on a repeated vocal or instrumental line, but on a drum roll. What a label!.

For many years it was thought that Elvis Presley played piano on both of Ray Harris Sun release. However, research has discovered that Charlie Rich was the piano player. The vocal backing was provided by Roy Orbison, Wayne Cogswell, and Red Hensley. (HD)
 
 

Sun 272-B 45rpm



Mack Self
"EASY TO LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:45
Composer: - Mack Self
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 256
Recorded: Unknown Date 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 273-A mono
EASY TO LOVE / EVERYDAY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-15 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Mack Self - Vocal and Guitar
Thurlow Brown - Lead Guitar
Stan Kesler - Steel Guitar
Jimmy Evans - Bass
Johnny Bernero – Drums

It is hard to listen to ''Easy To Love'', even a half century later, and not be struck by its sheer beauty. Surely Sam Phillips shared this view because something persuaded him to release it in 1957 when the record had little chance of commercial success.  Within the context of Sun's release schedule, ''Easy To Love'' fell smack in the middle of rockabilly items like Carl Perkins'''That's Right'' and Ray Harris's ''Greenback Dollar''. It was flanked by even less countrified rockers by Tommy Blake (''Lordy Hoody'') and Wade & Dick (''Bop Bop Baby''). In short, ''Easy To Love'' was pure country outing, the very thing from which Sun was progressively shying away. All of which underscores just how direct its impact must have been on Phillips for him to schedule its release. Commercialism aside, what has contributed to the beautiful of ''Easy To Love''? Self's vocal, while not powerful, is rather idiosyncratic. His line ''I'm tuning you loose'' is followed by wordless humming in the first verse. Two bars without a lyric. This tension is resolved in the last verse the same line is finally completed with ''I'm letting you go''. A nice touch, especially surrounded by the drama of the sustained 4-chord and cymbal at the finale.

Rhythmically, the song achieves a surprising momentum from the echoes drumming and acoustic guitar. In fact, if it can be said that a waltz is driving, then this one surely qualifies. The instrumental work seems serviceable, not flashy throughout, with its simple Luther Perkins-like lead guitar. Even the steel, an instrument often given to tasty riffs and virtuosity, is played in flawless, but rudimentary style. The record simply has an understated charm that assert itself almost immediately. For some reason, one throwaway feature (absent from the recently discovered alternate take) has always focused my memory of this song. The band hits a passing 2-minor chord between halves of the verse. It comes right after the lines ''Like they're brand new'' and ''between you and me''. One would expect a conventional 5-2-5 transitional sequence but instead there's that implied 2-minor chord. A mistake, maybe, but it's simply beautiful.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 273-A 45rpm



Mack Self
"EVERYDAY" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Mack Self
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 257
Recorded: - March 28, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 273-B mono
EVERYDAY / EASY TO LOVE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-16 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Mack Self - Vocal and Guitar
Therlow Brown - Lead Guitar
Jimmy Ray Paulman - Rhythm Guitar
Jimmy Evens - Bass and 2nd Vocal
James M. Van Eaton - Drums

"Everyday", for too long has this track been overshadowed by its gorgeous flipside, "Easy To Love". "Everyday" is a fine country song in its own right. It reveals Mack as a songwriter with a penchant for country waltzes as well as a deft melodic touch and a gift for imagery. In addition to the release version, we  have two previously unissued alternate takes that are quite different from each other. Serious listening is rewarded here. Jimmy Evans (or perhaps Stan Kesler on steel) provides a highly unusual bass figure, sliding up to the target note. Either Van Eaton or Holland provides some interesting drum work, accenting on the cymbal during the guitar break. This is a simple country song with relatively few musicians in the studio. But  Lord, Lord, there sure is a lot going on here.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 273-B 45rpm



Carl Perkins
"FOREVER YOURS" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Carl Perkins
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 258
Recorded: - March 28, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 274-A mono
FOREVER YOURS / THAT'S RIGHT
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-17 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Perkins - Vocal and Guitar
James Buck Perkins - Rhythm Guitar
Lloyd Clayton Perkins - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland – Drums

Back In March l 957, George Hamilton IV's hit record ''A Rose And A Baby Ruth'' was stall on the charts when Carl recorded this. If this was the era for candy-bar inspired love songs, Carl wanted a piece of the action. ''Forever Your'' bars may be all but forgotten now, but these ''vanilla Milky Way'' bars were once quite popular. They disappeared from the candy counters of America abut 20 years later in 1979, but this was Carl Perkins attempt to continue the candy bar trend in American popular music. Commercial tie-in or not, this is a damn fine ballad and, needless to say, light years away from the ballad style we've heard previously on ''Turn Around'' or ''I'm Not Sorry''. One aside about the original single record: When original released on Sun 274, ''Forever Yours'' was coupled with that nasty little opus called ''That's Right''. It was an odd paring to say the least.

We're going to go out on a limb here and say that ''Forever Yours'' is the most beautiful song Carl Perkins recorded for Sun. It's true that most of what fans value about Perkins' work isn't tied up in ballads, but this one is a stunner. Arguably, the big selling point is that flatted VI chord (C in the key of E) in the release. It's beautiful and unexpected. According to his bio, Carl nearly had a mutiny on his hands when he taught the song to brother Jay. It's also not the first time Carl worked that territory. The same chord change appeared in ''Honey Don't'', when Carl was in his more accustomed rockabilly mode. But here, in a ballads he adds a 4-note to the chord making it a little softer and warmer than the straight version of the chord that appeared in the uptempo ''Honey Don't''.

Another feature that takes ''Forever Yours'' into a very special realm is the recording mix. For this, we have Sam to thank. The slap bass is miked so prominently, it's almost shocking. Forget the drums; this one is driven by Clayton's bass. When is the last time you heard a ballad recorded like this? It was one thing on ''Blue Suede Shoes''. But a percussive bass on a ballad? You betcha, and it works like a charm.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 274-A 45rpm



Carl Perkins
"THAT'S RIGHT" - B.M.I. - 2:48
Composer: - Carl Perkins
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 259
Recorded: - March 28, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 274-B mono
THAT'S RIGHT / FOREVER YOURS
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-18 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Perkins - Vocal and Guitar
James Buck Perkins - Rhythm Guitar
Lloyd Clayton Perkins - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland – Drums

Anybody who thought "That's Right" was going to be a teen hit was in serious need of a reality check. Not since "Dixie Fried" had Carl Perkins come through with such a slice of southern lowlife. Precious few urban white teens were going to connect with the sentiments and moods of this ol' disc. In truth, its a menacing, rather mean spirited lament delivered in a slurred, palpably drunken style. How many 16 year olds could identify with the singer's life?. A mean, short tempered guy, suspicious of cheating, both at cards and love. And then there was that word "booger" which was just a little too close to "bugger" for comfort in Canada (where the line was excised) and in England (where the entire verse ended up on the cutting room floor). This has made British and Canadian pressings of this record perversely collectable. (HD)
 

Sun 274-B 45rpm



Ernie Chaffin
"I'M LONESOME" – B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Murphy Maddux
Publisher: - Singing River Music
Matrix number: - U 260
Recorded: - January 29, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 275-A mono
I'M LONESOME / LAUGHIN' AND JOKIN'
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-19 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ernie Chaffin - Vocal and Guitar
Murphy "Pee Wee" Maddux - Acoustic Guitar
Ernie Harvey - Steel Guitar
Leo Ladner – Bass

Once again, the success of this record is built upon the unusual 1 - flatted 7 chords sequence and Chaffin and company (and what a company!) deftly mine these changes for all they're worth. As we learn, they are worth a lot, at both dirge-like and mid-tempos. The first 8 bars of "I'm Lonesome" are particularly powerful. The instrumental intro has an almost dreamlike quality; it is literally difficult to become oriented and know what key the song is in. Chaffin's voice is a sheer delight here. What a fine country singer the man was! And not since Luther Perkins adorned Cash's best work has there been such a simple solo on a Sun record. Only this single note picking is done on a steel guitar! And finally, there's the fade. Not many Sun records feature studio fades, but this is the best ever. The simple instrumental work as those slide back and forth is a moment to cherish.  It is not clear what marketplace this record was originally slated for but, categories be dammed, this is one of the undeniable gems in the entire Sun catalogue.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 275-A 45rpm



Ernie Chaffin
"LAUGHIN' AND JOKIN'" – B.M.I. - 2:05
Composer: - Murphy Maddux
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 261
Recorded: - January 29, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 275-B mono
LAUGHIN' AND JOKIN' / I'M LONESOME
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-20 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ernie Chaffin - Vocal and Guitar
Murphy "Pee Wee" Maddux - Acoustic Guitar
Ernie Harvey - Steel Guitar
Leo Ladner – Bass

Once again, Ernie Chaffin contributes a 1-flatted 7 chord pattern to good effect, this time turning it into an uptempo, almost jaunty mood. Of Ernie's first four sides for Sun, this was probably the most conventionally country. The song has a wonderfully rhythmic drive, abetted by the percussive strumming of Pee Wee Maddux. Ernie Harvey helps himself to two-bar steel solos, played in a style that was reproducible by non-steel players. A thoughtful gesture!  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 275-B 45rpm



Edwin Bruce
"MORE THAN YESTERDAY" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Edwin Bruce
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 262
Recorded: - May 8, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 276-A mono
MORE THAN YESTERDAY / ROCK BOPPIN' BABY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-21 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Edwin Bruce - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Smith - Piano

Like Jerry Lee Lewis, Edwin Bruce sings the praises of a woman who manages to bop around without leaving her spot. A true Memphis goddess.
 

Ed's echo-laden vocal on the flipside "More Than Yesterday", was appropriately sexy and restrained, but its the rocker that has grabbed just about all the collector attention over the years. (HD)
 

Sun 276-A 45rpm



Edwin Bruce
"ROCK BOPPIN' BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: - Edwin Bruce
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 263
Recorded: - May 8, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - August 15, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 276-B mono
ROCK BOPPIN' BABY / MORE THAN YESTERDAY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-22 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Edwin Bruce - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Smith - Piano

Out of nowhere came Memphis teenager Edwin Bruce with this minor key rocker. "Rock Boppin' Baby" is a highly effective record, although it owes precious little to the country traditions that feuled most of Sun's best rockabilly. Nevertheless, the arrangement builds considerable tension with its muted string verses, before letting it fly during the release, which transforms the song back into a major key.

In Sam Phillips' words, the young Mr. Bruce has "the sincere pleading quality which can switch to fire and  volume to sock up the tempo for contrast". A bit wordy, but you get the idea. (HD)   
 

Sun 276-B 45rpm



Billy Riley & His Little Green Men
"RED HOT" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - William Robert Emerson
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 265 - Featured Overdub Handclaps
Recorded: - January 30, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 277-A mono
RED HOT / PEARLY LEE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-23 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Billy Riley - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
John "Ace" Cannon – Saxophone

Riley returned to the studio to start work on a rockabilly version of an old Sun copyright, Billy "The Kid" Emerson's "Red Hot". As always, the rhythm section, featuring Roland Janes and drummer James M. Van Eaton, played with teletathic cohesion. Win, lose, or draw, Riley always had one of the hottest working bands in the Mid-South. By the end of 1957, "Red Hot" had sold only thirty-seven thousand copies, and Riley was furious.

Billy Riley's third instance in the studio represents one of the last times when Jerry Lee Lewis would muster as a sideman.  This incandescent recording reading of Billy "The Kid" Emerson's "Red Hot" based on a cheerleaders' chant, "Our team is red hot..."). It was the closest Riley came to scoring a hit in the 1950s. The band was essentially the same, except that Jimmy Wilson had become the permanent pianist and Johnny "Ace" Cannon had been added on saxophone. The song was suggested by Sam Phillips (the fact that he owned the publishing probably accounted for some of his enthusiasm). The original version had appeared on Sun Records in June 1955.

Billy Riley is absolutely frantic. Whether his gal is "red hot" or not becomes a matter of life and death. He sounds as though he is pushing the recording needle well into the red as he does permanent damage to his larynx. "That's what the song needed - and that's what I gave it", Riley asserted.

James M. Van Eaton and Jimmy Wilson are extremely prominent, the former nearly maniacal, continually walloping the backbeat and thundering through bars three and four of each verse, creating a much heightened sense of tension. All the instruments are pushing, playing slightly ahead of the beat. The song actually has a relatively complex structure as Emerson mixes 6/4 and 4/4 bars in the chorus. Riley smiles, "That's what makes it happen. Most bands get it wrong". The whole song verged on hedonistic, almost violent chaos but Billy Riley and his band had crafted a truly definitive rockabilly performance.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 277-A 45rpm



Billy Riley & His Little Green Men
"PEARLY LEE" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Billy Riley
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 265 - Master - Featured Overdub Handclaps
Recorded: - January 30, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 277 mono
PEARLY LEE / RED HOT
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-24 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Billy Riley - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
John "Ace" Cannon – Saxophone

"Pearly Lee" meanwhile, was furnished with handclaps and a chorus overdub to  arrive at the kind of gloss normally lavished on a A-side. That distinction went to  "Red Hot".

Pearly Lee is probably better known as the flip side of Red Hot than as a great record in its own right. Nevertheless, those listeners who are familiar with its released version on Sun 277 are in for some surprises and some treats as they hear the alternate versions included here.

One inspiration for Pearly Lee is obviously Little Richard's record, ''The Girl Can't Help It'' (Specialty 591) which broke into the Billboard Top 100 just about the time that ''Pearly Lee'' was recorded.

On both, the lead vocalist sings a line and several voices respond in unison to remind him of the song's title. The responding voices do not appear on the four all versions here, but they are part of Sun 277. Riley also adopted a word from ''The Girl Can't Help It''. Little Richard begins, "If she walks by the menfolks get engrossed". On all the alternates (but not  Sun 277), Riley sings, "When she walks by the menfolks stop and look'. Are there any other rock and roll songs that include the word, 'menfolks'? Luckily, Riley didn't decide to use the word ''engrossed''.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 277-B 45rpm



Tommy Blake & The Rhythm Rebels
"FLAT FOOT SAM" - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Oscar Clara Wills
Publisher: - Hiphill Music
Matrix number: - U 266
Recorded: - August 18, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 278-A mono
FLAT FOOT SAM / LORDY HOODY
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-25 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Tommy Blake - Vocal and Guitar
Carl Bailey Adams - Guitar
Edward "Eddie Hall" Dettenheim - Bass
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
The Singing Sons
Elijan Franklin - Vocal Chorus
John Franklin - Vocal Chorus
Andre Mitchell - Vocal Chorus
Johnny Pryor - Vocal Chorus

Tommy Blake's first Sun single "Flat Foot Sam", wasn't one of his songs. A Shreveport-area TV repairman named Oscar Wills (dubbed T.V. Slim by local music honcho Stan Lewis) wrote and first recorded it for the local Cliff Records, a label associated with Ram Records. The song was published by Ram's Hip Hill Music, and sold well enough for Chess Records to take an interest. Chess purchased the Cliff master and issued it on Checker Records before deciding that it was too ragged. They told Slim to re-record it in New Orleans and the new version was issued on their Argo label. It was a measure of Sun president Sam Phillips' faith in it that he issued Blake's version despite the fact that he didn't own the music publishing. In the studio, he paired Blake with session drummer Jimmy M, Van Eaton and a vocal group. For his part, Blake easily related to a song about a scam artist who can't win for losing: "Flat Foot Sam stole a ten dollar bill. Told the judge he did it for a thrill...". ''Flat Foot Sam" sold well enough for Sun to keep the faith.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 278-A 45rpm



Tommy Blake & The Rhythm Rebels
"LORDY HOODY" - B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Johnny Blake-Eddie Hall-Carl Bailey Adams
Publisher: - Tree Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 267
Recorded: - August 18, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 278-B mono
LODY HOODY / FLAT FOOT SAM
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-4-26 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 2

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments )
Tommy Blake - Vocal and Guitar
Carl Bailey Adams - Guitar
Edward "Eddie Hall" Dettenheim - Bass
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
The Singing Sons
Elijan Franklin - Vocal Chorus
John Franklin - Vocal Chorus
Andre Mitchell - Vocal Chorus
Johnny Pryor - Vocal Chorus

"Lordy Hoody" is not a particularly good record. Recorded originally for RCA Victor (under the title "All Night Long") and relegated to the unreleased pile, Blake re-recorded the tune in slightly modified version for Sam Phillips. Ironically, the ballad side RCA Victor did release, an acoustic gem titled "Freedom", remains Blake's best recorded work. For some reason, Phillips or his studio disciples envisioned Blake as a rocker. It may have been a mistake. If you can discern the lyrics to "Lordy Hoody", you find a tale of a square old man who is at best mildly bemused by the young uns' wild music and carrying on.

Not much to get excited about here, except for Carl Adams' stinging Fender guitar work, which pushed the limits of 45rom reproduction and is pretty intense even for rockabilly fans.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 278-B 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"HOME OF THE BLUES" - B.M.I. - 2:38
Composer: - Johnny Cash-Glenn Douglas-Lily McAlpin
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 268 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - July 1, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 279-A mono
HOME OF THE BLUES / GIVE MY LOVE TO ROSE
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-1-1 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass

Overdub Session July 31, and August 1, 1957
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Sid Manker - Guitar
Jimmy Smith - Piano

This ''Home Of The Blues'' marked Jack Clement behind the glass and Clement has said that he found the original Cash sound a little ''tubby'' and there is already one subtle addition here, a second electric guitarist. Sid Manker plays the treble strings while Luther sticks to safer ground after his 'guitar manual' intro. By the time the song was released in 1957, Clement had taken a different version and overdubbed a piano and subdued chorus which themselves produced a curiously muddy sound. This overdubbed version finds Cash singing marinally higher than he often did and there may be a slight loss of intensity, but it is a pleasure to hear the song without the piano and vocal additions after all this time. The song itself may have been inspired by the record shop of owner Reuben Cherry of the same name which was a feature on Beale Street of downtown Memphis until urban renewal took its toll.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 279-A 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"GIVE MY LOVE TO ROSE" - B.M.I. - 2:42
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 269 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - July 1, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 14, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 279-B mono
GIVE MY LOVE TO ROSE / HOME OF THE BLUES
Reissued: - 1995 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15802 DI-1-2 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass

Overdub Session July 31, and August 1, 1957
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Sid Manker - Guitar
Jimmy Smith - Piano

"Give My Love To Rose" is more minimalist than ever. A western ballad, it represents the first time that Cash's infatuation with the Old West (which would later consume entire albums) intruded itself onto disc. "Rose" is a mournful tale of a dying man's wishes told to the minimalist accompaniment. The slight change in direction brought forth some reward when the single rose quickly to number 5 in the country charts and number 88 in the pop listing before dying away. That showing encouraged Jack Clement to persevere in his attempt at sweetening Cash's sound. Billboard was correct when they described this as a "very strong reading of an unusual piece of country material".  (HD)(MH)
 
 

Sun 279-B 45rpm



Dickey Lee & The Collegiates
"GOOD LOVIN'" - B.M.I. - 2:50
Composer: - Kirkland-Taylor-Jesmet
Publisher: - Barnhill Music Corporation
Matrix number: - U 271
Recorded: - August 10, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - October 12, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 280-A mono
GOOD LOVIN' / MEMORIES NEVER GROW OLD
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-3 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Dickey Lee - Vocal and Guitar
Allen Reynolds - Vocal and Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Vocal Chorus
Bill Talmadge, Eddie Well, Daved Morris,
J.L. Jerden, David Glenn

Ever wonder what rockabilly sound like when it meets doo wop? Wonder no more. Singer Dickey Lipscomb in his pre-Patches Sun mode reveals all on these sides.

More power to Lee and company for even knowing the Clovers' original version of "Good Lovin'" which appeared on Atlantic in 1953. Not surprisingly, the original black version of the tune was much more explicithly sexual; this is, after all, a song about a guy who is just overwhelmed by the boundless sexual energy of his girlfriend. In Lee's version, things are a tad more discreet. Musically speaking, doo-wop and rockabilly are not oil and water, as Buddy Holly was busy proving. In fact, it is Holly's shadow more than the Clovers that hangs over these sides. Sam Phillips continued to schedule sessions with Dickey Lee and a date early in the following year produced one more Sun single.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 280-A 45rpm



Dickey Lee & The Collegiates
''MEMORIES NEVER GROW OLD" - B.M.I. - 2:15
Composer: - Dickey Lee-Camp-Staley
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 270
Recorded: - August 10, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - October 12, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 280-B mono
MEMORIES NEVER GROW OLD / GOOD LOVIN'
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-4 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Dickey Lee - Vocal and Guitar
Allen Reynolds - Vocal and Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Vocal Chorus
Bill Talmadge, Eddie Well, Daved Morris,
J.L. Jerden, David Glenn

Dickey Lee made one more record at Sun Records in 1963, but the results were destined for the Dot label, where they were no doubt more at home. By that time, Lee had moved on to Jack Clement's little musical frontier in Beaumont, where he wrote "She Thinks I Still Care". ("I think of Jack Clement as Moses in another life because he led us all over the place", Lee once said). As a pop, then country singer, Dickey Lee charted consistently from the early 1960s until the early 1980s. At last sighting, he was Professional Manager at Polygram Music in Nashville, and had just written a charted song for MCA's Tracy Byrd - the latest in a long line of custom-written hits. Hus buddy in the Collegiates, Allen Reynolds, also went to Nashville, and became the producer of Garth Brooks.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 280-B 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis & His Pumping Piano
"GREAT BALLS OF FIRE" - B.M.I. - 1:50
Composer: - Jack Hammer-Otis Blackwell
Publisher: - Unichappell Music
Matrix number: - U 277 - Master
Recorded: - October 8, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 3, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 281-A mono
GREAT BALLS OF FIRE / YOU WIN AGAIN
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-5 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Reached number 2 on the Billboard's Pop charts; number 3 on the Rhythm and  Blues charts.

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

New York publisher, Paul Case, gave Jack Hammer's irresistible title to Otis Blackwell, who came up with an entirely new discourse. After agreeing to cut the song, Jerry Lee initially wrestled with his conscience over the tone of the lyrics. The deliberation was worth it because many highlights resulted, particularly his demarcating piano solo that shamelessly hocks the bass riff from Little Richard's "Lucille".

"Great Balls Of Fire" was no song Jerry had plucked from his reliquary, though; nor was it dashed off in one or two takes. It was a conscious attempt to produce a hit record for the lucrative teen market, which Jerry Lee had just shown he was capable of penetrating. 
 
 
The song had been pitched first to Carl Perkins then Lewis as part of a deal in which they would appear in the movie "Jamboree". Then, in a move wholly untypical of Sam Phillips, he decided to forego the publishing on the flip side as well.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 281-A 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis & His Pumping Piano
"YOU WIN AGAIN" - B.M.I. - 2:54
Composer: - Hank Williams
Publisher: - Acuff Rose Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 276 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - August 21, 1957
Overdubbed session, October 8, 1957
Overdubbed October 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 3, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 281-B mono
YOU WIN AGAIN / GREAT BALLS OF FIRE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-6 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Reached number 95 on the Billboard's Pop charts.

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
J Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes - Guitar
Unknown - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

 
Jerry actually recorded ''You Win Again'' at two 1957 Sun sessions; initially he taped three inappropriate fast takes, and then a few weeks later cut the more well-known slower version. The fast takes stayed in the can for over a quarter of a century, with the first of these being issued on ''The Sun Years'' box-set in 1984, while the slower cut (with a tasteful male vocal group overdub) was issued as the B-side to ''Great Balls Of Fire'' (in the United Kingdom it was even issued as an A-side in it’s own right but sadly sold poorly). The 1963 re-cut reinstates the final verse that Jerry didn’t sing on the Sun single, and the fuller backing (including girly singers & strings) perfectly suits the material.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 281-B 45rpm



Dick Penner
"CINDY LOU" – B.M.I. - 2:17
Composer: - Dick Penner
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 279
Recorded: - February 19, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 3, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 282-A mono
CINDY LOU / YOUR HONEY LOVE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-7 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Dick Penner - Vocal and Guitar
Don Gililand - Guitar
Unknown – Bass

Sam Phillips invited one half of 'the College Kids' back to the studio in an attempt to work up some of the elusive magic he had heard during the session for SUN 269. In truth, Phillips succeeded, although the rewards were not financial, and spelled an end to Penner's association with Sun.

Dick Penner seemed to gravivate to eerie, soaring minor key mid-tempo ballads with a decidedly romantic cast. "Cindy Lou", an ode to the woman he would eventually marry, is one such case. In fact, it is more than that. This is a really extraordinary record that has been overlooked in the reissue sweepstakes. There's a lot going on here and there are only three people doing it. The lead guitar work is incredibly assertive and its interplay with Penner's gentle understated vocal is brilliant. The drumming is restrained, although its use of the cowbell is quite unusual for 706 Union.  The electric bass player has the easiest job in town, and for a very special reason. "Cindy Lou" may be the only Sun record that never changes chords. This entire song is performed in a single chord. The bass player could have earned his fee by simply alternating two notes for the whole session. He adds a couple of grace notes here and there, perhaps to stay awake, but they were technically unnecessary. Not surprisingly, this limited structure creates a heap of tension, which the strident guitar player continues to punch at throughout the recording. This is a fine, fine record. (HD)
 

Sun 282-A 45rpm



Dick Penner
"YOUR HONEY LOVE" – B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Dick Penner
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 278
Recorded: - February 19, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - November 3, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 282-B mono
YOUR HONEY LOVE / CINDY LOU
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-8 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Dick Penner - Vocal and Guitar
Don Gililand - Guitar
Unknown – Bass

The structure of "Your Honey Love" is a lot more conventional and again, the three musicians make a lot of music. The bass player is finally free to do some playing and uses the opportunity well, providing a fat sound to underpin the bluesy changes. The lead guitar is as strident as ever (where did this guy go?), and Penner's voice is, once more, disarmingly gently.

Now Dick Penner is retired, travelling around the world and taking very artistic pictures, but his  music is still played worldwide.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 282-B 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"BALLAD OF A TEENAGE QUEEN" - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 284 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - November 12, 1957
Overdubbed Session November 22, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December, 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 283-A mono
BALLED OF A TEENAGE QUEEN / BIG RIVER
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-9 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and Guitar
Jack Clement - Guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass

Overdubbed Session
Cyd Mostelle - Lead Soprano
Asa Wilkerson - Vocal Harmony
Bill Abbott - Vocal Harmony
Don Carter - Vocal Harmony
Lee Holt - Vocal Harmony
Nita Smith - Vocal Harmony

You could spend an evening listening to all the outtakes of "Teenage Queen". You'd probably end up smirking at some of the cornier couplets Jack Clement came up with in his quest to siphon away some disposable income from middle America. For his part, Cash always insisted that he cut it under protest, but then, after years of refusing to do the song in concerts, he rerecorded it in 1987, finally reinstating one of Clement's lost couplets: "She was queen of the senior prom/She could cook just like her mom". The final product of the Sun session could have been a lot worse, and it is made infinitely more tolerable by the gem that appeared on its flipside. (HD)(CE)
 

Sun 283-A 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"BIG RIVER" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 285
Recorded: - November 12, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 283-B mono
BIG RIVER / BALLAD OF A TEENAGE QUEEN
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-10 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Cash - Vocal and Guitar
Jack Clement - Guitar
Luther Perkins - Guitar
Marshall Grant - Bass

"Big River" remains Johnny Cash's most explicit flirtation with rockabilly. It is a delight from start to finish, possessing both musical drive and integrity, as well as an uncommon lyrical flair. On the humorous side, there must have been a moment of disbelief back in early 1958 when Cash turned to Luther Perkins and said, "Ah, get goin' there". Luther get going? Fortunately, the instrumental break is as much rhythmic as musical and the band solos as a unit. Jack Clement still points to a careworn Martin guitar in his office, telling anyone who cares to listen that it was the guitar on "Big River". The lyrical reference to "cry cry cry", the title of Cash's first Sun Record, was a fine self referential in-joke. It is also a reminder that, much as this song has become a classic, it wasn't that far removed from the beginning of his career. SUN 283 was only Johnny Cash's sixth record. (HD)(CE)
 

Sun 283-B 45rpm



Roy Orbison
"I LIKE LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:30
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 283
Recorded: - October 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 284-A mono
I LIKE LOVE / CHICKEN-HEARTED
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-12 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Stan Kesler or Sid Manker - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums
Jimmy Wilson or Jimmy Smith - Piano
Martin Willis - Tenor Saxophone
C. Buehl - Unknown

Can this be the same Roy Orbison who became the operatic balladeer of the 1960s? However atypical of Orbison's later sound, "I Like Love" was as trite as its title suggests, rocks at a fine pace and the surprising sax  solo at the close following a run of piano triplets leads the song to a strong fade. Released in December 1957, the single was Orbison's last shot on Sun as a contracted artist. (HD)
 

Sun 284-A 45rpm



Roy Orbison
"CHICKEN-HEARTED" - B.M.I. - 2:15
Composer: - Roy Orbison-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 282
Recorded: - October 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 284-B mono
CHICKEN-HEARTED / I LIKE LOVE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-11 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roy Orbison - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Stan Kesler or Sid Manker - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums
Jimmy Wilson or Jimmy Smith - Piano
Martin Willis - Tenor Saxophone
C. Buehl - Unknown

The flipside, "Chicken-Hearted", has always been a bit of an enigma to Sun and Orbison fans alike. More a sax instrumental (probably by Bill Justis rather than the credited Martin Willis) than a vocal track, it wails along in a groove that has survived the ravages of time rather well. The instrumental work is uniformly fine, including some excellent drumming by Otis Jett and driving piano work by one of Sun's resident Jimmys: either Wilson or Smith. When Orbison isn't singing, this is a well done, even typical late-1950s saxled instrumental that reminds one more of Duane Eddy or The Champs than the gang at 706 Union.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 284-B 45rpm



Sonny Burgess
"MY BUCKET'S GOT A HOLE IN IT" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:17
Composer: - Clarence Williams
Publisher: - Pickwick Music
Matrix number: - U 280 - Master
Recorded: - August 14, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 285-A mono
MY BUCKET'S GOT A HOLE IN IT / SWEET MISERY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-13 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Sonny Burgess - Vocal and Guitar
Jack Clement - Acoustic Guitar
Johnny Ray Hubbard - Bass
Kern Kennedy - Piano
Jack Nance - Drums

Overdubbed
Stan Kesler - Unknown
Dianne Stephens - Vocal
Carolyn Gray - Vocal
Don Carter - Vocal
Lee Holt - Vocal
Bill Abbott - Vocal
Asa Wilkerson - Vocal

Best known by Hank Williams, "Bucket" was taken for such a fine rockabilly ride by Sunny Burgess that fledgling rocker Ricky Nelson rushed out and recorded a cover version which revealed all his limitations as a Sun wannabee. Burgess' version is an even better record than many of us realized at the time. Discovery years later of the original undubbed track pointed out two things: first, an even more powerful and driving performance had been buried under the overdubbed chorus; second, this overdub had not been done to a poor, unwilling Sonny. He was a willing participant in the process, as we hear him shout "yeh, get going's" to 16 bars of empty space awaiting Jack Clement's overdubbed guitar solo. (HD)
 

Sun 285-A 45rpm



Sonny Burgess
"SWEET MISERY" - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 281 - Master
Recorded: - August 14, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 285-B mono
SWEET MISERY / MY BUCKET'S GOT A HOLE IN IT
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-14 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Sonny Burgess - Vocal and Guitar
Jack Clement - Acoustic Guitar
Johnny Ray Hubbard - Bass
Kern Kennedy - Piano
Jack Nance - Drums

Overdubbed
Stan Kesler - Unknown
Dianne Stephens - Vocal
Carolyn Gray - Vocal
Don Carter - Vocal
Lee Holt - Vocal
Bill Abbott - Vocal
Asa Wilkerson - Vocal

Probably the less said about "Sweet Misery" the better. Having established their presence on "Teenage Queen", the shrieking Gene Lowery singers were beginning to establish their dreaded presence on Sun overdub sessions under Jack Clement's aegis. Commercially speaking, it was probably a move in the right direction, but arrangements like this were beginning to undermine the musical purity and quirky tension that had drawn fans and critics to those yellow Sun record in the first place.(HD)
 

Sun 285-B 45rpm



Warren Smith
"GOT LOVE IF YOU WANT IT" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - James Moore
Publisher: - Excellorec Music
Matrix number: - U 286
Recorded: - October 16, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 286-A mono
GOT LOVE IF YOU WANT IT / I FELL IN LOVE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-15 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Al Hopson - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Will Hopson - Bass
Jimmie Lott - Drums

This is not so much a cover, this was more a spirited revival of the Slim Harpo tune from six months earlier which had caught Warren Smith's ear over radio station WDIA in Memphis. Taken in a higher key and with a major hike in tempo, the arrangement was purposely detailed for teenage ears. For once all of the elements seemed to be in place for Warren to break through, except to say that most of Sun's promotional energies by late 1957 were totally geared towards the latest singles by Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Among the song that Warren Smith heard on the car radio was Slim Harpo's "Got Love If You Want It". In Harpo's hand it was a mellow mid paced blues, delivered in a laconic bayou country drawl to a pseudorhumba beat. In Smith's hand it became another celebration of joyous, primal rockabilly. Al Hopson and Roland Janes trated licks on the intro and the solo (Hopson taking the lead and Janes the response). Smith contributed a hugely confident vocal and made some minor lyrical changes in deference to prevailing mores: "Your fine brown frame" became "You fine looking thing", for example. Warren Smith omitted Harpo's final verses and substituted lines adapted from another Slim Harpo record, "I'm A King Bee". Coupled with a lovely ballad by Al Hopson, "I Fell In Love", there was no reason that the record should not have been a hit - except that it was issued in the same month as Jerry Lee Lewis' "Great Balls Of Fire".

According to Sun's royalty statement, the record had only sold a shade over 7000 copies by the following June. Warren Smith was disgusted, and his band began to lose the faith. Marcus Van Story dropped out, to be replaced by Al Hopson's brother, Will. Jimmie Lott also packed his bags and headed back to Memphis.  (HD)(MH)
 
 

Sun 286-A 45rpm



Warren Smith
"I FELL IN LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Al Hopson
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 287
Recorded: - October 16, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 286-B mono
I FELL IN LOVE / GOT LOVE IF YOU WANT IT
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-16 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Warren Smith - Vocal and Guitar
Al Hopson - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Manker - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

Overdub Session
Vernon Drake - Vocals
Asa Wilkerson - Vocals
Lee Holt – Vocals

As on his first Sun outing, Smith's rockabilly stylings are paired with a country effort. Only this time, the sound of country music has been softened to welcome the burgeoning pop crossover market. In its own way, "I Fell In Love" is, as Billboard used to say, "potent stuff". Smith's vocal is beautiful recorded, surrounded by a tastefully arranged male chorus. This time, drum support is confined to rather assertively miked brushwork.  In a somewhat daring step, Smith's singing is left to stand a cappella during the last line. Its a rather eyeopening way to close a highly effective arrangement. During the first verse, Smith sings the curious phrase "Just to be made feel blue", a form of English spoken nowhere on the planet, including the deep south.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 286-B 45rpm



Carl Perkins - The Rockin' Guitar Man
"LEND ME YOUR COMB" - B.M.I. - 1:55
Composer: - Kay Twomey-Ben Weisman-Fred Wise
Publisher: - Alamo Music
Matrix number: - U 289
Recorded: - December 6, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 287-A mono
LEND ME YOUR COMB / GLAD ALL OVER
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-17 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Perkins - Vocal and Guitar
James Buck Perkins - Vocal and Rhythm Guitar
Bernie - Steel Guitar
Lloyd Clayton Perkins - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland - Drums

Carl Perkins needed a hit record. The days of ''Blue Suede Shoes'' were plainly over and Sam, not to mention Carl, was willing to try just about anything to rekindle his success. ''Lend Me Your Comb'' qualifies as ''anything''. Think of it as The Everly Brothers meet Mickey & Sylvia. How could you miss with such a mixture? And this wasn't just any Everly Brothers song; the lyric is straight out of ''Wake Up Little Susie''.

There's still the mystery of how this song, right out of New York's Tin Pan Alley, made its way to Carl. It seems the route may have been rather indirect. Carl's was not the first recording of the song to hit the market. There were at least two earlier versions. The original of ''Lend Me Your Comb'' featured a double-tracked vocal by Carol Hughes and appeared on Roulette 404 I. Her record (with some gender-appropriate lyrical differences) received a Spotlight review in Billboard on December 30, 1957 as a ''cute rockabilly ditty'' with ''good rock work support''. The industry bible concluded that this record ''might make it''. Bernie Nee's cover released almost immediately on Columbia 41090 was also well received as ''a fine vocal effort that could click with the kids''. At this point with a couple of versions already on the market, an enterprising publisher's rep may have pitched the song to Sam Phillips as a sure ticket for renewed pop success for his hungry artist. Mr. Nee is a story, himself. This singer, songwriter, entrepreneur may be familiar to some collectors as the voices of the Five Blobs who appeared in the soundtrack of the classic 1958 horror movie, ''The Blob'', featuring the screen debut of Steve McQueen.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 287-A 45rpm



Carl Perkins - The Rockin' Guitar Man
"GLAD ALL OVER" - B.M.I. - 1:40
Composer: - Aron Schroeder-Sid Tepper-Roy C. Bennett
Publisher: - Magnificent Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 288
Recorded: - December 11, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - December 1957
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 287-B mono
GLAD ALL OVER / LEND ME YOUR COMB
Reissued: - 1990 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15494 EH-3-18 mono digital
THE CLASSIC CARL PERKINS

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl Perkins - Vocal and Guitar
James Buck Perkins - Rhythm Guitar
Lloyd Clayton Perkins - Bass
W.S. "Fluke" Holland - Drums

We are disappointed to report that there are no known outtakes of ''Glad All Over''. If Carl and the band did not nail this title in one take, where have the outtakes gone? It is possible, of course, that this title, which appeared in the 1958 film ''Jamboree'', was not recorded at Sun, even though it was released on the Sun label. Sam had already reached well beyond his usual business approach when he made a deal to get Carl and Jerry Lee Lewis into the teen music pic ''Jamboree'' in return for choosing two of the producers' copyrights (Carl famously chose to sing '' All Over'' rather than ''Great Balls Of Fire'', possibly denying himself a return to mass market attention)

''Glad All Over'' appeared on Carl's final Sun single (Sum 287) Drummer W.S. ''Fluke'' Holland thinks it might have been recorded in New York, but is not certain. However, Carl's bio suggest that the session was engineered by Jack Clement (at Sun). In the likely event the demo for the song came to Sun with the memorable drum hook already on it. W.S. would eve learned it right off that record. ''No doubt about it. I don a know why else I would have played that little drum thing right there'', observes W.S. He also agrees that learning the song and its arrangement straight off a demo might have reduced the session time it took for the band to record a final take, perhaps eliminating outtakes altogether. ''I don't know that we ever played it more than one''.

In any case, Sun Records contributed two songs and film clips to the movie. The songs share one striking feature: they are uncommonly short. ''Glad All Over'' runs l :40 and the issued version of ''Great Balls Of Fire'' times out at l:56. Given that the whole movie barely runs 70 minutes. these brief running times are not surprising.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 287-B 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis & His Pumping Piano
"BREATHLESS" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Otis Blackwell
Publisher: - Homefolks Music
Matrix number: - U 291 - Master
Recorded: - January 21, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - February 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 288-A mono
BREATHLESS / DOWN THE LINE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-19 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Billy Riley - Guitar
Jay W. Brown - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

When you're hot, you're hot. Jerry Lee managed to follow his mega-hit "Great Balls Of Fire" with yet another blockbuster from the pen of Otis Blackwell. "Breathless" is another wild performance, complete with a heavy breathing hook that grabbed more than its share of disposablee teenage income. The song's structure is less than typical, and far from the blues and country music on which Jerry Lee cut his teeth. Although Jerry's piano plays a less central role here than ever before, the artist still manages to make this performance his own. Jerry's Louisiana pronunciation of "You know I 'doin' like a wood in flame" is a delight.

Reached number 7 on the Billboard's Pop charts; at number 3 on the Billboard's Rhythm and Blues Charts, and number 4 on Billboard's Country and Western charts.

This song was a calculated shot at the pubescent market, with Jerry's breathy delivery of the title as its hook. "Breathless" moved up the charts with the help of a ploy devised by Jud Phillips and Dick Clark. Beechnut chewing gum had sponsored the networking of Dick Clark's "Bandstand" show, but initial response was unfavorable until Jud and Dick Clark figured out how to kill two birds with one stone with a crosspromotion deal. Jerry Lee Lewis sang "Breathless" on "The Dick Clark Show".  (HD)
 

Sun 288-A 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis & His Pumping Piano
"DOWN THE LINE" - B.M.I. - 2:11
Composer: - Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 290 - Master
Recorded: - January 16-18, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - February 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 288-B mono
DOWN THE LINE / BREATHLESS
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-20 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes and/or Billy Riley - Guitar
Jay W. Brown - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

More serious rockabilly fans were instantly enamored with "Down The Line", of course a reworking of Roy Orbison's timeless "Go Go Go", which had adorned the flipside of Orbison's 1956 hit "Ooby Dooby". True to his edict, Sam Phillips selected a take that was long on feeling, if a bit short on technical perfection. From the first eight bars, you know this is a good one. Jerry's tight little combo cooks beautifully with the bass and guitar complementing his piano boogie. But then the seams start to show. Jerry Lee demonstrates his well known flair for blowing lyrics and ends up mumbling his way through the chorus. Worse yet, by the fourth bar of the solo, it has become painfully obvious that the guitarist has gone rather woefully out of tune. If you don't look too closely, this record is very exciting, especially if you don't mind your excitement tinged with sloppiness. (HD)
 

Sun 288-B 45rpm



Billy Riley & The Little Green men
"BABY PLEASE DON'T GO" - B.M.I. - 2:06
Composer: - Billy Riley
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 293
Recorded: - November 25, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - February 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 289-A mono
BABY PLEASE DON'T GO / WOULDN'T YOU KNOW
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-21 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Billy Riley - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Pat O'Neil - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
James Paulman - Guitar
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Martin Willis - Saxophone
Bill Justis - Saxophone

"Baby Please Don't Go" is much successful. James M. Van Eaton opens it with an atmospheric shuffle augmented by Riley's girlfriend banging two drumsticks together. Riley plays the electric lead on a Bird land guitar and uses his raspy voice in marked contrast to the smoother 'A' side. Riley felt that the absence of Sam Phillips from the studio had a noticeable effect. "We weren't as comfortable in the studio with Jack at the controls. Sam was always coming around and listening. He was in there making you feel good. He'd say like 'OK man, that was great. Gimme more black in it'. Jack never been happy with a cut on anything he's ever done. Sam knew when the record was cut". The record that would supposedly fulfill Riley's promise was released in February 1958. By June it had sold a dismal 3210 copies.

Riley's vocal and guitar work on "Baby Please Don't Go" was closer to expectations. There is a considerable tension to this record; it feels just on the verge of breaking free. Riley sings and plays with restraint, yet there is an unmistakable edge to his performance. Its a fine recording.

Billy Riley spent too much of his Sun career eclipsed by Jerry Lee Lewis. The story has often been told of how "Red Hot" was held back in order to focus Sun's meager promotional and pressing resources on "Great Balls Of Fire". What is often overlooked is the fact that this cycle of neglect continued with SUN 289. While perhaps not as commercial as "Red Hot", this recording was similarly overwhelmed by Jerry Lee's latest (SUN 288). Again. Riley was relegated to the back burner and watched this single sell barely over 3000 copies. It was at this point that Billy Riley quit Sun and went off looking for greener pastures. He never found them and would soon return to the familiar confines of 706 Union.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 289-A 45rpm



Billy Riley & The Little Green Men
"WOULDN'T YOU KNOW" - B.M.I. - 2:46
Composer: - John Marascalco
Publisher: - Robin Hood Music Company
Matrix number: - U 292
Recorded: - November 25, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - February 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 289-B mono
WOULDN'T YOU KNOW / BABY PLEASE DON'T GO
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-22 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Billy Riley - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Pat O'Neil - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
James Paulman - Guitar
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Martin Willis - Saxophone
Bill Justis - Saxophone

Those expecting Billy Riley's vocal to be a repeat of "Red Hot" or "Flying Saucer Rock And Roll" were stunned by his style on "Wouldn't You Know". At the time, few fans realized how much of a chameleon Riley truly was. Even the instrumental sound of "Wouldn't You Know" was a departure. Everything from chord structure to tempo was a departure from typical Riley-Sun fare. Yet it all worked, highlighted by Martin Willis' highly melodic sax solo.

Billy Riley was unhappy with "Wouldn't You Know". "We should never have cut that record. It was something that we used to do on stage. It just wasn't a good record". In the absence of Ronald Janes, Billy Riley plays lead guitar and the solo spots are taken by Martin Willis' tenor sax. However, the highlight of the recording is Jimmy Wilson's ringing piano accompaniment. Note Riley's imitation of Jerry Lee Lewis' lascivious "Mmmm's".  (HD)(MH)
 
 

Sun 289-B 45rpm



Rudy Grazell
"JUDY" - B.M.I. - 2:03
Composer: - Paiz-Dick Ketner-Rudy Grayzell
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 295 - Take 2
Recorded: - October 15, 16, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 290-A mono
JUDY / I THINK OF YOU
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-23 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Rudy Grayzell - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Jimmy Smith - Piano
Dick Ketner - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

By the time he came to Sun Records in 1957, Rudy Jiminez Grayzell had already made his mark in country and rockabilly circles, recording for Talent, Abbott, Starday, and Capitol. 

Despite this gimmeckry, "Judy" rolls along in an engaging groove, largely assisted by fine work from Roland Janes and Jimmy Wilson, on guitar and piano.

The last two bars of "Judy" are an instrumental highpoint. Sun was apparently over its early period of awkward studio fades, and now featured some of the tightest endings in rockabilly music. Along with "Flying Saucer Rock And Roll" and "So Long I'm Gone", Grayzell's record of "Judy" closes with instrumental power and precision that almost redeems it. (HD)
 

Sun 290-A 45rpm



Rudy Grazell
"I THINK OF YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:30
Composer: - Rudy Grayzell
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 294
Recorded: - October 15, 16, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 290-B mono
I THINK OF YOU / JUDY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-1-24 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Rudy Grayzell - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Jimmy Smith - Piano
Dick Ketner - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

Billboard noted that Grayzell had a ''frantic sound'', and even had kind words for ''I Think Of You'', the  overwrought balled flipside. (HD)
 

Sun 290-B 45rpm



Jack Clement
"TEN YEARS" - B.M.I. - 2:15
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 296 - Master
Recorded: - February 17, 1958
RCA Studio B, 30 Music Square West
Nashville, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 291-A mono
TEN YEARS / YOUR LOVER BOY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-1 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jack Clement - Vocal and Guitar
Bob L. Moore - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Chorus The Anita Kerr Singers

"Teen Years", like the aforementioned "Teenage Queen", tells a tale of love lost through disuse. In "Teenage Queen", there's a last minute happy ending for the kiddies. This is the adult version: there's no such luck here. Perhaps the only highlight for Sun fans is Clement's I-IV acoustic guitar fills between verses. They're a nice touch, but it would take a miracle to overcome the effects of the chorus, whose lines are mixed up far too prominently, even by 1958 pop music standards. (HD)
 

Sun 291-A 45rpm



Jack Clement
"YOUR LOVER BOY" - B.M.I. - 2:14
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 297
Recorded: - February 17, 1958
RCA Studio B, 30 Music Square West
Nashville, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 291-B mono
YOUR LOVER BOY / TEN YEARS
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-2 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jack Clement - Vocal and Guitar
Bob L. Moore - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Chorus The Anita Kerr Singers

On the undubbed bed track of ''Your Lover Boy'' shows that Clement and his buddies had cranked up a rocking opus from a slender premise. If you listen to the lyrics, you can see that they are almost totally nonsensical, full of non-sequiturs, etc. However, the undubbed master gives us a clearer view of the innate drive and simplicity that was diluted by the overpowering chorus. Clement obviously intended to overdub a chorus because there are gaping holes in the arrangement, but, with almost sixty years perspective, the song probably sounds better in its nakedness. (HD)
 

Sun 291-B 45rpm



Edwin Bruce
"SWEET WOMAN" - B.M.I. - 2:40
Composer: - Edwin Bruce
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 298
Recorded: - January 26, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 292-A mono
SWEET WOMAN / PART OF MY LIFE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-3 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Edwin Bruce - Vocal and Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson – Piano

"Sweet Woman" was enough to rekindle the faith of Sun fans in early 1958. From the first 4 bars, it was clear we were in the presence of greatness. Everything works here. This is an edgy, tense record with not the slightest concession to pop sensibilities. Its hard to imagine two guitars, a bass and drums put to better use. Bruce's vocal is a standout. He was barely 18 when he recorded these sides, which more than fulfilled the promise of his first Sun outing (See SUN 276). (HD)
 

Sun 292-A 45rpm



Edwin Bruce
"PART OF MY LIFE" - B.M.I. - 2:10
Composer: - Heath-Heath
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 299
Recorded: - January 26, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Releases: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 292-B mono
PART OF MY LIFE / SWEET WOMAN
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-4 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Edwin Bruce - Vocal and Guitar
Billy Riley - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson – Piano

As he had previously, Bruce uses the flipside to demonstrate his interest in ballad singing. Curiously, the style here owes more to northern doo wop than it does the Memphis churchy moaning popularized by Elvis Presley. Edwin Bruce went on to record for Sun until mid-1956, although he never again saw his name on a yellow label from Memphis. In 1959 Edwin Bruce extended his talent into acting and made his television debut in the police drama, The Naked City on ABC TV. In 1962 he found success as a songwriter with "Save Your Kisses" (the B-side of Tommy Roe's "Sheila"), ahead of enjoying hits of his own for RCA and Monument. (HD)
 

Sun 292-B 45rpm



The Sun Rays
"LOVE IS A STRANGER" - B.M.I. - 2:59
Composer: - Stan Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 300
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 293-A mono
LOVE IS A STRANGER / THE LONELY HOURS
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-5 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal
Elsie Sappington – Vocal
Jimmy Knight - Vocal and Guitar
Hank Byers - Vocal
Stan Kesler - Steel Guitar
Clyde Leoppard - Drums
Smokey Joe Bauch - Piano

In a 1989 interview with Barbara Pittman, all was revealed. "Stan Kesler had in mind that he wanted to put together a vocal group, an Anita Kerr type of thing. He got us all into the studio. It was horrible. The voices just clashed. It was real difficult. The arrangement was all Stan's. Elsie Sappington sang that little solo on there. I was just a kid and my voice hadn't developed enough for me to hit those high notes. I sang lead all the way through until that part of the song". The Sunrays consisted of Barbara, along with Elsie Sappington, Hank Byers and Jimmy Knight.

In truth, "Love Is A Stranger" isn't that bad a record. The instrumental backing track is particularly solid and  driving. The lyric is servicable, and the key modulations provide a fair amount of tension. Probably the  worst thing about SUN 293 is that it appeared on a Sun label. The expectations were just too high. (HD)
 

Sun 293-A 45rpm



The Sun Rays
"THE LONELY HOURS" - B.M.I. - 2:50
Composer: - Stan Kesler
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 301
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 293-B mono
THE LONELY HOURS / LOVE IS A STRANGER
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-6 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal
Elsie Sappington - Vocal
Stan Kesler - Steel Guitar
Jimmy Knight - Vocal and Guitar
Clyde Leoppard - Drums
Hank Byers - Vocal and Trumpet
Smokey Joe Bauch – Piano

How many Sun fans bought this record back in 1958 and wondered what had hit them? No review in Billboard. No advance publicity. Virtually no air play north of the Tennessee state line. Who were the Sunrays? That mystery stayed pretty well intact until recently (even the redoubtable Sun Records Discography by Escott and Hawkins came up empty. "Unknown vocal group. Unknown date. Possibly 706 Union". (HD)
 

Sun 293-B 45rpm



Magel Priesman
"I FEEL SO BLUE" - B.M.I. - 2:33
Composer: - Magel Priesman
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 302
Recorded: - Unknown Date July 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 294-A mono
I FEEL SO BLUE / MEMORIES OF YOU
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-7 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Magel Priesman - Vocal
Roland Janes - Guitar
Unknown Musicians

For many years, Magel Priesman was an enigma to Sun collectors. Her lone single - SUN 294 - was released in April 1958, nearly a year after it was recorded. Nobody, it seemed, had a line on the oddly named Ms. Priesman. Because her style was far removed from the qualities that attracted most Sun fans, there seemed little impetus to track her down. Fortunately, researcher Colin Escott made contact with her in time to include her story on Volume 3 of the Complete Sun Singles (Bear Family 15803). The double-tracked vocal seemed to hark back to the early 1950s sound of Patty Page. (HD)
 
 

Sun 294-A 45rpm



Magel Priesman
"MEMORIES OF YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:35
Composer: - Magel Priesman
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 303
Recorded: - Unknown Date July 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 294-B mono
MEMORIES OF YOU / I FEEL SO BLUE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-8 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Magel Priesman - Vocal
Roland Janes - Guitar
Unknown Musicians

"Memories Of You" was a lovely evocation of a lost love affair, but Sam Phillips delayed its release for almost a year, and by the time it hit the streets Connie Francis was high in the charts with "Who's Sorry Now". The passing similarity between Connie Francis' double-tracked vocal and Magel Priesman's doubletracket vocal might have convinced Sam that Magel's moment had come. Not so. (HD)
 
 

Sun 294-B 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"GUESS THINGS HAPPEN THAT WAY" - B.M.I. - 1:47
Composer:  - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 304 - Overdubbed Master
Recorded: - April 9, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 295-A mono
GUESS THINGS HAPPEN THAT WAY / COME IN STRANGER
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-9 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

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

Overdubbed Session May 1958
Edwin Bruce, Sara Bruce, Nita Smith,
Lee Holt, Vocal Harmony

This was a landmark record for Johnny Cash. It was also his last major hit for Sun Records, although the releases kept coming for quite some time. SUN 295 was a brilliant two-sided release. On "Guess Things Happen That Way", Jack Clement provided Cash with a potent piece of material, and a clever arrangement. Its even possible to forgive most of the postsession sweetening. The chorus is less strident here. For once, it also has a more 'masculine' sound, which may have contributed to the overall effect. It still seems gratuitous for anyone to have to soften Luther's single note guitar runs by singing over them, but the net effect was a massive hit for Cash, in both the pop and country fields. (HD)
 

Sun 295-A 45rpm



Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two
"COME IN STRANGER" - B.M.I. - 1:38
Composer: - Johnny Cash
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 305
Recorded: - April 9, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 295-B mono
COME IN STRANGER / GUESS THINGS HAPPEN THAT WAY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-10 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

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

If there were any hard feelings among the purists, they were more than assuaged by this flipside "Come In Stranger". Johnny Cash is at his minimalist best here. Despite its seemingly happy subject matter, this still manages to retain a dark, brooding feel that has not been diluted by unnecessary instrumental or vocal work. The sound of the original Tennessee Two has been fleshed out by a piano and drum but, beyond that, Jack Clement knew enough to keep his hands off things. Or maybe he was shrewd enough to to produce any competition for the air play that would otherwise accrue to his composition on the flipside. At only 1:38 in length, "Come In Stranger" was likely to please Sun and Cash fans, but not dilute the commercial success of Jack Clement's composer/producer work. (HD)
 

Sun 295-B 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis & His Pumping Piano
"HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL" - B.M.I. - 2:27
Composer: - Jerry Lee Lewis-Ron Hargrave
Publisher: - Penron Music
Matrix number: - U 306 - Master
Recorded: - February/March 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - May 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 296-A mono
HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL / FOOLS LIKE ME
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-11 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Jerry Lee Lewis - Vocal and Piano
Roland Janes and/or Billy Riley - Guitar
Jay W. Brown - Bass
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums

 
His classic 5th single, and the title track from the movie of the same name which features Jerry and his band performing the song over the opening and closing credits. Although it was 25 years before we knew it, Sam Phillips spliced the ending from a different take onto the original release (the unspliced take was finally issued on ''The Sun Years'' box-set in 1983). Like several of his hits, this song was re-cut both for 1963’s ''Golden Hits'' and the 1989 (recorded 1988) ''Great Balls Of Fire''! movie soundtrack album. Incidentally there’s also an instrumental version of the song on ''The Session'' from 1973, but this does NOT feature Jerry Lee Lewis.

Sun 296 reached at number 21 on the Billboard's Pop charts; at number 5 on Billboard's Rhythm and Blues chart, and number 9 on the Billboard's Country and Western charts.

Until the ill-fated bioflick "Great Balls Of Fire" hit the big screen in the early 1990s, this was Jerry Lee's closest flirtation with Hollywood. In retrospect, all it did was saddle him with a contrived piece of material and an association with a slapdash exploitation film that did about as much for his career as for Mamie Van Doren's. "High School Confidential" was written by Ron Hargrave, with Jerry Lee cut in for half by his manager, but neither of them could manage the trick of actually including the title in the song.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 296-A 45rpm



Jerry Lee Lewis & His Pumping Piano
"FOOLS LIKE ME" - B.M.I. - 2:50
Composer: - Jack Clement-Pee Wee Maddux
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 307 - Master
Recorded: -Mid-March 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - Mid-March 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 296-B mono
FOOLS LIKE ME / HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-12 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

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

Overdubbed
Vocals chorus overdubbed, April 8, 1958
Roy Orbison, Jack Clement, Roland Janes

This flipside of SUN 296, "Fools Like Me", it was the second time Jerry Lee Lewis had revealed his country leanings to the rockers who supported his hit records. His first country outing on Sun ("You Win Again" on the B-side of "Great Balls Of Fire") had shown his ability to interpret a classic Hank Williams tune. Here, the pianist offers a solid reading of a Pee Wee Maddux tune written especially for Jerry Lee Lewis, one on which Jack Clement had managed to cut himself in for half. This was hardly a throwaway outing. Considerable time went into the arrangement and recording. Even an unusually restrained chorus (consisting of Roy Orbison, Roland Janes and Jack Clement) was overdubbed for release. Billboard observed that SUN 296 was "strong stuff for all markets". In retrospect, it was the country flipside that did more to solidify Jerry Lee's career and point to the market that would extend him a lifetime welcome. (HD)
 

Sun 296-B 45rpm



Dickey Lee & The Collegiates
"DREAMY NIGHTS" - B.M.I. - 2:28
Composer: - Dickey Lee
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 309
Recorded: - March 3, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Release: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 297-A mono
DREAMY NIGHTS / FOOL FOOL FOOL
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-13 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Dickey Lee - Vocal and Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano

The Collegiates
Allen Reynolds - Chorus
Bill Talmadge - Chorus
David Morris - Chorus
Eddie Well - Chorus
J.L. Jerden - Chorus
David Glenn - Chorus

Another outing in the not-very-typical Sun record sweepstakes. As on his previous outing (SUN 280) and on the obscure Tampa record that preceded it, Lee demonstrates his penchant for harmony singing. Lee had been parachuted onto Sun by dee-jay Dewey Phillips who had virtually demanded that Sam Phillips sign him. Lee cheerfully admits that he didn't belong there.

Neither side of this record is very southern. The ballad side, "Fool Fool Fool" (recorded August 10, 1957), contains some rather adventurous tempo changes that all but doom the tune as dance music. The uptempo "Dreamy Nights"" rocks along just fine, but it owes more to Dion and The Belmonts that to anyone in the vicinity of Union Avenue. (HD)
 

Sun 297-A 45rpm



Dickey Lee & The Collegiates
"FOOL FOOL FOOL" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Dickey Lee-Allen Reynolds
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 308
Recorded: - August 10, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 297-B mono
FOOL FOOL FOOL / DREAMY NIGHTS
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-14 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Dickey Lee - Vocal and Guitar
Allen Reynolds - Vocal and Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums

The Collegiates
Allen Reynolds - Chorus
Bill Talmadge - Chorus
David Morris - Chorus
Eddie Well - Chorus
J.L. Jerden - Chorus
David Glenn - Chorus

Dickey Lee made one more record at Sun Records in 1963, but the results were destined for the Dot label, where they were no doubt more at home. By that time, Lee had moved on to Jack Clement's little musical frontier in Beaumont, where he wrote "She Thinks I Still Care". ("I think of Jack Clement as Moses in another life because he led us all over the place", Lee once said). As a pop, then country singer, Dickey Lee charted consistently from the early 1960s until the early 1980s. At last sighting, he was Professional Manager at Polygram Music in Nashville, and had just written a charted song for MCA's Tracy Byrd - the latest in a long line of custom-written hits. Hus buddy in the Collegiates, Allen Reynolds, also went to Nashville, and became the producer of Garth Brooks. (HD)
 

Sun 297-B 45rpm



Ray Smith
"RIGHT BEHIND YOU BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:22
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 311 - Master
Recorded: - March 19, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 298-A mono
RIGHT BEHIND YOU BABY / SO YOUNG
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-15 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

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

Charlie Rich had a major hand in writing and producing Ray Smith's first Sun record. The results reflect the kind of rockabilly that was likely to emerge from Sun in 1958. There was plenty of energy here, but the sound was a little more intentional. This music has been thought through in advance, both lyrically and instrumentally. It is calculated for the teenage marketplace. The guitar solos are still hot and the vocals still sexy, but something had plainly been learned from all the wild excesses of 1956 - namely that radio didn't play them. (HD)
 

Sun 298-A 45rpm



Ray Smith
"SO YOUNG" - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Charlie Rich
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 310 - Master
Recorded: - March 19, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 298-B mono
SO YOUNG / RIGHT BEHIND YOU BABY
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-16 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

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

"So Young" tells the tale of teenage angst. In that sense, the results seem a little dated. There's something incongruous about the possibility of a wildman like Ray Smith crying when whispers drift his way. "Right Behind You Baby", creates a solid groove and never lets up. The double length instrumental solo is a special treat for Sun fans. Charlie Rich's presence on the session is subtle but undeniable. His piano turns those stop rhythm chords into inversions that might be more at home at a Stan Kenton session than a Union Avenue gig. (HD)
 

Sun 298-B 45rpm



Gene Simmons
"DRINKIN' WINE" - B.M.I. - 2:39
Composer: - Eugene Morris Simmons
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 214 - 2555 - Master
Recorded: - January 3, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 299-A mono
DRINKIN' WINE / I DONE TOLD YOU
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-17 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Gene Simmons - Vocal
Carl Simmons - Guitar
Jesse Carter - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Unknown - Piano

The A-side of Gene's only Sun release was "Drinkin' Wine". This, too, is an interesting story. The song began life as "Drinkin' Scotch" but within several takes Scotch had morphed into Wine. Gene jokingly suggested that Sam's taste in beverages might have had something to do with it. Carl suggests, "Wine was a gentler image and they may have been concerned about radio play in those days". That may be closer to the truth, but the sentiment seems laughable now. Even when you remove the scotch in favor of a chilled class of Chardonnay, you're still stuck with a guy drinking bourbon while he's "sipping along slow on my bottle of brew". Now to mention the threat of violence against his two-timing woman. All in all, it's a delicious slice of southern lowlife that wasn't going to become a mainstream hit even if the scotch had been phased out.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 299-A 45rpm



Gene Simmons
"I DONE TOLD YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:19
Composer: - Eugene Morris Simmons
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - U 215 - 2556 - Master
Recorded: - January 3, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - April 9, 1958
First appearance: - Sun Records (S) 78/45rpm standard single SUN 299-B mono
I DONE TOLD YOU / DRINKIN' WINE
Reissued: - 1996 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15803 DI-2-18 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 3

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Gene Simmons - Vocal
Carl Simmons - Guitar
Jesse Carter - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Unknown - Piano

After changing Scotch to Wine, Phillips was still not happy with the result and brought in drummer Jimmy Van Eaton. The change in sound is telling, especially when Van Eaton decided or was told to play through the stops. As originally conceived by Gene, this was a stop-rhythm talking blues. It sure didn't end up that way. Surprisingly, at the end of "Drinkin' Wine", a piano can be suddenly heard in the mix. Has it been there along? Aural evidence suggests not, but when the dust clears during those final drumbeats, there is the unmistakable sound of a piano. Session logs are imprecise but Carl Simmons remembers recording several sessions with  Charlie Rich present on piano. However, Rich had not yet joined the scene in January 1957, when this session is suggested to have occurred. In any case, "Drinkin' Wine" is a hell of a special record. A very southern 12-bar talking blues about a guy who's been done wrong by his woman and is getting drunker by the minute and thinking about killing her. On the other hand, it's a showcase for some fine, fine musicianship and unbridled energy in an era when such expression was quickly becoming verboten.  (HD)(MH)
 

Sun 299-B 45rpm


 
 
 
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