Buddy Blake
"YOU PASS ME BY" – B.M.I. - 2:28
Composer: - Hank Snow-E. Nesbit
Publisher: - Hill and Range Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 301
Recorded: - March 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1957
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3516-A mono
YOU PASS ME BY / PLEASE CONVINCE ME
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-1 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Buddy Blake - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Lead Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

If Blake's vocal style is hard to measure on this side, you need only turn the record over to understand what he, Sam Phillips and Jack Clement had in mind. "Please Convince Me" is a pop record by any standard relevant to 1957. From the piano triples and "doo doo wah" chorus, this is white pop music, and a pretty trite example at that. The last eight bars tell you everything you need to know about Blake and his roots. When evaluating the gentle acoustic feel of these sides, it's important to remember that Jerry Lee Lewis' "Whole Lotta Shakin'" and Warren Smith's "Miss Froggie" were recorded during exactly the same time period.

For whatever reason, Blake's style held considerable appeal for Sam Phillips, who worked overtime with the local singer, scheduling sessions at 706 Union in March, April, May and June 1957. Blake left more that a dozen unissued sides from these dates which a quarter of a century of Sun archaeologists have never deemed worthy of resurrection. "Right Or Wrongly", Buddy Blake has never been the poster boy for Sun record collectors.  (HD)(MH)
 

PI 3516-A 45rpm



Buddy Blake
"PLEASE CONVINCE ME" – B.M.I. - 2:13
Composer: - Bettye Maddox
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - P 302
Recorded: - March 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1957
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3516-B mono
PLEASE CONVINCE ME / YOU PASS ME BY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-2 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Buddy Blake - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Lead Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

The first Phillips International release extended the Sun career of Buddy Blake Cunningham. Blake had been last heard from three years earlier on SUN 208, a record most collectors remember with a shudder. The deservedly rare "Right Or Wrong"/"Why Do I Cry" makes most short lists for the least favorite and most anomalous early Sun release.

This time, Blake left his big band, night club crooner roots behind in favor of a gentle pop/country approach. "You Pass Me By", recorded and co-written by Hank Snow in 1950, is a curious piece of material structurally. It retains an odd tension and manages to violate most rules of traditional country songwriting. Cunningham's arrangement features strong yet subtle interplay between Roland Janes' electric guitar and Jack Clement's acoustic picking. There is a clippity-clop western rhythm that almost suggests a horse loping across the prairie. (HD)
 

PI 3516-B 45rpm



Hayden Thompson
"LOVE ME BABY" - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Herman Parker-Sam Phillips
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 305 Master
Recorded: - December 11,1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3517-A mono
LOVE ME BABY / ONE BROKEN HEART
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-3 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

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

The second Phillips International release was all the reassurance Sun collectors needed that this new label  would not specialize in tepid white pop music. This two-sided gen by Hayden Thompson put joy in the  hearts of rockabilly lovers and Sun fans everywhere and told an apprehensive world that the wildman,  unrepentant rockabilly antics at 706 Union had found a second home. There were now two Memphis labels  to watch and collect.

Hayden Thompson hung around the Sun studio for nearly a year beginning in late 1956, and everything he  committed to tape during this period has since been reissued. As Elvis Presley did on "Mystery Train",  Thompson and company borrow "Love Me Baby" from Sun bluesman Little Junior Parker and turn it into a  first rate rockabilly rave-up. In truth, Presley's theft was far more impressive. Parker's original of this tune,  especially its guitar figure, was considerable closer to the spirit and sound of rockabilly than was "Mystery  Train". In any case, as Sam Phillips was fond of explaining to all assembled guests, there was nothing  sweeter than recycling your own copyrights. (HD)
 

PI 3517-A 45rpm



Hayden Thompson
"ONE BROKEN HEART" - B.M.I. - 2:26
Composer: - Hayden Thompson
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporation
Matrix number: - P 306 Master
Recorded: - December 20, 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3517-B mono
ONE BROKEN HEART / LOVE ME BABY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-4 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Hayden Thompson - Vocal & Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Marvin Pepper - Bass
J.M. Van Eaton - Drums

On this flip-side, Thompson provided Knox Music with some original material of his own. Starting with a deceptive Latin rhythm. Thompson soon breaks free into 4/4 rhythm, much as his hero Elvis had done in this same studio just two years earlier on "Milkcow Blues Boogie". (HD)
 

PI 3517-B 45rpm



Barbara Pittman
"TWO YOUNG FOOLS IN LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated - Universal Music Publishing Limited
Matrix number: - P 303
Recorded: - June 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1957
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3518-A mono
TWO YOUNG FOOLS IN LOVE / I'M GETTING BETTER ALL THE TIME
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-5 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal & Vocal Harmony
Roland Janes - Lead Guitar
Jack Clement - Acoustic Guitar
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Stan Kesler - Bass

Curiously, Barbara Pittman's lone Sun single, issued in September 1956 never had a follow-up, despite respectable sales and media attention. For some reason, Sun never saw fit to follow through on her "female Elvis" image, by billing her as a tough competitor to Janis Martin. Pittman was no stranger to the Sun studio in late 1956 and early 1957, but no further titles were issued until these sides, both of which are relatively gentle compared to the steaming "I Need A Man" on Sun Records.

On "Two Young Fools In Love", Pittman offers a fine multitracked performance of a melodic tune that told us as much about producer and composer Jack Clement as it did Ms. Pittman. Clement's acoustic guitar added a strong folkie feel to this venture that stood a real chance with the teenage marketplace in the fall of 1957. Granted, it was a very different segment of the record buying public than Barbara had appealed to with Sun 253, but things were beginning to chance. Clement's lyric and its references to high school dances and wearing rings on chains are pointedly teen-oriented in contrast to most Sun fare, but they were commercial shrewd.  In an 1989 conversation, Barbara recalled "Roland Janes engineered the session and forget to use echo. At first Jack was very mad at him, but then he listened to it and decided he liked it better without the echo. That's the way they released it". (HD)  
 

PI 3518-A 45rpm



Barbara Pittman
"I'M GETTING BETTER ALL THE TIME" - B.M.I. - 2:50
Composer: - Stan Kesler
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 304
Recorded: - June 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1957
First appearance: - Phillips International 78/45rpm standard single PI 3518-B mono
I'M GETTING BETTER ALL THE TIME / TWO YOUNG FOOLS IN LOVE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-6 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal
Elsie Sappington - Vocal
Hank Byers - Vocal
Roland Janes - Lead Guitar
Jack Clement - Acoustic Guitar
Jerry Lee Lewis - Piano
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Stan Kesler - Bass

On the flip-side, written by Sun alumnus Stan Kesler, comes far closer to the sound and feel of vintage rockabilly, yet it too is muted by comparison. Gone is the maniacal energy and slap bass of Sun 253, replaced by a more subdued, neo-huffle rhythm and bopping chorus (which probably includes Barbara's voice overdubbed). Roland Janes takes a wonderfully melodic 16 bar solo and shows off a style rarely in evidence on his more famous work with Jerry Lee. Barbara has a really distinctive voice, with a smoky edge and undeniably sexy quality. It is well suited to the theme of this surprisingly risque work. "I may not be the best lover in the world, honey, but if we keep doing it, I'm going to get better and better". What good ole boy couldn't smile at a deal like that? (HD)
 

PI 3518-B 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"RAUNCHY" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - William Everette Justis-Sid Manker
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 309 Master
Recorded: - June 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1957
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard singles PI 3519-A mono
RAUNCHY / MIDNIGHT MAN
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 150805 DI-3-7 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Alt Saxophone
Vernon Drane - Saxophone
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Sidney Manker - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Lapworth - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Otis Jett - Drums

Here it is, the record that put the fledging Phillips International label on the map.   So popular was this disc in 1957 that it inspired cover versions by a host of artists including Ernie Freeman and Billy Vaughn. At one point, Sam Phillips bought space in the trade papers beseeching the industry to listen to all versions and decide which was the original. Sam was on quite a roll in his defense of "Raunchy".   He described counterclaims against Bill Justis' version as "uncouth" and went on to talk about the need for originality. He underlined the importance of never becoming "stereotyped and parasitic". Big words for a guy in the record business but he was right about one thing: PI 3519 was neither of those things.

In truth, the artist, Bill Justin, was far too hip (and technically skilled) for Sun. His hilarious between-takes exhortations to his fellow musicians are thankfully preserved on tape ("Come on, girls, let's get really bad now so we can sell some records:). In countless interviews, Justis maintained that his technically flawed sax work on this record (which only adds to its zany charm) stemmed from being out of practice.   It may have been a mild musical embarrassment to him, but it kept Sam 'n Sun on center stage in the music business. It was surely one of the first instrumentals with a rock and roll sensibility, and as such it led inexorably to the Champs and Duane Eddy and a host of others who perfected the form.

Just what was "Raunchy"?   Was it an uneasy truce between big band music and rockabilly? You know in the first four bars that you're in the presence of something. Sax man Vernon Drane recalled to Colin Escott, "I managed the Bill Justis band for nine years. We had a great band right after the war. We modelled ourselves on Count Basie and Shortly Rogers. After Bill went to Sun, I came with him. I actually named 'Raunchy''.  ''I said, 'That's the raunchiest damn thing you've ever done. If you don't record it, you'll miss a million seller'. He gave me a hundred dollar bonus for naming it. The guitarist Sid Manker was really the guy that worked up that riff though. He was a crazy man, high on everything. Hell of nice guy, though". Whatever its title, the overall concoction didn't have much precedent in 1950s popular music. Another hybrid is born at 706 Union. (HD)
 

PI 3519-A 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"MIDNIGHT MAN" - B.M.I. - 2:09
Composer: - Bill Justis-Sid Manker
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 310 Master - Vocal Roger Fakes and The Spinners
Recorded: - June 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1957
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3519-B mono
MIDNIGHT MAN / RAUNCHY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-8 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Roger Fakes - Vocal and Guitar
Bill Justis - Alt Saxophone
Vernon Drane - Saxophone
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Sidney Manker - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Lapworth - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Otis Jett - Drums
Band Vocals

There's not much to be said about the flip-side, "Midnite Man". Roger Fakes and the Spinners offer a vocal that no one in the industry seemed to take very seriously. By the time Sam Phillips saw fit to issue a Bill Justis LP (the first on the PI label), this track was conspicuously omitted. What is frightening, though, is that early disc jockeys copies of the disc were mailed with "Midnite Man" marked as the hit side. What were they thinking? (HD)
 

PI 3519-B 45rpm



Johnny Carroll
"THAT'S THE WAY I LOVE" - B.M.I. - 2:32
Composer: - Johnny Carroll
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated - Ridgetop Music
Matrix number: - P 307
Recorded: - June 23, 1957
Cliff Herring Studio, Forth Worth, Texas
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3520-A mono
THAT'S THE WAY I LOVE / I'LL WAIT
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-9 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Carroll - Vocal and Guitar
Bill Bunton - Bass
George "Mickey" Jones - Drums
Jay Salam - Guitar
Bill Hennen – Piano

Given the rich talent pool on his doorstep in Memphis, it is surprising that Sam Phillips saw fit to sign Texas resident Johnny Lewis Carroll, and its still not entirely clear how or why Carroll made their way onto Phillips' new Phillips International label. Sam Phillips would have been aware of Carroll because he had been on Decca in 1956 and he'd covered "Rock And Roll Ruby". Carroll had also appeared in a sub-B movie called "Rock Baby, Rock It" with another Sun artist, Rosco Gordon. To that point, he had been involved with a Dallas promoter, J.G. Tiger (aka Jack Goldman), and after they fell out he worked the Louisiana Hayride with Scotty and Bill, who had recently quit Elvis. Apparently, it was Bill Black who suggested to Carroll that he contact Sam Phillips, and Phillips bought a four-song session that Carroll had recorded in Fort Worth. This single was issued from those tapes.

Johnny Carroll has an interesting story about Phillips International that may or may not be true. This is the way he related it to Bill Millar: "I flew to Memphis 'cause Sam wanted to talk to me. He said he was gonna start this new label and spend a tremendous amount of money on it. He said that Phillips the electronic company were planning on coming to the USA, and - provided he established his label with one or two hits - they'd have to buy him out. He said, 'You can go ahead and be released on Sun, or you can wait a couple of months and go on Phillips International. I'm gonna release five discs in one package and whichever one the jockeys start playing, I'm gonna put everything behind that one record and go with it as hard as I can. 'So I took my chances and went on Phillips International. You know the rest; the jockeys picked up on "Raunchy'". Sam Phillips eventually folded Phillips International in 1963, ceding rights to Philips BV in Holland, so perhaps Carroll's story is not so far-fetched. (HD)(CE)
 

PI 3520-A 45rpm



Johnny Carroll
"I'LL WAIT" - B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Johnny Carroll
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 308
Recorded: - June 23, 1957
Cliff Herring Studio, Forth Worth, Texas
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3520-B mono
I'LL WAIT / THAT'S THE WAY I LOVE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-10 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Carroll - Vocal and Guitar
Bill Bunton - Bass
George "Mickey" Jones - Drums
Jay Salam - Guitar
Bill Hennen – Piano

Back to the record. The vocal riff on "That's The Way I Love" owes a considerable debt to the Cadillacs' Speedoo, and there's a case to be made for saying that Carroll borrowed more than a vocal lick or two. The stop-line release was also lifted almost note-for-note from "Speedoo". Its a cinch that Sam Phillips knew nothing of the New York doo wop scene or he wouldn't have touched these sides with a ten foot pole.  In the unlikely event they had sold or received northern airplay, Phillips International would have been approached by New York lawyers bearing writs rather than Dutchmen bearing cheques. Carroll went on to become a fan favorite in Europe in the 1970s and beyond, and many were saddened to hear of his death in February 1995 following a liver transplant. (HD)(CE)
 

PI 3520-B 45rpm



Cliff Thomas, Ed and Barbara
"I'M ON MY WAY HOME" - B.M.I. - 2:08
Composer: - Ed Thomas Jr.
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 312
Recorded: - November 29, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3521-A mono
I'M ON MY WAY HOME / TREAT ME RIGHT
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-12 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ed Thomas Jr. - Vocal and Piano
Cliff Thomas - Vocal and Guitar
Barbara Thomas – Vocal
Stan Kesler - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

This recordings by the Jackson, Mississippi-based brother, sister, and brother team of Cliff, Ed and Barbara Thomas appeared in the second mailing of PI releases (the first five singles had gone out together four months earlier). Wisely, Sam Phillips waited until much of the reaction to Bill Justis' "Raunchy" had died down before releasing this efforts. Its hard to know whether Sun had a national market in mind when these sides were shipped. Like Ricky Nelson, the Thomasses had a TV show (although they didn't go coast-to-coast) and were guaranteed intense exposure for teen heartthrob Cliff. A casual glance at the wholesome Thomas siblings gathered around the piano is not going to trigger the same response as watching Gene Vincent and the Bluecaps, but the truth is that Cliff, Ed and Barbara made some surprisingly good music. If nothing else, they were listening to (and absorbing) the right sources. But unlike their labelmate Johnny Carroll, they were not borrowing them literally.

"I'm On My Way Home" is better than it has a right to be. There's not a wasted note here, from Ed's powerful bluesy piano, to Cliff's socko vocal, to the minimal and effective choral work by Ed and Barbara. You could easily mistake the first eight bars here for a Fats Domino record until the vocal jumps in and takes this outing into its own original territory. There are touches of both Fats and Jerry Lee in Ed Thomas' piano but, ultimately, he's his own man. Although this production is decidedly minimalist, it is also competent and slick. (HD)
 

PI 3521-A 45rpm



Cliff Thomas, Ed and Barbara
"TREAT ME RIGHT" - B.M.I. - 1:58
Composer: - Ed Thomas Jr.
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 311
Recorded: - November 29, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - January 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3521-B mono
TREAT ME RIGHT / I'M ON MY WAY HOME
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-11 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ed Thomas Jr. - Vocal and Piano
Cliff Thomas - Vocal and Guitar
Barbara Thomas – Vocal
Stan Kesler - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums

The debt to Fats is even more explicit on "Treat Me Right" (not to be confused with the Elvis tune "Treat Me Nice" from the same year). They're plainly pushing the limits of Cliff's very teenage vocal equipment here, but the track still works largely because of Ed's powerful piano. Everything about the vocal and choral work just exudes blues, yet it remains original and melodic (just listen to the last four bars). can you imagine how trite this kind of white brother and sister trio might have been if these sides had been recorded in New York or Los Angele s. (HD)
 

PI 3521-B 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"THE STRANGER" - B.M.I. - 2:30
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 314
Recorded: - Probably June 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - February 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3522-A mono
THE STRANGER / COLLEGE MAN
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-14 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Alt Saxophone
Vernon Drane - Saxophone
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Sidney Manker - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Lapworth - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Otis Jett - Drums
Roger Fakes and The Spinners - Vocals

In truth, nobody had a clue how to follow-up the unexpected hit record of "Raunchy". Whatever the formula might have been, this wasn't it. Who in their right mind believed any disc jockey, especially those looking for successor to "Raunchy", would have gotten beyond the first four bars of "The Stranger"? Maybe Justis' moody 1940s alto work might have intrigued some, but that choral work and the whistling would have put an end to any serious  a ttention.  (HD)
 

PI 3522-A 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"COLLEGE MAN" - B.M.I. - 2:26
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 313
Recorded: - Probably June 5, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - February 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3522-B mono
COLLEGE MAN / THE STRANGER
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-13 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Alt Saxophone
Vernon Drane - Saxophone
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Sidney Manker - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Lapworth - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Otis Jett - Drums
Roger Fakes and The Spinners - Vocals
 
 
"College Man" was clearly the side earmarked for spins, but it, too, has lost the feel and intensity of the original. Some of the same ingredients are here (Otis Jett's drumming is a standout), but the tune lacks the musical originality of "Raunchy". Worse yet, that stinging guitar break after Justis' sax solo is just awful. Two bars of that kind of strident playing might have had some impact, but to ride it this long simply enters the realm of fingernails on a chalkboard. What is most damning is that Justis' vision of a "college man" seems to have come from watching reruns of 1940s musicals with Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland. Thirty year old adults were dressing up and acting like their fantasy of college kids. Campus life in 1957 had very little to do with the image painted by Bill Justis on this record. Not surprisingly, this two-sided miscalculation crashed and burned so quickly that another "follow-up" was issued barely a month later in 1958. (HD)
 

PI 3522-B 45rpm



Wayne Powers
"POINT OF VIEW" - B.M.I. - 2:43
Composer: - Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 316
Recorded: - Probably Early 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - March 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3523-A mono
POINT OF VIEW / MY LOVE SONG
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-15 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Wayne Powers - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Manker - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
Unknown - Drums

Here's Wayne Cogswell, whom he first encountered playing lead guitar for Ray Harris. If the best Sun records are hybrids, then this one should be on anybody's Top Ten list.  "Point Of View" keeps an aggressive rhythm guitar at its center, adds some melodic high string picking by either Roland Janes or Sid Manker, and caps the whole thing with a doo wop chorus featuring the Memphis version of Jimmy Jones (who was singing doo wop much like this in New York at the time prior to his solo hit "Handy Man" in 1960). Stan Kesler misses a few of the changes on his bass and sounds quite tentative throughout, which suggests that a few more takes might have taken this otherwise strong record to perfection. (HD)
 

PI 3523-A 45rpm



Wayne Powers
"MY LOVE SONG" - B.M.I. - 2:11
Composer: - Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 315
Recorded: - Probably Early 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - March 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm tandard single PI 3523-B mono
MY LOVE SONG / POINT OF VIEW
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-16 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Wayne Powers - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Manker - Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
Unknown - Drums

Cogswell comes even closer to crooning on this side. Listen to that voice. Could this really have been the guy wailing away on guitar behind Ray Harris on Sun 254. The answer is yes, suggesting that Phillips International was, on some occasions at least, being used to explore the "pop" niche of the marketplace, while Sun Records remained the haven for unrepentant wildmen. (HD)
 

PI 3523-B 45rpm



Bill Pinky & The Turks
"AFTER THE HOP" - B.M.I. - 2:04
Composer: - Bill Justis-Bill Pinkney
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 317
Recorded: - February 7, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearanc: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3524-A mono
AFTER THE HOP / SALLY'S GOT A SISTER
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-17 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Pinkney - Vocal
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Roland Janes - Lead Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano

Chorus The Turks consisting of
Willie Peppers,  Gerald Hendrix,
Tom Abston and James Curry

On second thought, maybe PI was going to specialize in artists whose last name started with "P". Pittman, Powers and now Pinky. Actually, that's Pinkney, although his handle was surgically shortened to Pinky. In any case, Pinky was the first black artist who had graced a Sun microphone in quite a while. In fact, other than Rosco Gordon (who would enjoy another Sun release later in 1958), the place was starting to look as lillywhite as a Klan meeting. But Pinky changed all that.

"After The Hop" is one of those Larry Williams teen records that manages to work in names like Short Fat Fanny while creating images of dancing away the night. In many ways this is mindless teen fluff from 40 years ago, yet its instrumental track has an undeniable energy starting with those strangled sax notes by Bill Justis. The longer the track goes on, the more Sun fans will recognize it as a reprise of Roy Orbison's "Chicken Hearted", recorded just months earlier. (HD)(CE)
 

PI 3524-A 45rpm



Bill Pinky & The Turks
''SALLY'S GOT A SISTER'' - B.M.I. - 3:12
Composer: - Bill Pinkney
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 318
Recorded: - February 7, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3524-B mono
SALLY'S GOT A SISTER / AFTER THE HOP
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-18 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Pinkney - Vocal
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Roland Janes - Lead Guitar
Stan Kesler - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano

Chorus The Turks consisting of
Willie Peppers,  Gerald Hendrix,
Tom Abston and James Curry

"Sally's Got A Sister" is a slightly different matter. Although it doesn't quite know what it wants to be or, more aptly, how to get there, there is a very interesting record buried in here.  The verses (more references to "Long Tall Sally" and company) are trite enough to make you sit back and pay attention when the release (containing the title) finally arrives. This songs works! Then there's the business of the instrumental break: not one, but two. After Bill Justis has his way say and we're expecting Pinkney and the Turks to come back in with the hook-aden release again, we're treated to 12 more bars of jamming, this time by Roland Janes. A strange record indeed.

Originally from South Carolina, Pinkney was singing alongside Brook Benton in the Jerusalem Stars when Clyde McPhatter drafted him into the Drifters in 1953. After McPhatter left, Pinkney sang lead on a few songs, including ''Steamboat'' before the Drifters' manager (and owner), George Treadwell, fired him in 1957. He did a tour with Bill Justis and Roland Janes, which probably accounts for this one-off single. In all likelihood, it was recorded shortly before Pinkney put together a group called the Flyers with Bobby Hendricks that made one record for Atco. Pinkney meanwhile was still recording occasionally with the Drifters until Treadwell fired the lot in 1958. he then formed a group called The Original Drifters that lasted well into the Seventies. (HD)(CE)
 

PI 3524-B 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
''SCROUNGLE'' - B.M.I. - 1:59
Composer: - Bill Justis-Sid Manker
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 320
Recorded: - August 22, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - March 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm PI 3525-A mono
SCROUNGLE / WILD RICE
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-20 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Tenor Saxophone
Sidney Manker - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Lapworth - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Jamieson Bryant - Unknown

Not wanting to lose the momentum of "Raunchy", Sam Phillips was quick to issue yet another follow-up after "College Man" did its kamikaze imitation. This one was closer to what the doctor ordered. It didn't really make anybody rich, but it did re-establish some credibility for the label and the artist.  For one thing, after "Raunchy" we expected a title like "Scroungie". And we expected a straight ahead rocker featuring some weird country-rockabilly-sounding guitar mixed with slightly flighty, barely in-tune sax breaks. In many ways, Bill Justis was the first guy to take his sax to a country hoedown.  (HD)
 

PI 3525-A 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
''WILD RICE'' – B.M.I.- 2:01
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 319
Recorded: - August 22, 1957
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - March 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm PI 3525-B mono
WILD RICE / SCROUNGLE
Reissued: - 1998 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-19 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Tenor Saxophone
Sidney Manker - Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Lapworth - Bass
Otis Jett - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Jamieson Bryant - Unknown

The flip-side, "Wild Rice", plows different ground. It comes much closer to the 1940s (even 1930s) big band era that was close to Justis' heart. This tune is inspired, if not lifted, very carefully mind you, from Ralph Flanagan's 1953 pop hit "Hot Toddy" . (HD)
 

PI 3525-B 45rpm



Carl McVoy
"TOOTSIE" - B.M.I. - 2:26
Composer: - Bill Cantrell-Quinton Claunch
Publisher: - Peer International
Matrix number: - 2002
Recorded: - Probably October/November 1957
RCA Studio, 1610 Hawkins Street
Nashville, Tennessee
Released: - June 16, 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3526-A mono
TOOTSIE / YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-22 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl McVoy - Vocal and Piano
Chet Atkins - Guitar
Johnny Ace Cannon - Tenor Sax
More Details Unknown

No sooner did the fledgling Hi label get its first release into the marketplace, but it appeared that they might  have a hit record on their hands. Totally ill-equipment to deal with such a possibility on the national level, the  master to "You Are My Sunshine" was sold to Sam Phillips in April 1958, who promptly issued it on his new  label and watched it virtually fall out of orbit. So much for this little tale. Only what happened before the  record was released is actually more interesting. (HD)
 

PI 3526-A 45rpm



Carl McVoy
"YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE" - B.M.I. - 2:22
Composer: - Jimmy Davis-Charles Mitchell
Publisher: - Peer International
Matrix number: - 2003
Recorded: - Probably October/November 1957
RCA Studio, 1610 Hawkins Street
Nashville, Tennessee
Released: - June 16, 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3526-B mono
YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE / TOOTSIE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-3-21 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl McVoy - Vocal and Piano
Chet Atkins - Guitar
Johnny Ace Cannon - Tenor Sax
The Jordanaires - Vocal Chorus
Millie Kirkham - Vocal Chorus
More Details Unknown

For one thing, pianist and vocalist Carl McVoy can lay  claim to being one of the true musical influences on his cousin Jerry Lee Lewis. For another, its fair to say  that the Hi label began because of this record.  Think about the influence of Hi recordings on popular music in the 1960s and 1970s. Curiously enough, it all  began when Ray Harris (along with Sun alumni Quinton Claunch and Bill Cantrell) invested the princely  sum of ten bucks in a McVoy demo of "Sunshine", which sufficiently interested record store owner Joe  Cuoghi to start his own label with McVoy as his premiere artist. In short, ithere is a lot of history  surrounding this disc which, ironically, went absolutely nowhere. (HD)
 

PI 3526-B 45rpm



Carl McVoy
"TOOTSIE" - B.M.I. - 2:26
Composer: - Bill Cantrell-Quinton Claunch
Publisher: - Peer International
Matrix number: - 2002
Recorded: - Probably October/November 1957
RCA Studio, 1610 Hawkins Street
Nashville, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Hi Records (S) 45rpm standard single HI 2001-A mono
TOOTSIE / YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl McVoy - Vocal and Piano
Chet Atkins - Guitar
Johnny Ace Cannon - Tenor Sax
More Details Unknown
 

HI 2001-A 45rpm



Carl McVoy
"YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE" - B.M.I. - 2:22
Composer: - Jimmy Davis-Charles Mitchell
Publisher: - Peer International
Matrix number: - 2003
Recorded: - Probably October/November 1957
RCA Studio, 1610 Hawkins Street
Nashville, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Hi Records (S) 45rpm standard single HI 2001-B mono
YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE / TOOTSIE

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Carl McVoy - Vocal and Piano
Chet Atkins - Guitar
Johnny Ace Cannon - Tenor Sax
The Jordanaires - Vocal Chorus
Millie Kirkham - Vocal Chorus
More Details Unknown
 

HI 2001-B 45rpm



Barbara Pittman
"EVERLASTING LOVE" - B.M.I. - 1:55
Composer: - Stan Kesler
Publisher: - Crystal Music Incorporated - Copyright Controll
Matrix number: - P 322
Recorded: - February 24, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3527-A mono
EVERLASTING LOVE / COLD COLD HEART
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-1 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Manker - Guitar and Bass
James M. Van Eaton
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Bill Justis - Tenor Saxophone
Bill Justis Orchestra
The Gene Lowery Singers

Sun's house-bass player Stan Kesler, became Barbara Pittman's representative knowing full well that the company had yet to launch a successful female act. After his artist's debut single was released, he set about reorganising her status with the result that Barbara signed to the Phillips International imprint simply because "the label looked pretty". "Everlasting Love" the second of her three fine singles, was a cover of Don Hosea's original on the Kesler-owned Crystal label. (HD)
 

PI 3527-A 45rpm



Barbara Pittman
01 - "COLD COLD HEART" - B.M.I. - 2:34
Composer: - Hank Williams
Publisher: - Acuff Rose Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 321
Recorded: - February 24, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3527-B mono
COLD COLD HEARET / EVERLASTING LOVE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-2 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Barbara Pittman - Vocal
Roland Janes - Guitar
Sid Manker - Guitar and Bass
James M. Van Eaton
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Bill Justis - Tenor Saxophone
Bill Justis Orchestra
The Gene Lowery Singers

Barbara, remains her favorite to this day: "I think "Cold Cold Heart" is the best record I ever did. I think its my best singing, but its also the best arrangement. The Gene Lowery Singers sang on it, but just the guys. They were more restrained without the soprano. That one guy, Cowboy Vernon Drane, had a beautiful bass voice. And Bill Justis was so pleased with the session. It was the only time I've ever seen an engineer come out of the control room crying. It really touched him. He loved it and I loved it, too. I also like the flip side, "Everlasting Love". I particularly like the ending of it. That was Bill Justis' band with Sid Manker on lead guitar". (HD)
 

PI 3527-B 45rpm



Ernie Barton
"STAIRWAY TO NOWHERE" - B.M.I. - 2:13
Composer: - Alan Wingate-Jo Ann Wingate
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 323
Recorded: - Possible March 1956
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International 78/45rpm standard single PI 3528-A mono
STAIRWAY TO NOWHERE / RAINING THE BLUES
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-3 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ernie Barton - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Bob Hadaway - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Vocal Chorus
Vernon Drane, Allen Page, Billy Riley

By all account, Ernie Barton virtually lived in the Sun studio between 1957 and 1960. He recorded as vocalist and session guitarist and even took over management of the studio for a while. He was, to put it mildly, a fixture. There were actually plans for a Barton LP - a step that now seems fanciful given the fact that (1) Sam Phillips was uncomfortable with long playing records at the best of times (Cash, Perkins and Lewis being the best of times), and (2) Ernie Barton never had anything resembling a hit single on Sun Records. All of his studio activity resulted in the grand total of two releases on Phillips International. This atmospheric composition formed the topside of his first single and came from songwriter Allen Wingate, who was recording at the time as Allen Page for the local Moon label.

And the truth is, it is quite a likeable record. It also went a long way to assuage the doubts of Sun fans who thought they'd rarely hear anything like a vintage Sun record on the PI label. At the least, there's enough echo here - on both Barton's vocal and Roland Janes' guitar work - to satisfy any Sun purist. "Stairway To Nowhere" (a great title) borrows heavily from the gospel tradition and manages to work in a guitar figure that would have been at home in "Sittin' In The Balcony". In truth, the most important part of this song (other than Roland's guitar work) is the "doodley wop" riffing by the male chorus. The lyrics were probably knocked off in less time than it took to write the choral figure and make just as much sense. Like many such spontaneous compositions, this one works just fine. (HD)
 

PI 3528-A 45rpm



Ernie Barton
"RAINING THE BLUES" - B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Alan Wingate-Jo Ann Wingate
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated - Knox Music Limited
Matrix number: - P 324
Recorded: - Possible March 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3528-B mono
RAINING THE BLUES / STAIRWAY TO NOWHERE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-4 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Ernie Barton - Vocal and Guitar
Roland Janes - Guitar
Bob Hadaway - Bass
James M. Van Eaton - Drums
Jimmy Wilson - Piano
Vocal Chorus
Vernon Drane, Allen Page, Billy Riley

"Raining The Blues" is, likewise, a fine production that works best when you just close your eyes and listen. Although it has a little more lyrical substance than "Stairway", close analysis won't bring you much. Barton is clearly striving for a "mood" here and succeeds. He also has some timing problems with his vocal right after the line "I thought you always knew". Amazingly, the chorus and band manage to follow him through this moment of ragged timing, thus suggesting that the entire performance was recorded live off the floor with everyone's eyes and ears fixed on the singer. (HD)
 

PI 3528-B 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"CATTYWAMPUS" - B.M.I. - 2:41
Composer: - Johnny Cannon-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporation
Matrix number: - P 325
Recorded: - June 5, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3529-A mono
CATTYWAMPUS / SUMMER HOLIDAY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-5 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Ace Cannon - Saxophone
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Charlie Rich - Celeste
Sid Manker - Guitar
Billy Riley - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

The Bill Justis Orchestra (not band) were back for their third release in four months. Never in the history of Sun Records had so many releases by a single artist appeared on the market in such a short time. The reason here was quite obviously the need to capitalize on the success of "Raunchy". Neither of two previous followups had managed the lofty sales figures or media attention of the original, and Sam Phillips didn't want to let this one get away from him.

"Cattywampus" is an entirely different affair, not to mention a legal quagmire. Most fans of Memphis music will have no trouble identifying Johnny Ace Cannon's "Tuff" when they listen to this track. Cannon played lead sax on the Justis track. Four years later, after he had left the Justis band and was recording as a solo artist for Hi Records, he simply re-recorded the tune and watched in delight as it climbed the charts and became one of the premier hit instrumentals of the day. But before Sam's lawyers could get their feet on the ground, everyone (including Cannon) was sued by the original composer, who pointed out that whatever these new fangled Memphis folks were calling it, this tune bore an uncanny resemblance to "Columbus Stockade Blues". As Cannon, Phillips, and the nice folks at Hi Records were learning, it was "Tuff" to grow up in the south and create an original tune.  Sun's resident PR woman, Barbara Barnes, explained the title by saying, "It's an old Southern usage meaning sort of cockeyed or haphazard - and another entry from the Bill Justis catalog of nervous instrumentals". Justis premiered it on Dick Clark's Saturday night show, July 26, 1958. (HD)
 

PI 3529-A 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"SUMMER HOLIDAY" - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Johnny Cannon-Bill Justis
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 326
Recorded: - June 5, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3529-B mono
SUMMER HOLIDAY / CATTYWAMPUS
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-6 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Johnny Ace Cannon - Saxophone
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Charlie Rich - Celeste
Sid Manker - Guitar
Billy Riley - Bass
James M. Van Eaton – Drums

The aptly titled "Summer Holiday" (the record was released in June 1958) tried to capture a different and very mellow sound. It features newly arrived session man Charlie Rich (whose first record was still months away) playing the glocke spiel. (HD)

PI 3529-B 45rpm



Lee Mitchell & The Curley Money Trio
"THE FROG" - B.M.I. - 1:48
Composer: - Jack Clement
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 327 - Instrumental
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1957/1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3530-A mono
THE FROG / A LITTLE BLUE BIRD TOLD ME
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-7 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Curley Money - Vocal and Guitar
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Lee Mitchell - Vocal
Curley Money Trio

Now this should have been the real follow-up to Bill Justis' "Raunchy". Slap Bill Justis' name on it and you're set to go. I mean, hell, that's Justis playing sax on "The Frog". Why not just credit him and be done with it? Ironically, the formula here is closer to the original record of "Raunchy" than anything subsequently issued under Justis' name. Even beyond the saxwork, we have that weird hoedown guitar (courtesy of Billy Riley) and a guitar break that lies strikingly close to the original Justis record. What's unclear at this point is what role Mitchell played in all this. In a recent interview with Colin Escott, Mitchell disavowed any involvement in "The Frog". Despite the label credit to the Curley Money Combo, it was Sun session guys all the way. Money had done no more than bring Mitchell to Sun Records. (HD)

PI 3530
This was the last 
Phillips International single issued on both 78/45rpm speeds
 

PI 3530-A 45rpm



Lee Mitchell & The Curley Money Trio
"A LITTLE BLUE BIRD TOLD ME" - B.M.I. - 2:12
Composer: - G. Bozeman
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 328
Recorded: - Unknown Date 1957/1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - June 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 78/45rpm standard single PI 3530-B mono
A LITTLE BLUE BIRD TOLD ME / THE FROG
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-8 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Lee Mitchell - Vocal and Guitar
Curley Money - Guitar
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Lee Mitchell - Vocal
Curley Money Trio

"I was born in Columbus, Georgia, in 1936. Grover C. Mitchell is my real name. I worked  sideshows in Fort Benning, Georgia, national Guard Armories, skating rinks... that sort of  thing. I played drums and sing. I had a good feel for making up songs, and I'd sing 'em on the  bandstand right after I'd made 'em up. If the people liked 'em, I'd go home and write down  the lyrics. "Blue Bird" was recorded at WRBL-TV Columbus by Ben Parsons, who ran a talent  programma and was on radio too. We used a vocal group from Phoenix City, Alabama, the  Charmettes, who were twelve, thirteen and fourteen year old. I had a manager then, Bob  Helms. You can jerk a manager out of the bushes if it looks like you're gonna make it, and  this guy latched onto me''.  ''He worked for Dixie Distributing and he took the master to Sam  Phillips and Sam liked it. Helms never done anything else for me, though. I got a lot of bad  advice. I still got a lot of stuff lingering out there in the dark somewhere".

"After Sun, I recorded for some hometown outfits. Got a lot of records out on Curley Money's  Rambler Records. I wrote some more songs. All the time I was working in a steel mill in  Atlanta, but I'm retired now".

It's hard to figure out Curley Money's involvement in Lee Mitchell's Phillips International record. His name is on the credits, and it's possible that his band worked with Mitchell on ''Blue Bird''. At some point, Mitchell drove to Sun with Helms, and it's possible that Curley Money went with them. Curley seems to have dropped off a tape at Sun, and one title from it, ''Chain Gang Charlie'', has been issued by Bear Family on ''That'll Flat Git It, Volume 14'' (BCD 16210). An abbreviated version of Curley's story can be found in the liner notes to that set. (CE)

PI 3530
This was the last 
Phillips International single issued on both 78/45rpm speeds
 

PI 3530-B 45rpm



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

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

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

PI 3531-A 45rpm



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

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

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

PI 3531-B 45rpm



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

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

Overdubbed
Martin Willis – Tenor Saxophone
Unknown Vocal Chorus

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

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

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

PI 3532-A 45rpm



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

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

Overdubbed
Martin Willis - Tenor Saxophone
Unknown Vocal Chorus

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

PI 3532-B 45rpm



Mickey Milan & The Bill Justis Orchestra
"SOMEHOW WITHOUT YOU" - B.M.I. - 2:00
Composer: - Wayne Cogswell
Publisher: - Knox Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 333
Recorded: - Probably September 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3533-A mono
SOMEHOW WITHOUT YOU / THE PICTURE
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-13 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Mickey Milan - Vocal
Bill Justis Orchestra
The Montclairs - Vocal Chorus

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

PI 3533-A 45rpm



Mickey Milan & The Bill Justis Orchestra
"THE PICTURE" - B.M.I. - 2:25
Composer: - Wilson-Hess
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 334
Recorded: - Probably September 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - September 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3533-B mono
THE PICTURE / SOMEHOW WITHOUT YOU
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-14 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Mickey Milan - Vocal
Bill Justis Orchestra
The Montclairs - Vocal Chorus

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

PI 3533-B 45rpm



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

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

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

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

PI 3534-A 45rpm



Ken Cook
"I WAS A FOOL" - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Roy Orbison
Publisher: - Hi-Lo Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 336
Recorded: - September 4, 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - October 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3534-B mono
I WAS A FOOL / CRAZY BABY
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 1805 DI-4-16 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

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

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

PI 3534-B 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"STRING OF PEARLS - CHA HOT CHA" - A.S.C.A.P. - 2:27
Composer: - Jerry Gray
Publisher: - Mutual Music
Matrix number: - P 338
Recorded: - Probably End 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (s) 45rpm standard single PI 3535-A mono
STRING OF PEARLS - CHA HOT CHA / BOP TRAIN
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-18 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Richard Mateller - Trumpet
Sid Manker - Guitar
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano
More Details Unknown

''OK, girls. The cha cha is hot. We've got our roots in the big band era. Let's take that big Glen Miller hit ''String Of Pearls'' and transform it into a cha cha. Can't miss, right''?

The band must have had fun recording this one. It certainly comes closer to big band music than anything ever recorded at 706 Union Avenue. Why, Justis even had to bring in a trombone player and a trumpet for the date (at Union scale). And he didn't just bury them in the mix. That's Richard Mateller's trumpet, not Justis' sax, during the first solo. And just listen to Charlie Rich playing those soulful piano fills during the last verse! Forget following up "Raunchy". Let's have some fun! (HD)
 

PI 3535-A 45rpm



Bill Justis & His Orchestra
"BOP TRAIN" - B.M.I. - 2:01
Composer: - Bill Justis
Publisher: - Justis Music Incorporated
Matrix number: - P 337
Recorded: - Probably End 1958
Memphis Recording Service
706 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee
Released: - 1958
First appearance: - Phillips International (S) 45rpm standard single PI 3535-B mono
BOP TRAIN / STRING OF PEARLS - CHA HOT CHA
Reissued: - 1997 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 15805 DI-4-17 mono digital
THE SUN SINGLES COLLECTION - VOLUME 5

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Bill Justis - Saxophone
Richard Mateller - Trumpet
Sid Manker - Guitar
Jimmy M. Van Eaton - Drums
Charlie Rich - Piano
More Details Unknown

"Bop Train" is another matter. Hidden on the B-side here and rarely reissued, this track is a gem that truly captures the hybrid spirit of Justis' music. The trouble is there's really nowhere to go after the first 12-bar verse. Its all been said. All that remains is to swap the soloing around until the clock on the wall tells us its time to wrap. In a true tough of class, rather than fade on somebody's solo, they return to the original guitar figure and the "Bop Train" rolls along the tracks until its out of sight. Fine work, girls.
 
The other nice story about ''Bop Train'' is a strange record that doesn't seem quite sure what it wants to be. It begins with a lovely, countrified 4-bar guitar intro in the key of B. Not many songs are in the key and there might not be another one on Sun. Then the band comes in playing a 120bar blues at a lazy rolling tempo with pleasant sax work by Justis in the style of Billy Vaughn. Only now they're in the key of A-flat. Huh? We never lose that 12-bar structure from here on. It's a train, rolling down the track, although the journey doesn't come to close to ''bop'' by anyone definition. (Then again, neither did Elvis when the critics called his music ''hillbilly bop'' back when he started). The first verse is led by the mellow sax. The next two-verses feature a lead guitar with a lot more edge and sting than any playing that comes before. This is as close to rock and roll as the record gets. Then there's one more sax-led verse (the Vaughn sound again) and we're out, back to that lovely hillbilly figure we started with. (HD)(SP)
 

PI 3535-B 45rpm


 
 
 
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