© May 27, 2013 Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 17313 mono digital
THE SUN ROCK BOX 1954 - 1959

''At Sun Records in the rock and roll days'', said Sun artist Mack Self, ''there would be the stars' pink Cadillacs parked up front on Union Avenue. Out back, there would be the beat-up Fords and pickup trucks of country boys like me trying to make it''.

Here on eight CDs and in the accompanying 224-page hardcover book authored by Hank Davis, Colin Escott, and Martin Hawkins, is the story of rock and roll on Sun Records, the place where it all began. Here are the mighta-beens, shoulda-beens, never-weres, fleeting stars, and forever stars. This is music from a mythic place and time: the Sun Records studio at 706 Union Avenue, Memphis, between 1954 and 1959. This is the music that changed the world.

Here are Sun Records' great rock and roll stars, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Roy Orbison, alongside Sun legends like Sonny Burgess, Warren Smith, Billy Riley, Ray Harris, Hayden Thompson, Gene Simmons, Carl Mann, Bill Justis, and Ray Smith, together with all the great unknowns. Here are future country stars Ed Bruce, Charley Pride, Dickey Lee, Mickey Gilley, Charlie Rich, and Conway Twitty, shakin; it up for all they're worth! Above all, here is the sound of rock and roll at the moment of creation. Listen to it unfold week-by-week, session-by-session!

This upgraded edition of the legendary 12-LP set from 1986 includes songs from that box together with 33 additional performances. The stories, photos, discography, and sound have all been substantially upgraded.

Producers:
Sam C. Phillips, Jack Clement, and Ernie Barton
Re-Issue Producers:
Hank Davis, Colin Escott, and Martin Hawkins
Disc/Metalpart Transfer:
Christian Zwarg
Source Research and Comparison:
Hank Davis, Colin Escott and Martin Hawkins
Mastering:
Jurgen Crasser
Liner Notes:
Hank Davis, Colin Escott, and Martin Hawkins
Additional Notes:
Dave Booth, Colin Davies, Bo Berglind, Rob Bowman, Ray Hobock, Ross Johnson,
Klaus Keltner, Craig Maki, Bill Millar, and Tony Wilkinson
Discography:
Colin Escott and Martin Hawkins
Transcription. Editing:
Evelyne Gerstenberger

Photos and Illustrations:
The Showtime Music Archive (Toronto), R.A. Andreas, Colin Escott,
Hank Davis, and Martin Hawkins
Photo Scans:
Andreas Merck
Photo Restoration:
Sam Malbuch
Artwork:
Mychael Gerstenberger 

Thanks to:
Dominique Anglares, the late Charlie Barbat, Danny Bowen, Jime Cole, Lane Cowart,
Ed Dettenheim, Peter Guralnick, Robert Loers, Bill Millar, Larry Rumsey,
Wayne Russell, Terry Stewart, Dave Travis, and Al Turner. 

Thanks also to John Singleton and Phyllis Hill at Sun Entertainment, Nashville 

For Biographies of Artists see: > The Sun Biographies <
For music (Sun standard singles) on YouTube click on the available > buttons <

CD 1 Contains ''Put Your Cat Clothes On''
*1 - That's All Right (Elvis Presley)
2 - Good Rockin' Tonight (Elvis Presley) > Sun 210-A <
3 - Baby Let's Play House (Elvis Presley) > Sun 217-B <
4 - Mystery Train (Elvis Presley) > Sun 223-A <
*5 - Carl Perkins In Memphis (Advertising Spot) (Carl Perkins)
*6 - Blue Suede Shoes (Test Acetate) (Carl Perkins)
*7 - You Can't Make Love To Somebody (Carl Perkins)
*8 - Everybody's Tryin' To Be My Baby (Carl Perkins)
*9 - Dixie Fried (Carl Perkins)
*10 - Put Your Cat Clothes On (1) (Carl Perkins)
*11 - Put Your Cat Clothes On (2) (Carl Perkins)
*12 - That Don't Move Me (Carl Perkins)
*13 - Only You (Carl Perkins) (Sun LP 1225)
*14 - Pink Pedal Pushers (Carl Perkins)
*15 - That's Right (Carl Perkins)
*16 - Crawdad Hole ((Jack Earls)
*17 - If You Don't Mind (Jack Earls)
18 - Slow Down (Jack Earls) > Sun 240-A <
19 - A Fool For Loving You (Jack Earls) > Sun 240-B <
*20 - Sign It On The Dotted Line (Jack Earls)
*21 - Rock All Night (Glenn Honeycutt)
22 - I'll Be Around (Glenn Honeycutt) > Sun 264-A <
23 - I'll Wait Forever (Glenn Honeycutt) > Sun 264-B <
*24 - Be Wise, Don't Cry (Glenn Honeycutt)
*25 - Come On Little Mama (1) (Ray Harris)
26 - Where'd You Stay Last Night (Ray Harris) > Sun 254-A <
27 - Come On Little Mama (2) (Ray Harris) > Sun 254-B <
*28 - Love Dumb Baby (Ray Harris)
*29 - Green Back Dollar, Watch And Chain (1) (Ray Harris)
30 - Foolish Heart (Ray Harris) > Sun 272-B <
*31 - Lonely Wolf (Ray Harris)
32 - Green Back Dollar, Watch And Chain (2) (Ray Harris) > Sun 272-A <
Original Sun Recordings

CD 2 Contains ''Go Go Go''
*1 - Cotton Pickin' Boogie (Johnny Bernero Band)
*2 - Rockin' At The Woodchopper's Ball (Johnny Bernero Band)
*3 - It Makes No Difference Now (Johnny Bernero Band)
*4 - Bernero's Boogie (Johnny Bernero Band)
*5 - I Don't Mind (Johnny Bernero Band)
*6 - The Blond In Red Velvet (Kirby Sisters)
*7 - You'll Always Belong To Me (Kirby Sisters)
*8 - So Tired (Kirby Sisters)
*9 - Sentimental Fool (Barbara Pittman)
10 - I Need A Man (Barbara Pittman) > Sun 253-A <
*11 - Voice Of A Fool (Barbara Pittman)
12 - I'm Getting Better All The Time (Barbara Pittman) > PI 3518-B <
13 - Everlasting Love (Barbara Pittman) > PI 3527-A <
14 - Bop Bop Baby (The College Kids) > Sun 269-A <
*15 - Don't Need Your Lovin' (1) (The College Kids)
16 - Don't Need Your Lovin' (2) (The College Kids) > Sun 269-B <
*17 - Wild Woman (The College Kids)
18 - Cindy Lou (Dick Penner) > Sun 282-B <
19 - Honey Love (Dick Penner) > Sun 282-A <
*20 - Fine Little Baby (Dick Penner)
*21 - Move Baby Move (Dick Penner)
*22 - Ooby Dooby (Roy Orbison)
23 - Go! Go! Go! (Roy Orbison) > Sun 242-B <
24 - Rockhouse (Roy Orbison) > Sun 251-B <
*25 - Domino (Roy Orbison)
*26 - Rock-A-Billy Gal (Hayden Thompson)
*27 - Rakin' And Scapin' (Dean Beard)
*28 - Long Time Gone (Dean Beard)
29 - That's The Way I Love (Johnny Carroll) > PI 3520-A <
*30 - Rock Baby, Rock It (Johnny Carroll)
Original Sun Recordings

CD 3 Contains ''Tennessee Zip''
*1 - Tennessee Zip (Kenny Parchman)
*2 - I Feel Like Rockin' (Kenny Parchman) (Sun 252 Unissued)
*3 - Love Crazy Baby (Kenny Parchman) (Sun 252 Unissued)
*4 - Treat Me Right (Kenny Parchman)
*5 - Get It Off Your Mind (Kenny Parchman)
*6 - What's The Reason (Kenny Parchman)
*7 - You Call Everybody Darlin' (Kenny Parchman)
*8 - Two Timin' Baby (Bill Bowen)
*9 - Go Ahead Baby (Luke McDaniel)
*10 - Huh Babe (Luke McDaniel)
*11 - High High High (Luke McDaniel)
*12 - My Baby Don't Rock (Luke McDaniel)
*13 - That's What I Tell My Heart (Luke McDaniel)
*14 - Rockhouse (Harold Jenkins)
*15 - Crazy Dreams (Harold Jenkins)
*16 - Give Me Some Love (Harold Jenkins)
*17 - I Need Your Lovin' Kiss (Harold Jenkins)
*18 - Born To Sing The Blues (Harold Jenkins)
*19 - Goin' Crazy (Mack Self)
*20 - Mad At You (Mack Self)
*21 - Good Lookin' Woman (Jimmy Williams)
*22 - Rock-A-Bye Baby (Jimmy Williams)
*23 - Sweet Rocking Mama (Jimmy Williams)
*24 - Sonny Boy (Jimmy Williams)
*25 - Fire Engine Red (Jimmy Williams)
*26 - Tomorrow (Jimmy Williams)
27 - Please Don't Cry Over Me (Jimmy Williams) > Sun 270-A <
28 - That Depends On You (Jimmy Williams) > Sun 270-B <
*29 - All I Want Is You (Jimmy Williams)
*30 - My One Desire (Jimmy Williams)
Original Sun Recordings

CD 4 Contains ''We Wanna Boogie''
*1 - Down On The Border (Gene Simmons)
*2 - Don't Let Me Down (The Miller Trio)
*3 - Shake Rattle And Roll (Gene Simmons)
4 - It's Me Baby (Malcolm Yelvington) > Sun 246-B <
5 - Rockin' With My Baby (Malcolm Yelvington) > Sun 246-A <
*6 - Trumpet (Malcolm Yelvington)
7 - Ten Cats Down (The Miller Sisters) > Sun 255-A <
8 - The Fools Hall Of Fame (Rudi Richardson) > Sun 271-A < 
9 - Cheese And Crackers (Rosco Gordon) > Sun 257-A <
10 - Sally Jo (Rosco Gordon) > Sun 305-A <
*11 - We Wanna Boogie (Sonny Burgess)
*12 - Red Headed Woman (Sonny Burgess)
*13 - Life's Too Short To Live (Joe Lewis)
14 - Ain't Got A Thing (Sonny Burgess) > Sun 263-A <
*15 - Feelin' Good (Sonny Burgess)
*16 - Truckin' Down The Avenue (Sonny Burgess)
17 - Restless (Sonny Burgess) > Sun 263-B <
*18 - Find My Baby For Me (Sonny Burgess)
*19 - Sadie Brown (Sonny Burgess)
*20 - Thunderbird (Sonny Burgess)
*21 - Rock 'N' Roll Ruby (Warren Smith)
*22 - Stop The World (Warren Smith)
*23 - Uranium Rock (Warren Smith)
*24 - Dear John (Warren Smith)
25 - Trouble Bound (Billy Riley) (Sun 245) > Sun 245-A <
26 - Rock With Me Baby (Billy Riley) > Sun 245-B <
*27 - Flying Saucer Rock And Roll (Billy Riley)
*28 - I Want You Baby (Billy Riley)
*29 - Red Hot (Billy Riley)
*30 - No Name Girl(Billy Riley)
31 - One More Time (Billy Riley) > Sun 322-A <
*32 - Got Your Water Boiling (Billy Riley)
Original Sun Recordings

CD 5 Contains ''Whole Lof Of Shakin' Going On''
*1 - Blues At Midnight (Gene Simmons)
*2 - Pop And Mama (Gene Simmons)
*3 - The Chains Of Love (Gene Simmons)
*4 - Juicy Fruit (Gene Simmons)
*5 - Drinkin' Wine (Gene Simmons)
*6 - I Done Told You (Gene Simmons)
*7 - Crazy Woman (Gene Simmons)
*8 - I Don't Love You Baby (Gene Simmons)
*9 - Money Money Money (Gene Simmons)
*10 - If I'm Not Wanted (Gene Simmons)
11 - Love My Baby (1) (Hayden Thompson) > PI 3517-A <
12 - One Broken Heart (Hayden Thompson) > PI 3517-B <
*13 - Fairlane Rock (Hayden Thompson)
*14 - Blues Blues Blues (Hayden Thompson)
*15 - Love My Baby (2) (Hayden Thompson)
*16 - Mad Man (1) (Jimmy Wages)
*17 - Heartbreakin' Love (Jimmy Wages)
*18 - Miss Pearl (Jimmy Wages)
*19 - Take Me From This Garden Of Evil (Jimmy Wages)
*20 - Mad Man (2) (Jimmy Wages)
*21 - Miracle Of You (Hannah Fay)
*22 - It's Love Baby (24 Hours A Day) (Hannah Fay)
*23 - Whole Lot Of Shakin' Going On (Jerry Lee Lewis)
*24 - You Win Again (Jerry Lee Lewis)
*25 - High School Confidential (Jerry Lee Lewis)
*26 - Crazy Heart (Jerry Lee Lewis)
*27 - Breakup (Jerry Lee Lewis)
*28 - Put Me Down (Jesse Lee Turner)
29 - Whirlwind (Charlie Rich) > PI 3532-A <
*30 - Charlie's Boogie (Charlie Rich)
*31 - Blue Suede Shoes (Charlie Rich)
*32 - My Baby Done Left Me (Charlie Rich)
*33 - Rebound (Charlie Rich)
*34 - Lonely Weekends (Charlie Rich)
Original Sun Recordings

CD 6 Contains ''I Wanta Rock''
1 - Stairway To Nowhere (Ernie Barton) > PI 3528-A <
*2 - She's Gone Away (Ernie Barton)
*3 - (Did You Tell Me) You Don't Care (Narvel Felts)
*4 - Cry Baby Cry (Narvel Felts)
*5 - I Wanta Rock (Patsy Holcomb)
*6 - Ooh That's Good (Patsy Holcomb)
*7 - Someone To Love (Patsy Holcomb)
*8 - Memories Of You (Magel Priesman)
9 - Judy (Rudy Grayzell) > Sun 290-A <
*10 - Drive-In (Mack Vickery)
*11 - Have You Ever Been Lonely (Mack Vickery)
*12 - Fool Proof (Mack Vickery)
*13 - Tough Tough Tough (Andy Anderson)
14 - Sorry I Lied (Cliff Thomas) > PI 3531-A < 
15 - To Tell The Truth (Bobbie & The Boys) > PI 3543-B <
16 - Flat Foot Sam (Tommy Blake) > Sun 278-A <
17 - Lordy Hoody (Tommy Blake) > Sun 278-B <
*18 - I Dig You Baby (1) (Tommy Blake)
*19 - You Better Believe It (1) (Tommy Blake)
20 - Sweetie Pie (Tommy Blake) > Sun 300-B <
21 - I Dig You Baby (2) (Tommy Blake) > Sun 300-A <
*22 - Shake Around (Tommy Blake)
*23 - You Better Believe It (2) (Tommy Blake)
24 - Rock Boppin' Baby (Edwin Bruce) > Sun 276-A <
*25 - Eight Wheel Driver (Edwin Bruce)
26 - Sweet Woman (Edwin Bruce) > Sun 292-A <
*27 - Baby That's Good (Edwin Bruce)
*28 - King Of Fools (Edwin Bruce)
29 - Memories Never Grow Old (Dickey Lee) > Sun 280-A <
30 - Good Lovin' (Dickey Lee) > Sun 280-B <
31 - Fool Fool Fool (Dickey Lee) > Sun297-A <
32 - Dreamy Nights (Dickey Lee) > Sun 297-B <
*33 - Hey Heart (Dickey Lee)
Original Sun Recordings

CD 7 Contains ''Willing And Ready''
1 - Right Behind You Baby (Ray Smith) > Sun 298-B <
2 - So Young (Ray Smith) > Sun 298-A <
*3 - Why Why Why (Ray Smith)
4 - You Made A Hit (Ray Smith) > Sun 308-B <
5 - Sail Away (Ray Smith) > Sun 319-A <
*6 - Rockin' Bandit (Ray Smith)
*7 - Willing And Ready (Ray Smith)
*8 - Forever Yours (Ray Smith)
*9 - Shake Around (Ray Smith)
*10 - Breakup (Ray Smith)
*11 - Sandy Lee (Mack Allen Smith)
*12 - Mean Woman Blues (Mack Allen Smith)
*13 - Kansas City (Mack Allen Smith)
*14 - Young Dreams (Mack Allen Smith)
*15 - Mona Lisa (Carl Mann)
*16 - Rockin' Love (Carl Mann)
*17 - Pretend (Carl Mann)
*18 - Too Young (Carl Mann)
19 - A Thousand Guitars (Tracy Pendarvis) > Sun 335-A <
20 - Is It Too Late (Tracy Pendarvis) > Sun 335-B <
21 - Is It Me (Tracy Pendarvis) > Sun 345-B <
22 - Southbound Line (Tracy Pendarvis) > Sun 345-A <
*23 - Beat It (Tracy Pendarvis)
*24 - Your Lovin' Man (Vernon Taylor)
25 - Today Is Blue Day (Vernon Taylor) > Sun 310-B <
26 - Breeze (Vernon Taylor) > Sun 310-A <
*27 - Hey Little Girl (Vernon Taylor)
*28 - Mystery Train (1) (Vernon Taylor)
*29 - This Kinda Love (Vernon Taylor)
*30 - Sweet And Easy To Love (Vernon Taylor)
31 - Mystery Train (2) (Vernon Taylor) > Sun 325-B <
Original Sun Recordings

CD 8 Contains ''Raunchy''
*1 - Thinkin' Of Me (Mickey Gilley)
*2 - Have A Little Party (C'mon Baby) (Mickey Gilley)
*3 - Whole Lot Of Shakin' Going On (Mickey Gilley)
4 - I'll Change My Ways (Danny Stewart) > PI 3561-B <
*5 - This Old Heart Of Mine (Eddie Bond)
*6 - Love Is My Business (Cliff Gleaves)
*7 - What Are You Gonna Do Now (Charlotte Smith)
*8 - I Lost My Baby (Roy Hall)
*9 - Christene (Roy Hall)
*10 - Apron Strings (Curtis Hobock)
*11 - (There's My Baby) Walkin' (The Stroll) (Charlie Pride)
12 - With Your Love, With Your Kiss (Johnny Powers) > Sun 327-A <
13 - No More Crying The Blues (Alton & Jimmy) > Sun 323 < 
*14 - Raunchy (Bill Justis Orchestra)
15 - The Midnight Man (Vocal by Roger Fakes & The Bill Justis Orchestra) > PI 3519-B < 
*16 - Somehow We'll Find A Way (Vocal by Roger Fake Bill Justis Orchestra)
*17 - Wild Rice (Bill Justis Orchestra)
*18 - College Man (Vocal by Billy Riley) (Bill Justis Orchestra)
*19 - Scroungie (Bill Justis Orchestra)
20 - After The Hop (Vocal by Bill Pinky & The Turk Bill Justis Orchestra) > PI 3524-A <
21 - Sally's Got A Sister (vocal by Bill Pinky & T Bill Justis Orchestra > PI 3524-B <
*22 - Bop Train (Bill Justis Orchestra)
*23 - Flip Flop And Bop (Bill Justis Orchestra)
*24 - Rolando (Roland Janes Band)
*25 - Little Bitty Pretty Girl (Vocal by Eddie Cash Roland Janes Band)
*26 - Hey Good Lookin' (Vocal by Eddie Cash) Roland Janes Band)
*27 - Sugarfoot Rag (Martin Willis)
*28 - Hey Bo Diddley (Jimmy M. Van Eaton)
*29 - That's The Way I Feel (Jimmy Pritchett)
*30 - Tuff (Cattywampus) (Johnny Ace Cannon)
*31 - That's Just Too Bad (Johnny Ace Cannon)
32 - 706 Union (Brad Suggs) > PI 3545-A <
Original Sun Recordings

© Original Sun Recordings, licensed from Sun Entertainment, Inc.
*- Not Originally Issued

For Biographies of Artists see: > The Sun Biographies <
Sun recordings can be heard on the playlists from 706 Union Avenue Sessions on > YouTube <
 
 

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

THE SUN ROCKING YEARS - Rock and Roll is the generic term used to describe the dominant strain of American popular music from 1955 to 1965. In general, rock and roll was teenage-oriented dance music that synthesized elements of black and white folk and popular music styles, specifically and most conspicuously, rhythm and blues and country (or hillbilly) music, is superseded by Elvis Presley, born in Tupelo, Mississippi, and reared in Memphis, Tennessee. All of the other subsequent rock and roll innovators, with the arguable exception of Chuck Berry (born, San Jose, California, 1926), were native southerners:

Carl Perkins (born, Bermis, Tennessee, 1932), Jerry Lee Lewis (born, Ferriday, Louisiana, 1935), Buddy Holly (born, Lubbock, Texas, 1936), Fats Domino (born, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1928), Little Richard (born, Macon, Georgia, 1932). From 1955 to 1958 rock and roll remained largely a southern phenomenon. Two principal regional recording centers were Memphis and New Orleans, each of which produced a distinctive idiom of its own. Memphis, long a cultural crossroads where various southern musical traditions flourished, especially Mississippi Delta blues and hillbilly music, produced a dynamic hybrid known as rockabilly.

Rockabilly was firmly rooted in country music but drew heavily from black sources, most notably gospel and rhythm and blues. It was characterized by small ensembles (often a trio), stringed instrumentation, and a persistent yet light beat layered over frenzied vocalizing and an echo produced in the recording studio. The classic rockabilly sound, engineered by Sam Phillips and performed by Elvis Presley (vocal and acoustic rhythm guitar), Scotty Moore (electric lead guitar), and Bill Black (acoustic upright bass) was first recorded at Phillips' Sun Records studio in Memphis in July 5-6, 1954. Sun soon attracted dozens of aspiring young musicians from across the South who performed in a style similar to Presley's. Important Sun artists after Elvis Presley were Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Billy Riley, Sonny Burgess, Roy Orbison, Charlie Rich and Conway Twitty. A definitive rockabilly group from Memphis, which recorded for the New Yorkbased Coral label, was the Rock And Roll Trio (Johnny Burnette, Dorsey Burnette, and Paul Burlison).

After 1955 the basic Memphis rockabilly sound underwent a gradual modification. Elvis Presley moved toward a mainstream rock and roll sound after signing with RCA Victor in November 1955. Jerry Lee Lewis introduced his own boogie-woogie-based piano style into rockabilly with his first Sun releases in 1955. Beginning in 1957 Buddy Holly created an original pop-influenced variant of rockabilly, exemplified by such recordings as "That'll Be The Day" (1957), "Peggy Sue" (1957), and "Rave On" (1958). In Louisiana, Dale Hawkins recorded in a strong blues-influenced style, which gained its greatest expression in the hit recording "Suzie Q" (1957). Numerous influential rockabilly artists lived and recorded in Los Angeles after 1955, including Gene Vincent (originally from Virginia), whose best-known song was "Be Bop A Lula" (1956), Wanda Jackson (originally from Oklahoma), the most talented female rockabilly performer; Eddie Cochran, next to Carl Perkins, the finest rockabilly songwriter, who recorded such definitive items as "Summertime Blues" (1958) and "Something Else" (1959), and Ricky Nelson (born in New Jersey), who sold more rockabilly recordings than anyone other than Elvis Presley. Nelson and the Nashville-based Everly Brothers followed Presley and Holly in moving rockabilly in the direction of pop music by removing much of the rawness and dynamism from the idiom. The Everly Brothers were especially significant for introducing the traditional hillbilly duet style into rock and roll. Their best recordings such as "Wake Up Little Susie" (1957), and "Bye, Bye Love" (1957), retained much of the potency of early rockabilly. A few mainstream country performers also recorded in a rockabilly mode, most notably Marty Robbins and Johnny Horton.

The New Orleans sound, which formed the second major component of southern rock and roll, was infused with the blues. It was characterized by small ensembles (usually five or six pieces) whose central instrument was the piano. Accompaniment usually consisted of saxophones, drums, electric bass, and horns. It was noted for a heavy, rolling beat and Carribean-derived polyrhythms. New Orleans vocalists, most of whom were black, sang with the thick inflections indigenous to the city. Most of the songs identified with New Orleans rock and roll were exuberant, joyous, and urgent, yet less frenzied than those from rockabilly music. Lyrics were seldom teen oriented.

Though no record label of comparable importance to Sun Records existed in New Orleans - most of the city's recordings were released by West Coast companies such as Imperial and Specialty - virtually every recording made in the city came from the studio of engineer and producer Cosimo Matassa. Matassa and Dave Bartholomew, a musician, writer, and producer, were key figures in the evolution of a distinctive New Orleans rock and roll style.

The quintessential New Orleans rock and roll performer was Fats Domino, a musical heir of the great rhythm and blues pianist Professor Longhair (Henry Roeland Byrd). Domino was a popular rhythm and blues recording artist in the early 1950s, and he made his entry onto the national pop charts in 1955 with "Ain't That A Shame". In the 1955-60 period, Domino produced a remarkable series of hit recordings, including "Blueberry Hill" (1956) and "I'm walking" (1957).

Other important contributors to the New Orleans sound included Lloyd Price, Smiley Lewis, Huey Smith, Clarence "Frogman" Henry, Frankie Ford, Bobby Charles, and Jimmy Clanton. Clanton, a white performer, accomplished the closest approximation of the New Orleans style to a mainstream rock and roll sound with recordings like "Just A Dream" (1958). The only non-Louisiana artist to play a significant role in the popularization of the New Orleans style was Little Richard (Penniman) of Macon, Georgia. Little Richard became one of the most dynamic and controversial rock and roll performers of the 1950s with such hits as "Tutti Frutti" (1955) and "Rip It Up" (1956).

By the early 1960s rockabilly music had largely been subsumed by the rock and roll mainstream. The New Orleans sound remained a vital and distinctive regional rock and roll form, though it too declined in popularity and experienced a certain degree of accommodation with the mainstream approach. Both Memphis and New Orleans ceased to be important recording centers. Most southern musicians left to work in Los Angeles, New York, or Nashville where, if successful, they tended to produce recordings of minimal regional identity. Southern rock and roll, which, in the forms of rockabilly and New Orleans music, had exerted a formative influence on the creation of a national rock and roll style, now merely existed as one element within the broad form as evinced by such representative recordings of the period as Johnny Tillotson's "Poetry In Motion" (1960), Johnny Burnette's "You're Sixteen" (1960), and Elvis Presley's "Return To Sender" (1962).

After 1963 American rock and roll began to succumb to the so-called British Invasion, spearheaded by the Beatles, who were soon followed by such groups as the Rolling Stones, the Animals, and Gerry and the Pacemakers. Ironically, the British invaders were themselves extremely indebted to the southern-derived forms of early rock and roll and thus revived much of the southern character and identity of the music. The most successful American rock and roll recording artist of the mid- 1960s was Johnny Rivers, a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana (born 1940), who had begun his musical career as a rockabilly stylist. Rivers's music combined many varied styles, from urban folk music to rockabilly, but retained its essential southern character.

By 1966 the Beatles and Bob Dylan (another musician devoted to southern musical forms) led the way toward "rock" as contrasted to rock and roll. Rock had a general, national (and even international) identity. It was a form oriented more toward concerts than dance and was linguistically and thematically sophisticated and complex. Only in the early 1970s, with the emergence of the Allman Brothers Band and the attendant success of Capricorn records of Maco, Georgia, did a specific, self conscious, and identifiable southern rock style evolve.

by Colin Escott, Hank Davis, and Martin Hawkins

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© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©