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1951SESSIONS 1
January 1, 1951 to January 31, 1951

Studio Session for Sam Phillips, Probably 1951
Studio Session for Walter Horton, Probably January 1951 / Modern Records
Studio Session for B.B. King, January 8, 1951 / Modern Records

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

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

1951

This year, unemployment dipped to 3.3% in the US and new roads were built to take the ever increasing numbers of cars including the New Jersey Turnpike. Children were given more than any other time in previous history with guitar lessons and sets of Encyclopedias to improve their minds . The average family income was $3,700 per year and people had money to spend so cars became more luxurious and had more powerful engines with options for two tone paint, during this time things like turn signals were still an extra and most drivers still used hand signals to tell other drivers which way they were turning. Television continued to grow with popular programmes like "I Love Lucy" and the first tests for Color Television Pictures were broadcast from Empire State Building on June 25th. Europe continued to export many cars to the US including Volkswagen's and Austin's.

Martin Luther King Jr. graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity degree from Crozer Theological Seminary in Chester, Pennsylvania.

1951

Dragnet was one the many shows from the period that began on radio and moved over to television, Dragent was about police and parts of the show still remain in the memories from those old enough to have seen the series including part of the opening title and these words "Ladies and gentlemen: the story you are about to hear is true. Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent." The series ran on Television from 1951 - 1959, a new series was created and shown from 1967 - 1970.

1951

A big year for dulcet-toned crooner Nat King Cole, a rare black presence on the radio who was so butterscotch smooth he offended no one. Also thrilling audiences were the easy-listening jazz-pop sounds of Tony Bennett and Rosemary Clooney (Rosemary's cousin named George, who became an actor).

The first juke-box that plays 45 RPM records is introduced.

Howling Wolf and Joe Turner popularize the "shouters".

Gunter Lee Carr cuts the dance novelty "We're Gonna Rock".

1951

The white Cleveland disc jockey Alan Freed decides to speculate on the success of Leo Mintz's store and starts a radio program, Moondog Rock And Roll Party, that broadcasts black music to an audience of white teenagers.

He called himself ''The Moondog'' and the music ''rock and roll'', black slang for sexual intercourse. In 1952 Freed, Mintz and Lew Platt put on what is now considered the first rock and roll concert, the Moondog Coronation Ball, at the Cleveland Arena. Thousands of teenagers whites and blacks, rushed the gates to see the Dominos, Paul Williams, and Varetta Dillard. The commotion caused the concert to be shut down early, but, as the saying goes, rock and roll was here to stay

A wave of young black vocal groups spring up with variations of the style popularized by the Orioles. The Five Keys smooth harmonies hit with "The Glory Of Love", the Clovers combine tougher harmonies with southern-inflected blues and hit with "Don't You Know I Love You" and "Fool, Fool, Fool", kicking off a string of 15 straight Top Ten hits, the Dominoes gospel-based singing and racy lyrics land them the biggest hit of the decade with "Sixty Minute Man" which sells in such high numbers that it makes number 17 on the Pop Charts as well.

In Memphis Sam Phillips records Ike Turner's band with Jackie Brenston on lead for "Rocket 88", leasing it to Chess Records of Chicago where the alcohol fueled rocker tops the charts and further cements rock's future as a raucous, exciting and dangerous style of music.

Les Paul's dazzling electric guitar work on the number 1 Pop Hit "How High The Moon" with Mary Ford allows the song to cross over onto the rhythm and blues charts bringing together the diverse influences that would help form rock and roll.

1951

In 1951 Sam Phillips was incredibly busy in his part-time studio, recording as much of the local blues and rhythm and blues talent as he could. In the first couple of years of the Memphis Recording Service Sam's sessions included Memphis-area pianists Lost John Hunter, Phineas Newborn, Albert Williams, Louis Calvin Hubert , Mose Vinson, Ike Turner, William 'Strutcher' Johnson, Evans Bradshaw, Eddie Snow, Ford Nelson, and Jack Kelly. It was natural that a pianist with Billy Love's reputation among his peers would suit Phillips' needs and one day in January or February 1951, possibly even before Rosco Gordon was there, Billy Love duly appeared on Phillips' log sheets as the session pianist with harmonica bluesman Walter Horton on Horton's ''Little Boy Blue'' released on Modern Records.

In 1951 Roy Orbison had been appearing regularly on KERB Radio in Kermit.

Libya is granted its independence, followed by twenty other new African nations over the next ten years, a spur to black self-determination in the United States.

ALAN FREED - Popular New York City disc jockey for radio station WINS who is often credited with coining the phrase "rock and roll". Alan Freed, who was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, on December 15, 1922, was one of the most successful disc jockey's in the country until his career was ruined by the payola scandals of the 1950s. Worked at various small stations throughout Ohio, Alan Freed came to Cleveland in 1950 and began working for a TV station before picking up regular work at WJW radio at 3717 Euclid Avenue, an AM station with the powerful transmitter that reached a large part of the state.

Freed signed on to play classical music but then became friendly with Leo Mintz, owner of the town's Record Rendezvous store, who persuaded him that his future lay in playing rough, dance-able rhythm and blues, a black music style that was finding a following among the city's white youth.

In 1951 Freed went to the station bosses, got the go-ahead for a youth-oriented show, and then almost got fired, not for scrapping the station play list, but for playing records by black artists.

Listeners supported him, however, and he was given a free hand on the late-night shift-the Moondog Shift, as he called it. Soon he'd christened himself the Moondog and was whooping and screaming in between records, swigging whiskey on air, pounding telephone books with his fists to beef up the beat, talking to an imaginary studio dog, and referring to his listeners as Moondoggers or Moon Puppies.

The Moondog Rock and Roll Party initially attracted a black audience (most of whom thought this screaming disc jockey with jive like vocals was himself black), but whites soon picket it up, especially after the press brought the music to national attention following the riot at Freed's showcase gig at the Cleveland Arena in 1952. He became one of the first disc jockey's in the country to play records from the Chess and King labels, what Billboard up to 1949 had called race music, for a white, teenage audience. One of the things that got Freed into trouble was his co-composer credits on several songs, including "Sincerely" (Chess 1581) by the Moonglows and "Maybellene" (Chess 1604) by Chuck Berry.

The later package at Cleveland Arena featured Clevelander Screamin' Jay Hawkins, who had earlier boxed in a local Golden Gloves contest in this arena and was noted for stage props that included coffins, voodoo insignia, and a skull called Henry. The Moondog tours catapulled Hawkins to the crest of his career in 1957, when he appeared in the Mister Rock and Roll movie that starred Alan Freed. Hawkin's role as an African bush warrior with a bone through his noise angered the NAACP(*), however, which got the film company to cut parts out and even lobbied the National Casket Association to stop supplying the coffins for his stage act.

Alan Freed left for a job at New York's WINS in 1954. There he continued championing rhythm and blues and Alan Freed was the first disc jockey in New York City to play Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel" in 1956. In May 1958, an Alan Freed-organized concert held in the Boston Arena at 238 Street across Botolph Street, was about to start when a phalanx of Boston's finest stormed to the stage and turned to face the crowd, nightstick drawn. Freed, the show's emcee, was informed that the show would not be allowed to go on until everyone in the audience sat down. Freed instead egged on the crowd, got himself arrested, and caused the gig to be cancelled. Meanwhile, backstage, two of the performers on Freed's package tour had finally had enough of each other's company. The story goes that while Freed was arguing with the cops out front, Jerry Lee Lewis's father had a gun trained on Chuck Berry, who was in turn holding a knife to Jerry Lee's neck.

On Christmas Day 1956, Alan Freed promoted the first raucous rock and roll show at Brooklyn Paramount, University Plaza, Flatbush and DeKalb Avenue, Brooklyn at this longclosed concert hall, now part of Long Island University. The show with Fats Domino and Frankie Lymon was so successful that Freed soon became a millionaire. He had wisely arranged to take a large cut of the door takings rather than a fixed fee. The big stars of the day, Buddy Holly and the Crickets, Little Richard, and so on, played over the next two years, but the shows were stopped in 1958 after a riot at the Freed-sponsored gig in Boston. At one of Freed's last Paramount shows, the never-very-chummy Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis had a furious argument over who should top the bill. Berry claimed seniority, and so Lewis went on first and ended by setting fire to the piano with gasoline while still playing it. The crowd went wild. Off went Lewis, who turned to Berry and jeered, "Follow that, nigger".

After continued played rhythm and blues on WINS, money troubles and the payola scandal ruined his career; he died in 1965.

1951

In May or June 1951 Billy Love and his friend Richard Sanders appeared on a Rufus Thomas session for Chess records, ''Night Workin' Blues'', and then around July 1951 Love recorded with drummer Willie Nix on a session that produced the RPM disc '' Lonesome Bedroom Blues''. In October he was on another Rufus Thomas session, ''No More Dogging Around'', and it was reported by some contemporaries that Billy Love coached singer Bobby Bland in matters of stage presentation following his first recordings in December 1951 and his debut singing with the Rosco Gordon band.

If this is so, it lends weight to the view that Love was a veteran of the Beale Street theatres by that time. This is further backed-up by reports of Love being an accomplished arranger.

Certainly he was a regular at several clubs and bars. Calvin Newborn remembered that Love was among the musicians who often hung, around the store of theatre manager Robert Henry, looking for gigs. Talking of his friends like Billy who were part of the Florida Street crowd, Rosco Gordon told John Floyd, "The people in my band re mostly neighbours.

We would all go to Sunbeam Mitchells Club Handy and I would meet a lot of musicians singer Big Lucky Carter remembered, The greatest musicians you had was upstairs at Sunbeam Mitchell's. All of the musicians would come through up here. It was hard to find a hotel in those days. They'd stop by Sunbeams and play for their supper.

That was the baptizing place for musicians. If you come out of there, if they said you was a musician, you was a musician." We can imagine a proud Milton Billy Love stepping out into the post-jam session sunshine on many an occasion and, by all accounts, stumbling out on others after an evening of drink and dice.

1951

Rufus Thomas inherited the 'Sepia Swing Club' from B. B. King when King went on the road on the back of his burgeoning recording career. 'Sepia Swing Club' was on at 3pm. Rufus had already worked a 6.30 to 2.30 shift American Textile and he used to catch the streetcar to the radio station, often leaping into his chair at or just beyond the opening of the show, ready to take off "like a late freight" as he put it.

After a while he would get a ride in his friend's car and then from 1954 he travelled in his own automobile. His opening patter remained the same though: "Come in the club, we're ready and right/ Got records and jive, no fuss no fight/ This is Rufus Thomas of Sepia Swing/ Gonna try to make you laugh and sing''.

1951

In the 1951 Memphis phone book under ''Recording Studios'' there are three listed: Memphis Recording Service, KWEM Radio Station, and Berl Olswanger Music. (Oldwanger was dubbed ''Mr. Music of Memphis''. He broadcast locally on radio and television, and ran a music store at 1531 Union Avenue that included a recording studio.

JANUARY 1951

Sam Phillips cuts several audition acetates of Walter Horton for Modern Records.

Sam Phillips records B.B. King for RPM Records.

During January of 1951 the United States government began nuclear bomb testing at a test site in Nevada. After the initial development of the atomic bomb during the mid-1940s the U.S. had moved its test sites off of the country’s mainland and began using islands in the Pacific. Due to logistical and safety concerns the U.S. Government decided to move the testing back to the mainland in 1951 and chose a large portion of mountainous and desert land in Nevada, located about 65 miles away from Las Vegas, as their site. The first series of tests to be held at this new site was named Operation Ranger. Initially, many tests were atmospheric tests but because of the adverse health effects that were observed all of the tests were moved underground by 1962. A total of 928 nuclear tests were conducted at the Nevada Test Site between 1951 and 1992.

JANUARY 2, 1951 TUESDAY

Columbia released Lefty Frizzell's ''Look What Thoughts Will Do'' backed by ''Shine, Shave, Shower (It's Saturday)''.

JANUARY 5, 1951 FRIDAY

Slim Whitman recorded his first hit, ''Love Song Of The Waterfall'', at the KWKH Studio in Shreveport, Louisiana. The label will bill him on the single as ''Slim Whitman, The Smilin' Star Duster''.

JANUARY 6, 1951 SATURDAY

Lefty Frizzell tops the Billboard country chart with ''I Love You A Thousand Ways''.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

Deep in the Sun tape archives lies an uncredited tape box, marked only "Sam's poem - Do not erase". The inscription is old and almost surely in Marion Keisker's hand. It contains the recitation on this track.

A duly surprised Sam Phillips had little trouble identifying the artist. And so Sam C. Phillips, record producer before there were such things, talent scout and architect of careers too numerous to mention, finally makes his debut as a recording artist. His efforts took a half a century to appear, but were worth the wait.

STUDIO SESSION FOR SAM PHILLIPS
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE 1951

MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
STUDIO SESSION: PROBABLY 1951
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

He recalled: "I had a friend named Mary Lois Crisler back in high school in Florence, Alabama. I was very fond of her and one night I took her to see the John Daniel Quartet. They were playing nearby and we borrowed my brother's car and drove to see them. The highlight of the show for us was when Troy Daniel, John's brother, recited that poem from the Stamps-Baxter hymnal. We were both very impressed with it".

"Anyway, Mary Lois went off and got married to a guy in the Air Force. He was killed quite young and she moved around a bit, finally settling in Texas. Years later after I came to Memphis I got to thinking about Mary Lois and all that had happened to her so I decided to surprise her with that tape. I recited the poem in my best announcer's voice and sent it to her. That was around 1950. She was delighted with it''.

''It was still her favorite poem. Its one of mine too. I really think it does a fine job of revealing the things that matter in life", Sam recalls.

01 - ''WOULD ANYBODY CARE'' - B.M.I. - 2:23
Composer: - Stamps
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Unknown Date Probably Early 1951
Released: - 2000
First appearance: - Bear Family Records (CD) 500/200rpm BCD 16387-32 mono
SUN GOSPEL

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Sam Phillips - Vocal
Unknown Musicians

The true story about the poem is, that in Sam Phillips' high-school days, a girl named Mary Lois Crisler had moved to town from Moulton, thirty-five miles away, her father repaired old woodstoves at the smallest hardware store in town, and the family was extremely poor. There were mock-trail cases every week in a course Sam took in commercial law, and every week, Sam beat everybody, whether for the prosecution or the defense, unless he happened to run up against Mary Lois Crisler. ''Now, she didn't have as many friends in the class as I did, but when she got through with her case, she whipped my ass every time, but that taught me something. Now, here was the woman that I just absolutely wanted to whip more than the rest of the class put together, but probably I got afraid. And didn't know it. I got frightened to death that this woman was going to win and couldn't admit it (to myself)''. The lesson was clear: ''You can't let anybody get a hold of you and make something out of you that is not instinctively yours''. The result was ''Mary Lois Crisler was about the only girl at that time that I reckon I ever thought I was in love with''.

One time he took her to a John Daniel Quartet show that Sam's brother J.W. (Jud) was promoting for the DeMolay society, going out to Lovelace Community to borrow his brother Horace's 1937 Dodge for their date and impressing Mary Lois with his knowledge not just of the music but his personal acquaintance with some of the members of the quartet. The highlight of the concert was troy Daniel reciting an old poem called ''Would Anybody Care?''.

''If I had heavy burdens'', Troy recited with feeling, ''That I must bear alone

If I had grief and troubles
That others had not known
If I in my heart's deep sorrow
And nothing to compare
Would anybody comfort me,
Would anybody care?

If my life had been a failure
And I tried but could not win
If I became discouraged
And said, I'll never try again
If my heart is sad and lonely
Filled with sorrow and despair
Would anybody cheer me,
Would anybody care?

For Biography of Sam Phillips see: > The Sun Biographies <
Sam Phillips' Sun recording can be heard on his playlist from 706 Union Avenue Sessions on > YouTube <

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

Had it not been for the emergence of Little Walter, then Walter Horton would no doubt be (rightly) regarded as the greatest of the post-War harp players. This is the first known recording, and its a tour de force of harmonica-playing, demonstrating different techniques and frequent changes in tempo. It is, quite simply, one of the classic tracks of post-War blues.

Furthermore, its easy to see why the Biharis accepted two complete sessions of Horton's material after hearing this "Audition". Mention, too, must be made of the superb guitar accompaniment (Joe Willie Wilkins?) which echoes the harp in some passages and acts as a stunning counterpoint in others. All blues should be this good!

STUDIO SESSION FOR WALTER HORTON
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE FOR MODERN RECORDS 1951

MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
STUDIO SESSION: PROBABLY JANUARY 1951
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

It's widely assumed that this tour de force is Walter Horton's first known recording as a featured artist, although the acetate is undated and the recording isn't noted in Marion Keisker's logs. It first appeared in the early 1970s on the grammatically challenged Memphis Blues at Sunshine LP. Was it really recorded in January 1951? Who are the guys behind him? On both counts, we're unsure. The other side of the acetate held a white female singing Mitt Addington's ''Without Him Blues''. Addington first saw his name on Sun in 1953 when he co-wrote both sides of Big Memphis Marainey's record, but he was a pal of Keisker's and could have demo'd songs earlier than 1953. All we know for sure is that Walter Horton wasn't known as Little Walter after Walter Jacobs appropriated the name in September 1952, so this tune probably predates the fall of 1952. Adding a further layer of confusion, another ''Walter Instrumental'' was issued on Bear Family's Joe Hill Louis CD. The questions surrounding provenance and the marginal quality of the acetate notwithstanding, this recording pretty much defines what Walter Horton could do with a harmonica. You get the sense that he could have carried on awhile without running short of ideas. If this indeed dates to early 1951, it's easy to see why the Biharis accepted two complete sessions of Horton's material after hearing this test. Mention, too, must be made of the guitar playing which echoes the harp in places and acts as a counterpoint in others.

01 - "LITTLE WALTER'S INSTRUMENTAL" – B.M.I. - 2:53
Composer: - Walter Horton
Publisher: - Copyright Control
Matrix number: - None - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - Probably January 1951
Released: - 1986
First appearance: - Charly Records (LP) 33rpm Sunbox 105 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE BLUES YEARS 1950 - 1956
Reissued: - 1996 Charly Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDSUNBOX 7-1-6 mono
SUN RECORDS - THE BLUES YEARS 1950 - 1958

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
Walter Horton - Harmonica
Possibly Billy Love - Piano
Joe Willie Wilkins - Guitar
Unknown – Drums

According to harmonica player Walter Horton and had recently formed a duo with Riley B. King, ''I was just walking around one day and decided I'd go up to his studio. Joe Hill Louis was playing, and so I stopped in there and played a couple of numbers, and after that, Sam Phillips wanted me to record for him''. As if to bear out this account, Sam Phillips immediately dubbed the thirty-three-year-old Horton ''Mumbles'' as much for his dreamy nature as his manner of speech, but the instrumental sample that he sent to Modern on January 17, 1951, is a masterpiece of sound and tone, mixing a kind of ethereal lyricism with a focused attack, and while Horton's melodies may have derived from familiar tunes, in everything else his playing represented just what Sam was looking for, a free-flowing feel that had its origins solely in the artist's imagination.

For Biography of Walter Horton see: > The Sun Biographies <
Walter Horton's Sun recordings can be heard on his playlist from 706 Union Avenue Sessions on > YouTube <

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

JANUARY 8, 1951

Decca released two separate Red Foley singles: his solo recording of ''Hot Rod Race'' and a duet effort with Evelyn Knight, ''My Heart Cries For You''.

Sam Phillips recorded six more titles on Riley B. King at the beginning of January 1951, nothing he considered particularly outstanding, but the Bihari brothers appeared to be satisfied, and it resulted in another release a couple of months later. The two sides chosen for the single each provided a different glimpse of the singer's potential, with the first, ''My Baby's Gone'' (RPM 318), stamped by a makeshift rhumba beat that, just two years later, would become the basis for ''Woke Up This Morning'', one of his most enduring hits. The backside, ''Don't You Want A Man Like Me'', offered a slow crooned vocal that never quite caught fire and, like the first, seemed in the end curiously unfinished. To Sam it was B.B.'s disc jockey background as much as anything else, his professional affability coupled with an almost desperate personal desire to please, that stood as the chief impediment to his breaking free of the traces of conformity and convention. But he didn't sense from their reaction that the Bihari brothers were in any way displeased, they were, after all, just casting about for a hit, so, as a matter of pure pragmatism, he simply decided to look elsewhere, among some of the other equally gifted but less ''professional'' musicians who came into his studio, for that secret store of talent, that indefinable spirit that lay within the soul of every man, to which he felt that he alone could the unlocking key.

© - 706 UNION AVENUE SESSIONS - ©

King is a true visionary of blues. He was among the first to take blues out on the long highway and to see, on a grand scale, the connection between extensive touring and the sales of records. While King has been working to sell blues to the public, he has also been busy innovating and adding to the music. In his early days, King fused powerful, gospel-inflected vocals and stately, intricate, Texas-flavored blues guitar with the raw guts of Mississippi Delta blues, thus creating and perfecting a hybrid that has been an inspiration to rural and urban musicians alike.

His use of a large band with a powerful horn section, elaborate musical arrangements and even strings, also made him popular and influential in the blues world. Today he continues to build on the music, incorporating elements of jazz, funk, pop and soul. And few blues guitarists can match King's clean power and dexterity.

STUDIO SESSION FOR B.B. KING
AT THE MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICES FOR RPM RECORDS 1951

MEMPHIS RECORDING SERVICE
706 UNION AVENUE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
STUDIO SESSION: MONDAY JANUARY 8, 1951
SESSION HOURS: UNKNOWN
PRODUCER AND RECORDING ENGINEER - SAM C. PHILLIPS

01(1) - "FINE LOOKIN' WOMAN" – B.M.I. - 2:16
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1491 - Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-2-2 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951
And a detailed host of photographs and memorabilia.

01(2) - "FINE LOOKIN' WOMAN" – B.M.I. - 2:20
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1404 Master Take 2
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 1952
First appearance: - RPM Records (S) 78rpm standard single > RPM 348-A < mono
FINE LOOKIN' WOMAN / B.B. BOOGIE
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-2-3 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

01(3) - "FINE LOOKIN' WOMAN" – B.M.I. - 2:28
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1491 - Take 3 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-2-4 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

02 - "QUESTIONNAIRE BLUES" – B.M.I. - 2:57
Composer: - Riley B. King-Joe Josea
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1488 - Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 1968
First appearance: - First appearance: - Kent Records (LP) 33rpm KST 9011 mono
ANTHOLOGY OF THE BLUES - B.B. KING 1949-1950
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1-14 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

03 - "A NEW WAY OF DRIVING" – B.M.I. - 1:55
Composer: - Riley B. King-Sam Ling
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1490 - Take Not Originally Issued 1 -
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 1968
First appearance: - Kent Records (LP) 33rpm KST 9011 mono
ANTHOLOGY OF THE BLUES - B.B. KING 1949-1950
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-2-1 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

04(1) - "B.B. BLUES" – B.M.I. - 2:12
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1489 - Incomplete Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1-15 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

Solomon Hardy's squealing tenor sax wails throughout the mid-tempo ''B.B. Blues'', King shouting the blues full-throttle. The patriotic Korean War epic ''Questionnaire Blues'' and the double-entendre boogie ''A New Way Of Driving'' stem from the same session as ''B.B. Blues'' but had to wait a couple of decades to see light of day on that same historic Kent LP. Rounding out the session was the easy-swinging ''Fine Lookin' Woman'', issued as RPM 348 with Hardy squawking up a storm and is also on offer here in an alternate rendition.

04(2) - "B.B. BLUES" – B.M.I. - 2:29
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1489 - Take 2 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1-16 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

B.B. King had recorded for Bullet Records at the WDIA radio studio in 1949 before recording three singles for RPM at Sam Phillips' studio. This was the fourth. Phillips' willingness to court the unusual betrayed itself on ''B.B. Blues'', recorded on this session and pulled for release six months later. Solomon Hardy's wailing sax punctuated B.B's vocal to striking effect. While B.B. seemed quietly resigned to his misery, Hardy screamed in anguish. Pianist Ford Nelson was one of B.B.'s fellow disc jockeys on WDIA and performed with him as an on-air duo.

04(3) - "B.B. BLUES" – B.M.I. - 2:27
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1489 Master Take 3
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - June 1951
First appearance: - RPM Records (S) 78rpm standard single < RPM 323-A < mono
B.B. BLUES / SHE'S DYNAMITE
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

05(1) - "DON'T YOU WANT A MAN LIKE ME" – B.M.I - 2:21
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1470 - Take 1 - Not Originally Issued
Recorded: - January 8, 1951
Released: - 2002
First appearance: - Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1-12 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

05(2) - "DON'T YOU WANT A MAN LIKE ME" – B.M.I. - 2:19
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1470 Master Take 2 or Take 3
Recorded: - January 8, 1951 - Missing In Action
Released: - 1951
First appearance: - RPM Records (S) 78rpm standard single > RPM 318-A < mono
DON'T YOU WANT A MAN LIKE ME / MY BABY'S GONE
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

Both sides of RPM 318 served as intriguing tuneups for subsequent King gems. ''My Baby's Gone'', cut on 8 January 1951, is his first crack at what would morph into his horn-leavened early 1953 smash ''Woke Up This Morning''. The bubbly Latin rhythmic pulse is already in evidence and the lyrics are nearly identical, but the innovative tempo switch into full-blown jump mode that made ''Woke Up This Morning'' so distinctive isn't.

King takes ''Don't You Want A Man Like Me'' at a more deliberate pace than the sprightly south-of-the-border tempo of his 1954 L.A. treatment, concentrating on his vocal to the total abandonment of Lucille.

06 - "MY BABY'S GONE" – B.M.I. - 1:59
Composer: - Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1469 Master
Recorded: - January 8, 1951 - Missing In Action
Released: - 1951
First appearance: - RPM Records (S) 78rpm standard single > RPM 318-B < mono
MY BABY'S GONE / DON'T YOU WANT A MAN LIKE ME
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-1-11 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

07 - "SHAKE IT UP AND GO" – B.M.I. - 2:33
Composer: - Traditional Arranged by Riley B. King-Jules Taub
Publisher: - Modern Music
Matrix number: - MM 1805 Master
Recorded: - Probably January 8, 1951 - Missing In Action
Released: - 1952
First appearance: - RPM Records (S) 78rpm standard single RPM 355 mono
SHAKE IT UP AND GO / MY OWN FAULT, DARLIN'
The other side of 355 was "My Own Fault, Darlin'", a 1952 recording.
Reissued: - 2002 Ace Records (CD) 500/200rpm CDCHM2 835-2-5 mono
B.B. KING - THE MODERN RECORDINGS 1950 - 1951

Name (Or. No. Of Instruments)
B.B. King - Vocal and guitar
Solomon Hardy - Saxophone
Ford Nelson - Piano
James "Shinny" Walker - Bass
E.A. Kemp – Drums

For Biography of B.B. King see: > The Sun Biographies <
B.B. King's RPM recordings can be heard on his playlist from 706 Union Avenue Sessions on > YouTube <

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

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