Take exclusive video tours
around Sun Studios
are few studios that have had such an impact on the
World as Sun Studios in Memphis. The studio played host
to that famous first Elvis Presley recording but so
many other major artists have started off their carrers
at Sun. Some of the headline names that have recorded
at the recording studio include Roy Orbison, Johnny
Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and many, many more.
are delighted to present this very special behind the
scenes look in to the studio as it currently enjoys
a double role. By day the tourists can visit but at
night it reverts back to being a recording studio and
is available to hire. The two videos hopefully gives
you a flavour of what Sun Studios is all about and we
hope that you visit them, either as a tourist or as
addition to the Sun Studios videos we have a number
of related videos recorded in or around Nashville with
key people who worked at Sun in the past or have been
working closely with artsits that have historical associations
with Sun. These include Jack
Hale (Johnny Cash), John
Carter Cash (Johnny Cash!) and Cowboy
Jack Clement (engineered and produced at Sun).
One - Part
one of the Sun Studios feature
Two - Part
two of the Sun Studios feature
videos require Quick Time 7.0. The player is free and available
for PC and Mac.
would like to sincerely thank James Lott and all at Sun
Studios for allowing us the time to shoot this feature.
Thanks guys, we loved being there and this is one of
our favourite video features!
special thanks to Jack Hale for making this tour possible and to Johnny Jaskot of Babblefish.com for all his hard work in shooting and editing!
bit of history - but visit the official Sun Studios website to find out much more!
Sam Phillips opened Sun Studio as the Memphis Recording
Service in January, 1950 to record the blues greats
from the region who had no place else to record in the
bluesmen like B.B. King, Howlin Wolf, Bobby Blue Bland,
Rufus Thomas and Junior Parker recorded their first
In March, 1951 Jackie Brenston and the Delta Cats, with
Ike Turner on piano recorded, ROCKET 88 at Sun Studio.
ROCKET 88 is considered by most music historians and
by Sam Phillips himself to be the first Rock 'N' Roll
success of ROCKET 88 led Phillips to start his own record
label in 1952; the Sun Label.
Sam shared the tiny office with Marion Keisker, who
took care of most of the non-music end of the business.
She also greeted the teenaged Elvis Presley when he
came here in 1953 to make a personal recording, noting
in the studio log that he was a "good ballad singer".
In less than two years Sam Phillips took Elvis from
a complete unknown who had never played in public to
the most sought after singer in the country. The five
records that Elvis recorded at Sun Studio fused country,
blues and gospel music into a new sound that would literally
change music forever.
the studio would be filled with musicians hoping that
Phillips could work the same magic for them. Carl Perkins'
"Blue Suede Shoes" became Rock 'N' Roll's
first major hit, topping the pop, country and blues
charts. Johnny Cash became Sun's most consistent hitmaker.
Roy Orbison, Warren Smith, Billy Lee Riley, Charlie
rich and dozens more carried on the Rockabilly tradition
Elvis had begun. And Jerry Lee Lewis and his pumpin'
piano set the music world on fire, recording Sun's biggest
hits; "Whole Lot of Shakin'" and "Great
Balls of Fire."
1960, needing bigger quarters, Phillips closed the studio
and for the next 25 years barbers and businessmen replaced
the Rock 'N' Rollers. Then in 1985 Carl Perkins, Roy
Orbison, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis returned to
the then empty studio to record the Class of '55 album
and Sun Studio's second era of greatness began. The
studio was restored with Sam Phillips' help and in 1987
opened its doors as both a tourist attraction and a
working recording studio. Known for its relaxed and
creative atmosphere, Sun Studio has also played host
to the diverse talents of artists like Ringo Starr,
Def Leppard, John Fogerty, Tom Petty, U2, The Spin Doctors,
Def Leppard, The Tractors, Malcolm Yelvington, Michelle
Shocked, Gatemouth Brown, The Indigo Girls, Keith Sykes,
Dennis Quaid, Bonnie Raitt, Billy Swan, and The Gibson
Brothers are only some of the music greats who have
come to record at Sun Studio since it reopened.