Back in 1909 Beale Street was the hub of the black community and Blues music. Every night club, dance hall, gambling den had a stage and live music. Every street corner had a jug band collecting pennies. Beale St to musicians was like Broadway to actors.
In the 50's Sam Phillips started recording the music at Sun Studios and he was instrumental in the birth of Rock 'n Roll. Beale Street was alive with music again. Even though there is still music coming from the bars and the street is blocked off at night for entertainers, Beale Street is looking tired and grotty. It is like a living museum of earlier dynamic times.
However, we enjoyed strolling up and down the famous street.
Bill chats to some buskers.
It was hard to decide which bar/restaurant to go in for lunch.
We found a place to eat with a stage and live band. It was fun being part of the history. (But my sand which was awful)
Bill was keen to visit Sun Studios while we were in Memphis, not that he was a Rock'n Roll fan but he is very interested in the history of recording music. This building is no longer a recording studio but a museum. The new studios are built behind.
We went on an interesting guided tour of the studio as it was back in the 50's. It is where Elvis as a teenager paid $4:00 dollars for Sam Phillips to record a song, with hopes of being asked back. It took a year before he was invited to play with the studio band. Sam still wasn't happy with Elvis until he heard him messing around in a break. He recorded "That's All Right" it was blues like he had never heard before. Rock'n Roll was born.
The Sun recording studio is just as it was back in the 50's. They still have the mike that Elvis used and visitors are allowed to touch it, which is unusual for a museum. But Bill enjoyed having a go.