Thursday, July 31, 2003

ROCK AND ROLLBIT: No less an authroity than the A&E Channel called him the Man Who Invented Rock & Roll. Sam Phillips, the man who founded Sun Records, died on Wednesday. He was 80 years old. Besides his famous discovery of Elvis, Phillips was instrumental in kickstarting the careers of Carl Perkins, Joe Hill Lewis, Ike Turner, BB King and Johnny Cash - the only artist to release an album on his label.

In the sixties, he swapped from music to investments (in those days, two separate industries) and hit gold by pumping cash into the chain which went on to become Holiday Inn. Quite sweetly, and probably accurately, his son Knox reckons no other Mephian influended the world as much as his Dad.

I always hated (the term) rockabilly. I hated country-and-western (too) because it was two different things. Hillbilly I didn't mind too much, but when you stuck rock in front of billy . . . to me it was rock and roll. Whether it was black rock and roll or white rock and roll, it was rock and roll - Sam Phillips on genre-naming.


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