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Sun Sessions

Wed May 07, 2003 7:28 am

This question is for all but Dr John may be the one with the answer. Were there any recordings made in Sun Studios during the sessions leading up to That's All Right Mama. I am refering to the process of Elvis, Scotty and Bill trying to find their "Sound"

Thanks in advance

Wed May 07, 2003 7:35 am

I don't know the answer. It is a possibility but also these tapes were probably re-used, so nothing left of importance.


Wed May 07, 2003 7:38 am

Doc, that's a nice theory and it is plausible You're talking about the second tape to create the echo, I am theorizing that one of the "other selections" could be the FIRST tape of that echo of "how do you think I feel". I don't think you know what those selections are.

Wed May 07, 2003 8:34 am

I too would buy the Sunrecords in their entirety ONE MORE TIME! They SHOULD release them complete with all takes. Though it would be nice to see BMG release the Hayride stuff officially, but then again is there much more anyway? Shame that history has been lost with both Studio and Live stuff.

I think that if a Sun sessions was released the 2 singles that were found are a MUST.

Is there anything wrong with having a box set of the Sun stuff with the Million Dollar Quartet as well?

Wed May 07, 2003 9:43 am

If it comes out as a box set, all I ask is if live stuff is on it, keep it on it's own Cd. Don't mix it with studio tracks. Please.
Also the title should reflect what's in the box. Not a title like Sun Sessions or Sun Recordings as this sounds like studio stuff.
Maybe "Sun Days" or some such title.

Wed May 07, 2003 1:47 pm

I like the Title 'Sun Days' or something along those lines.

Why not have a track list that covers the songs as they happened.

Sun Days

Disc 1 -

My Happiness
That's When Your Heartaches Begin
I'll Never Stand in Your Way
It Wouldn't Be the Same without You
3rd Acetate (if discovered??)
I Love You Because (master and alternate?)
Harbour Lights (Master and alternate)
That's All Right (Alternate)
That's All Right (Master)
Blue Moon of Kentucky (alt + master)
Blue Moon (master + alt)
Tomorrow Night (master)
I'll Nevre Let You Go (alt + master)
I Don't Care if the Sun Don't Shine (alts and master)
Just Because
Good Rockin' Tonight
That's All Right (Live on LA Hayride - first appearance)
Blue Moon of Kentucky (Live on LA Hayride - first appearance)
My Baby's Gone (alts)
You're A Heartbreaker
Milkcow Blues Boogie

Disc 2 -

The Same principle covering the period Jan 1955 - Dec 1955

All studio songs plus good quality Hayride recordings + Eagles Nest Show

Disc 3 -

The complete MDQ session and the final Hayride show taped a few days later

Disc 4 -

This disc could be all the other alternates not on Disc 1&2 and all the scratchy acetates and even the reverb tape for How Do You Think I Feel - just to complete the set and make it as comprehensive as possible.

It could be packaged in a 10 inch box with the front cover a photo of That's all Right 78 A Side anf the back the B Side. Inside a booklet with as many unseen photos as possible plus press cuttings and recording information.


Wed May 07, 2003 3:40 pm

Interesting take, Andrew.

I do agree with Sam that the live material should be on its own.
You could have CD1 and CD2 similar to the way "The Complete Sun Sessions" LP is laid out.


CD1 having all the masters and CD2 having all the alternates and acetates - including the Lubbock acetates.
CD 3 would be the MDQ session and CD 4 could be all the Hayride and live material from 1955 (Eagles Hall)

PS. Sam the "Sun Days" title sounds great!!! Maybe you should drop a note to BMG!!!

Wed May 07, 2003 6:45 pm

I am still wondering about the "how do you think i feel" tape. Can someone explain to me why they think it is a reverb or echo tape? The way I understand it, is after a song is recorded, two identical master tapes are made and played back to create the echo. Why would sam phillips take the time to produce a reverb master from a tape without elvis's vocal. Neither tape one or two would have his vocal since they would be identical. I would appreciate a logical explanation of this puzzle.

Wed May 07, 2003 10:38 pm

It has been explained. The comments on "How Do You Think I Feel" are not theory -- it is how Sam Phillips achieved the "Sun sound."

Additionally, if one gives Elvis' original issue Sun material a listen they will note that many of the vocals are taped with simple room ambiance.

The tape in question was run by Sam while Elvis, Scotty, Bill and Jimmie were readying themselves to cut a version of the above song.

Hope this clears up the mystery.

Wed May 07, 2003 11:02 pm

Several months ago here, someone claimed there was a "home tape" of either That's All Right or Blue Moon of Kentucky with Elvis and Scotty recorded BEFORE the Sun session.

I don't think I believe that, does anyone KNOW or have comments.

Thu May 08, 2003 1:08 am

Logistically, it would seem difficult to imagine a home tape recorder at Scotty's house on 983 Belz Street on Sunday, July 4, 1954. Would this have not made Elvis even more nervous than just coming over to jam on some tunes? And would not the manning of said recorder and mic/s have distracted Scotty from his guitar playing and evaluating of Elvis?

Additionally, Scotty never mentions a home rehearsal recording in his biography "That's Alright, Elvis" (Schirmer, New York, 1997) -- in the same book he calls the famous July 5, 1954 Sun Studio visit his <u>second</u>. The first of course being when he came in May with Doug Poindexter and the Starlight Wrangers to cut their Sun single "My Kind Of Carryin' On" / "Now She Cares No More For Me."

This all indicates any Elvis/Scotty rehearsal would fall the day of the formal session.

If anything of a rehearsal nature -- somehow -- exists today it is likely on a very worn acetate. Still, I'd pay money to have a copy of what songs might be on that disc. Wouldn't you?

Thu May 08, 2003 3:44 am

Good points, Doc.

Besides, wasn't the "discovery" of That's All Right spontaneous on July 5th?
I thought that was the story. Elvis was messing around a broke into a upbeat, pop version of "That's All Right Mama". I know I don't have all the details but that's the idea.
Anyway, if it was spontaneous, as the story goes, how could they have rehearsed it? (that's a rhetorical question)

Thu May 08, 2003 8:57 am

If perhaps an Elvis/Scotty rehearsal did not include "That's All Right" -- or any uptempo R&B -- then a later in the day rendition would be noted as spontaneous and unexpected.

The title "Sun Days" is not new. It was utilized for a 1980s documentary -- and recently issued on DVD with another similar effort: ... helvis.htm