Two RV Gypsies: Full-Time RVers
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The two RV Gypsies (plus one)
toured Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee
July 16, 2014

sign about Memphis and Rock 'N Roll
sign about Elvis Presley and Sun Records

history clipart bookSun Studio is a recording studio opened by rock pioneer Sam Phillips at 706 Union Avenue in Memphis, Tennessee on January 3, 1950. It was originally called Memphis Recording Service, sharing the same building with the Sun Records label business. Reputedly the first rock and roll single, Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats' "Rocket 88" was recorded there in 1951 with song composer Ike Turner on keyboards, leading the studio to claim status as the birthplace of rock and roll. Blues and R&B artists like Howlin' Wolf, Junior Parker, Little Milton, B.B. King, James Cotton, Rufus Thomas, and Rosco Gordon recorded there in the early 1950s.

Rock and roll, country music, and rockabilly artists, including Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Charlie Feathers, Ray Harris, Warren Smith, Charlie Rich, and Jerry Lee Lewis, recorded there throughout the mid to late 1950s until the studio outgrew its Union Avenue location. Sam Phillips opened the larger Sam C. Phillips Recording Studio, better known as Phillips Recording, in 1959 to take the place of the older facility. Since Sam had invested in the Holiday Inn Hotel chain earlier, he also recorded artists starting in 1963 on the label Holiday Inn Records for Kemmons Wilson. In 1957, Bill Justis recorded his Grammy Hall of Fame song "Raunchy" for Sam Phillips and worked as a musical director at Sun Records.

In 1969, Sam Phillips sold the label to Shelby Singleton, and there was no recording-related or label-related activity again in the building until the September 1985 Class of '55 recording sessions with Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny Cash, produced by Chips Moman.

In 1987, the original building housing the Sun Records label and Memphis Recording Service was reopened by Gary Hardy as "Sun Studio," a recording label and tourist attraction that has attracted many notable artists, such as U2, Def Leppard, Bonnie Raitt, and Ringo Starr.

In 2005, Brian Setzer (of Stray Cats fame) released his "Rockabilly Riot Vol. 1: A Tribute To Sun Records" album, recorded at Sun and featuring various Sun Records songs, some hits and some obscure. In 2007, Canadian rockabilly band the Kingmakers recorded a selection of originals and classics such as Elvis Presley's "That's All Right" at Sun Studio, released as their first CD "Live at SUN Studio". In May 2009, Canadian blues artist JW-Jones recorded with blues legend Hubert Sumlin, Larry Taylor and Richard Innes for his 2010 release at the studio. In July 2009, John Mellencamp recorded nine songs for his album No Better than This at the studio. Wes Paul and his group the Wes Paul Band are recording their album at Sun this forthcoming May. In 2011, Chris Isaak released "Beyond the Sun", a collection of songs recorded at Sun Studio, most of which are cover versions of songs originally released on Sun Records.

Above quote from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

large guitar outside Sun Studios
entrance to Sun Studio

The two RV Gypsies and Karen's sister took a tour of "the most famous recording studio in the world". Tours are open daily from 10 AM until 6 PM. Tours are given at the bottom half of every hour from 10:30 AM through 5:30 PM. There is a free shuttle from/to Graceland and The Rock N Soul Museum;and free parking behind Sun Studio.

Kids 5-11 years were complimentary. Children under 5 are not permitted.)

Adult tour price at this time was only $12 (+tax). Plan an hour to an hour-and-a-half to enjoy the tour and take in all the memorabilia in the cafe. And of course, there is a gift shop.

outside the building of Sun Studio
sign: Sun Studio is a National Historic Landmark

Ilse Blahak singing at Sun Studio in Memphis. The X on the floor is where Elvis Presley stood to record records. Oops - Ilse missed the mark.

Ilse BLahak singing at Sun Studio in Memphis.

The two RV Gypsies relaxing outside of Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee

The two RV Gypsies relaxing outside of Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee
The two RV Gypsies relaxing outside of Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee

Menu for the two RV Gypsies Adventures
in Memphis Tennessee - July 2014

Travel to Memphis

Memphis KOA and sunsets

World Famous Beale Street

Memphis - statues, murals and more

Mud Island

Graceland, Heartbreak Hotel and more

Sun Studios (this page)

Rock N Soul Museum

choose a new page from below

go to Nashville, the next adventure of the two RV Gypsies AFTER you have viewed all ten (10) sites above, please continue on to Nashville, Tennessee - the Gaylord Opryland Hotel, the Grand Ole Opry, Country Music Hall of Fame and more.