If you want to experience some of Tennessee’s dark history, the Dark Side of Memphis Tour is highly recommended. The tour guides are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the subject matter, which revolves around criminals, prostitutes, murders, voodoo, and paranormal activity so it is just the perfect thing to do in October. With Halloween just around the corner, it is a great idea to get a group of friends together and learn about some of the more sordid details of Memphis history to get into the spirit of the holiday.
Jim Stewart established Satellite Records in 1957 and asked his sister Estelle Axton to help him expand the record label a year later. They purchased the Capital Theater in Memphis and turned it into a recording studio. The stage was converted into a control room, and the angled floor created a unique acoustical sound. When they discovered that another company was using the name Satellite Records, the siblings renamed their company Stax Records, which was a combination of the first letters of their surnames.
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Stax Records went on to launch the careers of many legendary performers, including Otis Reading, Isaac Hayes and the studio house band, Booker T and the MGs. The studio served as the venue where other well-known artists recorded their hit singles, including Wilson Pickett’s “In the Midnight Hour.” In competition with Motown and its “Hitsville, USA” studio, Stax Records placed the moniker “Soulsville, USA” on the theater’s marquee to highlight its unique R&B sound. The label produced more than 160 songs that made it onto the Top 100 chart.
Memphis has left an indelible mark on rock ‘n’ roll, the blues and barbecue. While you are visiting this famous port on the Mississippi, consider these top 10 family friendly attractions.
Take a stroll through the historical streets of Memphis and discover what really lurks in the shadows on the Memphis Ghost Tour. Narrated by tour guides and professional storytellers, history will come alive as you learn chilling but true tales of Memphis and her haunted heritage.
Take a tour of the most famous recording studio in the history of Rock N’ Roll. Sun Studio has produced more well-known musicians than any recording studio in the world. You won’t find this kind of memorabilia anywhere else. This studio is where country music and the blues came together to create an entirely new genre of music-Rock N’ Roll! Go back in time and see it all for yourself in a Sun Studio guided tour.
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The tour provides you with the opportunity to hear outtakes from historical sessions, including the first microphone session with Elvis. You will have the chance to re-live history and see tons of memorabilia that launched the music careers of such greats as Carl Perkins, B.B. King, Johnny Cash, Little Milton, Charlie Rich, Roy Orbison, Rosco Gordon, Howlin’ Wolf, Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and many other legends.