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Recap: 60 Years of Rock 'n' Roll Celebration in Memphis

July 07, 2014



Memphis celebrated the 60th anniversary of rock 'n' roll this past weekend with a variety of rockin’ events across the city known as the Birthplace of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

On July 5, 1954, Elvis walked into Memphis Recording Service, now known as Sun Studio, and recorded a fast version of Arthur Crudup’s “That’s All Right” with guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black. In honor of this special anniversary, the action packed weekend included a fireworks show, live music concert, new exhibit opening and much more.

The festivities kicked off Friday evening when the Memphis skyline was filled with fireworks set to classics by the King of Rock 'n' Roll in a 60th anniversary musical salute to Elvis Presley. Thousands gathered on the banks of the mighty Mississippi for the exciting show, fit for a king.

On Saturday at Sun Studio, the epicenter of "The Big Bang of Rock 'n' Roll," the celebration continued with the opening of their Dewey Phillips exhibit which honors the disc jockey who first played "That's All Right" on his Red, HOT & Blue radio show. Members of the Phillips family joined on stage to place the needle on vinyl as the crowd listened to Elvis’ "That's All Right" from a record player.

The historic Levitt Shell and Memphis musicians honored not only Elvis, but the full breadth of the Memphis music story. The all-star lineup of performers included Joyce Cobb and Andy Childs and featured classics from Memphis musicians Elvis, Booker T & the MG's, Sam & Dave, Al Green and The Staples Singers.

If you weren't able to be in Memphis for this special celebration, check out the photos from the festivities on our Facebook Page!

Complete Recap of 60 Years of Rock 'n' Roll