Includes liner notes by Colin Escott.
The Sun label and its owner, Sam Phillips, are synonomous with early Rock & Roll. Primarily a blues label of black artists, it changed (in the mid-50s) into a powerhouse of white male performers who fused blues and country styles. Phillips groomed young artists, giving them their first chance to record, and in the process launched some of the most famous musicians in country and rock music: Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Jerry Less Lewis, Roy Orbison, Bill Justis, Carl Mann and Charlie Rich.
Personnel: Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Carl Mann, Carl Perkins , Charlie Rich (vocals).
Liner Note Author: Colin Escott.
Photographer: Colin Escott.
Focusing on Sun boss Sam Phillips' four top artists -- Elvis, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, and Jerry Lee Lewis -- this hits package takes in some of the most important sides from the first days of rock & roll. Combining country, blues, R&B, and rockabilly, these future legends brought the musical predilections of Southern teenagers to bear on the world. And while this mix only scratches the surface, one can't really argue with a set that includes Presley's "Mystery Train," Perkins' "Dixie Fried," Cash's "I Walk the Line," and Lewis' "Breathless." Most of their other big, early smashes are also included, along with one-offs by fellow Sun singers Roy Orbison ("Ooby Dooby"), Charlie Rich ("Lonely Weekends"), and Bill Justis ("Raunchy"). A fine introduction to one of the most important labels in popular music. ~ Stephen Cook