RF: What makes
Memphis so great? Well, after W.C. Handy, see back in the early nineties, in
the early 1900s, I mean, Handy did the blues. He was the first one to put it
on paper. And he did all this right there on Beal Street. You have cities
now who say that we are home of the blues: Chicago, Texas, Mississippi. But
the people from Mississippi during that time came to Memphis to do the
blues. They'd stop off on Beal Street and come in there and, and Beal Street
was the black man's haven. And when he'd come here everything that he
thought of that was negative, when he hit Beal Street, man, lit up, lit up
like a slot machine or, or a grandpappy on a Saturday night, boy. Everything
was fired up. He left all of those things behind him. Beal Street was the
place, that's where Handy wrote the blues and Handy passed them on to all of
the other blues singers of today. But that was the foundation of the blues,
Memphis, Tennessee. And after the blues, you know, blues is, I would think
is the foundation of all of it anyway, all the rest of that music: jazz,
rock and roll and all the rest of the music you got coming, was built on the
blues. If you listen to jazz, listen to what's under it and see what you
hear. You can take a piece of the blues and build anything you want right on
the top of the blues. But jazz was not there then. Jazz came much later.
Jazz is, is an individual thinking that was built on top of the blues. All
the artists built on the blues but blues is the mother of all of
This is Rufus Thomas right here at WDIA in Memphis,
Tennessee. Hey, pick up, I'm young, I'm loose, I'm full of juice, I got to
go so what's the use. We're feeling gay though we ain't' got a dollar, Rufus
is here, so hoot and holler and here is B.B. King at 3 o'clock in the
morning on WDIA.
Ah ha, she cried as she lays a
wooden leg and then she dies. Right now I got to get, I got to go and I got
to left, I got to vamoose, in fact I got to disappear from here. That means
a high low, jip, jack and again and I'm gone.
is Rufus Thomas at WDIA and look out. Here comes Jackie Brinston right here
on WDIA with the hottest song in this man's time - "Rocket '88".
Rufus is right here WDIA, look out friend, ha, ha one of the
boys just hit this man's town and one of the hottest records that's we got
on going on for the day, boy from Tupelo, Mississippi. Yes, you guessed it.
It's Elvis Presley with "Good Rockin’ Tonight".