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flapjax at midnite (3)

Recreating everything in Sun Records sound

Studio engineer Matt Ross-Spang wasn't even born when most of Sun's most famous records were cut. Nonetheless, he's thought a lot about what makes them sound the way they do (transcript). Matt has been buying up old gear for a few years, returning the Sun Records studio to a vintage state (with a few exceptions), and he is still practicing "sonic archaeology," trying to figure out how Sam Phillips made records sound like Sun Records. There's more to it than the Sun tape echo. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 24, 2014 - 11 comments

A Canadian perspective on the Memphis Crisis Intervention Team model

The Walrus magazine looks into Toronto police shootings of the mentally ill and the Memphis Crisis Intervention Team model:

Memphis, one-quarter of Toronto’s size but with a homicide rate nine times higher, has developed a progressive approach to de-escalate high-tension confrontations, improve police attitudes toward those suffering from mental illness, and divert them from the criminal justice system. The Memphis Crisis Intervention Team model centres on dispatching specially trained beat cops to emergency calls as quickly as possible, and giving them the authority to take charge of the scene. That approach triggered a revolution in policing that has now been emulated in 2,700 jurisdictions across the US, including large urban centres such as Chicago and Los Angeles. A handful of Canadian cities, among them Hamilton and Vancouver, have also adopted the CIT model. While the TPS has not, senior officials claim that all of its 5,500 uniformed officers receive some training in how to handle mental illness, which makes the recent proliferation of shootings that much more perplexing.
posted by porn in the woods on Jul 3, 2014 - 11 comments

Memphis's finest, in top form

Fans of classic southern R&B and soul, and I'm talking the Stax variety, should get down on their knee and genuflect toward Norway, and then sing the praises of the BBC down every corner and alleyway of the city of Memphis. Why? Well, for hosting and for documenting a sweaty, burning, solidly funky evening back in 1967: Otis Redding & Friends Stax Volt Revue
posted by flapjax at midnite on Feb 4, 2014 - 28 comments

Cue the John Phillip Sousa

Though the original Peabody Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee opened its doors nearly 150 years ago, many would place its true birth at around 1940 when they first began the Peabody Duck March. The tradition has drawn people from far and wide to watch the mallards in residence make their morning commute from their rooftop palace to the fountain in the lobby. If you can't get to to Memphis, there is another Peabody in Orlando that also holds a Duck March, but don't bother with Little Rock (The Peabody there held their last march in May before being converted to a Marriott). Oh, and if you happen to shell out enough dough to stay the night, don't forget your complimentary duck soap.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Aug 17, 2013 - 13 comments

But they'll get theirs and we'll get ours if you can / Just hold on

Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me. With drummer Jody Stephens as their sole surviving original member, "the definitive story of the greatest band that never made it" is finally in theaters around the U.S. and on iTunes. One of rock's most mythic acts, the music fanatic's secret handshake, and (in the words of Robyn Hitchcock) a letter written in 1971 that didn't arrive till 1985 -- whatever metaphor best conjures up the mixture of beauty, chaos, and tragedy that defines the band, newcomers and long-standing members of the cult also shouldn't miss Don’t Lie to Me: An Oral History of Big Star. [more inside]
posted by scody on Jul 9, 2013 - 41 comments

The Memphis Group

Ettore Sottsass was an industrial designer who was born in Innsbruck, Austria. Famous for his My Valentine typewriter design and his geometric enamel designs. [more inside]
posted by panaceanot on Jun 14, 2013 - 15 comments

RIP mister bassman, Donald "Duck" Dunn

Millions may know him best from one of the only lines he delivered in the Blues Brothers movie: "We had a band powerful enough to turn goat piss into gasoline". Others who notice these things will remember him as the guy who also played the bass in the Blues Brothers band. And those for whom Stax records and the Memphis sound are important will know him as the four-string foundation of the great Booker T and the MGs, and the man who lent his solid, no-frills bass lines to many a tune by soul luminaries Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett and lots of other greats. Memphis-born bassman Donald "Duck" Dunn has died while on tour (along with fellow legend and bandmate Steve Cropper) in Tokyo. RIP, Duck Dunn, and if there's any goat piss in heaven, I know you're gonna turn it into gasoline up there, too.
posted by flapjax at midnite on May 13, 2012 - 112 comments

Rock and roll is here to stay

Alex Chilton (of the band Big Star) died two years ago today. Here's a choir singing Big Star's song "Thirteen."
posted by BoringPostcards on Mar 18, 2012 - 26 comments

Music, Movies, Microcode, and High-Speed Pizza Delivery

Le Blues De Memphis — behind the scenes at STAX & FAME Recording Studios (1969) and Hollywood Blues, a 1969 Hollywood Recording Session. Just a sample of the vintage 50s, 60s & 70s music, movies, microcode and high-speed pizza delivery at Bedazzled.tv. [sacré bleu]
posted by netbros on Jan 31, 2012 - 7 comments

Something is happening in our world: Memphis, Cairo, Madison

Something is happening in our world. The masses of people are rising up. And wherever they are assembled today, whether they are in Johannesburg, South Africa; Nairobi, Kenya; Accra, Ghana; New York City; Atlanta, Georgia; Jackson, Mississippi; or Memphis, Tennessee -- the cry is always the same: "We want to be free."
Forty-three years ago today, a man was killed while protecting workers' rights to bargain collectively.
posted by orthogonality on Apr 4, 2011 - 54 comments

teenager opening fire on two West Memphis police

"At this point, his 16-year-old son Joseph Kane comes out shooting with an AK-47." A dashcam video from a police SUV shows a teenager opening fire on two West Memphis police officers before taking off in a van with his father. Subsequent helicopter footage reveals a third occupant of the van escaping unharmed. The Game and Fish Officer who rammed his truck into the van most likely saved the lives of two wounded officers. Full Text. [more inside]
posted by thisisdrew on Jun 30, 2010 - 77 comments

Hot Barbeque!

When we reach these, the bleakest and coldest days of winter, my mind inevitably turns towards the warm days of summer and one of America’s favorite pastimes: Barbeque. [more inside]
posted by shiu mai baby on Feb 17, 2010 - 74 comments

Willie Mitchell, RIP

The man behind the classic sound of Al Green, Memphis producer and soulmeister supreme Willie Mitchell has passed on. Many of the Al Green sides are legendary, of course, and very well known (as is the fantastic "I Can't Stand the Rain, by Ann Peebles), but be sure and head over to the excellent Funky 16 Corners where you can hear three of his lesser-known but deeply grooving productions. Fat stuff. So long, Willie Mitchell, and thanks for the wonderful music.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Jan 6, 2010 - 24 comments

Big Star

"In 1971, Memphis act Big Star laid down tracks for what became one of the greatest rock albums of all time, the aptly-titled "#1 Record." During the historic sessions, bassist Andy Hummel and co-founder Chris Bell shot the following footage" + Nightime + Thirteen + Kangaroo
posted by vronsky on Aug 26, 2009 - 48 comments

"I'm not the best piano player in the world, but I've got damn good taste"

Memphis music legend Jim Dickinson has died. Dickinson's full credits are as impressive a resume as you'll find over the past 40 years: session player for many, including the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and Aretha Franklin. Producer for albums by Jason and the Scorchers, Big Star, the Replacements, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, and Mudhoney. Among his survivors are sons Cody and Luther of the North Mississippi All-Stars. His death comes one week after a benefit show in his honor headlined by John Hiatt. R.I.P., Jim.
posted by Ufez Jones on Aug 15, 2009 - 25 comments

Sourhern photographer William Eggleston

William Eggleston...an American(a) photographer takes intensly colorful photographs of junk, hotel rooms, road sides. Its been done by lots of photographers, and unintentional imitators, but he's made a real name for himself. So much depends upon a red wheel barrow glazed with rain water beside the white chickens.
posted by celerystick on May 1, 2009 - 17 comments

“…If you stand up straight, people can’t ride your back. And that’s what we did. We stood up straight.”

When Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated April 4, 1968, he was helping sanitation workers in Memphis form a union. In 1967, SCLC initiated the Poor People's Campaign to unify the African-American civil rights movement with working people's movements more generally. In MLK's words, "It must not be just black people, it must be all poor people. We must include American Indians, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, and even poor whites." [more inside]
posted by univac on Apr 4, 2009 - 20 comments

"Eat these [bleeping] ribs . . . then tell me about [bleeping] Texas!"

Bobby Egan: Restaurateur and Amateur Diplomat. [more inside]
posted by absalom on Apr 10, 2008 - 7 comments

New Evidence in the case of the West Memphis 3

New evidence in the case of the West Memphis 3 claims that "there was no DNA from the three defendants found at the scene, the mutilation was actually the work of animals and at least one person other than the defendants may have been present at the crime scene." [previous thread]
posted by billysumday on Oct 30, 2007 - 40 comments

Wey oh wey oh wey oh wey oh.

Fascinated by Egyptian archaeology? View and learn all about the discoveries in Giza, the Valley of the Kings (and Queens), Memphis and Saqqara and the Sphinx from the comfort of home. Depending on today's pesky sandstorms and time of day, you may even be able to see the pyramids from the comfort of your couch. Want to go inside? Yeah, me neither.
Previously.
posted by miss lynnster on May 16, 2007 - 11 comments

Are You Jewish Tonight?

Elvis: King of the Rock 'n' Roll Jews? Unlike George Allen, Elvis proudly embraced his Jewish heritage. Through his mother's side of the family, Elvis could trace his lineage back to his Jewish great-grandmother, Martha Tackett, which makes Elvis Jewish by matrilineal descent. A former shabbos goy who did chores on the Sabbath for a rabbi in Memphis, Elvis had his biggest-selling success with a #1 hit by a Jewish songwriting team. Known to wear a Hebrew Chai pendant and to donate to Jewish charities in Memphis, Elvis also put the Star of David on his Mom's gravestone.
posted by jonp72 on Oct 2, 2006 - 49 comments

A single tear graced her cheek.

"This statue proves that Jesus Christ is Lord over America, he is Lord over Tennessee, he is Lord over Memphis."
posted by naomi on Jul 5, 2006 - 145 comments

The best guitarist you never heard in your life. Shawn Lane is an underground hero in guitar circles. Born 1963 in Memphis Tennesee, he joined Black Oak Arkansas at the age of 13 , beat Ted Nugent in a cutting contest, and made Billy Gibbons fall off his bar stool. Shawn now plays with the Jonas Hellborg Trio - Windows media clip here. I admit that fusion and guitar heroics are not to everyone's liking. But, if you like this kind of thing, you must agree that this guy is the the real deal.
posted by crunchburger on Sep 20, 2002 - 19 comments

Oops, I guess we missed Elvis' return (and so did everyone else). This guy claims to have met the ghost of Elvis, and that 'The King' wrote songs for him from the grave. Need a bigger laugh? Then check out the audio clips on the home page.
"Ladies and Gentlemen, Elvis has most definitely left this universe!"
posted by Sal Amander on Aug 23, 2001 - 6 comments

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