The city of Memphis has launched a national campaign to help celebrate 50 years of soul music. The events (www.MemphisSoul50.com) turn the spotlight on the founding of Stax Records and Royal Studio, home to Hi Records. In honor of the anniversary year, the Concord Music Group will issue deluxe reissues from the Stax Records vault and reactivate the label.
Songwriters David Porter (left) and Isaac Hayes help kick off the celebration.
Photo: Marc Bryan Brown Photography
The celebration also showcases music-related landmarks in Memphis, including the Stax Museum of American Soul Music, Sun Studios, Graceland, Ardent Studios, the Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum and the Gibson Guitar Factory.
“I am thrilled to be celebrating this important milestone,” said Isaac Hayes. “I was part of Memphis soul from almost the beginning, and as the story continues, I am proud to help honor Memphis’ many remarkable achievements and those yet to come.”
“Memphis has stood at the crossroads of popular music, merging influences from blues to rock and soul,” said songwriter/producer/guitarist Steve Cropper. “No student of contemporary music can ignore the influence and importance of this city and its unique sound.”