"Sam Phillips and his Sun Records played an integral role during the formative years of rock 'n' roll and artists like Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lewis, and Roy Orbison belong in any serious music collector's library. What makes this CD of interest to more than merely the casual fan is the inclusion of some of Sun's lesser known artists.Billy Lee Riley was a session player for Sun, but also recorded with his band The Little Green Men. "Red Hot" is a rambunctious number and with Jerry Lee Lewis on piano, "Flying Saucers Rock 'n' Roll" is an equally raucus number. The version of "Mystery Train" included here is not Presley's souped-up classic, but a slowed down number by Herman "Junior" Parker with a soulful vocal delivery.Carl Mann gives the rockabilly treatment to Nat King Cole's 1950 No. 1 hit "Mona Lisa." Mann's version stalled at No. 25Warren Smith's "Ubangi Stomp" is rockabilly in the Carl Perkins mold. In fact, when I first head this, I thought it WAS Perkins.So if you're looking for a single disc to illustrate the importance of Sam Phillips and Sun Records, this will do the job more than adequately. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED"
Good but not Great
John Y. Ritz | Texas | 05/19/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Fours Stars because it is the Sun Story but... I have the vinyl and there are 8 songs that were left off the CD. They left off My Bucket's Got A Hole In It and High School Confidential, which are the two most egregious errors. A guy at Rhino Records told me they didn't get the clearances for the CD. Didn't make sense. Why didn't they get them for all formats? However this is a good start. If you can find the vinyl get it."
This CD's RED HOT!
Andre M. | Mt. Pleasant, SC United States | 04/21/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the good stuff that put the rock in rockabilly! Hard driving, hard pumping gritty poor-White Rhythm and Blues that is still a lot of fun to listen to nearly 50 years later. All the classics are here. Elvis, Bill, and Scotty doing "That's All Right Mama" (with apologies to Arthur Crudup), Warren Smith's "Ubangi Stomp," Charlie Rich's lovely "Lonely Weekends." Carl Perkins' "Honey Don't," and (to me), best of all, Billy Riley's underground classic "My gal is Red Hot/Your gal ain't doodely squat!" So is this CD! FUN FUN FUN! I DEFY anyone to sit still while listening to this!"
Country Music + R N B = ROCK AND ROLL!!!
chris meesey Food Czar | The Colony, TX United States | 05/02/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Rock and roll, which has been with us now for (at least) fifty years, was born when white country music was combined with black rhythm and blues. A few zealous visionaries, such as Memphis own Sam Phillips, played midwife to this birth. Sun Story is a compilation of the finest, rockingest, rollingest cool cats who recorded for Phillips label, Sun Records, in the mid-1950's. Here, we have rockabilly bopcat Carl Perkins with the original versions of "Blue Suede Shoes" and "Honey Don't", soul brother Little Junior Parker's smooth version of "Mystery Train," and The Killer, Jerry Lee Lewis (and his Pumping Piano)with no less than three scorchers: "Great Balls of Fire," "Whole Lotta Shakin'" and "Breathless". Twenty fabulous cuts in all and a great introduction to the Sun sound. There are even some "lesser lights" of the movement thrown in for good measure: Billy Riley and his (yes!) red-hot version of "Red Hot" (covered in the seventies by Robert Gordon and Link Wray) and the hilarious "Flying Saucer Rock 'N Roll", plus Warren Smith with the politically incorrect "Ubangi Stomp", later covered by the aforementioned Mr. Lewis. A great collection, to be sure. However, a few complaints. For my money, Roy Orbison was one of the greatest of the early rockers, yet "Devil Doll" is, to put it kindly, not one of his best efforts. ("Rockhouse" or "I'm Hurtin'" should have been chosen instead.) And, while Carl Mann made a noble attempt of the standard "Mona Lisa," he couldn't even begin to touch Nat King Cole's original. Johnny Cash's attempt at rockabilly, "Straight A's in Love," is good for a few laughs, but grows old quickly. Much better are the two country hits also included here, "Folsom Prison Blues" and "I Walk the Line". (Oh, for the days when country music truly had soul!) Charlie Rich, pre-Silver Fox, weighs in with two fine numbers, "Who Will the Next Fool Be?" and "Lonely Weekends," the latter sounding very much like Elvis himself. Finally, speaking of the King, Presley is well represented with two of his best (and least played on the radio) early efforts: "Good Rockin' Tonight" and his fine cover of Arthur Big Boy Crudup's "That's All Right, Mama". Altogether, a collection that will have you shakin' what God (and your mama) gave you. Get Sun Story right away, and pass out a few cigars to celebrate the "new" baby, Rock and Roll!!!"