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The Million Dollar Quartet [Kindle Edition]

Stephen Miller
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £19.95
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Book Description

Million Dollar Quartet’ is the name given to recordings made on Tuesday December 4, 1956 in the Sun Record Studios in Memphis, Tennessee. The recordings were of an impromptu jam session among Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Johnny Cash.The events of the session. Very few participants survive. Includes interviews with the drummer and the sound engineer.

A detailed analysis of the music played – and its relevance to subsequent popular music.

The early lives and careers of the quartet – where they were in 1956.

Relevant social and economic factors which meant that a massive audience of young people were keenly looking for a new kind of music they could call their own.

The “reunions” of surviving members of the quartet.

The emergence of the tapes, first on bootleg and then on legitimate CDs.

The genesis of the stage show and its reception – the enduring appeal of the music.

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Product Description

About the Author

Stephen Miller has had a lifelong interest in popular music in general and country music in particular. He was a regular contributor to Scot Country, a radio show broadcast from Edinburgh. He has written biographies of Johnny Cash, Dolly Parton and Kris Kristofferson (all published by Omnibus Press). He has recently been involved in the production of programmes relating to country music on BBC Radio 4: Married with four grown up children, Stephen Miller divides his time between Edinburgh and Nice.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1515 KB
  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Omnibus Press (15 April 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00CF4M86I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • : Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #922,812 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Million Dollar Quartet 24 Jun. 2013
By Brian
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
An excellent read into the background of the now famous recording session by the founding members of popular music in the 1950s.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars sun studio 24 Jun. 2013
By brian
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
having been to the sun studio last year and got the cd thought the book would be a good read was not dissapointed
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 19 Jun. 2015
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I haven't finished it yet, but what I have read is very interesting,.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.4 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Much New Info (aka, Carl Perkins was NOT from Jackson, MS) 4 July 2014
By Mark S. Crawford - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book seems to be an attempt to cash-in on the current attention generated by the musical of the same name and subject. The author brings little new information regarding this musically historic "reunion", nor the individuals who participated. I've never read a history related non-fiction book that didn't include footnotes, endnotes, a reference page, or a bibliography; this book has none (there is also no index). What the author does supply is a list of Further Reading that has nine titles, which includes biographies and autobiographies - most of which any fan of this period would have previously read. It's my opinion the author may have heavily relied on these sources for this book, but without proper citing, we'll not know.

What soured me on this book was the account of Carl Perkins. I lived in Mr. Perkins' hometown for several years where I got to meet him and his family - even worked with one of his sons and grand-daughters. Being a fan of his music, as well as the person, I read the account of Mr. Perkins with a watchful eye. To my dismay, the author commits an amateur mistake when it comes to Mr. Perkins' story: the author never mentions Mr. Perkins' home town as Jackson, TN, but Jackson, MS (p. 28). Furthermore, he specifically identifies a local venue, the Cotton Boll, as being in Jackson, MS (p. 35). It was NOT in Jackson, MS, it was south of Jackson, TN on state hi-way 45 - I've been there (it's since been torn down)! Another joint called the Sand Ditch, is said to be in Jackson (p. 36), but no state is given (it was located on the west side of Jackson, TN).

Another point that may irk Perkins' fans is the way one of Carl's childhood mentors is presented. Those who know the story will know that Uncle John Westbrook was more than ". . . an older man called John who played passionate blues and gospel songs on a battered old acoustic guitar when the day's work was finished (p. 32)."

This book could be a good read for those who not familiar with the participants and/or the night these music pioneers came together. Those who are more familiar with the stories will find little new information.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Capturing (Musical) Lightning in a Bottle! 13 July 2013
By Michael OConnor - Published on
On 4 December 1956, four up-and-coming singers came together, largely by accident, at a Memphis recording studio. Inevitably the four began an impromptu jam session, some of which was taped by studio engineers. And that spontaneous, informal get-together became the stuff of legend, the four individuals being Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis AKA 'The Million Dollar Quartet.' Author Stephen Miller recreates that singular moment in rock history in THE MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, JERRY LEE, CARL, ELVIS & JOHNNY, a 2013 Omnibus Press release.

After a brief stage-setting introduction, Miller relates the lives and careers pre-December 1956 of the so-called Million Dollar Quartet along with Sam Phillips, who played such a prominent role in the early success of the four. He then describes how the event played out and the songs that were sung/recorded and others that may have been sung before the tape started running. The post-December 1956 careers of all five individuals are covered as well as subsequent musical reunions featuring Cash, Perkins and Lewis. A concluding chapter covers the MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET stage show first produced in 2006.

Given the near-mythical status of that December 1956 occurrence, Miller had his work cut out for him regarding just what happened at the Sun Records studio 57 years ago. Little documentation existed; memories faded or morphed over the years; and so on. Using the definitive version of the session released in 2006, contemporary newspaper accounts, remisicences from the few remaining participants and other materials, Miller has crafted a fascinating, well-researched reconstruction of the Sun Studio session.

Music fans will enjoy Stephen Miller's book. It presents an entertaining, critical yet affectionate account of four talented singers who came together on a December afternoon and laid down 'good rocking tonight.' Highly recommended.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Million Dollar Quartet 17 Sept. 2013
By Carol Hummel - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I love anything to do with biography and history. Plus I grew up in the 50's. Saw the show on Broadway! FANTASTIC! What a great time that was!...........Carol A. Hummel
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 15 Jan. 2015
By Pete Borrelli - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Dad loved it!
1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars book was bought as a birthday present 4 Sept. 2013
By HENRY FRANCZAK - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
my wife is still reading the book and so far is very pleased with this gift so this was a very nice gift
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