july 1953


On this day in music history: July 18, 1953 - An eighteen year old truck driver named Elvis Presley makes his first recordings at the Memphis Recording Service (aka Sun Records). The 78 acetate disc contains the songs “My Happiness” and  "That’s When Your Heartaches Begin". The disc is recorded as a birthday gift for his mother Gladys. The receptionist Marion Keisker asks Presley what type of singer he is, which he replies “I sing all kinds”. Then after asking him what he sounds like , Elvis states “I don’t sound like nobody”. After the brief session, Keisker plays the recordings for her boss Sam Phillips, who calls Presley back to make more recordings in the following months. Phillips pairs Presley up with guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, and the trio begin working together. The original acetate (the only surviving copy, since the tape was erased following the session) with Elvis’ first two recordings are officially released ten years after Presley’s death in 1987. For many years, the record has been in the possession of Presley’s high school friend Ed Leek. After numerous attempts to sell disc, it is finally purchased by rock musician Jack White in 2015 for $300,000. White then issues it on a limited basis on Record Store Day in April of 2015, as a 10 inch 78 RPM disc, even replicating the original typewritten labels on the original acetate.

Yes, I was infatuated with you; I am still. No one has ever heightened such a keen capacity of physical sensation in me. I cut you out because I couldn’t stand being a passing fancy. Before I give my body, I must give my thoughts, my mind, my dreams. And you weren’t having any of those.
—  The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, July 1950-July 1953