The Memphis Masters is a limited video series celebrating various albums from the iconic Stax Records label, showcasing its enduring musical legacy, as well as its influence on Memphis, TN. Created in partnership with Memphis Record Pressing and Memphis Tourism, and directed by Andrew Trent Fleming of TheFilmJerk Media, the multi-part series was shot in several locations around the city—also known as the home of blues, soul and rock ’n’ roll—including such historic landmarks as Sam Phillips Recording Service, Royal Studios and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music. With interviews spanning multiple generations of artists, The Memphis Masters offers insight from the likes of Robert Trujillo (Metallica), Grace Potter, Matt Berninger (The National), Walshy Fire (Major Lazer), Steve Selvidge (The Hold Steady) and producer Boo Mitchell—all of whom were inspired by the label’s music and the albums being reissued. The Memphis Masters also includes interviews with Stax legends like Steve Cropper, Jody Stephens (Big Star), James Alexander (the Bar-Kays) and Booker T. Jones, plus longtime label publicist Deanie Parker and songwriter Bettye Crutcher, who share their memories from the label’s heyday.
Each episode—available on YouTube—will revolve around an album or collection from a singular artist or group on Stax’s roster, starting with Melting Pot from Booker T. & the M.G.’s. Other titles covered include Gotta Groove from The Bar-Kays, Home from husband-and-wife songwriting duo Delaney & Bonnie, Who’s Making Love from Johnnie Taylor and Victim of the Joke?…An Opera from acclaimed producer and songwriter David Porter. The series will take a broader view of The Staple Singers, who will be honored with a deluxe, seven-LP box set, Come Go With Me: The Stax Collection, available in early 2020. All of the standalone titles have been cut from their original analog tapes by Jeff Powell at Memphis’ Take Out Vinyl and pressed on 180-gram vinyl at Memphis Record Pressing. The majority of the single albums will be available November 1st, while LPs from Porter and Taylor will be reissued on December 6th.
Y’all ain’t heard Memphis like this!