April 9, 1932 - January 19, 1998

Listen to Carl's Music


Thoughts on Carl ...

Posted: May, 2000. While some ill-informed revisionist writers of rock history would like to dismiss Carl Perkins as a rockabilly artist who became a one hit wonder at the dawn of rock & roll's early years, a deeper look at his music and career reveals much more. A quick look at his songwriting portfolio shows that he has composed "Daddy Sang Bass" for Johnny Cash, "I Was So Wrong" for Patsy Cline, and "Let Me Tell You About Love" for the Judds, big hits and classics all. His influence as the quintessential rockabilly artist has played a big part in the development of every generation of rocker to come down the pike since, from the Beatles' George Harrison to the Stray Cats' Brian Setzer to a myriad of others in the country field as well. His guitar style is the other twin peak -- along with that of Elvis' lead man Scotty Moore -- of rockabilly's instrumental center, so pervasive that modern day players automatically gravitate toward it when called upon to deliver the style, not even realizing that they're playing Carl Perkins licks, sometimes note for note. As a singer, his interpretation of country ballads is every bit as fine as his better known rockers. And within the framework of the best of his music is a strong sense of family and roots, all of which trace straight back to Carl's humble beginnings.

He was born to sharecroppers Buck and Louise Perkins (misspelled on his birth certificate as 'Perkings') and was soon out in the fields picking cotton and living in a one country shack with his parents, older brother Jay and his younger brother Clayton. Working alongside Blacks in the field every day, it's not at all surprising that when Carl was gifted with a second hand guitar, he went to a local sharecropper for lessons, learning first hand the boogie rhythm that he would later build a career on. By his teens, Carl was playing electric guitar and had recruited his brothers Jay on rhythm guitar and Clayton on string bass to become his first band. The Perkins Brothers Band, featuring both Carl and Jay on lead vocals, quickly established themselves as the hottest band in the get hot or go home cutthroat Jackson, Tennessee honky tonk circuit. It was here that Carl started composing his first songs with an eye toward the future. Watching the dance floor at all times for a reaction, Perkins kept reshaping these loosely structured songs until he had a completed composition, which would then be finally put to paper. Carl was already sending demos to New York record companies, who kept rejecting him, sometimes explaining that this strange new hybrid of country with a Black rhythm fit no current commercial trend. But once Perkins heard Elvis on the radio, he not only knew what to call it, but knew that there was a record company person who finally understood it and was also willing to gamble in promoting it. That man was Sam Phillips and the record company was Sun Records, and that's exactly where Carl headed in 1954 to get an audition.

It was here at his first Sun audition that the structure of the Perkins Brothers Band changed forever. Phillips didn't show the least bit of interest in Jay's Ernest Tubb-styled vocals, but flipped over Carl's singing and guitar playing. A scant four months later, he had issued the first Carl Perkins record, "Movie Magg" and "Turn Around," both sides written by the artist. By his second session, he had added W.S. Holland -- a friend of Clayton's -- to the band playing drums, a relatively new innovation to country music at the time. Phillips was still channeling Perkins in a strictly hillbilly vein, feeling that two artists doing the same type of music (in this case, Elvis and rockabilly) would cancel each other out. But after selling Elvis' contract to RCA Victor in December, Carl was encouraged to finally let his rocking soul come up for air at his next Sun session. And rock he did with a double whammy blast that proved to be his ticket to the bigs. The chance overhearing of a conversation at a dance one night between two teenagers coupled with a song idea suggestion from label mate Johnny Cash, inspired Perkins to approach Sam with a new song he had written called "Blue Suede Shoes." After cutting two sides that Phillips planned on releasing as a single by the Perkins Brothers Band, Carl laid down three takes each of "Blue Suede Shoes" and another rocker, "Honey Don't." A month later, Sam decides to shelve the two country sides and go with the rockers as Carl's next single. Three months later, "Blue Suede Shoes," a tune that borrowed stylistically from pop, country and R&B music, is sitting at the top of all charts, the first record to accomplish such a feat while becoming Sun's first million seller in the bargain.

Ready to cash in on a national basis, Carl and the boys headed up to New York for the first time to appear on the Perry Como Show. While enroute their car rammed the back of a poultry truck, putting Carl and his brother Jay in the hospital with a cracked skull and broken neck, respectively. While in traction, Perkins saw Presley performing his song on the Dorsey Brother Stage Show, his moment of fame and recognition snatched away from him. Carl shrugged his shoulders and went back to the road and the Sun studios, trying to pick up where he left off. The follow-ups to "Shoes" were, in many ways, superior to his initial hit, but each succeeding Sun single held diminishing sales and it wasn't until the British Invasion and the subsequent rockabilly revival of the early '70s that the general public got to truly savor classics like "Boppin' the Blues," "Matchbox," "Everybody's Trying to Be My Baby," "Your True Love," "Dixie Fried," "Put Your Cat Clothes On," and "All Mama's Children." While labelmates Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis (who played piano on "Matchbox") were scoring hit after hit, Carl was becoming disillusioned with his fate, fueled by his increasing dependence on alcohol and the death of brother Jay to cancer. He kept plugging along and when Johnny Cash left Sun to go to Columbia in 1958, Perkins followed him over. The royalty rate was better, and Carl had no shortage of great songs to record, but Columbia's Nashville watch the clock production methods killed any of the spontaneity that was the charm of the Sun records. By the early '60s, after being dropped by Columbia and moving over to Decca with little success, Carl was back playing the honky tonks and contemplating getting out of the business altogether. A call from a booking agent in 1964 offering a tour of England changed all of that. Temporarily swearing off the bottle, Perkins was greeted in Britain as a conquering hero, playing to sold out audiences and being particularly lauded by a young beat group on the top of the charts named the Beatles. George Harrison had cut his musical teeth on Carl's Sun recordings (as had most British guitarists) and the Fab Four ended up recording more tunes by him than any other artist except themselves. The British tour not only rejuvenated his outlook, but suddenly made him realize that he had gone -- through no maneuvering of his own -- from has been to legend in a country he had never played in before. Upon his return to the States, he hooked up with old friend and former labelmate Johnny Cash and was a regular fixture of his road show for the next ten years, bringing his battle with alcohol to an end. The '80s dawned with Perkins going on his own with a new band consisting of his sons backing him. His election to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in the mid-'80s was no less than his due. After a long battle with throat cancer, Perkins died in early 1998, his place in the history books assured.
-- Cub Koda, All Music Guide

Another Look at Carl ....

  • Carl Perkins was born in Tiptonville, Tennessee. He grew up on a farm there and the first song he recorded was one of the first he ever wrote.

  • Carl first recorded for Sun Records in 1955 but he didn't get the big one till he recorded "Blue Suede Shoes" in 1956. After a fairly slow start, the song with the tremendous beat and novel words about the blue suede shoes started moving. And it went right to the top in country music, pop and rhythm and blues.

  • Carl's father gave him his first real guitar after the boy succeeded in getting music out of one made of a cigar box and baling wire. He thought the boy deserved it after that accomplishment, and Carl has been strumming a real guitar ever since. When he carried his books to school in Madison County Tennessee, Carl also toted his guitar too, and when the other boys went outside to play ball during recess, he stayed in and sang a few tunes and plunked away at the guitar.

  • Like so many of the new crop of singers, Carl practically grew up as an entertainer among the folks of his district. Whenever there was a get-to-gether or a show, it was as natural as falling off a log that he'd be called on to sing. At these local wind-dings, he developed a sixth sense which proved of great value after he moved into the big-time. This was the ability to sense what an audience wanted - in the profession they call it "audience awareness." Along with that awareness, Carl had the talent to deliver the goods.

  • In the early days, there were just Carl and his guitar. Eventually he had a combo consisting of his two brothers, Clayton and J.B. - known as Buck and Jay plus a long-time friend, W.S. Holland. As a foursome, they won considerable local popularity in and around Jackson, Tennessee, playing show dates and night clubs. Their response on those dates was tremendous. Entire audiences rocked and rolled as the combo gave out the strong beat. They might have remained nothing more than local entertainers if an interested friend had not advised them to try for an audition with Sun Records. Carl and his boys put on a show for Sam Phillips, and he decided quickly they had the stuff. He took them under his wing, which meant months of coaching, rehearsal, bringing out their best qualities, polishing the rough edges, until they developed a style that would be accepted by the critics as professional and by the public as commercial.<

  • Carl's first record for Sun, "Let the Juke Box Keep on Playing," and "Gone Gone Gone," was well received by record distributors who felt the singer and his group showed great promise. That promise was fulfilled with a wallop when they turned out "Blue Suede Shoes," backed by "Honey, Don't. "Blue Suede Shoes" won thousands of fans for Carl Perkins. Carl gained an affectionate nick name from this recording, "The Boy With The Blue Sude Shoes," and the record sold over a million and a half copies. He could not believe it at the time how his record "Blue Suede Shoes" earned him $20,000 the first month. And, he soon said good-bye to an old jalopy and took over a brand new Cadillac presented to him by Sam Phillips. The car was in appreciation of the fact that Carl had been the first star to ever have a record hit the top in all three categories listed by Billboard Magazine - popular, country and western, and rhythm and blues.

  • Meanwhile, Carl did not sit back resting on his laurels, as he kept busy writing songs tailored to order for his own personality and that of his combo. And the dollars kept pouring into his bank account as he played more important engagements. No matter where Carl Perkins made his personal appearances, there was always a "Standing room Only" sign hung out. The reason for this was he had a way of putting over a rock 'em and sock 'em song in a real swingin' way - and then have the natural ability to pour out all his heart on a great ballad.

  • Carl had many loves, but heading the list were his family, whom he loved deeply. His next and true love in line was Country & Western music. Yes, Carl came a long, long way in a short time - but it wasn't all "peaches and cream"; for he studied hard and played and sang Country and Western songs until he knew them backward and forward. In so doing, music became his true love.


  • Carl Perkins Album Discography

    Dance Album of Carl Perkins (Sun, 1958)
    Teenbeat -- The Best of Carl Perkins (Sun,1958)
    Whole Lotta Shakin' (Columbia, 1958)
    Country Boy's Dream (Dollie, 1967)
    Carl Perkins' Greatest Hits (Columbia, 1969)
    Carl Perkins On Top (Columbia, 1969)
    Boppin' The Blues (Columbia, 1970)
    Carl Perkins (Harmony, 1970)
    Original Golden Hits (Sun, 1970)
    Blue Suede Shoes (Sun, 1970)
    Brown-Eyed Handsome Man (Harmony, 1972)
    Greatest Hits (Columbia, 1973)
    Carl Perkins (Columbia, 1973)
    Greatest Hits (Columbia, 1973)
    My Kind Of Country (Mercury, 1973)
    The Carl Perkins Show (Suede, 1976)
    The Best Of Carl Perkins (Trip, 1976)
    Matchbox (Pickwick, 1977)
    Carl Perkins: The Sun Story (GRT, 1977)
    Ol'Blue Suede's Back (Jet, 1978)
    Rock N' Gospel (Koala Aw, 1979)
    Sing A Song With Me (Koala Aw, 1979)
    Country Soul (Koala Aw, 1979)
    Cane Creek Glory Church (Koala Koa, 1979)
    Best Of Carl Perkins (Koala Koa, 1979)
    Carl Perkins Live At Austin City Limits (Suede, 1981)
    Carl Perkins -- Mr. Blue Suede Shoes (Realm IV, 1981)
    That Rockin' Guitar Man -- Today (Soh Ag, 1981)
    Country Soul (Charvan, 1981)
    Presenting Carl Perkins (Accord, 1982)
    Boppin' The Blues (Accord, 1982)
    Born To Boogie (O'Hara, 1982)
    The Survivors (With Johnny Cash, Kerry Lee Lewis) (Columbia, 1982)
    The Heart And Soul Of Carl Perkins (Allegiance, 1983)
    Gospel (Sagittarius, 1984)
    Carl Perkins (Dot, 1985)
    Up Through The Years 1954-1957 (Bear Family, 1986)
    Class of 55 (With Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis) (America, 1986)
    Class of 55 (Picture Disk (Polygram, 1986)
    Interviews From The Class Of 55 Recording Sessions (America/Smash, 1986)
    Li'l Bit Of Gold (Rhino, 1988)
    18 Super Hits (Laserlight, 1988)
    Honky Tonk Gal: Rare And Unissued Sun Masters (Rounder, 1989)
    Born To Rock (Universal, 1989)
    The Million Dollar Quartet (With Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis) (BMG, 1990)
    The Classic Carl Perkins (Bear Family, 1990)
    Jive After Five: The Best Of Carl Perkins (1958 - 1978) (Rhino, 1990)
    The Dollie Masters: Country Boy's Dream (Bear Family, 1991)
    Restless: The Columbia Recordings (Columbia, 1992)
    Friends, Family & Legends (Platinum, 1992)
    Introducing Carl Perkins (Fresh Sounds, 1992)
    Carl Perkins -- Memorial (Fresh Sounds, 1992)
    Re-Union (Belle Meade, 1992)
    Carl Perkins & Sons (BMG, 1993)
    Take Me Back (BMG, 1993)
    Disciple In Blue Suede Shoes (BMG, 1993)
    Best Of Carl Perkins (Curb, 1993)
    Go, Cat, Go (1996)

    Carl Perkins (Bopcat, 1978)
    The Rockin' Guitar Man (Bopcat, 1978)
    All My Friends From Jackson, Tennessee (Lake County, 1978)
    Mr. Country Rock (Demand, 1983)
    Carl Perkins (Picture Disc, 1983)
    Carl Lee Perkins -- British Tour 1964 (Doctor Kollector, 1984)


    JACKSON, Tenn. (AP) - Monday, January 19th, 10:30 EST - Carl Perkins, a rock 'n' roll pioneer whose song "Blue Suede Shoes" and lightning-quick guitar playing influenced performers including Elvis Presley and the Beatles, died today. He was 65. Perkins died at Jackson-Madison County General Hospital from complications related to three strokes suffered in November and December, family spokesman Albert Hall said. The tall, broad-shouldered Perkins was among the founders of "rockabilly," a cross of rhythm-and-blues and country music that came out of Sun Records in Memphis in the mid 1950s.

    He also wrote some of the top hit records in rock 'n' roll and country music. A near-fatal traffic accident in 1956, coupled with the rise of Presley, kept him from becoming a bigger solo star. Perkins wrote and recorded the 1956 smash "Blue Suede Shoes," which Presley later recorded. Perkins' version sold 2 million itself before Presley's rendition also became a hit. Perkins also wrote the rockabilly standard "Dixie Fried" and the songs "Honey Don't," "Matchbox" and "Everybody's Trying to Be My Baby," which were later covered by the Beatles. His relationship with the Beatles lasted long after their breakup in 1970. Perkins dueted with Paul McCartney on the country ballad "Get It," a song off McCartney's 1982 album, "Tug of War." On the same record, he played rhythm guitar on the McCartney-Stevie Wonder hit duet, "Ebony and Ivory."

    Beatles George Harrison and Ringo Starr appeared with him in a 1986 cable TV special in London, "Carl Perkins and Friends: A Rockabilly Session." He met the Beatles in 1964 during a British concert tour with another rock 'n' roll pioneer, Chuck Berry. About his influence on the Beatles, he said in a 1985 Associated Press interview, "They advanced it (guitar playing) so much. That rockabilly sound wasn't as simple as I thought it was." In another interview, he said the Beatles and Rolling Stones saved rockabilly in the mid-1960s when it was in danger of dying in the United States. "They put a nice suit on rockabilly," Perkins said. "They never really strayed from the simplicity of it, they just beautified it." In 1987, Perkins was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

    Perkins grew up picking cotton in Lake County, Tenn., where he listened closely to music sung by blacks as they worked in the fields together. As a youngster, he used to retreat behind the family chicken house to pretend he was singing on Nashville's Grand Ole Opry. At the age of 7, he began playing a guitar that his father, a tenant farmer, had made from a cigar box, a broomstick and baling wire.

    He wrote `"Blue Suede Shoes" after hearing someone telling his date at a high school prom not to step on his blue suede shoes. Perkins went home to his dark housing project in Jackson, Tenn., and wrote the song on a brown potato sack. Shortly after recording the song, Perkins was seriously hurt in a traffic accident in Wilmington, Del., and spent a year recovering and unable to capitalize on his mounting fame. During this time, Presley also recorded the song and earned much of the popularity that Perkins had been building.

    "I was bucking a good-looking cat called Elvis who had beautiful hair, wasn't married, and had all kinds of great moves," Perkins said in 1986. In tribute to the song, he usually wore blue suede shoes in public. He spent 15 years battling alcoholism, saying he overcame it by hurling his last whiskey bottle into the Pacific Ocean in 1967 near Encino, Calif.

    Perkins was a member of rock 'n' roll's fabled "Million Dollar Quartet." He, Presley, Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis met for an informal jam session in the 1950s that was later released as an album. In 1986, Perkins joined Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Roy Orbison on the album "Class of '55." Perkins also wrote "Daddy Sang Bass," which was a hit for Johnny Cash, and played in Cash's band from the mid-1960s to the mid-1970s.

    He said in the 1985 interview that his biggest thrill was getting a gold record for "Blue Suede Shoes." "After all those days in the cotton fields, the dreams came true on a gold record on a piece of wood. It's in my den where I can look at it every day. I wear it out lookin' at it."


    JACKSON, Tenn. (AP) 24, Jan. 1998 - George Harrison took acoustic guitar in hand and paid musical tribute to rock 'n' roll pioneer Carl Perkins, singing Perkins' early tune "Your True Love" at his funeral. Harrison was among fans and entertainers who packed a Lambuth University auditorium Friday to remember Perkins, a contemporary of Elvis Presley -- he wrote "Blue Suede Shoes" -- and a key influence on generations of rockers. "Carl was the coolest cat I know," Wynonna Judd said in her eulogy. "When I watched him, I realized I could only wish to be that cool." Among the hundreds of mourners at the funeral were entertainers Garth Brooks, Ricky Skaggs, Billy Ray Cyrus, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Rivers and Judd. About 200 people watched on TV monitors in another building. Musical tributes came from Elton John and Eric Clapton; Paul McCartney sent a videotape in which he recounted the Beatles' fascination with Perkins' music while growing up in Liverpool, England. Bob Dylan sent a note, which Judd read. "He really stood for freedom. That whole sound stood for all the degrees of freedom. It would just jump right off the turntable. We wanted to go where that was happening," Dylan wrote. On the way out, Harrison gave a bear hug to Lewis, who was part of the Sun Records stable of artists at the same time as Perkins, Presley and Cash.

  • On Wed, 21 Jan 1998, Russ Truell wrote: Thank you for your comments about Carl. He was one of the finest persons that I have ever known. The address for the Child Abuse Center is: 217 East College Street, Jackson, TN 38301. The phone number is: 901-424-7900. The office hours are 8 am to 5 pm Central time. Incidentally, I am the City Clerk and in that capacity I received a call today at 11:00 from the Governor's office instructing that all flags be flown at half mast in Carl's honor.

  • Elton John Saying he's not a "professional mourner," paid tribute yo Carl Perkins. John told a press conference in Miami last Thursday that he's not a going around the world being a professional mourner." John had paid tribute to yet another late celebrity, this time dedicating his song, "Don't Let Sun Go Down On Me," to rocker Carl Perkins during a 12-song concert at TV industry convention in New Orleans.


    BILLY SWAN: "Just heard about Carl Perkins. God bless him. He inspired so many of us. I'll always have a wounderful memory of the man, a real good guy. Will miss him!"

  • OTHER LEGENDS WHO HAVE PAID TRIBUTE TO CARL thru contact received at the Rockabilly Hall of Fame office:
    Mac Curtis
    Marshall Lytle
    Sonny West
    Jerry Lee Merritt
    Larry Collins
    Glen Glenn
    Dale Hawkins
    Willie Jeffrey
    Charlie Gracie
    Andy Widder
    Dickie Harrell
    . . THANK YOU ALL!

  • Del Villarrea, WCBN 88.3 FM - Chicago's WGN 720 all night talk shows hosts Steve & Johnnie were very genuine in their thoughts and respect for Mr. Perkins and I was only too happy to stay up a little later than usual to help them honor his memory in such a considerate way. They are good people and I know what radio station I'll be listening to the next time I'm in Chicago.

    Carl Perkins shared musical roots with Elvis, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis. Edvins Beitiks OF THE EXAMINER STAFF Jan. 20, 1998 - Hearing that Carl Perkins had died, Dickie Harrell sighed into the phone and said, "Man, they lost a good one, tell you that. They gonna miss him bad." Harrell, the drummer for Gene Vincent and the Blue Caps - a band that burst on the rock scene at the same time as Perkins - said, "We played with Perkins when he first started, with him and his brother. Played the Midwest, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania. . . . Man, we had a good old time. It was all so new, new to all of us, but Carl never let it bother him.

    "He sort of reminded me of Roy Orbison, you know?" said Harrell, 57, in an interview from his home in Portsmouth, Va. "Down to earth. What you see is what you get." Harrell, who followed Perkins' month-to-month struggle through a series of strokes last year, said it was tough to hear the news on Monday that heart failure had killed Perkins at the age of 65. He died at Jackson-Madison Hospital in Nashville, on the other side of the state from his boyhood home of Tiptonville and 10 years removed from his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

    There's a straight line that runs from Perkins' rockabilly career to Ringo Starr's smoke-off-the-cig recording sessions for the Beatles - one of those hings in the world of rock music that makes absolutely no sense while making perfect sense at the same time. When Starr recorded "Honey Don't," "Matchbox" and "Everybody's Tryin' to be My Baby," it was part of a Beatles tribute that grew into Perkins playing guitar on Paul McCartney's "Get It" and "Ebony and Ivory." Perkins, who met the Beatles in 1964, had an open bar with that group ( "Your money's no good here" ) while he tried to put together the pieces of his on-again, off-again career. Perkins was there for Ringo, helped talk George Harrison out of retirement and did a cable special with Harrison, Starr and Eric Clapton in 1985 to mark the 30th anniversary of the release of "Blue Suede Shoes." When filming was over, Perkins said, "Nothing in the music business has even come close to this for me. At times I felt I was going to break down crying."

    The Beatles weren't the only ones who glommed onto Perkins' music. Bob Dylan wrote "Champaign, Illinois" with Perkins in 1970. The Band turned to his music during and after its stint with Ronnie Hawkins. Johnny Cash recorded Perkins' "Daddy Sang Bass" in 1968, Jimi Hendrix did "Blue Suede Shoes" in 1970 and Dolly Parton recorded his "Silver and Gold" in 1991.

    "Blue Suede Shoes" sold 2 million copies before Elvis Presley even got his hands on it, becoming the first record ever to hit the pop, country, and rhythm and blues charts at the same time - a song Perkins said he wrote after playing "a gut-bucket barroom" called the Roadside Inn. "One night I heard this boy tell the girl he was dancing with, "Watch out, don't step on my suedes.' It kind of stuck to me," said Perkins, who pulled out a paper sack the next morning and wrote on it, "Well, it's one for the money, two for the show... "

    "Blue Suede Shoes" is what Perkins is best remembered for, but he had other tunes - "Gone, Gone, Gone," "Boppin' the Blues," "Pink Pedal Pushers" - each one filled to the brim with the same kind of knife-in-the-back rockabilly beat turned out by the likes of Johnny Burnette, Dale Hawkins, Sonny Burgess, Billy Lee Riley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Orbison and Vincent. "Oh man, that was music," said Harrell. "And I tell you, Carl was a hard act to follow. That was tough, that was tough. He put everything he had into it." Harrell laughed, remembering the way Perkins could stir up a crowd, get it dancing backward and howling at the clapboard ceiling. And he talked about the all-night road tours that wound up in some tinpot motel or found the Blue Caps stumbling down a mountainside in front of Perkins' car in fog so thick they couldn't see 15 feet.

    Most rockabilly singers saw their share of heartbreak, and Perkins and Vincent were no different. Vincent was in the 1960 London car crash that killed Eddie Cochran. He had health problems before dying of bleeding ulcers in October of '71. Perkins was in a near-fatal accident that killed his brother in 1956 and was felled by a series of strokes at the end of his life. "Carl passing like this . . . ," said Harrell. "I know they're both up there having a good time. I know there's really some rock 'n' rolling going on."

    Neither Vincent nor Perkins repeated the success of their early days, butting their heads against the charts for years but never breaking through. Perkins' high-water mark came when he was part of the Million-Dollar Quartet at Sun Records with Presley and Cash and Jerry Lee, gathered around a piano for songs that never made it to the record stores. So many rockabilly stars have gone since then: Presley and Bill Haley and Burnette, Cochran and Vincent, Orbison and Bobby Helms and, now, Perkins. "It's hard to hear about his passing," said Harrell. "But you can't stay here forever. When they ring the bell, it's time to go."

    1998 San Francisco Examiner: Page B 1

    Posted February 16, 2003
    "I'd like to mention the taped concert: 'Carl Perkins and Friends - Blue Suede Shoes: A Rockabilly Session (1985)'. This is the concert with George Harrison, Eric Clapton and many others. Recorded for TV and shown on Public Broadcasting Station (PBS) as a special. I found this a great way to know who Carl Perkins was and also showed the following fans Carl Perkins from many musicians when they were in their teenage years. I went to www.amazon.com and this is available, even today, for sale on DVD." - sarnade@harris.com


    Rockabilly Hall of Fame