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Short Synopsis
Memphis gave birth to music that changed the world—Memphis Mayhem is a fascinating history of how music and culture collided to change the state of music forever.

Full Synopsis
Memphis gave birth to music that changed the world—Memphis Mayhem is a fascinating history of how music and culture collided to change the state of music forever

Memphis Mayhem weaves the tale of the racial collision that led to a cultural, sociological, and musical revolution. David Less constructs a fascinating narrative of the city that has produced a startling array of talent, including Elvis Presley, B. B. King, Al Green, Otis Redding, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Justin Timberlake, and so many more.

Beginning with the 1870s yellow fever epidemics that created racial imbalance as wealthy whites fled the city, David Less moves from W. C. Handy's codification of blues in 1909 to the mid-century advent of interracial musical acts like Booker T. & the M.G.'s, the birth of punk, and finally to the growth of a music tourism industry.

Memphis Mayhem explores the city's entire musical ecosystem, which includes studios, high school band instructors, clubs, record companies, family bands, pressing plants, instrument factories, and retail record outlets. Lively and comprehensive, this is a provocative story of finding common ground through music and creating a sound that would change the world.

"This thoughtful reflection on Memphis's music history is complemented by narrator Chris Abernathy's soft Southern accent and relaxed timing." ---AudioFile

Memphis Mayhem

A Story of the Music That Shook Up the World

Author David A. Less

Narrated by Chris Abernathy

Publication date Oct 6, 2020

Running time 6 hrs 16 min

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