RCA TOOK ELVIS TO 'HEARTBREAK HOTEL'
Sun Records launched Elvis in the Southern States, RCA Records took him glo
By Scott Barretta
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In November of 1955, Sam Phillips of Memphis' Sun Records sold Elvis Presley's contract
to RCA for $35,000. Elvis had shook up the music business via his five singles on Sun, and
with the seemingly paltry sum Phillips was able to successfully push the careers of Jerry
Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and others.

Elvis entered RCA's Nashville studios in early January, recording three songs including his
first RCA single, Heartbreak Hotel. Later that month Elvis made his first national television
on the Dorsey Brothers' program, sparking a national craze.
In November of 1955, Sam Phillips of Memphis' Sun
Records sold Elvis Presley's contract to RCA for
$35,000. Elvis had shook up the music business via his
five singles on Sun, and with the seemingly paltry sum
Phillips was able to successfully push the careers of
Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and others.

Elvis entered RCA's Nashville studios in early January,
recording three songs including his first RCA single,
Heartbreak Hotel. Later that month Elvis made his first
national television on the Dorsey Brothers' program,
sparking a national craze.

A new boxed set, Young Man With the Big Beat
(RCA/Legacy), collects all the recordings Elvis made
for RCA in 1956 in a deluxe package that also includes
live recordings, interviews and session outtakes. The set, in an album-sized sleeve, features five CDs, a richly illustrated
booklet and a package containing copies of vintage ads, posters and photos.

The first two CDs contain 39 master recordings from RCA, including five songs the company acquired from Sun, and
contain many songs rarely found on "best of" packages. Here one can trace the evolution of Elvis' sound, most notably
through the addition of drummer D.J. Fontanta and the presence of vocal group the Jordainaires.
Two discs containing three live shows and interviews with Elvis capture the excitement of his breakthrough year, while a CD featuring multiple outtakes of
Lawdy, Miss Clawdy and Shake, Rattle and Roll reveal the work that went into creating the legend.

The set's 82-page booklet follows the life and career of Elvis month-by-month throughout 1956, with detailed accounts of his live engagements, television
appearances, and his ascendancy as a matinee idol.

Stunning both visually and aurally, Young Man With a Big Beat lovingly documents one of the most important chapters in America's musical history.