Stax Records And A Paranormal Connection!
January 27, 2007
The Memphis sound intrigued me so much that Stax Records became the first stop on my publishing tour of the south. When I was general manager of Warner Brothers Music in 1970, my longtime friend and sometime collaborator, Steve Cropper, who co-wrote “In The Midnight Hour”, “Dock Of The Bay”, “Knock On Wood”, etc., took me around his town, winding up at the offices and studios of the legendary record and publishing organization, East-Memphis music
The company occupied an old movie theater in the ghetto, with a markee that simply said STAX.The reception area, was the place where refreshments were sold, and the recording studio was where the second run movies were once shown.
I was humbled to be in the same studio where Booker T. & The M.G.s, Otis Redding, The Mar-Keys, Sam & Dave, Wilson Pickett, The Barkays, Eddie Floyd, Johnny Taylor and Isaac Hayes made all of those mega-hits!
I’ve always believed that every studio has its own flavor, due to the collective consciousness and spiritual vibrations from all those who have poured out their hearts and souls within its walls. This place was no exception. I walked around mesmerized with the sounds of the late Al Jackson, Jr.’s solid drumbeat from, “Hold On I’m Comin’” running through my head. I even had the urge to yell out, “Play it, Steve!”, but I restrained myself!
Before I had to leave for my next stop, Muscle Shoals, Alabama, Steve invited me into the control room to hear some remixes he was doing on the late Otis Redding. It was a spectacular ending to a day I’ll never forget.
Since I became interested in music, I always believed that more than just music is captured in the recording process. Primitive tribes correctly believed that a photographic image of them takes a piece of their soul forever…I believe a recording essentially does the same thing. More than sound and musical content are recorded, retained and reproduced…so are the inaudible vibrations, thoughts, emotions and energy of the lead performer as well as every participant in the studio.
I accepted the psychic fact years ago, that each of us carries with us spirits of our family, friends and ancestors…who carry with them the spirits of their family, their friends and their ancestors. Some of these entities that surround the artists, musicians, and other contributors to the process, mingle with other entities they encounter there. Some like their new environment so much, they stick around and become part the studio’s collective creative consciousness.
As a songwriter/ singer/ producer and publisher, I’ve had the chance to visit recording facilities all over the world where historic sessions have taken place…including Allegro, Associated, Bell sound, Olmstead, Sound factory, Mirasound, A+ R and Atlantic studios in New York, The Sound Factory, A+M, Gold Star, American, M-G-M studios and Cherokee studios in Hollywood, Apple, Trident, Rak studios, EMI studios in Abbey Road, London, the legendary Motown studios, The Record Plant in New York and L.A., Stax, Hi and Sun studios in Memphis, RCA and Columbia recording studios in Nashville, London, New York, and San Francisco to name a few.
Although most studios are routinely cleaned, few, if any are spiritually cleansed. Like a well – used grill at a restaurant, there is a spirit buildup over time that gives each studios end product a distinct flavor.
I’ve been asking artists, musicians, producers and engineers, if they ever experienced any paranormal phenomena in the studios where they worked. If you have any first hand experience please let me know about it.
Thanks and regards, Artie
Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne
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