It is said that behind every great man there is a woman.
Usually doing said job.
Sam Phillips famously said that if he could find a white guy who could sing black, he’d make a million dollars.
He didn’t. He made $35,000 plus a debt relief of $5,000 as RCA picked up Elvis’ contract and paid outstanding royalties.
all those pennies the artists get, adds up
Sam did not discover Elvis.
Marion Keisker did.
Elvis came in with his guitar and a story about his mother’s birthday and sang two songs.
Marion reacted to this unpolished, greasy plaintiff boy and recorded part of the first song and all of the second. When she played it for Sam, he was unimpressed.
Elvis came in again and this time, Sam recorded and cut his 45 acetate. Again. Unimpressed.
It was Marion who pestered Sam to give the call when a ballad song came in.
Sam got Scotty and Bill to give the kid a test run. Elvis showed up in a pink suit to his first rehearsal.
Marion left Sun for the All Women Staffed Radio Station that Sam Phillips also created.
Eventually, she joined the WAC and last saw Elvis when he was mustering out