Reggie Young

The story of Reggie Young's career is, in many ways, a miniature version of the story of Southern soul music. Raised in Memphis and influenced by the Delta blues, Young's musical education came at the hands of Dewey Phillips' Red Hot & Blue radio show, where he soaked up the sounds of Ike & Tina Turner and a young Elvis Presley. Like many key figures in Southern soul Young was a white kid drawn to the sound of black music and, later, his musicianship figured prominently in shaping the reputation of many southern studios including Goldwax, American, and Rick Hall's FAME studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Young got his first real break as the guitarist in Eddie Bond and the Stompers when a local DJ named Sleepy Eyed John heard their music and asked the group to record a song called "Rockin' Daddy." The record became a hit on Mercury Records and, at 20-years-old, Young found himself touring alongside Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Roy Orbison. After the tour, Young moved to Shreveport, LA to further his career. Though he had little or no money, the Shreveport scene was strong at the time and Young befriended fellow musicians Jerry Kennedy, D.J. Fontana and Billy Sandford, all of whom would help him in the '70s when he finally made the move to Nashville.