A new version of the song 'Memphis Tennessee' released

Bill Dennison ·
22 April 2014
Environmental Report Cards | 

Since Memphis, Tennessee is the blues music capital of the world, just upriver from the jazz music capital in New Orleans and a short distance from Nashville, TN, the country music capital, it seemed appropriate to capture our lower Mississippi River workshop in the form of a blues song. Memphis is where Sam Phillips at Sun Records recorded such music luminaries as Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins. This made the choice of a song easy - the song 'Memphis Tennessee' which was first recorded by Chuck Berry, but covered by many artists, including Elvis Presley.

Memphis Tennessee

I adapted the lyrics and sent them off to my musical genius colleague, Gary Cox, who wrote an original score and sang and recorded it from his studio in Perth, Australia. Gary was also my musical partner on the song 'Seagrass Blue Carbon Blues', which has gone 'bacterial' (not quite viral, but popular among a select group of marine biologists).

Gary was able to complete the song just in time for the final wrap up at the workshop. With the help of Ali Schwaab, we were able to produce the song as a YouTube video, as we did for 'Seagrass Blue Carbon Blues'.

Note the acronym 'D.U.' in the song stands for 'Ducks Unlimited', our workshop venue.

Memphis Tennessee

Report card information, here in Memphis Tennessee

help us find the data, tryin' to get it to you and me.

We just need all the data sources, we need to know who to call

so we can craft the message, and have done by this fall.

Aaah, help me information, let me know just who to see

you're the only one who would phone me here in Tennessee.

D.U. on the east side, way up high upon a ridge

that's just a few miles from the Mississippi bridge.

Aaah, help me information more than that I can not add

only that we need the data, yeah we need it really bad,

On this very issue we most certainly do all agree

that it would make for a happy time here in Memphis Tennessee.

At the end of this workshop, we'll all wave goodbye

with hurry-home-trips and a promise to really try.

But time is runnin' out, so information please

tryin' to get my data right here in Memphis Tennessee.

About the author

Bill Dennison

Dr. Bill Dennison is a Professor of Marine Science and Vice President for Science Application at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES). Dr. Dennison’s primary mission within UMCES is to coordinate the Integration and Application Network.

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