Recording Career
1953 - 1956

I was privileged to record with some great older musicians who had much experience. Piano players: Willard McDaniel, Meadlux Lewis, Henry McDade, Jimmy Bunn, and Austin L. McCoy. Bass Player: Buddy Woodson, Ralph "Chuck" Hamilton, and Ted Brinson. Saxophonist: "Bumps" Myers . Drummer: Jessie Price . Most of these were the musicians that I would work with at Austin L. McCoy's Studio. When I would work at Ted Brinson's Studio on 30th Street in Los Angeles, it would be a different group of musicians. I also would do recording at Louis Jackson's "C" Note Recording Studio in Culver City, CA. Louis was a great guitar player. He turned his whole house into a studio, with each room like a different booth separating sections of the bands. While Ted Brinson and Austin McCoy's studios were "garage studios", in which we would record each section one at a time, Louis Jackson's was set up so that the whole band could be recorded at the same time, due to the different rooms that he would use. This was all great "schooling" for me and I took it all in, including the technical aspects that I learned while talking to Austin, Ted , and Louis , about the recording equipment that they were using. Great excitement came when these studios went from  monaural,  1track, to stereo, 2 track machines. All used Ampex mono and 2 track machines, while Ted , also used the first Concertone Series 90 recorders as well.  

I met "Lucky" Hawkins , who recorded a number of vocal groups and used my band for these. We recorded at a studio in Los Angeles around Adams Blvd and San Pedro Street. I don't remember the name of the studio, but we did a lot of recordings there. "Lucky" teamed up with "Cholly" Williams , who also engineered some of those early recordings. It was at one of these sessions that I met my long-time friend and colleague, Jackie Kelso, who at the time was working with Johnny Otis' Band and Roy Milton's "Solid Senders" Band. Little did I know that I would one day be  privileged to work with these popular bands as a guitar player.

My first guitar was a Harmony acoustic. I bought it at a pawn shop in Dallas, Texas.

I worked at a place in Dallas called Triangle Motors Grill as a dish -washer. I was about 9 years old when I saw the guitar in the pawn shop window. I told my father about it and he got it for me. Of course, I paid for it but still he made the deal since I was a minor.

 When I got home to show it to my mother, she took it, tuned it and played a song called Colorado. What a shock!

My parents paid for my first private lessons on guitar starting in 1953, when I studied with Bob Bennett at the Southern California Music Store in Downtown Los Angeles. I later met Herman Michell, who was with a number of name groups, including The Famous Ink Spots, The Platters, Ernie Freeman and others. He taught me chord progressions and theory as well as useful playing techniques. I worked in small clubs in order to pay for my lessons and upkeep of my instruments. I was happy to earn "five cents" ($5.00 a night.)

The Very Thought of You.
by: Arthur G. Wright
ABOUT ME Continued

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