“There are cool cats and there are cool Memphis cats but no one, not
Elvis, not Jerry Lee, not even the Wolf came close to epitomizing Memphis
and cool like Jim Dickinson did. He was the Top Cat Daddy, an
inspiration, a mentor and my friend.

If you knew his music and understood his role as one of the links between
black and white culture and between blues and rock and roll, you know what
I'm talking about. If he is unfamiliar to you, now's as good time as any
to get to know him, even though he's checked out of the motel.”

--Joe Nick Patoski

For more about Jim go to

Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Bad News" Jerry "The King" Lawler...

Jerry "The King" Lawler and Jim Dickinson

     It was 1974 in Memphis and wrestling was the biggest thing in Memphis.
Our phone rang.  It was Barbarian Records' mogul,  Jim Blake, inviting Jim
to come to Ardent Studio- B and co-produce the music for the world's first
wrestling video, "Bad News," on Jerry Lawler, the number one "heel" in
town.   Dickinson made Jerry comfortable in the studio by having him take
off his shirt and wear his crown. The session rocked. It wound down
when Jerry said, "I've got to quit and get something to eat.  If I don't eat now,
I'll puke in the ring."

    Countless wrestlers have strutted their stuff to their signature rock
songs with their signature videos, but The King had the first one, thanks to
his friends, Jim Blake  and Jim Dickinson.  Jerry's Saturday morning tv
wrestling show entranced Memphis for years and the whole world tuned in
when he wrestled actor Andy Kaufman.  Who didn't see news clips of Jerry
slap Andy Kaufman out of his chair on the David Letterman show?  If you
didn't see it, you claimed you had.

     Lawler moved on to the mighty World Wrestling Federation as a wrestler
and announcer.  On September 10, 2012, he won a four man tag team match,
sat down behind the announcer's table, and keeled over with a massive heart
attack.  He had two stents put in his heart and was sitting up, beaming at the
camera two days later, even though as he said, "I've got more wires coming
out of me than AT&T!"  Yesterday,  he was flown home in a private jet
and was picked up at the airport in a limousine provided by Ardent Studios.

Rock on, King.   Memphis loves you.  World boogie is coming!

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