Since opening its doors in 2000, the Rock ‘N’ Soul Museum has seen over 200,000 locals and tourists. Take an audio guided tour through the museum’s seven galleries and see the story of rock and soul unfold through extensive audio footage, artifacts and audio visual programs.
Start your visit off with a short documentary film and then explore the museum’s seven galleries supported by artifacts, videos, pictures, words and music. Using your personal audio guide you’ll learn about everything from the rural fieldhollers and sharecroppers of the 1930s to rock ‘n’ roll legends like Elvis Presley.
The museum’s audio guide boasts over 300 minutes of information including over 100 songs. Learn about music legends including Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Sam Phillips, Isaac Hayes, Sam and Dave and other renowned artists.
Over 30 instruments, 40 costumes and other musical treasures can be found throughout the Rock ‘N’ Soul Museum bringing the story of Memphis’ music to life.
After leaving Mississippi due to the lack of work, many field hollers and sharecroppers headed for Memphis. In the, “Rural Culture” gallery discover how many of Memphis’ music icons dirtied their hands in the fields long before the studios.
From music passed down from generation to generation to those who were influenced by the radio, discover how blues, country and gospel came together and formed a musical revolution in the, “Rural Music” gallery.
Coming to Memphis
Holding the promise of jobs, many sharecroppers and field hollers headed for Memphis. Despite the segregation, see how airwaves, recordings and live performances crossed the color line on Beale Street in, “Coming to Memphis”.
Sun Records & Youth Culture
Established by Sam Phillips, Sun Records gave many small time musicians their big break and redefined the music scene both nationally and internationally. Learn about the beginnings of Memphis sound, legends like B.B. King and the cultural impact that the Memphis sound had on its youth.
While the white youth expressed themselves through rock ‘n’ roll, the African- Americans found their identity through soul. Uncover the origins of soul and see how it went from being a form of entertainment to a vehicle for political expression and community activism.
During the 50s and 60s not only Memphis, but the entire nation went through turbulent change. While Martin Luther King Jr. led the United States through the Civil Rights Revolution, Memphis led a revolution of its own. In the, “Social Change” gallery you can see how the Memphis sound played an important role in the city’s dynamics and made an indelible impression on the world.
Memphis’ musical icons not only put the river city on the musical map, but have had a significant impact on the Civil Rights Movement. Pay you respects to the individuals who changed the world in the “Bravo Gallery”.
Don’t forget to stop by the Gift Shop. Whether you want a small keepsake to remember your time at the museum, or that special gift for a loved one, the Gift Shop carries everything from t-shirts and sweaters with the original Rock ‘N’ Soul logo to coffee mugs and tumblers.