THE PHIL WILKINSON STORY www.gypsyquill.com CHAPTER 4

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FATS DOMINO

"I never played with Fats but we became friends back stage at this concert. It was during my tenure with the group ONE STEP BEYOND. He was from New Orleans. I was performing in that area at the time." 

Left to right--Phil Wilkinson, his mother Margaret, niece Kristin Davidson and David Allen Coe. Phil put together an original act called One Step Beyond which was actually a rock band but they converted to lean towards country as he was very versatile and opened for David Allen Coe. Wendell Adkins and his band also performed. 1983

1983

"William Yaagar hired me to do orchestral arrangements and to compose the music for lyrics he wrote for a song. 'SOMEONE TO HOLD YOU." He was dating the lady in the picture to the right, and I was playing on world renowned Blues Alley, in Memphis Tennessee with B.B. Cunningham and the Hombres. I invited them and her daughter to the gig." 

Phil Wilkinson

This was at Ardent Recording studio in Memphis, Tennessee-1977-78. Phil recorded his album ROCK AND ROLL with B.B. Cunningham on Bass, Jerry Peters on the Grand Piano and Chris Pederson on Drums. Phill did all guitar and vocal work as well as some piano over dubs with B.B. and some percussion. But the album was not completed in Memphis. "There was a lot of work ahead in many studios such as: Sounds of Memphis, Sound Recorders in Kansas City. The Record Plant in Hollywood. But before going on to finally fisnish the album at the Record Plant." Phil would work the Memphis circuit with B.B. Cunningham and a clique of great musicians. "I played with a lot of great musicians in Memphis, but B.B. was the one who really broke me into the professional recording and live scene in Memphis. Most of the people I met and worked with was through him!"

B.B. was the founder of the band-The Hombres

B.B. Cunningham Jr. and THE HOMBRES in 1968.

He played keyboards and guitar for that band. He also wrote three hits that got them into the top-ten. Their biggest hit was number 1 with a bullet in Memphis, Tennessee, LET IT ALL HANG OUT. He showed me a copy of the BILLBOARD CHARTS of that time. The Hombres were the only American band that knocked The Beatles out of the number one spot in the charts. And the song held its place for three weeks straight.  Number 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 and 10 were all songs by--The Beatles

This is what he looked like when I met him in 1978 and we began to play together.

R.I.P. B.B.Cunningham Jr.

"This is a more recent picture of B.B. I am deeply saddened by his passing. And I will never forget him. One of the best musicians I've had the pleasure of performing with both live and studio recordings. A humanitarian at heart and a great over all person! He passed on."

                                           ----  Phil Wilkinson 

Some of the named bands he's worked with: Elvis Presly, Jerry Lee Lewis, Bill Haley and the Comets, Johnny Cash, Elton John, Steely Dan, The Eagles and many more. He also started the recording project for Cher and Greg Alman, but was forced to return to Memphis and that is when he and Phil connected.

THE PHIL WILKINSON STORY CONTINUES HERE...to chapter 5