Louisiana Hayride, Elvis Presley, Frank Page, James Burton and KWKH [VIDEO]
The Louisiana Hayride, was a live concert held each week at the Municipal Auditorium in Shreveport, Louisiana and was heard on KWKH.
In 1954, legendary radio announcer Frank Page introduced Elvis Presley.
Heart of Louisiana: La. Hayride and Elvis
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Reported by: Dave McNamara, Heart of Louisiana
There’s an auditorium in the city of Shreveport that played a huge roll in launching the careers of some of this country’s greatest musicians. In the 1950’s, almost everyone had heard of the Louisiana Hayride. Today, the memories of those great performers still echo through the old building.
“It is said that if you were to have stood in this building at the right moment in time, that you would have actually seen the music change, the face of music change for the whole country, right in the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium because of people like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, and of course Elvis Presley,” says Teresa Micheels with the auditorium.
It was 1954 when Elvis made his first appearance on the Louisiana Hayride, a weekly live concert that was broadcast on radio from the Municipal Auditorium in Shreveport. KWKH radio announcer Frank Page introduced the young singer.
In an oral history recorded for LSU Shreveport, Page talks about the decision to put Elvis on the Hayride.
“We thought he sounded different, so we said let’s try him out and see what happens. Well you know what happened. It drove the older people away and the young ones came in”.
Elvis became a Hayride regular for the next year. The rising star packed the house.
Guitar legend James Burton started playing in the Hayride’s house band when he was 14 years old.