(Est. 1959) – Since its inception, Stax Records has been synonymous with Southern soul music, the combination of rhythm & blues and gospel that connects to the innermost emotions of its listeners. The label served as the driving force of unity during the civil rights era from its hometown of Memphis, Tennessee, uniting people through music in a time of great social unrest. Among the many artists who scored hits on Stax and its Volt subsidiary during the sixties were Rufus and Carla Thomas, Booker T. & the MGs (an interracial instrumental quartet that also served as the Company’s rhythm section), Sam and Dave, Johnnie Taylor, Albert King, Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes, the Staple Singers, and the Dramatics.
Today, the Stax brand continues to not only issue impressive soul releases—most recently in the form of Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite’s Get Up! and the soul-stirring soundtrack Take Me to the River—but also supports community building and enriches the lives of youth through the power of soul music via the Soulsville Center School, the Stax Music Academy, and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.