Bill Porter

Date: 1994 November 11
Length: 214 min.
Call Number: OHC229


Recording engineer. Born June 15, 1931. Full name: Billy Rhodes Porter. Chief engineer for RCA Records Nashville, 1959-1963. Engineer for Columbia Records Nashville, 1963. Manager, Monument Records Nashville studio, 1964-1966. Operated his own recording studio in Las Vegas, 1966-1973. Engineered Elvis Presley’s stage shows, 1970-1977.

Interview Summary

1994 November 11
(3 hours, 34 minutes)
Recording engineer Bill Porter describes his career, focusing on custom recording projects and recording techniques he used during his years with the RCA, Columbia, and Monument record labels. Discussion includes recording gospel acts; recording Jerry Byrd; the technique for the signature drum sounds on “(‘Til) I Kissed You”; working with Wesley Rose; comments on his approach to recording; recording the Everly Brothers; recording “Pretty Woman”; recording Bob Moore’s “Mexico”; working with Felton Jarvis; comments on the traits of a good producer; working with Archie Bleyer; recording Johnny Tillotson; memories of Jim Reeves; the decision to leave RCA; highlights from his work at Columbia; joining Monument and a description of the studio; working with Brent Maher; working with Fred Foster; recording Joe Tex; recording Charlie Rich; and recording Roy Orbison.