MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Memphis will now be the home of a national program deploying music industry veterans to mentor young and up-and-coming musicians.
David Porter, the songwriter who co-wrote such classics as "Soul Man" and "Hold on I’m Comin," announced the program Tuesday in Memphis. He said the initiative to develop a talent pool of new musicians is called "The Consortium MMT" ("Mem phis Music Town").
The program seeks to nuture successful professional musicians to help restore Memphis’ reputation as a capital of soul music, said Porter, who wrote for artists re cording with the famed Stax Records.
Along with soul music, Memphis also is a cradle of rock and roll, where Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lew is, Johnny Cash and others re cord ed hits on the Sun Records label.
Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. lauded the program, noting the city’s popular music history. Music drives a steady tourism business in the city. "The one thing about our soul music is that wherever you go, the story of Memphis is told," Wharton said.
Porter, a member of the Nation al Songwriter’s Hall of Fame, said the influence of a professional on a young artist’s career could turn a good musician into an exceptional one.
"If we don’t give back, we’ll have done an injustice to the place that we love, which is Memphis," Porter said.