Current Exhibit

Portraits in Soul: Rare Images from the API Archive

In 1961, Bill Carrier Sr. and his team at Allied Photography Illustrators (API) forged a relationship with Stax Records that would share the look and feel of the soulful sounds being created at 926 E. McLemore Avenue. From promotional shots sent to concert promoters to album covers and functions in Stax’ famed Studio A, API, working closely with Jim Stewart and Deanie Parker, created a iconic body of work featuring the Bar-Kays, Booker T. and the MGs, Sam & Dave, Carla and Rufus Thomas, and other – often lesser known – ¬†artists. These 30 photographs, many never seen by the public, showcase the heart, soul, creativity, and beauty of these performers that defined an era of popular music and created a pictorial landscape for the Memphis Sound.

All photographs furnished by Bill Carrier Jr. of API photographers, inc. from the archive’s Stax Collection.