Ardent Studio’s John Fry 1945-2014 R.I.P.


Memphis legend also worked collaboratively in the studio with Big Star.

By Fred Mills

Called by some “the rock of Memphis music,” John Fry of Ardent Studio passed away yesterday following a heart attack. The Commercial-Appeal reports, “The 69 year-old Mr. Fry died on Thursday afternoon at Methodist East hospital, where he was taken after suffering a cardiac arrest at his Germantown home.”

Ardent, of course, played host to everyone from Led Zep and ZZ Top to R.E.M. and the White Stripes — and a local Memphis outfit called Big Star. Fry had started the studio originally in his parents’ garage, later moving it to a series of locations until building a new complex at 2000 Madison Ave. He also launched his fledgling Ardent label, eventually connecting with Stax Records for distribution and the release of Big Star’s #1 Record.

The rest is history. “If you acquire knowledge or skill or even wisdom, and you just keep it, then when you die, that dies with you,” Fry is quoted as saying in 2006. “But if you share that with other generations — who in turn will share it and share it and share it — you’re doing something that lasts.”

Go HERE to read the full Commercial-Appeal report.

Leave a Reply