Duane Eddy emerged as the leading guitar instrumentalist of the primordial rock & roll era, his twangy reign beginning with the incendiary "Rebel-Rouser" (of course, it didn't hurt that Dick Clark was one of his managers, ensuring plenty of airplay on American Bandstand). Eddy had honed his Chet Atkins-influenced guitar chops in country bands around Phoenix during the mid-'50s, his musical fortunes advanced by a young producer named Lee Hazlewood. Once Eddy began concentrating on the properties of his axe's low strings and whammy bar, his menacing sound was set. Eddy's first 45 for Philadelphia-based Jamie Records, "Moovin' N' Groovin," became a mild national hit in the spring of 1958 and set the stage for "Rebel-Rouser." Dramatically opening the track all by his lonesome by picking out a highly distinctive melody on his bass strings, the rest of the band fell in soon thereafter and momentum built fast. The key modulated up a half-step every 12 bars, Eddy sticking strictly to his low-end licks as the gang at Ramsey Recorders pounded out a stomping beat and a recently installed echo chamber rigged up from a 200-dollar grain storage tank made Eddy's simple but strong riffs sound downright threatening in their aggression. The historic Phoenix session took place in March of 1958, but Hazlewood and his partner Lester Sill weren't quite finished with the track. The pair took the master to Hollywood's Gold Star Studios and overdubbed a romping sax break by Gil Bernal (a frequent presence on the Robins' Jerry Leiber/Mike Stoller-masterminded mid-'50s classics for the Spark logo) and "rebel yells" by the Sharps, a black vocal group who cut their own Hazlewood-produced rocker for Jamie ("Have Love, Will Travel" with Eddy on lead guitar) before morphing into the Rivingtons of "Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow" fame. "Rebel-Rouser" made the handsome young Eddy a national star, spiking up to number six on Billboard's Hot 100 during the summer of 1958.