A development partnership - Area Hotels LLC - has submitted a set of plans to Memphis and Shelby County planners showing a four-story Hilton Garden Inn being built at the southwest corner of Second Street and Linden Avenue. The eight-story-tall Chisca sits to the east of that land at 272 South Main St. in Memphis.
The Chisca hotel once was the host of the "Red Hot and Blue" radio program on WHBQ wound-up voice of deejay Dewey Phillips howling through the speakers, playing the first Elvis record, "That's All Right Mama", on the air in July 1954. Phillips gave the record a test spin a few days after Elvis recorded it at Sun Studio and ended up playing it several times back-to-back on his show that night.
Phillips, still remembered by some Memphians by his nickname as "Daddy-O-Dewey," also conducted Elvis' first radio interview on his show at the hotel. The Chisca is the place where it all happened, where the frenetic deejay spun rock and blues records and uttered catch phrases - still famous today - like: "Get yourself a wheelbarrow load of mad hogs, run 'em through the front door, and tell 'em Phillips sent ya."
If newly filed real estate development plans are to be believed, the recording may soon be one of the few remaining mementos of the historic hotel, which was built in 1913 and once served as the headquarters of the Church of God in Christ (COGIC).