Who exactly is Stephen Shutts?
At a young age, Stephen M. Shutts began a hobby of collecting beer cans and baseball cards. During this time, his love for music developed and was shaped by first records he heard: Buffalo Springfield and The Jackson 5. His local FM radio stations provided the top-100 of the 1970s and The Monkees TV series, which he references as the soundtrack to his childhood.
During this time, Shutts became mesmerized with Elvis Presley after catching a glimpse of him on TV. Right then and there, he convinced his father to get the two of them Elvis tickets for an upcoming concert appearance in Dayton, Ohio. Shutts fell in love with everything about that first concert experience, and three more Elvis concerts would be attended in 1976 and 1977, with Shutts’ father in tow.
After college, a move to Nashville, and no job offers, Shutts began work at a talent agency, where he developed a knack for acting. Gigs as an Elvis impersonator became the norm for Shutts (long before the term, ‘Elvis Tribute Artist,’ or ‘ETA’ was used), which opened many doors for him, including a three-year stint touring alongside country music duo Brooks & Dunn.
Since moving to Nashville and from the early 1990s to the present, finding nostalgic items and discovering music history has been a large part of the weekly itinerary for Shutts. As years passed, finding and collecting rare and interesting items as memorabilia transitioned from a side hobby and into a full-fledged business, including buying, selling, appraising, authenticating and brokering memorabilia.
Touring exhibits began calling and the national and international spotlights fell on what would later become Rockology. Highlights of Shutts’ memorabilia business has included selling Elvis’ Memphis Audubon home to a world record sale, buying the historic Zippin Pippin rollercoaster, and finding a Hank Williams personal notebook of unpublished songs. With each sale, Rockology became a bigger piece of history and of greater importance within the museum and memorabilia industry, all with Shutts at the helm.