ELVIS AARON PRESLEY
The collaboration between Jean-Etienne Baduel and Erik Lorentzen leads to a beautiful documentation that is not presented in previous forms. An asset to every fan who appreciates Elvis from 1969 to 1977. 1124 is at the printer as we speak (11/23/2023) and soon out to all our loyal individual Elvis fans and wholesalers. Expected date for shipping to our dealers and customers: second week of December . . .
ONLY 1000 - one thousand - sets available
Eleven Hundred and Twenty-Four
By Erik Lorentzen & Jean-Etienne Baduel.
GUARANTEED RELEASE NOVEMBER '23
─ The set contains 3 volumes, housed in a slipcase.
Eleven Hundred and Twenty Four . . . that's about the number of concerts Elvis has performed since his return to the stage in front of a live audience in 1969.
About three years ago I (Erik) was asked by many collectors of my unique projects to do something from the time when Elvis returned to the stage at the Hilton Hotel in Las Vegas and all legendary concerts after that. Well now . . . a three book edition is ready and due to special circumstances this set will be released a few months earlier. The plan was to release this book set for Christmas 2023 but it has now been pushed forward a few months, this is for a reason and you will read that in the issues.
Anything and everything is brought to light in these special editions. All recordings, every stage suit, all information from every CD ever released by RCA, Sony and FTD records. More than 1200 pages packed with information with the best photos available printed on heavy glossy paper as you are used to from TEF. We has made a commitment to all fans and we offer it to you at a discounted rate ─ €269 ─ including DHL EXPRESS World Wide.
From the opening night on July 31st 1969 till the last concert Elvis Presley ever gave on June 26, 1977, at the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis. A SUPER-DE-LUXE EDITION of a phenomenon . . . The King Elvis Presley.
An absolute must for every Elvis fan.
Elvis is one of the most significant cultural icons of the twentieth century. This set is available from www.theelvisfiles.com and through your local dealer ─ GET YOUR COPY TODAY! Price includes shipping with DHL to all corners of the continent.
The first time Elvis Presley played Las Vegas, the critics hated him. Appearing in the Venus Room at the New Frontier Hotel in the spring of 1956, the 21-year-old hillbilly crooner with the dreamy eyes and well-lubricated hips was billed as "America's only atomic-powered singer." Two years earlier, he had been driving a truck in Memphis for $45 a week. Now he had a contract with RCA Victor Recordings and a movie deal with Paramount Studios.
1969 - The man causing the unprecedented stir: Elvis Presley. "It's been too long since I’ve done anything except making movies (more than thirty low-quality, top grossing films) and cut records (which have earned him 52 gold disks). "When I made my television special last year, I realized how much I missed the excitement of live audiences. "Right then I decided I'd like to do a nightclub date or two and see people from the stage again. I want to get back where the personal contact is."
1977 - Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, June 27, 1977.
Elvis Presley, known around the world as the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, thrilled audiences for decades with his legendary swagger, good looks, and unique vocal stylings. Among his many concerts over the years, the one that garners much historical attention is the final one, at Indianapolis’s Market Square Arena on June 26, 1977. His final performance, to a crowd of nearly 18,000 people, inspired copious press attention.
This new 1,200-page Deluxe set covers it all.
ELEVEN HUNDRED AND TWENTY FOUR
ELEVEN HUNDRED AND TWENTY FOUR
Nine-hundred and 44 pages of reading, viewing & listening pleasure
This 9-pounder is the best printed early Elvis travelogue since . . . ever! And I say that with some pride to it . . . Robert and Erik worked hard on this 2-book volume. The printing is absolutely beautiful, the box cover is stunning and all photos in the book are just jaw-dropping and in excellent quality ─ It'll knock your socks off! (except for one fake, sorry). The ready-to-frame SUN promo photos are a must to see, colors are right and close to the originals.
After many years of research and gathering facts of the first 20 years of Elvis' life, this is the pinnacle of any other release, ever. A beautiful tell-it-all-book that should not be missed in your collection.
PRODIGY OF SUN RECORDS
ELVIS: Prodigy of SUN Records. Use the BUY NOW button and order your copy today! DHL requires your telephone number, don't forget to mention this. It will cause serious delays in the processing.
Many hours of research through digital libraries emerged new facts and interesting anecdotes from Elvis' early life and career dated ‘35 till ‘55. From Old Saltillo Rd., to the magic of SUN recording studios, the first Louisiana Hayride appearances and everything in between. This book is filled with a string of never-before-seen photos dated from 1935 till 1955. BUT WAIT, that’s not all ─ a 10 inch vinyl bonus LP with ten songs also comes with this release!! The early Elvis SUN recordings in the best possible sound. The world's first atomic powered singer mixed blues, pop and hillbilly/country to create an electrifying new music that was called Rock ‘n Roll and changed the influence of music in the world forever. Also 9 glossy early SUN promotional photos – suitable for framing - you’ll find with your order presented in a printed paper sleeve.
A collection of stories: many of Elvis' early childhood friends sharing their memories in these two books. Elvis' time in primary and secondary school is extensively discussed as well as his first loves (not only girls) and his roots for Gospel music. Tupeloans share their stories about their childhood friend who became the future King. A collection of jaw-dropping photos and, of course, the near to complete story from Elvis' birth until his big break in 1955.
An unmissable reference book for all fans.
10" album cover
PRODIGY OF SUN RECORDS
ELVIS: Prodigy of SUN Records. Use the BUY NOW button and order your copy today! DHL requires your telephone number, don't forget to mention this. It will cause serious delays in the processing.
Lorentzen has already delivered big projects in recent years but I can assure you that this release is the icing on his cake. No expense has been spared to make this travelogue a success. For you of course, the fans.
The complete overview in word and image from Elvis’ birth until he [Elvis] signed for RCA. Over 900 pages packed with unique material and documentation interspersed with beautiful photos.
Hundreds of hours of research gives an overall picture of the boy who eventually became a 'king.' Many new and/or higher/better quality photos have been purchased and distributed through these two issues. You will be amazed at the mass of information that has come to light through newspaper articles, through those who befriended Elvis over the years and much more . . .
a "day-by-day" travelogue.
ELVIS: Prodigy of SUN Records. Use the BUY NOW button and order your copy today!
9 reproduction SUN promotional cards
November 30, 1976. Anaheim, CA. Photographed by Elaine Christan.
...AND THEN THERE WAS ELVIS
OUT NOW AND SHIPPED TO THE DEALERS ─ the long awaited release written by Elaine Christan (Coons) from the diary of her mother Virginia Coons.
A superfan's personal adventure.
Virginia Coons was a super-SUPER-fan. Her interest started with Elvis’ breakthrough in the mid-fities and continued to her very last day. She has met Elvis multiple times and was the direct link between America and England (Europe). She maintained contacts and ensured that the latest releases of LPs and 45s found their way overseas. She not only had contact with Elvis but with everyone close to him including Priscilla, Col. Parker's office and RCA. There are so many fun-to-read stories its incredible.
Virginia has hundreds of memories now curated by her daughter ─ Elaine Christan ─ in a 400 page hardback book. Many personal stories summarized in a beautiful book with many high resolution photos, personal candids etc . . . made available by MEGA collector Erik Lorentzen. Erik's photo collection is known worldwide and sky high.
Elaine translated her mother's journey into writing, so many beautiful stories brought together in one book. Anyone who reads The Elvis Files magazine will be familiar the way Virginia remembered Elvis and penned her memories.
...AND THEN THERE WAS ELVIS: Use the BUY NOW button and order your copy today! DHL requires your telephone number, don't forget to mention this. It will cause serious delays in the processing.
Presley walked through the front entrance of 706 Union Avenue to take advantage of the facility’s side-earner, a make-your-own-record service. Elvis’ amateur renditions of ’My Happiness’ and ’That’s When Your Heartaches Begin’ caught the ears of the studio’s owner, but it would be a full year before Phillips would team Elvis with guitarist Scotty Moore and bass player Bill Black, and set about realising a long-held ambition.
Some people tap their feet . . ,
Some people snap their fingers . . ,
and some people sway back and forth . . .
I JUST SORTA DO 'EM ALL TOGETHER, I GUESS.
magazines and books by Erik Lorentzen
On the brink of becoming an artistic phenomenon:
On July 5, 1954, Elvis Presley, chock full of nerves and not exactly sure of what would transpire, ventured inside Sun Studio for his first official recording session with producer Sam Phillips, guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black.
After trying various songs with middling results, Phillips was ready to end the session, but Presley serendipitously began playing Arthur “Big Boy” Crudup’s “That’s All Right” on his acoustic guitar, fusing the bluesy number into a heretofore unexplored musical genre that ultimately became rock ’n’ roll.
Subscribe to our widely acclaimed magazine
─ 4 issues €64 ─ delivered to your doorstep.
Renew your subscription today. Send €64 to email@example.com ─ starting with issue 41 (2023) ─ via PayPal or credit card for 4 magazines or use the friendly SUBSCRIBE AND PAY HERE . . . button above or the BUY NOW button below. Be up-to-date with the best photos and in-depth stories. The Elvis Files© is by far the best magazine ever since 2012, hailed by many fans and collectors around the world. We ship from Norway over the Northern Atlantic to Mozambique criss-cross Arabia to Russia and every country in between ─ for FREE.
The Arizona State Fairgrounds;
By the time he made his first appearance on a Phoenix stage — a sold-out concert at the Arizona state fairgrounds — Elvis Presley was the hottest
rockabilly singer on the planet.
It was June 9, 1956. "Heartbreak Hotel," his first single since signing to RCA Records, was in itssixth of seven weeks at No. 1 on Billboard's Top 100.
ELVIS through the years
Elvis Gyrates on The Ed Sullivan Show
Experienced showmen such as Ed Sullivan weren't sure the world was ready for such wild moves as the slick Elvis Presley was offering, but when Elvis proved too popular not to book, Sullivan scheduled him. Elvis made his first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show on September 9, 1956.
Elvis Presley had already appeared on other national television shows (such as on Stage Show, The Milton Berle Show, and on the popular The Steve Allen Show) when Ed Sullivan booked Elvis for three shows. Elvis' pelvic gyrations during his appearances on these other shows had caused much discussion and concern about the suitability of airing such provocative and sensual movements on television.
Although at first Ed Sullivan said he would never want Elvis on his show, Sullivan changed his mind when The Steve Allen Show with Elvis as a guest had about twice as many viewers as Sullivan's show that night (they were competing for the same audience since they were in the same time slot).
After negotiating with Elvis' manager, Ed Sullivan paid Elvis the huge sum of $50,000 for appearing on three of his shows: September 9, 1956, October 28, 1956, and then on January 6, 1957.
SULLIVAN DIDN'T HOST AND ELVIS NOT ACTUALLY ON SET
For Elvis' first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show on Sunday night at 8 p.m. on September 9, 1956, Ed Sullivan himself was not able to host since he had recently been in a very serious car accident that left him in the hospital. In his place, Oscar-winning actor Charles Laughton hosted the show. Elvis was also not on location in New York for the show since he was in Los Angeles for the filming of Love Me Tender.
Laughton hosted from New York and then when it came time for Elvis' appearance, Laughton introduced him and then cut to the stage in Hollywood with Elvis.
Elvis appeared on a stage with large, artistic guitars as decoration. Wearing a plaid jacket and holding his guitar, Elvis thanked Mr. Laughton and the audience and then said, "This is probably the greatest honor that I've ever had in my life. There's not much I can say except that hope it makes you feel good and we want to thank you from the bottom of our heart."
Elvis then sang, "Don't Be Cruel" with his four back-up singers (the Jordanaires) followed by "Love Me Tender," which was the not-yet-released title track from his new movie.
During this second set, Elvis sang "Ready Teddy" and then ended with a portion of "Hound Dog."
Throughout Elvis' entire performance, viewers could hear girls in the audience screaming ─ especially when Elvis did his special twitch or swung his hips or swiveled his legs. Elvis appeared to enjoy himself, frequently smiling or even laughing, which made him seem friendly, sweet, and hunky — depending on who was watching.
During Elvis' first performance on The Ed Sullivan Show, the cameras stayed mostly from the waist up during the first half of Elvis' appearance, but during the second time he appeared that night, the camera widened out and the TV audience was able to see Elvis' gyrations.
While many have felt that Elvis was censored by only showing him from the waist up on The Ed Sullivan Show, that really only happened during Elvis' third appearance, on January 6, 1957. For some still unknown reason (although there are a lot of rumors as to why), Sullivan allowed Elvis to only be shown from the waist up during that third and final show.
IT WAS A BREAKTHROUGH PERFORMANCE
Elvis' appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show was a major success. Over 60 million people, both young and old, watched the show and many people believe it helped bridge the generation gap for Elvis' acceptance into the mainstream.
The Nashville Tennessean, Wednesday Morning, Feb. 15, 1956.
Rock & Roll Set Adores Elvis Presley
It Happened Last Night.
By Earl Wilson
NEW YORK ─ “Teenagers,” 21-year-old Elvis Presley, of Memphis, Tennessee, exclaims, “I love ‘em!” “Sure,” the new idol of the Rock ‘n Roll set told me “they tear off my clothes, they scratch their initials on my cars, they phone my hotel all night. But they buy my records and they pay me to sing. I’m grateful and when they stop annoying me, I’ll start to worry.”
For the present at least, Elvis would seem to have little to worry about. After an appearance two weeks ago on Jackie Gleason’s TV program “Stage Show,” with the Dorsey brothers, Elvis was quickly signed for another four weeks. Observers generally credited Gleason with a shrewd move.
If any singer could dent the popularity of the show’s competition, smooth, effortless Perry Como, it was probably Elvis. His fans ─ including a “few” older folks ─ have shelled out for over 100.000 of his latest record, “Heartbreak Hotel,” an almost incredible showing for a two week period. On one-night stands over a good part of the country, Elvis plays to very excited and well-packed-in throngs.
What does this kid Presley have? A couple of particularly cubey squares were asking. Well, he’s got a voice that’s very loud and full of feeling and when he sings, unlike Como, it is not effortless. Like Johnny Ray, to whom he has been compared, he writhes and contorts and suffers through a song, and the kids love it. In addition, he’s some showman. For instance. He wears his hair long, with sideburns yet.
“I’ve got the money for a haircut.” Elvis assured me. “But this is good business. It’s important that I be conspicuous. His more enthusiastic admirers say he looks like a cross between Marlon Brando and the late James Dean. In a way, he does at that. Incidentally, he’s taking acting lessons.
Then, there’s his clothes. “I don’t think it’s right,” Elvis says, “for a fellow to dress loud. On the street that is. On stage, I want to stand out. The louder my clothes the better.” He favors combinations of red and black, usually without ties. He went to the closet and returned smiling, with a jacket that almost become his trademark. It was a flaming, screaming fire-engine red. A turquoise model is another favorite.
He has “about 75” suits. “Have you worn ‘em all?” I asked. “Most of ‘em” he said. He has 27 pairs of shoes and shirts “I haven’t taken the price tag off yet.” “You see, collecting clothes is my hobby.”
“Mam’s been speaking to me about spending too much money,” (His parents are Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Presley, of Memphis). Mrs. Presley may have had in mind his two Cadillacs, a pink one and a yellow one, back home in Memphis. He travels to his personal appearances in a standard, inconspicuous Plymouth. “Why is that?” I wondered.
“Well, I used to use the pink Caddy ─ had it especially painted, you know, but the kids got so they recognize it. They’d scratch their initials in it and walked off with my hubcaps as souvenirs. “I’m proudest and happiest, though, with my motorcycle.” With two powerful cars and a motorcycle, the accent seemed on speed. I mentioned this. “No reason to worry about that,” Elvis assured me. “I never speed. You see, I care too much about living.”
Who Is Elvis Presley?
THAT rocket blazing a fiery trail across the musical sky these days and nights is no rocket. It's 21 year old Elvis Presley, Memphis's contribution to the world of music. Presley's rise to fame has been little short of fantastic. Some time ago, Elvis walked into the Sun Record Company in Memphis, Tenn., and recorded his voice at his own expense. Sun Record Company liked Presley's style and signed him to a contract.
Recently RCA Victor bought Presley's contract and he is on his way up. He recorded "Heartbreak Hotel." His unique style clicked at once. Now this record is a cinch to pass the million mark any day. He is in great demand for personal appearances and TV shows. More of his songs are being released. His head is in a whirl but Elvis is taking it all in stride. He appreciates his good fortune and is determined not to let it change him.
How does Elvis rate cover position in the Enthusiast? He is a Harley-Davidson rider and is shown on his third motorcycle. He started out as the owner of a 165 and at present rides the 1956 "KH." It is a red and white model and is his favorite. His new life makes great demands on him but, he still finds time to roll up some miles on his "KH". Good Luck for your future, Elvis.
Ted Bruehl Photo ─ January 1956, Getwell Rd. Memphis, Tn.
Article of the Enthusiast® ©Harley Davidson
"Chicago International Amphitheatre"
Elvis meet the press in the Saddle and Sirloin Club - March 28, 1957.
Peter Guralnick wrote; Elvis had a press conference at the Saddle and Sirloin Club at the Stockyards Inn in the afternoon, and that night he unveiled the $2,500 gold leaf suit that the Colonel had had made up for him. The idea had come from the gold cutaway that Liberace wore in Las Vegas, and the Colonel had Nudie Cohen, Hollywood tailor to the stars (or perhaps a certain kind of star, including all the bespangled country and western luminaries), come out to the movie set in his steer—horn-decorated Cadillac to measure him for it.
The Chicago Tribune wrote;
Before opening night of his 1957 tour at the International Amphitheatre, Elvis Presley held a news conference in the Saddle and Sirloin Club, a nearby ritzy hangout for cattle executives visiting the Union Stockyards.
Flanked by a hound dog and a gaggle of reporters ahead of his first-ever Chicago stop — the first concert after his waist-up "Ed Sullivan Show" appearance — the 22-year-old Presley unveiled golden shoes, part of the custom-designed gold suit that he'd debut that night and that would become iconic.
Then came the 16-song, 47-minute performance, attended by some 13,000 rabid fans who rendered "the King" and his backing Jordanaires inaudible with their screams.
Newspaper accounts detail the pandemonium: Grown women were reduced to tears. Dozens of girls fainted. An usher from Bridgeport was cold-cocked by the purse of a fan trying to rush the stage at the arena, located at 42nd and Halsted streets.
From his rollicking rhythm and blues roots to the grandiose stage shows at now-shuttered arenas, the relationship of "The King of Rock 'n' Roll" with the city was special.
"I don't think there was a more pivotal or more important voice to younger generations at that time. They needed that beacon of energy for their generation and certainly Elvis was it," said Cory Cooper, a Nevada-based "Elvis expert."
Like most major cities in the United States, Chicago was a familiar and frequent spot for Presley, where he played both the Amphitheater and Chicago Stadium. But Presley's legacy here took a macabre turn in 1956.
The American of Chicago produced a series of high quality posters with blank spines except for two notations and a number on each, which have been printed on newspaper, so that they can be folded and show no ink leaks. Celebrities of the time like James Dean, Nancy Sinatra, James Cagney, James Stewart, The Beatles and of course Elvis Presley were all present. In preparation for this special Elvis Presley poster which was to be inserted in Chicago's America issue in 1968, the poster offered announced this upcoming release. Due to the fragile nature of newspapers, few of these inserted posters have survived.
Given Elvis' popularity, advertising the pending insert was a smart tactic to elicit interest and, in turn, sell more of this edition. This earlier advertisement for the poster insert is equally unusual and represents the exact image of Elvis in his gold lamé costume that would be included free with the Sunday edition of Chicago's American. What fan could resist to such a dazzling image of the singer in action to hang on his wall?
Erik Lorentzen & KJ Consulting proudly presents the ULTIMATE Elvis Files magazines and books.
TTWIwas is a fully documented complimentary 5 book set with over 3000 unseen photos both in B/W and color from the original slides ─ NOT from the film reel ─ from MGM's photographic archives. See Elvis on stage and at the rehearsals in superb quality printing. Elvis 1970 is the KING in his prime! Vol.1-2-3 €249 and €199 for Vol.4-5 Both sets can be ordered separately Hardcover books in slipcase. Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
TTWIwas is a fully documented complimentary 5 book set with over 3000 unseen photos both in B/W and color from the original slides ─ NOT from the film reel ─ from MGM's photographic archives. See Elvis on stage and at the rehearsals in superb quality printing. Elvis 1970 is the KING in his prime! Vol.1-2-3 €249 and €199 for Vol.4-5 Both sets can be ordered separately Hardcover books in slipcase. Mail: email@example.com
TTWIwas is a fully documented complimentary 5 book set with over 3000 unseen photos both in B/W and color from the original slides ─ NOT from the film reel ─ from MGM's photographic archives. See Elvis on stage and at the rehearsals in superb quality printing. Elvis 1970 is the KING in his prime! Vol.1-2-3 €249 and €199 for Vol.4-5 (this set comes with twelve 8"x12" photos ─ pre-order) Both sets can be ordered separately Hardcover books in slipcase. Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
TTWIwas is a fully documented complimentary 5 book set with over 3000 unseen photos both in B/W and color from the original slides ─ NOT from the film reel ─ from MGM's photographic archives. See Elvis on stage and at the rehearsals in superb quality printing. Elvis 1970 is the KING in his prime! Vol.1-2-3 €249 and €199 for Vol.4-5 Both sets can be ordered separately Hardcover books in slipcase. Mail: email@example.com
Weekly - FREE - Photo
for subscribers only
©1979 Excerpt from Alfred Wertheimer's Elvis ‘56 IN THE BEGINNING
I woke up in Newark, New Jersey, feeling sticky. We were fifteen minutes from New York, and with a cold shot of water on the face and my all-American breakfast of an apple, a half-pint of milk and a Yankee Doodle cupcake, I was ready to go.
Elvis was sitting cross-legged in a compartment with D. J. and Bill. He had on the same white bucks as the night before, which were no longer quite so white, the same slate-grey suit and the same slick pompadour, which by now had a gloss that could outshine a waxed black Cadillac.
He was reading a fan letter. D.J. studied her photograph, a wallet-sized high school picture that was so universal in kind, I was convinced there was a special camera that, no matter how it was used, would forever yield a "cheese" smile looking over the right shoulder. D.J. turned it over to read her name and handed it to Elvis, whose face was still puffy and soft from sleep. Elvis looked her over and passed into a morning daydream.
D. J. said, "Hey, she's pretty good lookin', huh?" Elvis came back. "Yeah, pretty good lookin'." Bill looked out the window and all went black.
We were crossing under the Hudson River into the subterranean corridors of Pennsylvania Station."
The main concourse of the station was active with Sunday morning travelers. Elvis picked up a copy of the Sunday New York Mirror. This time he didn't stick it under his arm. In bold, two-inch type the headline read "2 Airliners Missing, 127 Aboard." I had heard he once had a close call in a chartered plane, somewhere outside of Texas.
He read that news across the concourse "PHOENIX, ARIZ. June 30. Two luxury airliners, carrying an estimated 127 passengers and crew, were missing and presumed crashed in the Arizona desert ... "), up the stairs ("as darkness wrapped the desert, a vast search-rescue effort was halted for the night ... "), on the street (" ... could be the worst disaster in commercial aviation history ... ") and in the cab ("Other Major Flying Disasters") to the Hudson Theatre, site of the "Steve Allen Show." The train looked better all the time.
We were back in New York. The number four Mirror Disc of the Week was "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You" by Swivle Yelserp (sic). Number one was "Wayward Wind" by Gogi Grant. The frosting on the cake was one of "Nick's Snacks!!!": "It isn't what young girls know that bothers their parents ... it's how they found out."
The cab carrying Tom Diskin, Elvis, Junior and myself drove up Forty-fourth Street, which was deserted and grey under the Sunday morning overcast. At the entrance to the theater, a young girl dressed all in white appeared, escorted by a middle-aqed gentleman. She looked about sixteen going on thirty, and wore what must have been her best white dress (its billowing folds were topped by a bow in the back), white gloves, white pumps, and hat. Her earrings were white rhinestones in the shape of hearts. Around her neck was a rhinestone cross. She looked as if she were ready for her first Communion, except for the dark glasses that she wore.
As soon as Elvis opened the door of the cab, she bravely stepped forward and with all the tentative confidence mental rehearsals bring, she asked, Elvis can I have your autograph?"
She presented the pen and the book. He asked her and she told him, becoming so excited, that she could barely speak. When it finally came out, it rushed in a choking torrent.
"I came in all the way from Long Island with my father; we've been waiting here for over one hour; "I'm so lucky I was able to see you before you went into the theater; I can't wait to see you tonight."
Elvis returned her autograph book, took a white gloved hand in both of his and smiled graciously. "It's very nice of you to come all the way from Long-Island. I really appreciate it."
She choked again. "I'm, I'm so happy to see you I love your music. I love your voice; I've got all your records; I love "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You": I listen to it all the time; I read everything I can about you ..."
She couldn't go on.
Elvis spoke gently. "I'm glad you like it. I sure hope I do well tonight. You gonna watch?"
"I sure will."
Tom interrupted. "Elvis, it's getting to be time for rehearsal."
"I gotta go now."
She kept it together. "Goodbye."
As soon as Elvis entered the theater, she covered her face and wept. Her father put his arm around her, delighted that his daughter's wish had come true. I asked to take their picture. She composed for one shot, then covered her face again and burst into tears. It was true devotion. After the scene last night, I believed it.
The Hudson Theatre, the oldest legitimate showhouse on Broadway, a relic of green marble and stained glass, had been overtaken by the unforgiving progress of television and had been converted into a studio. The stage, which had been extended to accommodate both sets and television cameras, jutted deep into the seating area leaving no more than a dozen rows. The balcony had been given over to the lights.
Elvis met Bill and D. J. outside his dressing room and they quietly walked together across the stage and up the aisle and took seats halfway from the rear. where Tom and a few of the Jordanaires sat. The Colonel was nowhere in sight.
Elvis was instructed to sing to the dog. Without the mike, he crouched down nose-to-nose with the dog and let her know, "you ain't nothing but a hound dog." She heard that and ignored him for the rest of the song.
Now they had a problem. Steve wanted the hound to listen to Elvis, so he suggested that they get to know each other. The top hat and bow tie were removed. Elvis leaned over, caressed her neck and whispered in her ear. She turned away. Elvis became intimate, speaking softly, touching her forehead with his hand to let her know she was the only one in his life. She didn't believe him.
The director tried his technique, scratching her chin and speaking his own special dog language. He convinced her to put aside her feelings and be the trooper he knew she was.
The director gave the cue. Elvis extended his hand and she leaned forward and rested her chin in his palm. He told her again she was nothing but a hound dog, and when he had her where he wanted her, his hand holding her face close to his, he told her she "ain't never caught a rabbit." Elvis tried to keep a straight face when she turned away. Scotty, D. J. and Bill rocked through the refrain.
Elvis coiled like a runner at the starting blocks, shot his finger straight out at her and told her again. She looked right back at him and took it, and when he finished telling her, "you ain't no friend of mine," he patched it all up, hugging and caressing her, laughing as she licked his face. The audience applauded, the stagehands nodded, and Steve approved. The Memphis Flash was okay.
THERE'S NO SUCH THING AS HAVING TOO
MANY - JAW DROPPING - ELVIS FILES BOOKS
Lorentzen's books broaden your Elvis knowledge
May 22, 1960. The NY Times
Elvis Presley Returns To Movie Maneuvers
By MURRAY SCHUMACH
Hollywood. The tall young man with the dark, curly hair, smoothed down his soldier's uniform, rose from the bar stool and walked glumly below bright lights, out among the crowded night-club tables. Sulkily he acknowledged applause and cheers of his soldier buddies, slapping one on the back, tousling another's hair, as he moved toward the bandstand by popular request. When he neared the orchestra leader, he said to an approaching soldier:
"I thought I told you not to help." The soldier grinned and replied, "What did I do?" Whereupon the dark-haired soldier mocked, with heavy sarcasm, "What did I do," and sullenly accepted a guitar from a smiling bandleader.
There was no need for Elvis Presley to do any more than hold the guitar in this scene from "G. I. Blues," his first movie since his discharge from the Army. He had already recorded in a sound studio his eleven songs for this picture. "I liked that," Presley called across the night-club set at Paramount Studios as soon as the cameras stopped." "I liked it too," echoed Norman Taurog, the director, from beside the camera men. "We'll print that."
Mr. Taurog, who has a reputation for knowing how to work with child actors and young actors, explained that the secret of working with someone like Presley, was that "you have to like music and you have to enjoy working with young people."
Presley, he said, was obviously a natural for the movies. "There is no stiffness with this boy. This is the most relaxed boy you could want. He reminds me of Crosby and Como. He is a good listener. When you have a good listener you have a good actor."
Hal B. Wallis, the producer, approached as Mr. Taurog broke off the eulogy to confer with him. Presley returned to his bar stool to chat with his co-star, Julie Prowse, who was adorned in flesh- colored tights and beads for her role of the night-club singer besought by Presley.
Magnetic Music Man
Mr. Wallis finished his conversation with Mr. Taurog and recalled how he had signed Presley under a personal movie contract more than four years ago. "I saw him on a TV show. There was an excitement in him. His whole look had it. I could see he was not just a singer. I saw something in him more than a personality. I signed him without a screen test."
During an interval while the camera recorded crowd enthusiasm, in general and in detail, Mr. Presley withdrew to a small dressing room and discussed acting and singing. Acting, he said, was more difficult. He had heard that lots of young men and women venturing into movie work had decided to study acting. "I'm not doing any studying," he said. "At least not so far as reading or taking lessons goes. I'm learning from experience."
He denied he would sacrifice his singing career for acting. He liked singing too much, he explained. All kinds of singing. "The other night at the Milton Berle show ─ you know his night-club show ─ he put on six opera singers," said Presley. "I flipped my lid. They had great voices, great arrangements." With regret, he confessed that while he was stationed in Germany with the Army, he had not been to any opera. "I was just too tired at night to go anywhere," he said sadly.
About his own singing, he was more specific. He does not read music, he said. "I just listen to it get played a few times. No one can tell me how you should do this song or that one. I work strictly my own way. If the day ever comes when I listen to anyone else I'll get mechanical and I'm dead."
He could see no sense in reports that rock 'n' roll music was dying and he said it was ridiculous to think that the success of this sort of music was due solely to payola to disk jockeys who plugged rock 'n' roll records.
"Rock 'n' roll music," he said, "is getting better than ever. The sound engineers are learning more about how to handle the stuff. It couldn't have been made popular by payola alone. Too many Americans love it. Nope. I don't see why I should change my singing style right now. Seems pretty foolish to me. Of course," he added, after a pause during which he squinted carefully up at the ceiling, "if things change I'll change too. You have to. That's show business." Of the eleven songs he has done for "G. I. Blues," he said that only about three or four were rock 'n' roll. "Then I did some medium beat and some ballads."
He stretched. It was good, he said to have a car of his own instead of an Army jeep. "I get up just as early as I used to because I have to make movies."
He grinned broadly. "There's a little difference now. A little difference in tactics. A little difference in maneuvers.
The TCB Band in 1970: Ronnie Tutt, Jerry Scheff, James Burton and John Wilkinson.
Lydia Hutchinson | January 8, 2016 | Performing Songwriter
August 1970, the Grand Ballroom of the Las Vegas Hilton. The lights are going down. Out of the darkness comes a torrent of drums, a guitar riff, a piano and eight background singers clapping in tent-revival rhythm. Elvis Presley appears from the wings, throws his shoulders around and flashes a photon beam of charisma. The world’s most coveted head of male hair flops across his forehead. As he starts to sing “That’s all right mama,” the crowd goes nuts. It’s more than all right. The 35-year-old superstar has made a triumphant return to live performance.
When he first hit in 1955, Elvis was like an H-bomb on shaky legs. In 18 months, he went from hillbilly singer to the biggest star in America, with a parade of No. 1 hits such as “Heartbreak Hotel,” “All Shook Up” and “Jailhouse Rock.” Along the way he upended our entire pop culture—from music to fashion to attitudes about race and sexuality.
By the early 1960s, Elvis was lured to Hollywood as aspirations of movie stardom replaced his desire to be the king of rock ’n’ roll. But he got trapped in a succession of inane films—the result of years-long manipulations of his notorious manager, Colonel Tom Parker. Finally, in 1968, Elvis had enough. In that landmark year, he reasserted himself in the televised ’68 Comeback Special, a new album, From Elvis in Memphis—and his first chart-topper in seven years, “Suspicious Minds.”
“I lost my musical direction in Hollywood,” Elvis told reporters on the eve of his return to live performance in Vegas the following year. “My songs were the same conveyer-belt mass production, just like most of my movies. Now I’m back and on the right road.”
His traveling companions on the road to the Hilton were a group of ace musicians, including Glen D. Hardin (piano), James Burton (guitar), Ronnie Tutt (drums) and Jerry Scheff (bass). This is the band that would ride with the king from his initial return to the stage in Vegas until his drug-addled last performances in 1977.
Best of the Best
Elvis had reunited original backup band members Scotty Moore and drummer D.J. Fontana for the ’68 special, but the old hands were eased out for the Las Vegas shows in favor of young guns with more skill and flash. Moore and Fontana—along with bass player Bill Black—had been with Elvis when he began recording at Sun Studios in Memphis in 1954, but the new players were carefully selected from among the best live and session musicians in the business.
Preparing for Elvis’ new live show was an impressive undertaking. Luckily, Elvis and his new band clicked immediately.
“We rehearsed probably 200 songs,” says Jerry Scheff. “When we played them with him, it wasn’t like a rehearsal. It was more like we were just having fun, like jamming almost.”
A San Francisco hippie with jazz and classical training, bassist Scheff had contributed to hundreds of west coast pop sessions, from Neil Diamond to Linda Ronstadt.
“The old songs from the ’50s, Elvis turned those into medleys, and we’d race through them,” Scheff says. “He put them in because he had to, but he squashed them down to the least time possible. He wanted to be taken more seriously by critics. That was his vision—to ease out of the rock ’n’ roll business and become known more for what he considered more adult-type stuff.”
Glen D. Hardin agrees. “Elvis was convinced that he was probably the best rock singer in the world, but he came to a point where he wanted to be Perry Como.”
Hardin, a Lubbock, Texas native, cut his teeth with Buddy Holly’s group, the Crickets, then after a stint in the Navy, joined the house band for the mid-’60s TV music program Shindig! There he taught himself the arranging skills that he’d use to give much of Elvis’ live work in the ’70s its pomp and circumstance.
“I could make the arrangements pretty busy because he was such a powerful singer,” Hardin recalls. “A lot of the stuff for the Vegas show, he’d tell me the song, then say he wanted it the next day. Sometimes it was more than one. A lot of it, I did without ever consulting him. When I got it all together, I’d usually stop by his dressing room before we went on, and I’d play it for him. It was loose.”
“In rehearsals, and on stage, Elvis keyed off the guitar,” says James Burton. “We had great eye contact. He loved guitar. If I’d play a lick or something, he would just turn around and say, ‘Yeah, baby!’ It was a great communication that all of us had.”
Burton had first caught Elvis’ eye as a member of Ricky Nelson’s band on the weekly TV show The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet. As the chickenpickin’ axeman rose to the top of the L.A. session scene, Elvis kept tabs on him. He knew the day would come when they’d work together.
Rookie drummer Ronnie Tutt, another Texan, had played with Western swing bands and symphonies before joining Elvis’ band. “I’ve always said it was like working for a stripper in the old days of vaudeville,” Tutt says. “The drummers and musicians had to watch every move the stripper made to accent it with their instruments.”
With so many songs at his disposal, Elvis rarely followed a set list. “You never knew which way he was going to go on stage,” Burton says. “He could change at any moment. He’d say, ‘James, give me an E.’ Then he’d go into whatever song he had in his mind.”
Santa Cruz Sentinel, 23 January 1975
Elvis May Buy Boeing 707 Jet
MEMPHIS, Term. (AP) ─ If Elvis Presley chose to live in it while on tour, a Boeing 707 jet the singer hopes to buy would be "10 times more plush" than some places he has stayed, his attorney says. Presley has bid $1.5 million for the plane, formerly owned by financier Robert L. Vesco, and already has made a $75,000 deposit, Charles H. Davis said Wednesday." Davis said he expected a group of creditors of a defunct firm formerly headed by Vesco to decide soon on whether to approve the sale. Superior Court Judge Irwin I. Kimmelman of Newark, N.J., also must give his approval. Davis said the plane, which has been at the Newark airport since last May, has 33 passenger seats, sleeping accommodations for a number of persons, a sauna and steam baths, a dressing room, a study and two dining rooms. "Elvis can add more staterooms," Davis said. "He can take his entire staff and band and they can practice while flying. He has had to charter three jets on occasion to take his entire group when he flies to appearances. "Facilities on the plane will be 10 times more plush than some places he has had to stay. And he can keep the plane at a guarded airport location and Capitola Lions.
Meeting tonight at Art and Walt's Garbini Inn, Soquel, members of the Capitola Lions Club will view a film, "Second Sight," on a pilot program to provide guide dogs for the blind. Lions President Eddie Ball said the film documents the training of German Shepherd dogs as leaders and their placement with blind persons, who also must be instructed to make the relationship work. Charles Murray is the Capitola club's liaison for its Sight Conservation program. Members of all area Lions clubs are invited to the meeting, slated for 7:30 p.m. live in it.
It is excellent from his standpoint." The plane has 40,000 hours of flying time, about half of its expected life, and originally cost between $3 million and $4 million without improvements made by Vesco, Davis said. Davis said that if Presley purchases the aircraft, he would employ a permanent staff of four to operate it, two pilots, a flight engineer and a navigator. Elvis' father, Vernon, said his son had been looking for an aircraft to buy for some time. The elder Presley inspected the plane last week and has shown pictures of it to his son.
Vesco, now living in Costa Rica and the Bahamas, is under indictment on charges of conspiracy to stop a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation of his finances in exchange for a $200,000 contribution to the 1972 re-election campaign of former President Richard M. Nixon. Former Atty. Gen. John N. Mitchell and former Commerce Secretary Maurice H. Stans were acquitted in April 1974 on charges of criminal conspiracy, perjury and obstruction of justice in the same case.
Eventually he bought himself a flying Graceland, worth to a king.
So what do we know about his attraction to planes?
He owned 2 jets in his life.
a Convair 880 called Lisa Marie
a Lockheed Jetstar called Hound Dog II.
The Convair 880 was a jet airliner produced by the Convair division of General Dynamics. It was designed to compete with the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8 by being smaller, faster and safer, a niche that failed to create demand. Only 65 880s were produced over the lifetime of the production run from 1959 to 1962, and General Dynamics eventually withdrew from the airliner market after considering the 880 project a failure. Only 9 of these aircrafts are left in the world, none of them is airworthy and only one is preserved properly, Lisa Marie – the plane of Elvis Presley. It is parked in Graceland in Memphis and it is part of the Elvis museum.
Maiden flight: January 27, 1959
Number of aircrafts built: 65
Cumberland County Memorial Auditorium, Fayetteville, NC. August 3-4-5 1976.
The JetStar originated as a private project within Lockheed, with an eye to winning a USAF requirement that was later dropped due to budget cuts. Lockheed decided to continue the project on their own for the business market. Noise regulations in the United States and high fuel consumption led to the development of the 731 JetStar, a modification program which added new Garrett AiResearch TFE731 turbofan engines and redesigned external fuel tanks to original JetStars. The 731 JetStar modification program was so successful that Lockheed produced 40 new JetStars, designated the JetStar II, from 1976 through 1979. The JetStar IIs were factory new aircraft with the turbofan engines and revised external fuel tanks. Both 731 JetStars and JetStar IIs have greatly increased range, reduced noise, and better runway performance compared to the original JetStars.
JetStar production totaled 204 aircraft by final delivery in 1978. Most original JetStars have been retired, but many 731 JetStars and JetStar IIs are still flying in various roles. A JetStar that was owned by Elvis Presley in his later years, named Hound Dog II, is on display at Graceland.
Maiden flight: 4 September 1957
Produced: 1957 – 1978
Number of aircrafts built: 204
Both jets were sold by the family after the death of Elvis, but later they were bought back and parked in Graceland, Memphis and they serve as a part of the museum.
Lisa Marie and Hound Dog II ─ The Lisa Marie, newest craft in Elvis Presley's small air fleet, is at Memphis International Airport on 12 Nov 1975 getting final touches before being put to use for touring. The converted Convair 880, formerly used by DAL.
San Bernardino Sun, 22 November 1971
Elvis Adjusts to Audience
BY MARY CAMPBELL
AP Newsfeatures Writer
Elvis Presley, the person RCA Victor says has sold more records than any other person who has ever lived, is also an incredible showman in person. He gave an entirely different ─ show different in approaching ─ in November 1971 in a sometime basketball arena in Philadelphia from the one he gave in August 1969 in a Las Vegas nightclub. And unlike some performers, who would have wound up with a good presentation and a lesser one, Presley was in both cases tremendously exciting.
In Las Vegas, he was returning to live performing after nine years devoted to many movies and a little TV. His audience there ─ people old enough, worldly enough and prosperous enough to gamble in a Las Vegas hotel and then go to the hotel's nightclub, all remembered Presley from early 1956 the shock of the sound of his voice and the crude songs he sang clanging into the midst of ballads from "My Fair Lady" and "Bells Are Ringing." But mostly Presley was the shock of all those sexy gyrations that earned him the name "Elvis the Pelvis" and got him photographed waist-up only on the Ed Sullivan Show.
In Las Vegas, Presley gave his audience 1956 ─ all the grinds and thrusts with the guitar and all those old hit songs sung with 1956 intensity, "Blue Suede Shoes," "Don't Be Cruel," "Heartbreak Hotel," "Hound Dog," "Love Me Tender." The audience got very, very turned on. It was nostalgia with a very big plus. People who hadn't liked Presley at first now were used to rock stars' gyrations and, no longer focusing entirely on that, talked excitedly after the show about Presley's stage presence, his excellent voice, his showmanship, his cool, his sex appeal.
In Philadelphia, the audience was very different and so was Presley. While we might have assumed that the whole world had become accustomed to a star's sexy moving around on a stage, Presley evidently didn't assume that. Here he had many entire families and they didn't see movements any more suggestive than one would see from a group of carefully supervised Junior high school cheerleaders.
After the first couple of numbers, Presley got rid of the guitar and took off a short cape which made him look a combination of an Elizabethan dandy and Superman. He walked around holding a hand mike, gesturing mostly with the other hand, gestures from orchestra conducting to cheerleading to twirling a lariat. He did shake his left knee, but the way he did it was like tapping a toe in time to music. Still, it was a tight, exciting show.
There was the merest moment between the end of one song and the start of the next. High point of the evening, as far as we were concerned, was "Bridge Over Troubled Water." That was sung with religious intensity and the audience responded the way a church full of people sometimes rises to the intensity of a spellbinding gospel minister. "How Great Thou Art" and "The Impossible Dream" were on nearly as high a level of fervor. Screaming erupted at the beginning and end of every song and each of the four times Presley took a black scarf from around his neck and in the V neckline of his bright white suit and threw it into the audience.
Old friend Charley Hodge, playing acoustic guitar, kept providing scarves and glasses of water. Also behind Presley were three electric guitarists, a pianist, a drummer, an orchestra and nine backup singers. When the Beatles used to perform, the audience screamed. When George Harrison hosted a concert in New York in July, there was silence during a song and then strong but ordered applause at the end. Presley fans still scream. They also shoot flashbulbs toward the stage, throughout. The 17,000 seats in the hall named Spectrum were all sold, plus the press box.
Next stop, on a 10-city tour of one-nighters, Boston. Presley gives the impression of a person on top of a career, not with the career on top of him. He sang some of the old hits, but not all of them, and threw in some relative oldies that were hits for other people, like "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me" and "You've Lost that Lovin' Feelin'." He sang one of his 1969 million sellers, "Suspicious Minds," and not the other one from that year, "In the Ghetto."
The six females in front of me appeared in the age groups of three little girls, two mothers and a grandmother. Three had binoculars. Not screamers, they seemed enveloped in silent awe. They loved what they heard, weren't disconcerted by anything they saw and clapped a lot at the end. The conclusion is supershowman Elvis Presley knows what he's doing.
San Bernardino Sun, 18 March 1974
Elvis returns to Memphis
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) ─ Elvis Presley is back where it all started 20 years ago and the hometown fans are happy. "The President lives in the White House, but the King lives in Memphis,'' said one man. Presley was in town for five shows four over the weekend and one on Wednesday. The opening performance Saturday drew a crowd of 12.000 who screamed, cheered, waved and jumped out of their seats. "Hello. Memphis,” said Presley. "It's good to be home." It was his first Memphis performance in 13 years.
Presley, 39, crooned, bumped, teased, wiggled and tossed silk scarves to begging women. Nobody fainted. "We gave out a lot of aspirins and earplugs, but nobody needed the oxygen tank," said Faye Martin, a Red Cross volunteer. Glittering in a white jumpsuit, Presley worked his way through more than 20 songs, opening with "C.C. Rider" and bowing out to "I Can't Help Falling in Love With You." Hundreds of people shouted for more, but Presley was gone.
Officials of the Mid-South Coliseum where the concert was held said the singer left the building in nine seconds flat. Before the show, barkers hawked "treasures from Elvis" that included a $3 souvenir booklet with 16 pictures of Presley in "living, loving color," $7.50 autographed scarves in various colors and $2 field glasses.
ELVIS PRESLEY DIES; ROCK SINGER WAS 42
He was both loathed, loved
By JOHN ROCKWELL New York Times News Service
NEW YORK For most people, Elvis Presley was rock-and-roll. And they were right. Bill Haley may have made the first massive rock hit, and people like Chuck Berry and Little Richard may have had an equally important creative impact on this raucous new American art form, but it was Elvis who defined the style and gave it an indelible image. The songs were tough and driving in a time, 20 years ago, when American popular music was still based on Tin Pan Alley tunesmithing. And the image was of a working-class rebel, pushing sex into the nation's consciousness long before the "sexual revolution." With his ominous, greasy, swirling locks, his leather jacket and his aggressive undulations, Elvis was a performer that parents abhored, young women adored and young men instantly imitated.
Presley's national impact began in the spring of 1956, after he had signed to RCA Victor; in that year alone he had such hits as "Heartbreak Hotel" (the first), "Don't Be Cruel" and "Hound Dog" (a double-sided hit), "Blue Suede Shoes," and "Love Me Tender." But before that Presley had forged his style in Sam Phillips' Sun Records studios in Memphis. Although he was not a songwriter, Presley still deserves more credit than he is generally accorded for the creation of his style. Early rock-and-roll derived from a blend of white rockabilly and black rhythm-and-blues.
Elvis was not an ignorant country boy who stumbled into the style or who followed the orders of wiser mentors. The by-now-legendary "Sun sessions" of 1954 and 1955, which produced his greatest recorded work and which were recently reissued on an RCA LP, saw Presley carefully working and reworking the songs, evolving his craft on the spot. Elvis' first national impact ─ the "Elvis the Pelvis" days ─ saw the greatest eruption of hysteria about a singer since the days of the young Frank Sinatra. He was mobbed, and idolized even as he was denounced as the devil's tool.
Presley became the focus for a new kind of youth music, one that swept aside the gentilities of the adult-oriented pop of previous decades and reflected the swelling youth market of the postwar baby boom. By the late 1950s, however, Presley's image began to change. He went into the Army, and by the time he returned to performing, his main impact was felt in the films he had begun to make soon after his initial success. There were rocking moments in them, to be sure; "Jailhouse Rock," from his third film, was one of his greatest hits. But in most of his movies (overt B films, all of them) he became a sultry Lothario, crooning ballads like "Love Me Tender," his first hit of this sort. By the mid-60s, following the Beatles and the British Invasion, Presley's career had reached its nadir. He still made films and records, and they still sold respectably. But he was no longer a creative force in popular music.
In that context his appearance in Las Vegas in 1968 and an attendant television special and album constituted a genuine comeback. From then on the Presley career took an erratic course. At his best and he was capable of the best right up to the end he could reach back and deliver his up-tempo songs with passion and power. He no longer topped the charts, and he no longer affected people except as an icon, but he could give surprisingly profound musical pleasure. But Presley appearances in recent years had long since transcended the category of concerts and became ritual celebrations. He didn't sell millions of records, but he sold out sports arenas with monotonous regularity. And the audiences at those concerts were something to behold, so adoring and affected were they.
Elvis would come on, overweight but regally commanding, and thousands of cameras would light up like rippling waves of fireflies wherever he turned. Grown people would cry unashamedly in their seats, and renditions of appalling indifference would be cheered as lustily as the occasional brilliant effort. Ultimately, the inconsistencies and irrelevancies of his later career do not dim his earlier achievements. Rock is even more a youthful art form than Romantic poetry, after all; in both, the brightest creativity comes early, and successful artists tend to live out their lives on their youthful reputations.
Elvis will remain the founder of rock 'n roll in most people's minds, and every rock singer owes something to him in matters of inflection and visual style. The Beatles and Bob Dylan brought the music closer to art as it has been traditionally defined. But Elvis was and remained a working-class hero, a man who arose from obscurity and transformed American popular art in answer to his own needs and who may possibly have been destroyed by the isolation that American celebrityhood sometimes entails. He was as much a metaphor as a maker of music, and one of telling power and poignance.
Record Stores Mobbed by Presley Fans
WASHINGTON - Screaming and fainting were only two of the activities by persons reacting to Elvis Presley’s death. Merchandising and analyzing were occupying many others, all over the country.
The computer at RCA Records in New York broke down under the pressure of orders for Presley records, so the amount of the demand was not known. But the company’s plant in Indianapolis was converted into a chiefly Presley-producing operation, turning out 250,000 albums and 200,000 singles each day by working around the clock to meet a demand estimated to reach 100 million.
“The problem is not in pressing the records, but in getting the paper for their covers,” said Vince Penn, regional representative for RCA’s East Coast division, who said that the entire East Coast, including “every record store in Maryland, Washington and Virginia,” is sold out of Presley stock. “We probably won’t be able to replenish the stock in some stores for at least another week.”
New York RCA spokesman Stu Ginzburg said that RCA is trying to be “as low-key and tasteful about this tragedy as we can,” but is planning to return out-of-print Presley movie sound tracks to the catalog. A future promotional campaign is planned.
Specialty record stores in the area reported that they were “absolutely mobbed” by Presley fans seeking old records and memorabilia.
“Elvis was a dead product at this store until he died,” said an employe of Joe’s Record Paradise. Now, however, the store has a waiting list for Presley albums, singles, LPs and photos that’s two pages long. “People will pay anything,” says Les Moskowitz of Roadhouse Oldies. “We’ve been selling some of the 78s for $15 and $20 a throw.
“People I’ve never seen in here before are asking for Elvis records. We had offers of $100 for some of the Sun singles like “Good Rocking Tonight” and “Baby Let’s Play House,” even before he died, but I’m not going to sell those. I’m going to wait a couple of weeks and see what happens.” The Record Bar in Memphis sold 35 albums, 12 eight-tracks and 20 singles in 10 minutes flat; Chicago’s Rose Record Stores named as a typical customer a legal secretary who bought 14 albums for $122.14 because she “just admired him very much as a person.”
Presley’s most recent album, Moody Blue,” was No. 26 on the Billboard listing of hit albums before his death. The first 250,000 copies of it were pressed in blue vinyl, instead of the usual black, and these are now being sought as collector’s items.
Presley impersonators found themselves in sudden demand. Bill Haney, who calls himself “almost Elvis Himselvis,” said that his “telephone has been ringing off tne wall” because “millions of fans . . . love Elvis and they have no live Elvis to worship anymore.
“The only way his fans can remember his legend is to be able to see somebody do his material in good taste, do it well and do it justice. I hope I can do it well enough so that people will come out and remember Elvis through me,” said Haney, who was making $50,000 a year doing Presley’s material before the singer’s death.
Rick Saucedo, who canceled his Wednesday night show of Presley impersonations in Chicago but resumed Thursday’s, said his career could now “go either way. For all I know, my career could be over.”
In the tee-shirt business, a licensing problem is holding up production. Foto Lith, producer of the Charlie’s Angles and Kid-for Rent tee-shirts, is negotiating with lawyers in Memphis to make an official, heat-transfer Presley shirt.
Winterland Products of San Francisco is searching the right to produce a silkscreen version, requested by many large record store chains.
One Brooklyn firm that refused to be named has a memorial tee-shirt in the works, with a picture of Presley, a record cover, “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll” and his dates. They had previously had an Elvis tee-shirt, but “It never was a Jaws or Farrah Fawcett” when he was alive.
Day of the Unicorn, a Mt. Vernon, N.Y., wholesaler, has only 100 of its black shirts with Presley’s name and face in stock at $7 retail each, and “they flew out,” said Val Manokain, who hopes to have more in by next Wednesday.
Others, from President Carter to Presley’s colleagues to pop culture scholars, were turning out analyses of Presley and what he symbolized.
“His music and his personality, fusing the styles of white country and black rhythm and blues, permanently changed the face of American popular culture,” said the President’s statement. “His following was immense and he was a symbol to people the world over of the vitality, rebelliousness and good humor of his country.”
The Soviet government newspaper Izvestia depicted him as a victim of “sharp business operators (who) turned Presley into an ‘idol of rock ‘n’ roll,’ placing his talent and reputation at the service of profits. Contrary to the legend, the riches and fame did not bring happiness to the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, but emptied him and wrecked him and prematurely turned him into a cripple,” the paper said.
August 17, 1977. The NY Times.
Presley Gave Rock Its Style
By JOHN ROCKWELL
For most people, Elvis Presley was rock-and-roll. And they were right. Bill Haley may have made the first massive rock hit, and people such as Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis and Little Richard may have had an equally important creative impact on this raucous new American art form. But it was Elvis who defined the style and gave it an indelible image. The songs were tough and driving in a time, 20 years ago, when American popular music was still based on Tin Pan Alley tune-smithing. And the image was of a working-class rebel, pushing sex into the nation's consciousness long before the "sexual revolution." With his ominous, greasy, swirling locks, his leather jacket and his aggressive undulations, Elvis was a performer whom parents abhorred, young women adored and young men instantly imitated.
Presley's national impact began in the spring of 1956, after he had signed with RCA Victor. In that year alone, he had such hits as "Heartbreak Hotel" (the first), "Don't Be Cruel" and "Hound Dog" (a double-sided hit), "Blue Suede Shoes" and "Love Me Tender."
But before that Presley had forged his style in Sam Phillip's Sun Records studio in Memphis. Although he was not a songwriter, Presley still deserves more credit than he is generally accorded for the creation of his style. Early rock-and-roll derived from a blend of white rock-a-billy and black rhythm-and-blues. Elvis was not an ignorant country boy who stumbled into the style or who followed the orders of wiser mentors. The by-now-legendary "Sun sessions" of 1954 and 1995, which produced his greatest recorded work and which were recently reissued on an RCA LP, saw Presley carefully working and reworking the songs, evolving his craft on the spot.
Elvis's first national impact --the "Elvis the Pelvis" days ─ saw the greatest eruption of hysteria about a singer since the days of the young Frank Sinatra. He was mobbed and idolized, even as he was denounced as the devil's tool. Presley became the focus for a new kind of youth music, one that swept aside the gentilities of the adult-oriented pop of previous decades and reflected the swelling youth market of the postwar baby boom.
By the late 1950's however, Presley's image began to change. He went into the Army, and by the time he returned to performing, his main impact was felt in the films he had begun to make soon after his initial success. There were rocking moments in them, to be sure; "Jailhouse Rock," from his second film was one of his greatest hits. But in most of his movies he became a sultry Lothario, crooning ballads like "Love Me," his first hit of this sort.
By the mid-60's, following the Beatles and the so-called British Invasion, Presley's career had reached its nadir. He still made films and records, and they still sold respectably. But he was no longer a creative force in popular music. In that context his live television special in late, 1968, the attendant album and his resumption of concert performances the following year constituted a genuine comeback.
From then on, the Presley career took an erratic course. At his best ─ and he was capable of his best right up to the end -- he could reach back and deliver his up-tempo songs with passion and power. He no longer topped the charts, and he no longer affected people except as an icon, but he could give surprisingly profound musical pleasure.
But Presley appearances in recent years had long since transcended the category of concerts and become ritual celebrations. He didn't sell millions of records but he sold out sports arenas with monotonous regularity. And the audiences at those concerts were something to behold. Elvis would come on, overweight but regally commanding, and thousands of Instamatics would light up like rippling waves of fireflies wherever he turned. Grown people would cry unashamedly in their seats, and renditions of appalling indifference would be cheered as lustily as were the occasional really brilliant efforts.
The inconsistencies and irrelevancies of Presley's later career don't dim his earlier achievements. Rock is even more a youthful art form than Romantic poetry, after all; in both, the brightest creativity comes early, and successful artists tend to live out their lives on their youthful reputations.
Elvis will remain the founder of rock-and-roll in most people's minds, and every rock singer owes something to him in matters of inflection and visual style. The Beatles and Bob Dylan brought the music closer to art as it has been traditionally defined. But Elvis was and remained a working-class hero, a man who arose from obscurity and transformed American popular art in answer to his own needs ─ and who may possibly have been destroyed by the isolation that being an American celebrity sometimes entails. He was as much a metaphor as a maker of music, and one of telling power and poignancy.
Vernon Presley, 63; Father and Manager Of the Rock Pioneer
The New York Times. June 27, 1979
MEMPHIS, June 26 (AP) — Vernon Presley, father of the late rock-and-roll singer Elvis. Presley, died of a heart ailment today in Baptist Hospital. He was 63 years old.
After his son became an international singing star, Mr. Presley managed his affairs at Graceland, the entertainer's Memphis estate, and traveled with his son on tours.
Mr. Presley, who was executor of his son's estate, was the third beneficiary listed in the singer's will, after Elvis's daughter, Lisa Marie, and grandmother, Minnie Mae Presley.
The value of the estate has not been determined, but last December records filed in Probate Court indicated that the estate had earned nearly $5 million since Elvis Presley's death.
Mr. Presley was born in Tupelo, Miss., and worked as a carpenter, sharecropper and painter to support his wife, Gladys Love Smith Presley, and son.
Elvis Presley died Aug. 16, 1977, at the age of 42. His mother died Aug. 14, 1958, also of a heart attack, and is buried on the grounds of Graceland beside her son.
In 1960, Vernon Presley married Davada Elliot Stanley. That marriage ended in divorce in 1977, after a three-year separation.