January 14 - Q&A with Ernst Jorgensen

Ernst Jørgensen did a Q&A on January 13, 2018 in Oslo at an event organized by the Norwegian Flaming Star fan-club.

Asked about future projects he says the "big" thing happening in 2018 will be "The Searcher". He also had this to say about the future of FTD: "There is from time to time rumours that FTD is going to stop. But that is something I don't know anything about." 

He said there is always an anniversary for something in the Elvis world and that this year it is the 50th anniversary for the '68 Special and next year for 1969. Both big years for Elvis. We could maybe take that as a hint for one or two future releases? He did confirm a 3 CD set of “Viva Las Vegas” according to a posting on the FECC forum. 

He talked about "Elvis On Tour" and "Elvis In Concert" without revealing any plans for either one of those specials. Regarding "Elvis On Tour" there are several parties (Warner, SONY and EPE) that need to talk to each-other for that to happen, and there is a costly project of transferring the old film footage and restoring it which means there is very little money to be made. The film company, not RCA, paid for the audio recordings, that's why they can't release it without their consent. He said it's possible that they will release the concerts on CD but it won't be in 2018 or 2019. 

Other topics he talked about:

  • Ernst talked at length about the 50's box set from 1992. BMG in Germany believed in the project from the start, but the American record label thought it might sell 10,000 at most. It ended up selling 400,000 in the US, and 600,000 in the rest of the world.
  • Will there be an updated version of "A Life In Music". Ernst doesn't really answer this, he says he doesn't want to do it just to make money, there has to be a real good reason to publish a new edition.
  • Any surprises? Ernst says no, but that sometimes things turn up like the wire recording of "I Forgot To Remember To Forget". He also says that when they acquire new unreleased material, they will try to release it as soon as possible, and mentions "Live A Little", "Speedway" and "Kissin' Cousins" as examples. An unreleased Elvis recording is no longer a sensation, it will not make headlines, so it makes no sense to keep secrets from the fans - if he finds anything, we will know about it.
  • "Elvis In Concert" - Lisa Marie doesn't ever want it released and they respect her wishes. Ernst has no wish to release the concerts on audio, because of the bad shape Elvis was in. So that seems to rule out an FTD release.
  • The "Aloha" and "Madison Square Garden" LP:s will eventually be releases in FTD:s classic album series.
The Q&A was done in Danish and Norwegian, for those who understand those languages here is the Q&A from YouTube. 

DVD and Blu-Ray re-issues

Due for release from Koch Media GmbH on February 8, 2018 in Germany are DVD and Blu-Ray re0-issues of “Frankie and Johnny” and “Follow that Dream” (“Ein Sommer in Florida”). 

Due from Alive - Vertrieb und Marketing on April 27, 2018 is a DVD re-issue of "Loving You" ("Gold aus heißer Kehle"). 

Edwin Hawkins Died

Award-winning gospel singer Edwin Hawkins, best known for a hit arrangement of “Oh Happy Day”, has died at the age of 74. Credited with being one of the founders of modern gospel music, Hawkins died Monday at his California home after battling pancreatic cancer, US media reported, quoting the artist's publicist, Bill Carpenter.

“Oh Happy Day" is a 1967 gospel music arrangement of an 18th-century hymn. It became an international hit in 1969. Hawkins' arrangement quickly became a “standard” and has been recorded by hundreds of artists including Elvis Presley in 1970. Elvis Presley never made a studio recording of "Oh Happy day," but he sang it occasionally in concert and thought about using it in his 1968 TV special.

(Source: Flaming Star / FECC / Amazon / Elvis Club Berlin)

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