Wednesday, May 31, 2023

May 31 - Golden Boy Elvis (Updated)

The new edition of the German 'Golden Boy Elvis' magazine is due soon. 

Publicity stated: The main theme of the new 60-page issue is FTD's mega-box-set 'The Making of Blue Hawaii'. In a mammoth joint project our team looked at the original LP, the books as well as the CDs with the masters and tons of outtakes. 

Also reviewed in detail are the 'Let Me Be There' 3-CD-set, the '8mm Elvis - The Forgotten Format' book, the LP's 'Elvis Live 1972', 'Burning Love - The RCA Rehearsals' and part 3 in the Bear Family CD-series 'The Elvis Presley Connection'. 

The 'In Memoriam' section shows us once again clearly how finite our time on earth is, as we had to say goodbye to Barbara Gray, Harry Belafonte, Gordon Lightfoot, "Red" Robinson and Bill Baize, among others.

In the new series 'Pieces of My Life' Helmut Radermacher recalls some of the adventures from his life, starting with 'Tony Sheridan, Elvis and Me'. And finally, in the 'Songs From A to Z' series we cover 'Don't Ask Me Why' and 'Don't Be Cruel'. 

For more information visit the magazine's website at >>> Golden Boy Elvis.

Between The Lines

Hercules Publications published the 132-page paperback 'Elvis: Between The Lines: His Quest for Higher Consciousness as Told Through His Notes' by Ingrid De La O. 

Synopsis: Elvis: Between The Lines takes you on an enthralling journey through the pages of his personal library, revealing the handwritten notes, thoughts, and ideas that offer a rare and intimate glimpse into the man who changed the face of music. This unique book features stunning photographs of Elvis' actual books, complete with his personal marginalia, transporting you into the heart of his world.

Explore the literature that shaped Elvis' life, the spiritual and philosophical connections that fueled his passion, and the emotional depths touched by the poems that inspired him. This one-of-a-kind volume is more than just a collection of photographs; it's an immersive experience, putting you in the shoes of a cultural icon as you uncover the secrets that lie within the pages of his cherished books. Are you ready to see Elvis in a whole new light?

The SUN Is Almost Shining

The long wait for the 10-inch SUN LP, that was part of the KJ Consulting publication 'Elvis Prodigy of SUN Records', is almost over, the LP is currently being pressed. 

(Source: Golden Boy Elvis / Elvis Files on Facebook)

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

May 30 - Simply Elvis

Publications International, Ltd. announced the August 29, 2023 release of the 320-page paperback simply titled 'Elvis'. 

Description: Discover the real story behind the legend. Learn about Elvis’ shumble roots in a shotgun shack in East Tupelo, Mississippi, his formative years, first successes, time in the military, and subsequent legendary career as a singer and actor. The biggest milestones and highlights of his life are all covered.

This book includes chapters on his early years as a performer on stage and the stories behind some of his most pivotal recordings. His appearances on television shows and in movies and career-defining moments like appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show, the ’68 Comeback Special, and his fabled Las Vegas shows.

The important people in his life, including parents and family, business partners and band members, and of course, Priscilla Presley. All illustrated with rare and historic photos, album covers, and magazine covers.

Elvis may have left the building, but Elvis allows you to revisit the life of an American idol, whether you’re a devoted Elvis fan, pop culture enthusiast, or just want to know more about the King. 

(Source: Amazon)

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Review Rags To Riches

The Millbranch import record label released the CD / DVD double disc set ‘Rags To Riches - The Original Mono Mixes’ featuring music from the June and September 1970 recording sessions in Nashville and a DVD featuring a new edit with additional footage and new camera angels of ‘Elvis: That’s The Way It Is’ movie.
Elvis in 1970 is usually a treat, or as Gerrit de Jong wrote in his review “Elvis and 1970 go together as women and diamonds or a sunny day with a cold drink”. So bring it on! 
The package comes in a seventies style triple foldout digipack. The glossy laminated cover gives it a classy look. Inside background liner-notes and a compilation of 45 RPM single covers and a “Kodak” frame showing Elvis rehearsing for the beforementioned movie. 
Content - CD
We Elvis fans are a strange bunch ... we’re listening to mono and live recorded music, newly mixed to stereo (mostly from the Memphis Recording Service). We buy and praise new mixes by Matt Ross-Spang on the Sony Legacy ('Elvis On Tour') and Follow That Dream labels ('Madison Square Garden'), and high-end remastered SACDs from the Mobile Fidelity label ('From Elvis In Memphis). And now, we return to the mono recordings, as featured on Elvis single releases for tracks we usually play in a stereo mix ... 
Many of the mono mixes featured on this album were originally created for single releases and airplay on radio stations. As The Colonel had a strategy not to include singles on LP releases, not all these songs were mixed or available in stereo, until they appeared on compilation albums many years, or sometimes decades later. 
The reason for RCA to continue to release mono mixes for Elvis’ songs up to 1975 - while most major U.S. record companies had stopped doing so by 1968 - was that they sounded better when played on radio-stations. They sounded a little louder, appearing to have some more punch. A technique still used today to make music sound “better” on the small stereo’s many people use to play or stream their music. Some of these versions were only released on promotional records for DJ’s and hard to find for collectors these days. 
Looking at the tracklisting I dare you to name one bad song! Opening with the rockin’ ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On’, followed by ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’ with the Harmony Vocal Overdub sounding very pure and going country with thew singles ‘I Really Don’t Want To Know’, ‘You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me’ and ’There Goes My Everything’ the opening is both strong and varied. 
The set-list - as many of these songs found their way to Elvis’ Vegas Shows - continues strong with the ‘Mary In The Morning’, which sounds a bit loud, and the strong ‘Stranger In The Crowd’ and ‘I’ve Lost You’ before it picks up some extra pace with ‘Patch It Up’. 

Not all songs are single versions, the producers also included various Alternate and Undubbed takes. It is not clear when these were mixed to mono because they were originally recorded in stereo and not intended to be released as single tracks. Several tracks were sourced from acetates. 
We slow down with the Undubbed Master of ‘How The Web Was Woven’ and unreleased takes of ‘Sylvia’, which are nothing more than count-ins, and released little over a month ago on the “acclaimed” Venus ‘Unedited Masters - Volume 1’ CD. 

I can continue to run down the tracklisting for this set, but you really should play it yourself, it is a very entertaining set ending on a high with the rocking ‘I Washed My Hands In Muddy Water’, the Horn Mix of ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On’ and a First Take ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’. Elvis pretty much nailed this classic composition by Paul Simon, who first released it early 1970. 
Content - DVD

The bonus DVD is titled ‘That´s The Way It Is In Motion’, and that is what you get. Although it’s more than a re-edit of ‘Elvis: That’s The Way It Is’, that is probably the best way to describe it. The producers describe it as “a musical documentary of its own, representing the album and the songs that appeared on it, and much more’. 
I enjoyed this “new” show as presented here, because again, what’s not to like from ‘Elvis: That’s The Way it Is’? 
The quality of the footage is good (enough), using various sources always shows, especially as part of the material has not been released officially and in part sourced from VHS-transfers (as acknowledged by the label). So it’s not like watching this show on your Blu-ray. 
And while many of us may have bought some of the raw footage used on the DVD when that became available about a decade or so ago, it is more enjoyable to watch presented as a whole. That’s something the editors for these Millbranch CD / DVD packages do very well. Talking about the quality of different releases we sometimes tend to forget to simply enjoy what's out there.

For this new edit the editor solved the quality problem nicely with some split-screen presentations. An unfortunate side-effect is that the size of the footage shown varies in size. 
The new edit for 'I Just Can't Help Believin’’, which goes from the rehearsal to the live performance works great, and so does the ‘Little Sister / Get Back’ sit-down medley. Fun to see a split-screen of Elvis and his entourage preparing back-stage while the crowd enters the Hilton Showroom, two sides of the event in one shot. 
The fragment from the Houston Astrodome press-conference with Elvis talking about his music, and other interview snippets used in this presentation may fit the ‘documentary’ perspective, but don’t belong to ‘TTWII’ and take away the pace from the concert. 
Overall the conclusion must be that the producers created an entertaining edit of the classic movie we know so well.
Adding this as a bonus to the CD was a good choice, as many songs from the that disc are featured is the DVD. The film ends with a touching dedication to Lisa Marie Presley. 
The Millbranch record label released another winner with entertaining audio and video presentations of Elvis in his prime years. The CD and DVD complement each other. The CD rock's and t
hanks to the use of the alternate footage we get a whole new experience of this documentary. 

Back to us fans ... I’ve just played the newly created stereo mixes of Elvis’ SUN recordings ('From Elvis At SUN') and now I’m entertaining my neighbours with this mono release, playing it a bit too loud! So yes, we Elvis fans are a strange bunch indeed! 

May 27 - Greatest Christmas Songs

The German ZYX record label announced the June 30 2023 release of a LP - on colored vinyl - and a CD titled 'Greatest Christmas Songs'. 

Publicity stated: The most beautiful Christmas carols sung by one of the greatest artists of all time. The King Of Rock'n'Roll interprets the great Christmas classics in his unique and incomparable way.

Great versions of 'White Christmas', 'Silent Night', 'I'll Be Home For Christmas' create a festive atmosphere at Christmas. As a special highlight, there is a colored and limited vinyl edition in addition to the CD version.

Side A: White Christmas - I'll Be Home For Christmas - Silent Night - That's When Your Heartaches Begin - Santa Claus Is Back In Town - Take My Hand, Precious Lord - It's No Secret (What God Can Do)

Side B: Blue Christmas - (There'll Be) Peace In The Valley - Here Comes Santa Claus - O Little Town Of Bethlehem - I Believe - I Beg Of You - Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me)

(Source: Elvis Club Berlin / ZYX)

May 27 - Charts May 2023 - Week 4 (Updated)

The weekly global Elvis Presley chart update. In both the United States and the United Kingdom there is little movement on the Billboard and Official charts. Elvis Presley did re-enter on the Music DVD chart at #10.

Additional charts will be updated over the weekend when the listings become available.

U.S. Billboard charts:

  • Billboard Top 200 Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' climbed from #167 to #162.
  • Billboard Soundtrack Album chart: 'ELVIS' Soundtrack' dropped from #22 to #23. 
  • Billboard Top Country Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' remained steady at #26.
  • Billboard Top Rock and Alternative Albums chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' dropped from #33 to #36. 

Official U.K. charts:

  • Official Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' remained steady at #40. 
  • Official Streaming Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' climbed from #34 to #33. 
  • Official Soundtrack Album chart: 'ELVIS' Soundtrack dropped from #24 to #29.  
  • Official Country Compilations chart: 'From Elvis in Nashville' dropped from #9 to #12.  
  • Official Film chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #19 to #29.  
  • Official Video Chart Top 100: 'ELVIS' dropped from #13 to #14. 
  • Official DVD chart: 'ELVIS' climbed from #11 to #10.  
  • Official Blu-ray chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #21 to #24. 
  • Official Films On Disc chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #9 to #11.  
  • Official Music DVD chart: 'The Complete Story' re-entry at #10. 
Irish IRMA charts:

  • Official Irish Album chart: 'ELV1S 30#1 Hits' climbed from #69 to #56.
  • Official Irish Music DVD chart: 'Elvis The Searcher' re-entry at #4.
  • Official Irish Video chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #12 to #17. 
(Source: Official Chart Company / UK Mix Forum / Billboard / IRMA)

Friday, May 26, 2023

May 26 - Mono News Report

The Millbranch Music import record label released the CD / DVD set 'Rags To Riches - The Original Mono Mixes'. 

Publicity stated: Millbranch Music is back with its first release in 2023! After the great success of our recent CD / DVD set 'Tampa Wave' we now present a completely new CD / DVD project!

'Rags To Riches – The Original Mono Mixes' is a 2-disc set. The CD includes 20 tracks from Elvis' June and September 1970 Nashville Recording Sessions, all presented as the original mono mixes in top-notch sound! 

You may wonder why Elvis' music was still mixed in mono in 1970. Well, all of Elvis’ 45 RPM singles from those days, almost to the end of 1971, were still being released in mono. Possibly because his releases were coming out of RCA Nashville, and some of the songs were only issued as singles and not so much as LP cuts, and therefore not mixed to stereo. Also, around this time, after a decade of indifference, country music radio started paying attention to Elvis again. Most of his singles from this period made the country charts. 

During this period, RCA recording artists Charley Pride, Waylon Jennings, Dolly Parton, Eddy Arnold (and every other C&W artist on RCA) released most of their singles in mono. The first Elvis stereo single in the ‘70s was Merry Christmas Baby/O Come All Ye Faithful from 1971. Promo singles for Elvis´ music continued being released in mono until 1975.

As a matter of fact those single records from 50+ years ago (especially the promos) did have a unique sound which is powered a lot by a great punch. This detail in sound was for sure intended by the producers as it made a great effect when being played by radio stations back then. Still today, collectors are partly buying these promos not only for collecting purposes, but also for playing them on vintage (or new) record players, enjoying “glorious mono sound”. Now you can enjoy all these great sounding Elvis tracks in glorious mono on this release!

The DVD in our new set has a running time of almost 100 minutes and we gave it the title 'That's The Way It Is In Motion'. While this is definitely not a re-edit of the original 'That's The Way It Is' movie, it is a musical documentary of its own, and represents the album and the songs that appeared on it. And much more! Using higher quality outtakes than ever before with footage that has no watermarks or similar impairments, we are able to present it in the highest possible quality, like you are used from us.

All of the songs on the DVD are newly edited with several different camera angles. You'll see and hear Elvis having fun rehearsing 'You Don't Have To Say You Love Me' on July 15, 1970 and also doing the tune live at the Opening Night performance on August 10, which has Elvis calling out Sammy Davis Jr.. We also included an interview segment of Sammy Davis Jr. talking about what he saw on stage that night accompanies the clip. 

A newly edited version of 'I Just Can't Help Believin'' which goes from rehearsal to live is presented in split screens, using several different angles. Also on this DVD are newly edited performances of 'Make The World Go Away', 'Polk Salad Annie', 'I've Lost You' and 'The Walk Through The Audience' (which has never been edited properly before). Added to that are several split-screen performances like 'Heartbreak Hotel' from the August 12th 1970 Dinner Show and 'Bridge Over Troubled Water'. The 'Little Sister / Get Back' sit down medley has been edited properly for the first time and is for sure one of the many highlights on our DVD. 

'Blue Suede Shoes' has been re-edited, despite its appearance in the original movie. This DVD brings you a great experience in going back to Las Vegas in the summer of 1970! 

Tracklist CD: Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin’ On (Master Recording) - Bridge Over Troubled Water (Without Harmony Vocal Overdub) - I Really Don’t Want To Know (Original Single Version) - You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me (Original Single Version) - There Goes My Everything (Original Single Version) - Mary In The Morning (Master Recording) - Stranger In The Crowd - I’ve Lost You - Patch It Up (Original Single Version) - How The Web Was Woven (Undubbed Master, Acetate Source) - Sylvia (Take 5 - 8) - The Next Step Is Love (Master Recording) - Rags To Riches (Master Recording) - Only Believe - The Fool - Where Did They Go, Lord - Twenty Days And Twenty Nights - I Washed My Hands In Muddy Water - Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On (Mix With Horns) - Bridge Over Troubled Water (Take 1)

Elvis Presley Video News Report

Emiel Maier posted the monthly Elvis Presley Video News Report on YouTube. The June 2023 edition looks back on the month May and contains segments on the upcoming 'James Burton and Friends' concert, the auction of Elvis's last Harley Davidson, the barbershop museum at Fort Chaffee, the passing of Bill Baize and many more short news flashes.

No 1 Hits

The new Continent record label re-issued their 2021 32-track compilation CD 'The No. 1 Hits' on May 26, 2023.

(Source: Facebook / Emiel Maier / Gerrit de Jong)

Thursday, May 25, 2023

May 25 - Follow That Dream Sold Out, Again!

The Follow That Dream collectors label announced the June 2023 release of the 3-CD-set ‘Houston, Fort Worth, Baton Rouge 1974’ (including two previously unreleased shows), the 5-CD-set ‘The How Great Thou Art Sessions’ and the 2-LP ‘Fun In Acapulco’. 

Publicity stated: As part of the ongoing live on tour series Follow that Dream presents ‘Houston, Fort Worth, Baton Rouge 1974’. This 3-CD-set features three soundboard-recorded concerts from 1974, housed in a 5-inch digipack.

CD 1: Astrodome, Houston, Texas (evening show), March 3rd 1974:
See See Rider - I Got A Woman / Amen - Love Me - Trying To Get To You - All Shook Up - Love Me Tender - Johnny B. Goode - Hound Dog - Fever - Polk Salad Annie - Why Me, Lord - Suspicious Minds - Introductions - I Can’t Stop Loving You - Help Me - How Great Thou Art - Let Me Be There - Funny How Time Slips Away - Can’t Help Falling In Love - Closing Vamp

CD 2: Tarrant County Convention Center, Fort Worth, Texas (Evening Show), June 15th 1974:
See See Rider - I Got A Woman / Amen - Love Me - Trying To Get To You - All Shook Up - Love Me Tender - Hound Dog - Fever - Polk Salad Annie - Why Me, Lord - Suspicious Minds - Introductions - I Can’t Stop Loving You - Heartbreak Hotel - Help Me - An American Trilogy - Let Me Be There - Funny How Time Slips Away - Big Boss Man - Can’t Help Falling In Love - Closing Vamp

CD 3: Louisiana State University Assembly Center, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, June 17th 1974:
See See Rider - I Got A Woman / Amen - Love Me - Trying To Get To You - All Shook Up - Love Me Tender - Hound Dog - Fever - Polk Salad Annie - Why Me, Lord - Suspicious Minds - Introductions - I Can’t Stop Loving You - Help Me - An American Trilogy - Let Me Be There - Funny How Time Slips Away - Big Boss Man - Can’t Help Falling In Love - Closing Vamp

As part of the acclaimed 'Sessions' series, FTD is pleased to announce the release of 'The How Great thou Art Sessions'. Recorded in May and June 1966. The 3x Platinum winning album also gave Elvis his first Grammy award for 'Best Sacred Performance'.

Apart from the excellent gospel performances that include 'Run On', 'So High' and 'Where No One Stands Alone'. The sessions also spawned the secular hits 'If Every Day Was Like Christmas', 'Love Letters', and 'Indescribably Blue'. Packaged in FTD's 8-inch format, it includes a 24-page booklet with insightful notes, recording details, photos and memorabilia.

The 'How Great Thou Art' album is presented as originally planned by Elvis prior to RCA's decision to include the 1965 hit "Crying In The Chapel." This recording, along with outtakes, is already on FTD's previous release of the 'His Hand In Mine Sessions'.

The 2-LP ‘Fun In Acapulco’ is a 180 Gr. 2-LP vinyl set featuring a collection of Masters and Outtakes.

Follow That Dream is pleased to announce the release of 'Fun in Acapulco' 2-LP Limited Edition. Inspired by RCA Victor's European release, this 180 Gr. double vinyl soundtrack companion features original soundtrack masters and many excellent alternative outtakes. 

Bonus tracks include "Witchcraft (takes 3/M)", "Love Me Tonight (takes 6-8/M)" and "Slowly But Surely (takes 5/M)".

Side A: Bossa Nova Baby (Take 10/M) - The Bullfighter Was A Lady (Take 4 - 6) - You Can’t Say No In Acapulco (Take 4) - Mexico (Take 1 & 2) - El Toro (Take 1) . Vino, Dinero Y Amor (Take 1) - Marguerita (Take 1)

Side B: Fun In Acapulco (Take 1/M) - Bossa Nova Baby (Take 1 & 2) - I Think I’m Gonna Like It Here (Take 1) - (There’s) No Room To Rhumba In A Sports Car (Take 1/M) - Mexico (Take 6) - The Bullfighter Was A Lady (Take 11 - 14 - Movie Version) - Guadalajara (Vocal Overdub Take 3 & 4)

Side C: You Can’t Say No In Acapulco (Take 5/M) - Vino, Dinero Y Amor (The Amigos - CafĂ© Version -Take 1) - I Think I’m Gonna Like It Here (Take 8 & 9) - Marguerita (Take 5 & 6) - Bossa Nova Baby (Take 3) - Bossa Nova Baby (Take 4 & 5) - Bossa Nova Baby (Take 6)

Side D: Mexico (Take 7) - The Bullfighter Was A Lady (Take 17/M - Movie Version) - Vino, Dinero Y Amor (Take 2 & 3) - I Think I’m Gonna Like It Here (Spliced Take 18 & 19 Master - Movie Version) - Bossa Nova Baby (Take 7 & 8)

Bonus Songs: Witchcraft (Take 3/M) - Love Me Tonight (Take 6 - 8/M) - Slowly But Surely (Take 5/M)

CD 1 - The Masters:
How Great Thou Art - In The Garden - Somebody Bigger Than You And I - Farther Along - Stand By Me - Without Him - So High - Where Could I Go But To The Lord - By And By - If The Lord Wasn’t Walking By My Side - Run On - Where No One Stands Alone - Love Letters - Come What May - Tomorrow Is A Long Time - Down In The Alley - I’ll Remember You - If Every Day Was Like Christmas - Indescribably Blue - Fools Fall In Love - Beyond The Reef (Original Overdubbed Master)

CD 2:
Run On (Take 1 & 2) - Run On (Take 3 - 6) - How Great Thou Art (Take 1 & 2) - Stand By Me (Take 1 & 2) - Stand By Me (Take 3 - 7) - Stand By Me (Take 8 - 10) - Stand By Me (Take 11/M) - Where No One Stands Alone (Take 1) - Where No One Stands Alone (Take 2 & 3) - Where No One Stands Alone (Take 4) - Where No One Stands Alone (Work Parts 1 - 4) - Where No One Stands Alone (Work Part 5) - Where No One Stands Alone (Work Part 6) - Where No One Stands Alone (Splice Of Take 4 & 1/M)

CD 3: 
Down In The Alley (Take 1) - Down In The Alley (Take 2 - 6) - Down In The Alley (Take 7 - 9/M) - Tomorrow Is A Long Time (Take 1 & 2) - Tomorrow Is A Long Time (Take 3/M) - Love Letters (Take 1 & 2) - Love Letters (Take 3 - 7) - Love Letters (Take 8) - Love Letters (Take 9/M) - So High (Take 1) - So High (Take 2 & 3) - So High (Take 4/M) - Farther Along (Take 1 & 2) - Farther Along (Splice Of Take 3 And One Line From Take 2/M) - By And By (Take 1 - 4) - By And By (Take 5 - 9) - By And By (Take 10/M)

CD 4:
In The Garden (Take 1 - 3/M) - Beyond The Reef (Take 1 & 2/M - Undubbed Master) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Take 1 - 8) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Take 9 - 11) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Take 12) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Take 13 - 15) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Take 16) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Work Parts 1 - 4) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Work Part 5) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Work Part 6) - Somebody Bigger Than You And I (Splice Of Take 16 And Work Part 6/M) - Without Him (Take 1) - Without Him (Take 2 - 8) - Without Him (Take 9 - 14) - Without Him (Take 15/M) - If The Lord Wasn’t Walking By My Side (Take 1) - If The Lord Wasn’t Walking By My Side (Take 2 - 4) - If The Lord Wasn’t Walking By My Side (Take 5/M) - If The Lord Wasn’t Walking By My Side (Take 6) - Where Could I Go But To The Lord (Take 1 & 2/M)

CD 5: 
Come What May (Take 1 & 2) - Come What May (Take 3 & 4) - Come What May (Take 5 & 6) - Come What May (Take 7) - Come What May (Take 8/M) - Fools Fall In Love (Take 1 - 4) - Fools Fall In Love (Take 5/M) - Indescribably Blue (Instrumental Track Take 7 And Work Parts 1 & 2) - I’ll Remember You (Instrumental Track Take 17 - 19/M) - If Every Day Was Like Christmas (Instrumental Track Take 8 - 9/M) - Indescribably Blue (Vocal Overdub Take 1 To Instrumental Track 7 And Work Part 1) - Indescribably Blue (Vocal Overdub Take 2 To Instrumental Track 7 And Work Part 1/M) - I’ll Remember You (Vocal Overdub Take 1 To Instrumental Track 19) - I’ll Remember You (Vocal Overdub Take 2 To Instrumental Track 19) - I’ll Remember You (Splice Of Vocal Overdub Take 1 & 3 To Instrumental Track 19) - I’ll Remember You (Splice Of Vocal Overdub Take 1 & 3 To Instrumental Track 19 / Unedited/M) - If Every Day Was Like Christmas (Vocal Overdub Take 1 & 2/M To Instrumental Track 9 / Undubbed/M)

Sold Out Again!

The Pyramid import-label announced the release of volume 20 in the 'Sold Out!' series. It should be available after the weekend.

Publicity stated: 'Sold Out' is back and part 20 really contains a wealth of rare and previously unreleased footage. We know that the 1977 footage is very popular, and several movies have been shot from the Spring/Summer '77 tours.

We all know he was out of shape, but on a good night he could captivate an audience with powerful moments like 'My Way'. There are several nice close-ups from 1977, even some of the best ever, and it's also good to see how much effort he puts into performances like 'That's All Right Mama' and 'Are You Lonesome Tonight', where he puts himself accompanies the acoustics.

The man still had it.

Yet there are also some difficult moments, including the last tour of June 1977, and it is still heartbreaking to see Elvis in this form. But it's all part of history, and Pyramid has stated from the start to document everything, without obscuring anything.

This release is really from Elvis live in the seventies, with especially 1969 to 1972 well presented. He really is the live ultimate performer in these movies, in complete control and giving his all. The early concert years were very exciting and his live show was very physical and dynamic as you can see in this footage. This release is actually the first time we've included footage from 1969, and what a great performer he was back then! As someone once said, if you didn't see Elvis in 1969, you never saw the real Elvis, and the footage here confirms that. But in his own way, the June 1972 shows were just as good, and performances like 'You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling' and 'How Great Thou Art' show what a versatile artist he had become.

There are also plenty of highlights in the later years, although the tempos were a bit lower. There are four movies from April 1, 1975 and they are a real delight, because they highlight the fun side of Elvis as a performer, play with the audience and have a great time. There's Memphis 1976 and Forth Worth is a neat and fairly long movie - good to see it here with no logos or watermarks. 

The lesser performances are also discussed, including silent images from the infamous concert in Houston 1976, which shows how lethargic he was. And perhaps even worse is another (long) movie from College Park, where his behavior is strange to say the least and where he appears to be under the influence of something. We think these movies are just as important as the good shows because together they provide a balanced view of Elvis' live shows in the 1970s. And College Park is certainly insightful: the things he said were pretty bizarre, but it's even more surreal to see him in that state ("I love showbidnezz"), constantly punking Charlie Hodge to adjust his mic stand . Even after all these years, there's still something dark and disturbing about moments like this, but again, it's all part of the Elvis story.

But it doesn't diminish the magic the man created every time he made his entrance, whether it was in Las Vegas, Chicago, Fort Worth, Jacksonville, Memphis, Philadelphia or wherever. These recordings take you back to all those special evenings. 

As always, Pyramid presents these films as they were shot, with no edits or alterations of any kind. These films were carefully restored to remove artifacts added by time, such as discoloration. We think it's important to let these films speak for themselves. Ladies and gentlemen, get ready for the greatest showman there ever was. On a good night there was no one like him, but even on a bad night he was still Elvis. 'Sold Out' volume 20 tells you that story.

The Million Dollar CD 

The Memphis Mansion record label announced a CD re-issue of their 2022 2-LP -The Million Dollar Quartet' featuring a remastered version of the impromptu jam session by Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Johnny Cash on December 4, 1956, at the Sun Record Studios in Memphis, Tennessee. 

Possible songs: Instrumental - Love Me Tender (Instrumental) - Mr. Sandman (Instrumental) - Jingle Bells (Instrumental) - White Christmas (Instrumental) - Reconsider Baby - Paralyzed - Don`t Be Cruel - There`s No Place Like Home - When The Saints Go Marchin 'In - Softly And Tenderly - When God Dips His Love In My Heart - Just A Little Talk With Jesus - (Walk That) Lonesome Valley - I Shall Not Be Moved - (There'll Be) Peace In The Valley - Down By The Riverside - I'm In A Crowd But Oh, So Alone - Farther Along - Blessed Jesus, Hold My Hand - On The Jericho Road - I Just Can't Make It By Myself - Little Cabin Home On The Hill - Summertime Has Passed And Gone - I Hear A Sweet Voice Calling - Sweetheart, You Done Me Wrong - Keeper Of The Key - Crazy Arms - Don't Forbid Me - Too Much Monkey Business / Brown Eyed Handsome Man - Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind - Brown Eyed Handsome Man - Don`t Forbid Me - You Belong To My Heart - Is It So Strange - That's When Your Heartaches Begin - Brown Eyed Handsome Man - Rip It Up - I'm Gonna To Bid My Blues Goodbye - Crazy Arms - That's My Desire - End Of The Road - Black Bottom Stomp - You're The Only Star In My Blue Heaven - Elvis Leaves The Building.

(Source: Facebook / Elvis The Man and His Music / Elvis Club Berlin)

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

May 24 - The February 1977 Tour

The Cine8 import label released the DVD 'The February 1977 Tour'. 

Publicity stated: Cine8 returns after their very well received release 'A Medley Of Costumes' with their second DVD featuring unreleased 8mm footage. 

While Elvis his first tour of 1977 was a step down in comparison to the great december 1976 tour, Elvis still seemed to have the spirit to put on some great shows, while he looked far from his best during the first show, things improved as the tour went on and he started to look much better. 

This tour often has been overlooked when it comes to footage and so 'The February 1977 Tour' DVD fills that gap!

On this DVD we've opted to create a watchable DVD consisting of various performances from 7 different shows on this tour, matched with soundboard sound. On this disc you'll find complete performances of 'Fairytale' as performed in Charlotte, NC on February 20th, the only version of 'Big Boss Man', the two versions of 'Blueberry Hill' Elvis performed on this tour along with the rare 'Where No One Stands Alone', a rousing version of 'Polk Salad Annie' and 'It's Now Or Never' performed on February 16th among other performances. The DVD is rounded out by a few unedited clips, including a rare 'Funny How Time Slips Away' and a blistering version of 'Hurt' performed during the very first show of this tour. Sit back, relax and enjoy this release!  

Tracks: Also Sprach Zarathustra / See See Rider / I Got A Woman - Amen / Love Me / Fairytale / Jailhouse Rock / O Sole Mio - It's Now Or Never / Big Boss Man / Little Sister /Teddy Bear - Don't Be Cruel / My Way / Polk Salad Annie / Blueberry Hill / Love Letters / Hurt / Hound Dog / Where No One Stands Alone / Fever / Can't Help Falling In Love.

Bonus performances: See See Rider (February 20th, 1977) / Love Me (February 13, 1977) / Jailhouse Rock (February 13, 1977) / It's Now Or Never (February 19, 1977) / Introductions - Blueberry Hill (February 13, 1977) / Little Sister (February 19, 1977) / Polk Salad Annie (February 19, 1977) / You Gave Me A Mountain (February 12, 1977) / Hurt (February 12, 1977) / Funny How Time Slips Away (February 12, 1977).

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to Priscilla Presley, she celebrated her 78th Birthday today.

News from Graceland

Elvis Presley’s Graceland is gearing up for a busy summer filled with a variety of activities and numerous reasons to visit. 

It kicks off with the opening of a newly reimagined ’68 Exhibit, which provides an up-close look at Elvis’ legendary 1968 NBC television special. The exhibit features artifacts such as tickets to the original show and the blue chairs that Elvis and the band sat on during the sitdown portion of the special. Along with a replica stage and famous ELVIS in red lights display, visitors can also see Elvis’ made-for-tv outfits including his famous black leather suit and white 'If I Can Dream' suit. With 28 TVs throughout the exhibit, guests can immerse themselves in video clips of the unforgettable special that launched the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s “comeback” to live performing. 

The exhibit opens Memorial Day weekend at Elvis: The Entertainer Career Museum at Elvis Presley’s Memphis.

(Source: FECC / Pascal Matteo / Graceland)

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

May 23 - Frankie and Vinyl

Released in Spain are the Spanish DVD editions of the 'Frankie and Johnny' ('Franky Y Johnny') and 'Clambake'  ('Cambalache') movies. 

Happy Birthday

Happy 73rd Birthday Linda Thompson

Linda met Elvis Presley on July 6, 1972 at the Memphian Theater in Memphis. Elvis and Linda were together four and a half years from July 1972 to November 1976. 

When Elvis passed away, little Lisa Marie, first called Linda on the telephone. Linda is the author if the book 'A Little Thing Called Life'. 

Promo Vinyl 

Here is the promo edition of the 10-inch SUN LP that came with the 'Prodigy of SUN Records' double book by Erik Lorenzen and Robert van Beek. 10 copies were given away to lucky fans who bought the set through the Elvis Files website. 

Christmas Vinyl

The Vinyl Passion record label announced the October 20, 2023 release of the LP 'Christmas Classics Gospel Greats' on leaf green colored vinyl. This LP was originally released in 2018 on grey colored vinyl. 

Side A: Santa Claus Is Back In Town / White Christmas / O Little Town Of Bethlehem / Here Comes Santa Claus 

Side B: (There'll Be) Peace In The Valley (For Me) / It Is No Secret (What God Can Do) / I Believe / Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho / He Knows Just What I Need / I Believe In The Man In The Sky / Swing Down Sweet Chariot / Take My Hand, Precious Lord.

Debut Vinyl

The DOL record label announced the July 7, 2023 re-release on Elvis' debut album on vinyl.

(Source: Elvis Club Berlin / Robert van Beek / Elvis File/ PASCAL Matteo / Amazon)

Monday, May 22, 2023

May 22 - Climactic Summary of the Life of Elvis

Osy King published his 45-page paperback 'Climactic Summary of the Life of Elvis'.

Publicity stated:  The 'Climactic Summary of the Life of Elvis Presley' is the ultimate biography for fans of the King of Rock and Roll. 

From his humble beginnings in Tupelo to his meteoric rise to fame and untimely death, this book takes readers on a journey through the life of one of the most iconic musicians of all time.

Benefits to the reader:
  • Gain a deeper understanding of Elvis's personal and professional life through detailed research and interviews with those who knew him best.
  • Experience the excitement of Elvis's groundbreaking performances and chart-topping hits, from "Heartbreak Hotel" to "Hound Dog" and beyond.
  • Discover the impact of Elvis's music and style on American culture, and how he helped shape the future of rock and roll.
  • Explore the controversies surrounding Elvis's life, including his drug use, relationships, and allegations of cultural appropriation and exploitation.
  • Be inspired by Elvis's enduring legacy and his influence on generations of musicians and performers.
  • Whether you're a lifelong fan of Elvis Presley or a newcomer to his music, this is an engaging and informative biography that captures the spirit and legacy of the King.
(Source: Amazon)

Saturday, May 20, 2023

Review Elvis Summer Festival 1972 2-LP Set

Less than a month ago we got the 4-CD-set ‘Las Vegas Summer Festival 1972’ and now we have the 2-LP-set, featuring two concerts from the previous outing on old fashioned vinyl. 
For me the design by Kev Reape for the LP, with just Elvis’ head works better than the design with the Vegas marquee from the CD edition. It looks very stylish. Inside the gatefold sleeve we get a compilation of pictures. Looking at the photo, you may perhaps expect a compilation of tearjerkers, but you’re getting something else. 
The picture on the back of Elvis, spreading his cape while kneeled on on knee, would have made a great alternative cover! 
The black vinyl I played felt solid and is flat as it is supposed to be with a neatly designed label, matching the frontcover. As usual, the album is also available on clear vinyl.
The LP contains the two Midnight Shows from August 11th and 12, 1972, both drawn from the ‘1972 Summer Festival’, Elvis’ seventh engagement in Las Vegas.

In 1972 Elvis delivered solid - or should I say professional - performances that rocked, we have the proof from the ‘Elvis On Tour’ movie and Madison Square Garden performances. 
For more details on the content, read the review of the >>> CD edition of ‘Las Vegas Summer Festival 1972’.  

I played these concerts loud, and compared to the CD version, the audio holds up very good. The audio is not without faults - listen to ‘An American Trilogy’ over-stretching the limits of the original tape - as it is based using soundboard recorded reference tapes and not based on professional recordings as for the beforementioned titles. 
Compared to the mono versions of these show as released by the official Follow That Dream collectors label and various bootleg labels, the MRS engineer created a more open and entertaining listening experience with this newly created stereo version. Where die hard Elvis fans are accustomed to the dry mono soundboard sound, new fans and casual buyers picking up a new Elvis release in 2023, expect a stereo presentation with some punch, and that is what this LP gives them. 
The concert releases from the U.K. based Memphis Recording Service offer enjoyable shows for a good price, with revamped stereo audio that - within the limitations of the original recordings - meets today’s standard. As an Elvis fan I love seeing new releases like this on the shelves of the record store, Elvis Is Back!

The LP (and CD) is available from the >>> Memphis Recording Service, and Amazon. 

May 20 - Charts may 2023 - Week 3 (Updated)

The weekly global Elvis Presley chart update. In the United Kingdom Elvis' music is on its way up on the Soundtrack and Country music charts. 

In the United States there is little movement, Elvis' records are losing and gaining a few spots. 

U.S. Billboard charts:

  • Billboard Top 200 Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' climbed from #172 to #169.
  • Billboard Soundtrack Album chart: 'ELVIS' Soundtrack' dropped from #20 to #22. 
  • Billboard Top Country Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' dropped from #25 to #26.
  • Billboard Top Rock and Alternative Albums chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' climbed from #35 to #33. 

Official U.K. charts:

  • Official Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' dropped from #34 to #40. 
  • Official Streaming Album chart: 'ELV1S 30 #1 Hits' dropped from #31 to #34. 
  • Official Soundtrack Album chart: 'ELVIS' Soundtrack climbed from #30 to #24.  
  • Official Country Compilations chart: 'From Elvis in Nashville' climbed from #12 to #9. 
  • Official Film chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #14 to #19.  
  • Official Video Chart Top 100: 'ELVIS' dropped from #6 to #13. 
  • Official DVD chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #5 to #11.  
  • Official Blu-ray chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #18 to #21. 
  • Official Films On Disc chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #5 to #9.  
  • Official Music DVD chart: 'Elvis The Searcher' dropped from #25 to #38. 
Irish IRMA charts:

  • Official Irish Album chart: 'ELV1S 30#1 Hits' climbed from #77 to #69.
  • Official Irish Video chart: 'ELVIS' dropped from #8 to #12. 
(Source: Official Chart Company / UK Mix Forum / Billboard / IRMA)

Friday, May 19, 2023

May 19 - Flying Sauces at Studio B

Due for (re)release from the Country Music Foundation Press are two educational publications: 'Flyin' Saucers Rock & Roll: The Cosmic Genius of Sam Phillips' by Peter Guralnick, Jay Orr, Knox Phillips and Kyle Young, and 'Historic RCA Studio B' by John Rumble, Peter Cooper, Ray Edenton, Fred Foster, Jay Orr, Dolly Parton and Bill Porter.

Publicity stated: Sam Phillips is one of the most innovative and inspiring figures in the history of American music, Sun Records founder Sam Phillips introduced the world to Johnny Cash, Howlin' Wolf, B.B. King, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, Elvis Presley, Charlie Rich, Rufus Thomas, Ike Turner and many other brilliant and original artists. 

This 64-page book complements the Country Music Hall of fame and Museum exhibition Flyin' Saucers Rock & Roll: The Cosmic Genius of Sam Phillips, co-curated by award-winning Phillips and Elvis Presley biographer Peter Guralnick. This book contains rare photos not included in the exhibit and contributions from Guralnick and Phillips's son Knox Phillips.

The historic RCA Studio B, home of 1,000 Hits, is a landmark with a legacy built by some of the most important producers and artists in country and pop music. During a golden window, from 1957 to 1977, approximately 18,000 sessions were recorded within its walls, including more than 200 songs by Elvis Presley. The many hits spread Nashville's reputation as Music City worldwide. 

The 112-page paperback comes generously illustrated with rare photos from the museum s archives, this book traces the story of RCA Studio B from its birth through the city s striking musical evolution, to its existence today as both working studio and tourist attraction and celebrates a magical, bygone era.

Both paperbacks are published the non-profit, educational Country Music Foundation. The mission of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is to identify and preserve the evolving history and traditions of country music and to educate its audiences. Functioning as a local history museum and as an international arts organization, the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum serves visiting and non-visiting audiences including fans, students, scholars, and members of the music industry.

(Source: Amazon)

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

May 15 - Encore Settlement (Updated)

Joseph Tunzi shared that his new book 'Elvis Encore Performance VII: The Chicago Blues' will be out May 31, 2023. 

Publicity stated: This book will feature photos from Elvis' performance at the Chicago Stadium on June 17, 1972. It comes with a bonus 2023 "pocket" Elvis calendar.

The book 'The Definitive Vinyl Artwork of Elvis Presley, Vol. 2: The Back Covers' is planned for the end of 2023 or early 2024. 

Dispute Settled

According to CNN Priscilla Presley has reached a settlement agreement over her petition questioning the validity of her late daughter Lisa Marie Presley’s will.

The parties would like to report that they’ve reached a settlement,” Ronson J. Shamoun, Priscilla Presley’s attorney, told Judge Lynn Scaduto at a court hearing in Los Angeles.

The agreement pertains to the Promenade Trust, which names Riley Keough, Lisa Marie Presley’s oldest daughter, as the beneficiary of her late mother’s estate. Details of the agreement were not discussed in court. Attorneys for the parties said they plan to file a motion to seal the settlement agreement.

The judge asked for the settlement and the motion to seal to be filed by June 12 and set another hearing in the case for August 4.

The families are happy,” Shamoun told reporters outside court. “Everyone is happy, unified, together and excited for the future”. Justin Gold, attorney for Riley Keough, told CNN “she is very content”.

Priscilla Presley said in a statement that her family is “pleased that we resolved this together.”

“My family has resolved all confusion as it relates to our plea to the court and request for document interpretation after my daughter Lisa Marie’s untimely passing,” she added. “Although the media identified such a plea as a lawsuit, I want to make clear that there was never any lawsuit filed against my beloved granddaughter.”

A lawyer for Riley Keough didn’t return a request for comment.

Lisa Marie Presley, Elvis Presley’s only child, died in January after being hospitalized following an apparent cardiac arrest at her California home.

Priscilla Presley disputed a 2016 amendment to her daughter’s will which states that Lisa Marie Presley removed her mother and former business manager, Barry Siegel, as co-trustees, replacing them with her children Riley and Benjamin Keough. Benjamin Keough later died in 2020.

The petition, filed in January and obtained by CNN, alleged that Priscilla Presley did not receive the amendment while her daughter was alive, as required by her Trust, and that the document misspells Priscilla’s name. The petition also alleged that the amendment was not witnessed or notarized and questioned the authenticity of Lisa Marie Presley’s signature.

Lisa Marie Presley’s cause of death remains under review, according to the Los Angeles County Coroner.

Bill Baize Died

Bill Baize, tenor singer of Blackwood Brothers Quartet and J.D. Sumner and The Stamps, died. He was 83. R.I.P. and thank you for the music. He sung as part of The Stamps as Elvis' backing group on records and on tour from 1971 to 1976. That year Baize began a long running solo career.

Baize contributed to the recording session for the 'Promised Land' LP and was there at and was present at the Jungle Room sessions. It is Bill Baize who sings the fabulous falsetto high note at the end of 'Burning Love' and you can see him in action in the 1972 movie 'Elvis On Tour'.

The Blackwood Brothers Quartet lovingly stated: "Legendary tenor, Bill Baize, graduated to heaven on May 15th."

Sam Thompson posted: "Bill was a great singer and good man.  Elvis loved Bill singing 'The Lighthouse' ... So many of us gone now".

Graceland posted: Remembering Bill Baize

In the world of gospel music, there are certain individuals who leave an indelible mark on the hearts of audiences and fellow musicians alike. Bill Baize, the cherished tenor member of the renowned Stamps Quartet, was just that person to Elvis and Graceland. 

Graceland was saddened to learn of Bill Baize’s passing on May 15. He left us with memories of his extraordinary talent and unwavering embodiment of faith which captivated both Elvis fans and gospel music fans.

Bill’s most memorable performances with Elvis – from singing “Sweet, Sweet Spirit” to crafting the “Burning Love” rock ‘n’ roll lyric all love to sing (“ahhh”) – will forever leave a lasting impact on Elvis fans. 

With the voice of angel that could yield powerful performances, Bill would always share a radiant smile and a genuine warmth that made him approachable and beloved by fans. Bill Baize understood the transformative power of music and used it to uplift, encourage and inspire others. 

Bill recently shared with us how blessed he felt to be part of the Elvis world, which sums up how we all felt about him as well:

“I feel that I have been one of the most blessed people on earth to have been able to work with Elvis when I did, and I cherish all the fond memories that I have of that time. I have wonderful memories of the days that we spent working in Hawaii on the Aloha From Hawaii show, and wonderful memories of when I spent days there working on the 40th anniversary show. I miss the fans and their enthusiasm about being at Graceland, and I definitely miss my dear friends there at Graceland. I feel like I have been one of the most blessed people on earth to have been able to work with Elvis when I did.”

Bill, an ordained minister, spent his life singing gospel. He sang tenor for the "Smitty Gatlin Trio" from 1966 - 1967 and later sang tenor for "JD Sumner And The Stamps Quartet" from 1971 - 1976. Baize performed with gospel quartets like the "Echoes of Calvary," "The Illinoisans," "The Trailsmen Quartet," and into the professional spotlight with the "Smitty Gatlin Singers." He was with the "Stamps Quartet" from 1971 to 1976 and took the gospel to the world through their highly respected spot with Elvis. 

(Source: JAT Publishing / CNN / Hollywood Reporter / Blackwood Brothers Quartet on Faceboo / Elvis Information Network / Graceland)