Saturday, September 09, 2023

September 09 - Closing Night In Steel City

The Straight Arrow import record label released the ‘Steel City '73’ CD featuring an audience-recording of the June 25, 1973 Evening Show performance. 

This should be the first of several volumes in the label’s new ‘From The John Herman Mastertapes’ series.

Publicity stated: In memory of John Herman (June 25, 1942 - July 5, 2017) “I first met John Herman around 1974 - 1975. We met the old fashion ways - by mail. He was running ads in the record collector’s magazine Goldmine as well as in want ad sections of fan club newsletters. I belonged to several - it’s how we networked with other fans and collectors.

John and I swapped letters and traded Elvis items. Once our relationship was established we began speaking on the phone. Eventually those phone conversations about Elvis turned to more friendly topics. Family, sports and as the years went by - our health issues. He often relayed the story about being a young guy in South Carolina where he was born and being turned on to Elvis from the early days at SUN Records. 

One funny story involved getting the SUN release of ‘I Don’t Care If The Sun Don’t Shine’ and disliking it so much that he used it for target practice one day. Imagine shooting a SUN label record! It was of course available in stores back then and before Elvis’ popularity exploded. 

Eventually John and his family relocated to Uniontown, Pennsylvania. A small town about 45 miles east of Pittsburgh along the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Pittsburgh would eventually figure greatly in his love for Elvis. John helped me immensely in building my Elvis collection. He was generous to me including trading audio cassettes, reel to reel tapes, video tape, films and records. We became such good friends he gifted me 3 Sun Records, two 45 RPM’s and one 78 RPM. 

As the years progressed he recorded many Elvis concerts. He saw Elvis on tour in Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Virginia as well as other places including Elvis’ last two engagements in Las Vegas. He shared a lot of that with me as well as other fans. He even helped me get to some of those shows and shared his access with me - I’m forever grateful. 

Like many of us he began recording the shows on cassette tape. A process that was a learning experience for those of us who did such a thing. The more shows you’re recorded - the better you became at it. The same applied to shooting still pictures or Super 8 film. At some point you got better and better. The interaction between Elvis’ staff, his father and eventually Elvis himself gave John pretty good access to his hero. It’s a story I’ll relate in later editions. Elvis loved policeman and that was John’s profession - a police officer for his hometown. John became friendly with his hero on a personal basis.

The audio recordings he made, the photographs he shot and even the iconic films he shot have become legendary in the world of Elvis. With the passing of many of the original guard of Elvis fans and collectors - his is one of those names and stories that needs to be kept relevant. He left us with many great moments and memories that we all still share and enjoy.”

Straight Arrow was fortunate enough to obtain recently recovered 1st generation copy of the original audience-recorded tape of this show, coming from the collection of an American fan. This historic concert was never before available in good sound quality - until now! Every second was enhanced to achieve the optimal listening experience. The sound was remastered to the correct speed. If you have enjoyed our previous 1973 CDs, we believe that you will love this one as well. 

Presented in the usual Straight Arrow fashion with the top notch digipak including the photos of Elvis in Pittsburgh and Uniondale, June 1973 and great liner notes written by close friend of John Herman, this new release is another beauty that you must not miss! Straight arrow is planning several volumes of “From The John Herman Mastertapes” similar with our legendary 2015 ‘From The Rick Rennie Mastertapes’ series. 

Note: Elvis super fan John Herman also taped the legendary Pittsburgh 1976 New Year’s Eve show, widely released by bootleggers and by the official FTD label. 

Tracks: 01. Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra - 02. C. C. Rider - 03. I Got A Woman / Amen - 04. Love Me Tender - 05. Steamroller Blues - 06. You Gave Me A Mountain - 07. Love Me - 08. Blue Suede Shoes - 09. Long Tall Sally / Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On / Mama Don’t Dance / Flip Flop And Fly / Jailhouse Rock / Shake Rattle And Roll / Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On - 10. I’m Leavin’ - 11. How Great Thou Art (with reprise) - 12. Hound Dog - 13. Fever - 14. What Now My Love - 15. Suspicious Minds - 16. Introductions of singers, musicians, orchestra - 17. Happy Birthday to Colonel Parker - 18. I’ll Remember You - 19. I Can’t Stop Loving You - 20. An American Trilogy - 21. Johnny B. Goode - 22. Help Me Make It Through The Night - 23. Can’t Help Falling In Love - 24. Closing Vamp.

Note: This concert was previously released in 2009 by the Rocky Record label as 'Help Me Make It In Pittsburgh' (audience recording). 

Closing Night Vinyl

The new Memphis Recording Service LP 'Closing Night 1972' has been released, the first dealers and fans received their copies. 

Publicity stated: This CD features a live performance recorded on 4 September 1972, during the last night of Elvis’ seventh engagement in Las Vegas at the Hilton Hotel. For the first time ever, the show is presented in stereo. A bonus CD of remastered rehearsal tracks, recorded days before the engagement began, is also included. 

The accompanying booklet - featuring rare photographs and memorabilia from the final evening – also includes liner notes that set the scene.

Tracks CD 1 - Las Vegas Hilton December 4, 1972 Dinner Show: Also Sprach Zarathustra - See See Rider - Johnny B. Goode - Until It’s Time For You To Go - You Don't Have To Say You Love Me - Polk Salad Annie - Elvis Talks To Audience - What Now My Love - Fever - Love Me - Blue Suede Shoes - Heartbreak Hotel - All Shook Up - Love Me Tender - (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - Little Sister / Get Back - Hound Dog - I'll Remember You - Walk That Lonesome Road (J. D. Sumner & The Stamps) - Suspicious Minds - Band Introductions - Elvis Welcomes British Fanclub - For The Good Times - A Big Hunk O' Love - You Gave Me A Mountain - Can't Help Falling In Love

CD 2 - August 4, 1972 Las Vegas Rehearsals:

You Don't Have To Say You Love Me - Until It's Time For You To Go - You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' - Burning Love - What Now My Love (Take 1) - What Now My Love (Take 2) - My Babe - For The Good Times - True Love Travels On A Gravel Road - Fever - Blueberry Hill - Little Sister / Get Back (Incomplete) - I'll Remember You - An American Trilogy - Something - Faded Love - You Gave Me A Mountain - I'm Leavin' - My Way (Take 1) - My Way (Take 2)

Tracks LP: Side A - 04.09.1972 DS (Las Vegas): Also Sprach Zarathustra - See See Rider - Johnny B. Goode - Until It’s Time For You To Go - You Don't Have To Say You Love Me - Polk Salad Annie - What Now My Love - Fever - Love Me - Blue Suede Shoes - Heartbreak Hotel - All Shook Up

Side B: Love Me Tender - (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - Little Sister / Get Back - Hound Dog - I'll Remember You - Suspicious Minds - For The Good Times - A Big Hunk O' Love - You Gave Me A Mountain - Can't Help Falling In Love

Note: This material was previously released on the Follow That Dream CDs ‘Destination USA’ and ‘3000 Paradise Road’ and the Madison bootleg 'A Hilton Double Shot 1'. Both released in mono.

Best Actrice

Cailee Spaeny won the best actress award at the Venice Film Festival on Saturday, at the age of just 25, for her portrayal of Elvis Presley's wife in 'Priscilla'. Coppola did not wil in the category 'Best Movie'.

(Source: Otto Meszaros on Facebook / Eddy Vodden on Facebook / France 24)