Remembering Joe Esposito

Joe Esposito

Joe Esposito died the day before Thanksgiving, so this post is unfortunately late. Blame it on the time demands of getting through one holiday and getting ready for another.

It saddens me to do these memorials to friends and musicians from Elvis’ world. The circle keeps getting smaller. Since ElvisBlog began 11 years ago, we’ve remembered Charlie Hodge, Lamar Fike, John Wilkinson, Gordon Stoker, Millie Kirkham, and Scotty Moore.

 

Graceland Remembering Joe Esposito

Like every other Elvis website, Graceland.com posted a memorial to Joe Esposito, but is was surprisingly brief. It did mentioned that Joe served as Elvis’ road manager, but omitted other functions he performed – bodyguard for a while and sometimes assisting in the bookkeeping.  Joe was also co-best man at Elvis’ wedding to Priscilla.

(Editor’s note: I did not copy the “Remembering Joe Esposito” title that Graceland.com used. That’s been the way I memorialized all the folks mentioned above, and this continued the pattern.)

 

Elvis and Joe Esposito riding a bike

 

Joe esposito and Elvis at memphis Airport

One interesting factoid about Joe Esposito is mentioned the book ELVIS: His Life from A to Z – “It was Joe Esposito who arranged females for Elvis to date.”

 

Elvis and Joe Esposito at Set of It Happened at the World's Fair

 

Did you know that Joe Esposito had bit parts in eight Elvis movies?

Joe Esposito in Elvis Movies

You can see him through the windshield in this shot taken during the filming of Spinout.

Elvis and Joe esposito on Set of Clambake

 

One thing I found out about Joe Esposito while doing research is that Google has way more images of him in his later years than during his time with Elvis. Here’s a good one of him having some laughs with Linda Thompson. Everyone says he was a great guy, fun to be around.

Joe Esposito and Linda Thompson

 

I got to know Joe just a little bit. Here I am at Elvis Week 2007 at a book signing table outside the venue for a concert presented by Darwin Lamm, Editor/Publisher of Elvis International magazine. I got to play pseudo-bodyguard protecting Joe and DJ Fontana from any pushy or unruly fans. Fortunately there weren’t any.

Phil Arnold, Joe Esposito, DJ Fontana

I will forever be grateful to Darwin for giving me the opportunity to hang out back stage with these two men plus Scotty Moore, Gordon Stoker, and Millie Kirkham.

 

Here is a picture of Joe with Elvis two months before Elvis died.

Joe esposito with Elvis Two Months Before He Died

 

And here’s a photo of Darwin vising with Joe Esposito two months before his passing.

Joe esposito and Darwin Lamm

Joe was an important earlier contributor to Darwin’s magazine, and the two have been friends for decades.

 

Joe esposito

 

We’ll miss you, Joe. Say hi to Elvis for us.

 

 

© 2016 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

.

 .
 .
ElvisBlog Logo

.

 .
Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

 

 

 

 

Thanksgiving Leftovers — Elvis Style

Peanut Butter and Turkey Sandwich

Just for kicks, I Googled Peanut Butter, Banana, and Turkey Sandwich.  This is as close as I could find.  The picture shows turkey lunchmeat, but I think I’ll give it a try using sliced left-over turkey breast from Thanksgiving.  It sounds pretty good.

While doing my Google search, I came across an interesting variation on the peanut butter and banana sandwich.

Variation on peanut butter and bana sanswich.

I might try one of these, too.

ElvisBlog Logo

A Thanksgiving Message

I hope Elvis fans everywhere have much to be thankful for.

Elvis Praying.

Happy Thanksgiving from ElvisBlog

 

Elvis and National Jukebox Day — Part 1

National Jukebox Day Sign

I saw on the morning news that today is National Jukebox Day.  I never heard of it before, but I have a few Elvis & jukebox pictures, so let;s celebrate.

Elvis and jukebox

Elvis and Jukebox

Elvis at Jukebox

Elvis and Jukebox

Elvis CD Jukebox

.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving Everybody

Elvis and his Gold Cadillac Flying Hot Rod

Elvis - 200 Cadillacs DVD

Elvis’ love affair with automobiles, especially Cadillacs, has been well documented. Also, his generosity in giving gifts of automobiles to friends, family, associates and even complete strangers is legendary. In fact, the above 2004 DVD provides pictures and details on 200 Cadillacs Elvis gave away during his lifetime.

 

Elvis' 1973 De Tomaso Pantera

In addition to big roomy elegant sedans, Elvis also owned a variety of high performance models. Above is a 1971 De Tomaso Pantera.

Elvis' 1973 Stutz Blackhawk III

And this is his 1973 Stutz Blackhawk III.

 

Elvis and Linda Thompson on his supertrike

Elvis loved other unique forms of getting around. Here he is with Linda Thompson on his custom-made “SuperTrike.”

Three strange Elvis Vehicles

Here it is on display, along with two other Elvis playthings: a snowmobile he had fitted with wheels for driving around the grounds of Graceland, and a white golf cart in the back.

 

Elvis has been quoted, “While I was driving a truck, every time a big shiny car drove by, it started me sort of day-dreaming. I always felt that someday, somehow, something would happen to change everything for me. I would daydream about how it would be.”

And when that someday did come, he naturally had to own cars like this 1965 gold Cadillac Eldorado designed by George Barris.

1965 elvis Gold Cadillac Eldorado

 

Yes, Elvis loved him some Cadillacs. However, he spent the entire year of 1959 serving in the Army in Germany, so he never had a Cadillac from that year. The closest he came was having Col. Parker purchase 14 “give away” cars in his name for donations to various charities.

Elvis Gift to Charity - 1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville

This 1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville was one of those cars. Can there be any doubt that Elvis would have loved this baby and owned one if he had been home in 1959? This car practically screams ELVIS.

 

So, I ask you to consider a fantasy. Suppose eighteen years later, Elvis ends up at the North Pole living with Santa Claus. He needs some kind of hot rod for getting around. As Elvis ponders over what he would like the elves to make for him, he remembers the incredible lines of the 1959 Cadillac convertible.

1959 Cadillac Convertable

Yeah, just like this, except gold. And no back seat or trunk lid. Just a big open space in the back like Santa’s sleigh. Of course, tires won’t get him around at the North Pole, so it needs runners. And why not go for broke and make the thing fly.

Santa and Elvis in Jet Sled

Yes, that’s it. Elvis’ hot-rod jet sled from my book BIG E and the SANTA MAN.

In the story, Big E (as he is called at the North Pole) doesn’t just have fun flying around in the sky. His jet sled is instrumental in foiling Scrooge’s plot to ruin Christmas. It’s a back and forth battle between the forces of good and evil.

Big E is just what every Elvis fan would want him to be: decisive, nerves of steel, a man of action. The inventive maneuvers he uses in the jet sled to counter Scrooge’s offensive strategies are heart-pumping exciting.

And through all the skirmishes with Scrooge, he keeps his unique sense of humor. This is such a fun story.

BIG E and the SANTA MAN

In previous posts, I have asserted that BIG E and the SANTA MAN is the strangest Christmas story ever written. I also stressed that the book is the perfect Christmas present for Elvis fans.

So, here’s the third point: Elvis is depicted as a true hero who jumps into action when Santa needs help or Christmas will be ruined, not just for one year, but forever. You will love this depiction of Elvis. And even though it is a fantasy, you will believe he could do every bit of it. If you want to read a book that makes you immensely proud of Elvis, this is for you.

 

Amazon Page - BIG E and the SANTA MAN

It’s almost Thanksgiving and the buying of Christmas presents is going on. How about telling a friend or family member that you would like them to give you BIG E and the SANTA MAN. Tell them to go to Amazon and search for it under books, or click here and go right to it.

Or if you want a signed and inscribed copy, send me an email at philarnold@charter.net. I’ll submit a Money Request to PayPal and we’ll go from there.

I haven’t mentioned it before, but there is an inexpensive third option. Amazon also offers a Kindle eBook for just $2.99.

So, pick one of the three ways to get BIG E and the SANTA MAN. You will be glad you did. Next time I will share comments from others who read the book and felt very positive about it.

Thank you,

Phil Arnold
Original ElvisBlogmeister

 

ElvisBlog Logo

PS: While working on this blog post, I checked out Google to see if any artists had created a flying automobile sled for Santa Claus. Here are three good ones.

jet-powered-bentley-santa-sled

jet-powered-sled-sled

santa-in-jet-powered-sled

 

I’m glad there were no gold Cadillac sleds. That has to be an Elvis exclusive.
So, how about it? Are you ready to order BIG E and the SANTA MAN? Click here. Do it.

So, How Much is an Elvis Autograph Worth – Part 8

Sincerely Elvis Presley

It’s been nine months since the last ElvisBlog post in this series, but there have been three auctions this year with a number of Elvis signed items, so let’s see what the latest items are.

 .

 

Julien’s Auction – May 2016:

Elvis autographs show up at Julien’s infrequently, but there were five in this auction and the three signed on things other than photographs all had interesting aspects.

 

Color Photo Inscribed to Harry Levitch:

elvis-signed-photo-inscribed-to-harry-levitch

Elvis signed an untold number of publicity photographs for his fans, but occasionally he also did it for associates in music, film, and business. Harry Levitch was a Memphis jeweler who made, sold and repaired jewelry for Elvis, including Priscilla’s wedding ring. The inscription says, “To Mr. and Mrs. Levitch, my sincere for all the thoughtful jewelry over the years. Your friend, Elvis Presley.” The high bid on this 7” x 9” item was $1,600, including the 25% buyer’s premium.

 

1955 Bank Deposit Slip:

Elvis Presley Signed Deposit Slip

The interesting thing about this signature is that it is actually the carbon copy of a two-part deposit slip for the National Bank of Commerce in Memphis. A look at the fine print at the bottom shows “Duplicate Deposit Ticket / New Account,” so this $240 probably was the first money to go into it. I wonder how much the total deposits over the years came to. The winning bidder was happy to spend $1,920 for the carbon-copy Elvis signature.

 

Signed International Hotel Postcard:

Front of Elvis Presley Signed Postcard

Elvis Presley Signed Postcard

In addition to Elvis’ signature, do we we get a sample of other Elvis writing in the address to Mary Miller?  The auction website makes no memtion of it. Strangely, the inscription is “To Dennis.” The postcard went for $1,600.

 

Inscribed Children’s Book:

Elvis Inscribed Childrens' Book

Cover of Elvis Inscribed Children's Book

As you can see, this is signed E.P. which might ordinarily deter autograph collectors. However, the message above it must be one of the longest inscriptions Elvis ever wrote, “To Robin, a sweet little girl. Thanks for your lovely cards. They are wonderful. My sincere thanks and all the best. Your friend, E.P.” Bidders obviously saw value in this item, and it went for $1,600.

 

Signed Black and White Image:

elvis-presley-signed-photo

I expected this to bring less than the previous items because the auction website said it appeared to be a page taken from a book, not a quality publicity photo. Bidders didn’t seem to care, and it went for $1,600.

 

Auction at Graceland — October, 2016:

As I have stated before, the Auctions at Graceland seem to be the ones with the best return for sellers. They also have access to a number of contractual documents, applications, and other items that add significantly to the value of the signature. I prefer to feature mostly items that Elvis signed for the fans, but here’s a list of some of the big ticket signed documents:

1956 Application for the Screen Actors Guild — $6,250
1964 Rolls Royce Phantom V credit application — $4,000
1970 Federal Firearm Transaction Record — $6,250

 

Envelope signed at the Big D Jamboree, 1955:

Elvis Presley Signed Envelope

Back when I started following the auctions of Elvis collectibles, his autograph on whatever a fan had available (scraps of paper, blank check deposit slips, etc.) would bring in $6-800. That was during the early days of the recession. Now, seven or eight years later, the economy is healthier and it cost more to buy Elvis autographs. This 3-3/8 by 5-3/4 inch signed envelope in crappy shape brought in $1,375.

 

Signed and Inscribed Elvis’ Golden Records Vol. 1:

Elvis Presley Signed Album

A young fan got Elvis to sign this album cover while he was an Army recruit at Ft. Chaffee in 1958. As I have said before, it behooves the seller of Elvis autographs to present them in proper framed display in order to fetch top dollar. At 18 by 27 inches, this signed album will look great on any collector’s wall. It went for $2,500.

signed-and-inscribed-elvis-golden-records-vol-1-close-up

 

Signed “Mr. Rhythm” Magazine in Framed Display:

elvis-presley-signed-mr-rhythm-magazine-in-framed-display-copy

OK, my theory isn’t foolproof, as proved by this item. Here we have a signed photograph from the back cover of a “Mr. Rhythm” souvenir picture program from 1956. It is beautifully displayed in a 33” by 39” black frame, along with the program cover, three photographs, and a descriptive plaque. In spite of all this, it had only four bids and went for $1,500. A real bargain for somebody.

 

Signed Early Promotional Photo from 1955:

elvis-presley-signed-early-promotional-photo

And this item diminishes another of my theories. I have often wondered why people pay so much for an Elvis photo autographed on the BACK. How do you display it? Like this?

elvis-presley-signed-early-promotional-photo-close-up

While this item has no appeal to me, it did to somebody, as it went for $2,500.

 

Signed Thunderbird Hotel Cocktail Napkin, 1963:

elvis-presley-signed-thunderbird-hotel-cocktail-napkin

Here’s a question for you. You know about Elvis performing at the New Frontier Hotel in Las Vegas, and later at the International/Hilton Hotel, and getting married at the Aladdin Hotel, but what is his connection to the Thunderbird Hotel. Give up? He stayed there while filming Viva Las Vegas. In a story like countless others, a fan had a chance encounter with Elvis and grabbed the first thing she could to get his autograph, which was this cocktail napkin. It is in less than ideal shape, but still went for $2,500.

 

Signed Flamingo Hotel Envelope:

Elvis Presley Signed Flamingo Hotel Envelope

Here’s another one. What was Elvis’ connection to the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas? You are all probably familiar with the 1969 picture of Elvis in a hard-hat signing papers at the construction site of the International Hotel. It was actually a ceremonial contract for his upcoming concert engagement when the hotel was completed. Elvis stayed in town for four days at the Flamingo and signed this hotel envelope. It sold for $2,125. So much for proper presentation in a framed display. At the Auction at Graceland, bidders just didn’t seem to care.

 

Elvis Presley Signed Promotional Poster:

elvis-presley-signed-promotional-poster

Well, if a 3” by 6” signed envelope is worth $2,125, then certainly an autographed 21” by 28” color poster is worth $2,750.

elvis-presley-signed-promotional-poster-close-up

This prize was originally obtained in 1973 by a girl with the good fortune to have a flight attendant sister who knew Elvis personally. When Elvis performed in their hometown at the Pittsburgh Civic Center Arena in July 1974, the girls spent a lot of time with Elvis and his buddies. Along with a treasure of wonderful memories, she also got this signed poster.

 

Heritage Auctions – November 2016

There were just a handful of Elvis collectibles in the latest Heritage Entertainment and Music Memorabilia Auction, but what can you expect when the Auction at Graceland featured 145 the month before?

 

Signed June Kelly Print from Roustabout:

elvis-presley-signed-june-kelly-print-from-roustabout

This painting was used during the promotion of Elvis’ film Roustabout.

elvis-presley-signed-roustabout-poster-close-up

Penciled on the back side in the artist’s hand is “Artist proof #1 / for Elvis / June Kelly. I guess that helped push the bidding up to $1,687

 

Elvis Presley Signature with Photo:

elvis-presley-signature-with-photo

This is a nice example of proper displaying. The scrap of paper with Elvis’ autograph measures just 2.75″ x 4″, but the framed display is 12” by 19”. It went for $1,500

 

Elvis Presley Signed Black and White Photograph:

elvis-presley-signed-publicity-photos

At first glance, it might appear Elvis signed this black and white photograph twice. However, the white “Best Wishes/ Elvis Presley” at the bottom right is a facsimile printing.

elvis-presley-signed-black-and-white-photograph-close-up

The real signing was “To Jo/ I Love You Very Much/ Elvis Presley” at the top right in red ink. She was Jo Heims, the female screenwriter on his 1967 MGM film, Double Trouble. The top bid on this was $1,625.

 

 

© 2016 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

ElvisBlog Logo

Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

An Election Result that Elvis Fans Should Like

Election Ballot

If you don’t know what this is about, click here.

ELVIS and ELVES

Cute Female Elf

There are just four regular-sized people in my book BIG E and the SANTA MAN – Big E, Santa, Mama Claus, and Scrooge. All the other characters, both good and bad, are elves. I’d like to introduce the major ones here, so hopefully you will want to learn more about them by reading the whole story.

As I said before, there are no illustrations in the book, but I’ve dug deeply into Google to find images closest to the main elves in the story. Let’s start with one of the two elf leaders, Corky.

While she doesn’t look exactly like the beauty above, Corky is equally pretty and very talented. She oversees all the creative and design work in Santa’s workshop. Imagine Corky older than the elf above – say about 35. Of course, her everyday attire is nothing like this, but she dresses up in spectacular fashion once in the story. It’s when she sings at the annual North Pole Christmas party held on December 25 after Santa recuperates from his long journey delivering presents. She mesmerizes all the male elves, especially this next guy.

All-business Male Elf

Corky’s male counterpart is Gears, a mechanical genius that can build anything, including Big E’s flying jet sled. He is much more handsome than the fellow above, but he does possesses the same all-business attitude. Gears is in charge of all production in Santa’s workshop. Imagine Gears at about 45.

Paul McCartney as Elf

Here we have an elf picture that looks exactly like the way I imagine him in my story. This is Mac, one of three young elves who Elvis (known as Big E at the North Pole) teaches to play guitar. The others are G.H. shown here…

George Harrison as Elf

 

… and Jonel (pronounced John L).  Sorry, there was no picture available that looked like Jonel, but I’m pretty sure you get the connection. There’s also no picture of Shooter who plays the drums. Together, these four 20-somethings form a band under Big E’s tutelage called The ELVI’s. There’s a lot of music in the book, mainly because my dream is for it to someday be made into an animated Christmas special on TV. Can you imagine how great it would be if Big E and these four fellows teamed up in a concert. Well, it happens in BIG E and the SANTA MAN.

The four members of the ELVI’s aren’t in the story just to add a musical element. They all take part in thwarting Scrooge’s first attempt to ruin Christmas, told in back-story. Elvis and Santa aren’t the only ones doing heroic things.

 

Not all of the elves in the story are good. There’s a group of four that Santa cut from the workshop team because of insubordination and sloppy craftsmanship. These trouble-makers are banished from Santa’s castle, and they devolve into a biker-gang-like group called the Humbahs led by one called Weasel. They hate Santa and are perfectly suited to assist Scrooge in his plan to ruin Christmas.

Bad Elf

Google had a surprisingly large selection of “Bad Elves,” but none quite fit the image of Weasel as described in the book.

He had purple spiked hair, and wore a heavily studded, sleeveless black leather jacket. His face sported several piercings, and numerous tats covered his little arms.

Weasel’s rebellious and argumentative nature results in many confrontations with Scrooge, but the two put that aside when it’s time to launch the plan to ruin Christmas.

 

Big E and the Santa Man Front Cover

 

So, after three blog posts about the book, I’m pretty sure you can see that BIG E and the SANTA MAN qualifies as the:

 

Most unusual Christmas story ever written

 

And it stars Elvis!  If you need something to convince you that it’s also a good read, a well-written novel, an enjoyable fun story, then just check out the five 5-star reviews on Amazon.

Amazon Page for Big E and the Santa Man

In a future post, I will supplement the Amazon reviews by sharing some of the good things people have emailed me after reading the book. I will not be cherry-picking just the good ones. There are no bad ones.

 

PayPal

Amazon is not the only way to order the book. If you want it autographed and inscribed with a message of your choice, the PayPal option is for you. You just notify me by email (philarnold@charter.net) that you want the book and any special inscription you would like. Then, I submit a Money Request to PayPal. They process the sale and let me know, so I can sign the book and send it to you. The Post Office Media mail rate is $2.92 to the US, and $7.00 to Canada. International rates are very high, although a man in France did buy the book in spite of $21.50 postage.

 

So, one final pitch. You are an Elvis fan or you wouldn’t be on this blog. BIG E and the SANTA MAN is the perfect Christmas gift for Elvis fans. You will love him as a hero who teams up with Santa Claus to save Christmas. Why not tell a friend or family member that you want them to give you this book. Make it easy for them when they’re trying to figure out what to get you for Christmas.

Click here to order the book on Amazon.

.

Thank you,

Phil Arnold

Original ElvisBlogmeister

 

 

ElvisBlog Lip Logo

The Auction at Graceland Does It Again

The Auction at Graceland Logo

I continue to be more and more impressed with the Auctions at Graceland each time we have a new one. And they are coming at an increased frequency. The first was during Elvis Week 2014. In 2015, there were Auctions at Graceland during the birthday celebration and Elvis Week. Same thing this year, but now we get an additional one as part of the grand opening of the Guest house at Graceland.

Guest House at Graceland

Just 2-1/2 months after the Elvis Week 2016 auction, they have come up with 145 new items for collectors to bid on. I’ve noticed that the item descriptions on the auction website are getting longer and more interesting. Typically I write my own summary and comments on the items presented here on ElvisBlog, but this time we’ll look at what the website has to say (with minor editing).

 .

1953 Humes High School Yearbook Signed by Elvis Presley and Class President George Klein:

Elvis' High School Yearbook

Carolyn Lee Jones was certainly a popular girl in Humes High School and her yearbook from 1953 confirms the fact that this lovely lady had many friends and admirers. The most famous of those was Elvis Presley himself, who signed near his own class picture, “Best of luck to a very cute girl. Elvis.” Elvis’ friend and Class President, George Klein, also signed “To a very nice girl. Best of everything always. George.”

Elvis Autograph and Inscription on High School Yearbook

Based on the staggering number of signatures in her yearbook, it appears Carolyn knew almost everyone in her school! A cherished high school memento, this yearbook was stored for many years in a safety deposit box, and because of that it is one of the most well-preserved copies ever offered.

The yearbook is 112 pages long. Elvis is depicted in his senior class portrait wearing a suit jacket and tie with a curl of hair falling onto his forehead. He has listed his major as “Shop, History, English” and his activities as “R.O.T.C., Biology Club, English Club, History Club, Speech Club.” Elvis is also mentioned on page 30 in the class’ Last Will and Testament, in Section 83: “Donald Williams, Raymond McCraig and Elvis Presley leave hoping there will be someone to take their places as ‘teachers’ pets.’” Elvis is also pictured on page 56, in the 5th period 12th grade English class photo, in the back row.

The pristine example of the 1953 Herald yearbook is offered with a letter from Carolyn Lee (Jones) Davis in which she fondly recalls her school days with Elvis:

“There are so many memories in this wonderful book. I think back on the days of Elvis sitting on the front steps of the school and playing his guitar. To see what he has become is truly amazing. He was always a loner and most people paid him no attention. I felt sorry for him at times. We became friends and I helped him with his school work. English was his worst subject. Funny how life takes its turns. I, for one, was very proud to know him. Memories are a wonderful thing.”

 

Elvis Presley's High School Classmate Carolyn Jones
This is the yearbook photo of Carolyn Lee Jones. It was reproduced in a June 2012 ElvisBlog article, part of a series that covered comments by Elvis’ former classmates. In preparation for their 50th reunion in 2003, a website was created where everyone could post their memories of Humes High School. Naturally much of this concerned Elvis. Here is what Carolyn Jones said about Elvis then.

comment-by-elvis-presleys-high-school-classmate-carolyn-jones

Somehow, between 2003 and 2016, her recollections of Elvis went from “I didn’t know Elvis very well” to “We became friends and I helped him with his school work.” No big deal. Just interesting.

The pre-auction estimate on this yearbook was $4-6,000, and the winning bid was $6,875 (including the auction’s 25% buyer’s fee). In April 2013, ElvisBlog reported on the sale at Heritage Auctions of another Herald yearbook with Elvis’ signature and inscription. It sold for $4,375 (including buyer’s premium). This in another example of how the Auctions at Graceland bring higher realization for sellers of Elvis memorabilia.

 .

Rare Complete Set of Five Elvis Presley’s Sun 78 RPM Records:

Elvis 78 RPM Record That's Alright Mama

This incredible complete collection of Elvis’ Sun Records 78s includes his first five singles: 1954 Sun 209 “That’s All Right/Blue Moon of Kentucky”; 1954 Sun 210 “Good Rockin’ Tonight/I Don’t Care if the Sun Don’t Shine”; 1955 Sun 215 “Milkcow Blues Boogie/You’re A Heartbreaker”; 1955 Sun 217 “Baby Let’s Play House/I’m Left, You’re Right, She’s Gone”; and 1955 Sun 223 “Mystery Train/I Forgot to Remember to Forget.”

While a complete set of Elvis’ Sun 45s are highly collectible, a full set of the Sun 78s are even more rare and desirable. Rumors have been told throughout the years that the scarcity of the 78s was due to the fact that Sam Phillip’s brother Tom, who ran the back warehouse where stacks of the 78s were stored, allowed an overseas collector into the space and that collector was so overtaken at the sheer quantity that he fell into the stacks, causing a vast amount of irreplaceable damage. Another anecdote explaining the shortage of 78s was that Tom Phillips would give away enormous quantities to county fairs who would use them as targets in the carnival games, hanging them from strings so customers could toss balls at them in an attempt to break them to smithereens.

We may never know the true story, but the fact remains that the Elvis Sun 78s are highly sought after for their rarity and superior sound quality compared to the 45s. A very clean complete set, with signs of only moderate use, including a few scratches and scuffs. Labels are extremely clean and totally intact. Excellent condition, if not a somewhat better overall.

This set was a popular item generating eleven bids. It sold for $4,500, right in line with the pre-auction estimate.

 .

Original 1954 Record Stamper for Sun Records 209, Elvis Presley’s “That’s All Right”:

1954-stamper-for-elvis-presleys-thats-all-right

The offered metal stampers were used to produce some of the very earliest pressings of Elvis Presley’s first 45 RPM record release with the songs “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon of Kentucky.” The recording of these two songs is widely considered by many to be the birth of rock and roll. When Elvis exploded on the Memphis airwaves, changing popular music forever, Sam Phillips charged into the future and had his records on the shelves only days later, on July 19, 1954. The initial copies were pressed by Plastic Products in Memphis, and Elvis himself is said to have visited the plant to watch the record being made. There is no way to know for sure if these stampers were part of the initial production run in mid-July, but pencil notations on the storage sleeve indicate that they were in use no later than August 1954. Either way, some of the first records Elvis fans ever played were pressed from these very stampers. They pressed together upon the waiting “hot wax” and, one copy after another, helped change the world forever.

Key attributes of the stampers include the matrix numbers visible in what would be the “dead wax” portion of the final pressed records, the “Audiodisc” logo around the center circles, and, of course, the three small indentations around the center holes. The 1/4” indentations, used to hold the stampers in place by connecting with three opposing pins during pressing, are what created what are known to collectors of early Elvis records as “delta” marks. They form a triangle (or the Greek letter “delta”) of marks on the Sun labels. These marks are the tell-tale sign that a record is a “delta pressing,” pressed at the Memphis record plant. Copies pressed at other plants in Philadelphia or Los Angeles do not have these marks. The marks appear on all of Elvis’ Sun 45s except for his final release, “Mystery Train.” By the time of that release in 1955, the stamper production method had been adjusted.

When I saw the pre-auction estimate for this was $30,000 to $40,000, I said “No way.” Indeed, no one even cared to make the minimum bid of $15,000. We will see this stamper again at auction at a considerably lower price.

 

 

Three Sun Record Co. Checks Written to Elvis Presley, Scotty Moore and Bill Black:

Sun Records Check to Elvis Presley

This grouping of checks is an unprecedented offering representing the actual payments for an Elvis Presley recording session at The Memphis Recording Service with Sam Phillips. The three Sun Record Co., Inc. checks are each signed by Phillips and, respectively, Elvis Presley, Scotty Moore and Bill Black. They are for the recording session on November 15, 1954 for the song “I’m Left, You’re Right, My Baby’s Gone.” The memos on the Moore and Black checks (nos. 834 and 835, respectively) read “Presley Session: 11/15/54,” while Elvis’ check (no. 833) simply reads “Session: 11/15/54.” The distinction between the memos may be related to the fact that Elvis was paid as the session leader, while Scotty and Bill, as players, were paid half as much. The checks are dated the day after the session, November 16, 1954 and are also endorsed on the reverse below each musician’s name by “O.V. Foster,” the secretary of the Memphis local musicians’ union.

Elvis Presley Signed Sun Records Check

Seven takes were recorded at the session, and are commonly referred to as the “slow” version of the song. Eventually, the boys would record the more upbeat version that was released with “Baby Let’s Play House” as Sun 217 and titled “I’m Left, You’re Right, She’s Gone.” However, there is some confusion about whether the record version was recorded during the March 5, 1955 session, as is commonly held, or if it was indeed recorded during the November 15, 1954, session. The debate has smoldered among fans for some time, and hopefully the offering of these checks will only fan the flames!

Elvis Presley signed checks of any vintage are highly sought-after by collectors, and checks from the earliest period of his career only more so. And an Elvis-signed Sun Record Co. check that is also signed by Sam Phillips would be the pinnacle. So considering the presented group of Sun Record checks are signed by not only Elvis and Sam, but also Scotty Moore and Bill Black, and that they are for a recording session, it is fair to say that this may be the most significant Elvis Presley check offering ever. A truly historic auction opportunity.

The set of three checks sold for $16,250, slightly below the pre-auction estimate.

 

Complete Set of Elvis Presley’s RCA Victor 45 RPM EPs – All 29 Releases from 1956–67:

Elvis Presley EP

In November 1955, RCA bought Elvis’ contract from Sun Records. In March 1956, RCA released Elvis’ first full-length album, simply titled Elvis Presley, which sold more than 350,000 copies in just over a month. RCA simultaneously released two 45 EPs of the same title that together included all 12 tracks available on the LP. Extended Plays, commonly referred to as EPs, were created in the 1950s and contained more than the traditional two tracks on most 45s. By releasing both the LP and EPs at the same time, RCA was assuring saturation of its new star in a market that used record players with varying capabilities. RCA’s strategy proved victorious, with the EPs selling even more copies than the LP. The success of Elvis Presley made it the first in music history to sell more than a million copies, and Elvis became the first RCA single artist to reach a million dollars in sales. The album reached number 1 on the Billboard charts and launched Elvis’ long career with RCA.

Complete Set of Elvis Presley EPs

(Editor’s note: The other 27 Eps in this collection had four songs each. I learned something here – I never knew the two Elvis Presley EPs sold more than the album of the same name.)

I thought this very desirable set was undervalued in the pre-auction estimate of $1,000-$1,500. A total of 22 bids ran the price up to $2,500. Still a bargain.

 

 

Elvis Presley Stage-Worn Jumpsuit – The “Aqua Blue Vine” Jumpsuit:

Nothing is more synonymous with the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll than his famous jumpsuits. While every fan remembers Elvis’ wonderfully spectacular variety of jumpsuits (nearly 100 different examples were made), few are ever made available on the open market. Only a very small number of jumpsuits exist outside the treasured Graceland Archives. The opportunity to acquire such an iconic piece of music and entertainment history is incredibly rare. The offered legendary jumpsuit, with its turquoise clustered studs, was designed by Bill Belew and Gene Doucette in 1973 for Elvis. In the typical fashion of many of his jumpsuits, it has a zippered front closure, flared sleeves, flared legs with turquoise silk inverted kick pleats, a high-pointed Napoleon collar with Velcro patches on the back to attach the matching cape, and is studded with magnificent faux turquoise stones and gold-colored studs all over. The heavy fabric material matches other examples from the period, and an important hidden element that is present is the extra underarm padding.

Elvis Presley Aqua Blue Vine Jumpsuit

After designing the famous spectacular jumpsuits for which Elvis became known, Bill Belew was in high demand. Subsequently, Gene Doucette took a more active role in studding the jumpsuits with the elaborate stone and bejeweled designs. After early experiments, Bill had found that the best color choice for the fabric was white as it enabled Elvis to be lit by different colored spotlights without the suit itself absorbing the color. The high “Napoleonic” collar was meant to draw attention to Elvis’ face, and the multitude of jewels and studs all over the jumpsuits would give the costume sparkle in the spotlights. The turquoise-and-gold flower style design of the offered jumpsuit is a perfect example of this design strategy, as it created a dazzling array of colorful glimmer under the lights of the Las Vegas stage and served to focus all attention on the shining star himself.

Elvis wearing Aqua Blue Vine Jumpsuit

There are a great number of images of Elvis in this jumpsuit, which he wore on stage in August and September of 1973 in Las Vegas and then again a few more times in 1974, most notably during the March tour. To complement this jumpsuit, Elvis often wore the matching cape and belt, which are both part of the treasured Graceland Archives Collection. The belt presented here, and included with the jumpsuit, is a replica created later for presentation purposes.

Elvis gave the jumpsuit, among many other garments and artifacts, to the family of girlfriend Ginger Alden. The Alden family subsequently sold the jumpsuit to Jimmy Velvet, and it was offered in the Jimmy Velvet auction in Las Vegas in 1994. The jumpsuit most recently traded hands on eBay nearly 10 years ago for over $200,000.

With the vast majority of jumpsuits residing at Graceland, only a precious few become available to collectors and this opportunity comes so very infrequently. The “Aqua Blue Vine” jumpsuit is a treasure to behold and with thousands of images of Elvis performing in this very costume, it would be the pinnacle of any important Elvis collection’

The jumpsuit is in excellent condition overall, with great signs of heavy stage use, wear at the armpits, discoloration marks where the matching belt would have been worn, and staining in the collar and armpits commensurate with heavy wear and stage use.

 

Elvis Presley' Peacock Jumpsuit

(Editor’s note: The last Elvis jumpsuit sale was in August 2008. The Peacock jumpsuit pictured above went for $300,000.)

The Aqua Blue Jumpsuit was billed as the highlight of this auction, and it did not disappoint. The top bidder shelled out $325,000.

.

1952 The Reno Brothers “First Draft” Original Twentieth Century Fox Script for Elvis Presley’s First Film, Love Me Tender:

Elvis Presley Love Me tender Script

Elvis Presley exploded onto the national scene in 1956 with a slew of #1 hits for RCA, several landmark television appearances and his Hollywood film debut as Clint Reno in Love Me Tender. The film was retitled from The Reno Brothers late in production to capitalize on the raging success of Elvis’ single “Love Me Tender,” which sold an unprecedented one million copies prior to its release. Reworked slightly for the young singer, Love Me Tender was a fairly straightforward Western tale with some nice plot twists and some songs thrown in for good measure. The film was premiered by Twentieth Century Fox on November 15, 1956 in New York City and on November 20 in Memphis. Elvis attended the Memphis showing with his mother Gladys. When Gladys cried at the death of her son’s character at the end of the movie, Elvis vowed never again to take a role in which his character perished. Gladys wasn’t the only one to take umbrage with Elvis’ onscreen demise—when test audiences reacted poorly to seeing him expire, the studio quickly had Elvis add another verse to the title track that could be sung by his ghostly image above the final scene.

This astounding first draft script’s original title, “The Reno Brothers,” is stamped on the front of its orange-colored cover. The new title is handwritten in ink directly above the stamped original title and date of November 15, 1952. The script is marked “First Draft Continuity” and numbered “2671” in the upper right corner of the cover. It is stamped along the bottom “Property of Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation / Return to Stenographic Department

The offered script, along with the treatment that was delivered with the script to the then-head of Twentieth Century Fox, Darryl F. Zanuck, is also accompanied by a memo from Zanuck back to the filmmakers and writers. Based on this memo, the offered script contains Zanuck’s very own handwritten edits in red, including dialogue changes and removals. His memo goes on to discuss changes to the end of the film. This historic collection of Hollywood ephemera is noteworthy for Zanuck’s handwritten contributions to the film that would launch Elvis’ robust movie career. Since the script languished for years in pre-production, the script’s printed date pre-dates Elvis’ fame.

Although originally quite minor, the part Elvis was given was revised to include extra lines and added scenes to accommodate his rabid fan base. Love Me Tender was the only film in which Elvis appeared and was not given top billing, but was also widely regarded as his best performance. Elvis, who desperately wanted to be taken seriously as an actor, would go on to make over 30 movies.

This screenplay was well below the pre-auction estimate but still topped out at $1,375. This would put it in the middle of the price range for the other screenplays reported in an ElvisBlog post two months ago.

.

1952 Jailhouse Rock Original MGM “Vault Copy” Script with Working Title “Ghost of a Chance”

Elvis Presley Jailhouse Rock Screenplay

The 1957 MGM film Jailhouse Rock was based on the dark short story by Nedrick Young titled “Ghost of a Chance.” Production of the film took only two months between May and June of 1957. The movie premiered in October that year in Memphis and was released nationwide in November. The script for the film began with the working title Ghost of a Chance after the short story on which it was based. The film’s name was subsequently changed to The Hard Way and Jailhouse Kid before the final title of Jailhouse Rock was decided. Jailhouse Rock was a highlight in Elvis’ career and contains the most recognized and memorable musical scene in any of his films.

The offered original “Vault Copy” script has a blue cover with the typed title “Jailhouse Rock,” and is numbered 5676. The script also contains a number of yellow-colored pages dated 7-8-52 with the title “Ghost of a Change Chgs.” Yellow insert pages in a script indicate revisions and save having to reprint the entire script. This example of the Jailhouse Rock script, a movie that was selected in 2004 for the U.S. National Film Registry, has found its way out of the vault and is available to be added to someone’s lucky collection

For some reason, the Jailhouse Rock screenplay had a lower estimate than Love Me Tender, but it sold for the same price of $1,375.

 

1957 Unpublished Images of Elvis Presley aboard the USS Matsonia:

1957 Unpublished Photo of Elvis Presley

Elvis’ love for Hawaii ran deep and during his lifetime he visited often. Whether it was to perform concerts and benefits, film a movie or to just vacation, the islands would always draw him back. Elvis first sailed to Hawaii from Los Angeles aboard the first class Matson Line ship, the USS Matsonia, on November 5, 1957. Elvis was scheduled for three concerts, including a performance for troops and their families at the Schofield Barracks in Honolulu. The voyage across the Pacific took several days, during which Elvis’ new film Jailhouse Rock opened in theaters. When the Matsonia docked in Honolulu on November 9, 1957, an on-board press conference was held before Elvis disembarked and set foot on Hawaiian soil for the first time.

A plethora of images exist from this journey and press conference, however, the offered pair of 1957 unpublished images of Elvis Presley in transparency slide format have never-before-been seen in public. The 35 mm color transparencies, contained in Kodachrome transparency slide holders measuring 2 by 2 inches (5.08 x 5.08 cm), include copyrights to the photos. The transparencies are offered with two 8 by 12 inch (20.32 x 30.48 cm) full-color prints that depict Elvis at the ship’s wheel and on the main deck. Elvis appears to be at the forefront of sailing fashion in his red print shirt, sunglasses and captain’s hat, ready for a voyage that would introduce him to a place and people that would change his life. These stunning images of Elvis are accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

The transparencies (color slides) show signs of mild wear and are mounted inside slide folders. The images shown benefited from minor digital cleanup after scanning, and they show the potential of how clear an image could be created from the originals. Excellent condition.

I was pretty sure the pre-auction estimate of $1,500 – $2,000 was too low, and the bidding certainly confirmed this. This pair of never-before-seen color photos of Elvis in 1957 had 28 bids topping out at $4,000.

 

Elvis Presley Owned and Worn “E.A.P.” Gold ID Bracelet:

Elvis Presley EAP Gold Bracelet

Identification bracelets came into use during WWII as the precursor to the dog tag, and listed all the information about a soldier should he not be able to convey the information himself. Even after the war, servicemen continued to wear their bracelets as a badge of honor. The ID bracelets hit mainstream popularity in the 1970s and Elvis, always at the height of fashion, had one. Elvis’ had a nameplate that was simply engraved “E.A.P.” The 14 karat gold bracelet weighs a total of 47.6 grams, with a 5-strand gold-mesh rope bracelet and fold-over clasp marked “Z&F.”

The bracelet comes with a letter from Joe Esposito that states in part,

“This 14K gold ID Bracelet with the gold mesh bracelet once belonged to Elvis Presley. Elvis had E.A.P. engraved on it. He purchased it in Las Vegas at the Thunderbird Hotel Jewelry store. He purchased it during the 1970’s. It was during one of his engagements. I don’t remember how long he had it before he gave it to one of his girlfriends as a gift. In the early 1980’s she called me at my home and told me she was having some financial problems. She wanted to know if I knew someone who would buy it from her. I was the one who bought it.”

I was surprised this bracelet didn’t meet the pre-auction estimate, but $8,000 is nothing to sneeze at.

 

Elvis Presley Owned and Worn Puka Shell Necklace – Worn during the Time He was Filming Blue Hawaii:

Elvis Presley Puka Necklace

Elvis Presley Puka Necklace

Elvis fell in love with Hawaii at first sight and would often return. On March 18, 1961 Elvis headed to Hawaii for the USS Arizona benefit concert he would perform on the 25th, and also to begin filming for the Hawaiian-themed film Blue Hawaii, which was released by Paramount Pictures later that year. Elvis began recording the soundtrack for the film on March 21 and the location filming for the movie was complete in just three weeks. Blue Hawaii would be the first of three Elvis movies filmed on location in Hawaii. Elvis would return many times during his career and for his own personal holidays as he adored the island culture. No doubt during his stays Elvis learned that the Hawaiian word for hole is puka and that Hawaiians often create necklaces from the shells of sea snails, which have a naturally occurring hole at the center that makes these rounded-edge shells natural beads.

The offered necklace with four turquoise stone beads and seven small silver-colored beads was gifted from Elvis to Dr. George Nichopoulos, who was told that Elvis wore the necklace during the period he was filming Blue Hawaii. The necklace is mounted against a turquoise-colored background in a framed display with a plaque that states, “THIS SHELL AND TURQUOISE NECKLACE, WORN BY ELVIS PRESLEY, IN BLUE HAWAII, WAS GIVEN TO DR. GEORGE NICHOPOULOS, “DR. NICK”, BY ELVIS PRESLEY.” The wording on the plaque is somewhat inexact, as Dr. Nick clarifies in the accompanying letter when he states that the necklace was “worn in the time period of filming Blue Hawaii.” The necklace was not worn in the film.

In a related interview, Dr. Nick also detailed how Elvis and his entourage were all wearing these puka shell necklaces while in Hawaii during filming, and that he wanted Dr. Nick to have one as well. The framed display measures 15 by 11 1/2 inches, and the necklace is 6.5 inches in diameter.

Puka may be a good way to describe the feeling by bidders when they saw the estimate of $8-12,000 for this shell necklace. In fact, no one thought it was worth the minimum bid of $4,000. I agree.

 

Complete Set of Elvis Presley’s Fingerprints on 1970 Beverly Hills Police Department Application for Permit to Carry a Concealed Weapon:

Set of Elvis Presley fingerprints

On October 1970, Elvis headed to the Beverly Hills Police Department to be fingerprinted for his application for a permit to carry a concealed weapon. This pristine fingerprint card contains the original fingerprint for every single one of Elvis’ 10 digits—both hands, twice—and his bold blue ink signature. This amazing artifact was held in the files at the Beverly Hills Police Department for seven years before being transferred to microfiche, and the original fingerprint card was given to the officer who took the prints, Richard Clason. The card was treasured and framed by Clason and is being offered direct from his family.

The card, numbered 73808 lists Elvis’ occupation as singer, place of birth as Tupelo, Miss. and date of birth as 1-8-35. Elvis signed the card “Elvis A. Presley,” and the signature remains bold in blue ink.

The fingerprint card is offered with a letter from Richard Clason’s son Kenneth in which he recounts in detail the circumstances of his father’s meeting with Elvis to take his fingerprints that day. This precise accounting mentions in part,

“So it was on October 22, 1970, that my father was called into Police Chief B.L. Cork’s office to meet an individual who was applying for such a permit and would need a set of prints taken right away. Imagine my dad’s surprise to see none other than the King of Rock ‘n Roll standing there in front of the Chief’s desk! Officer Clason was quite accustomed to interacting with celebrities, including some who were rather full of themselves, people who seemed to believe their own PR as my dad would say. But he recalled Elvis as being very soft spoken and polite, just a regular guy. As he walked Elvis to the fingerprint room, my father asked him why he felt he needed to carry a concealed weapon. Elvis told him there had been threats on his life and that sometimes when he was on stage with the house lights blinding his eyes, he would feel particularly vulnerable.”

Between his love of firearms and karate, Elvis was certainly capable of self-protection should the need arise. This fingerprint card, measuring 8 by 8 inches, is the pinnacle example of the most complete set of the King’s unique identifier—all 10 of his fingerprints!

This is a super cool Elvis collectible and the bidding represented this. It sold for $30,000. I’ve seen a wad of Elvis’ hair separated into smaller samplings and sold individually. Do you think the new owner of this set might start selling them one finger at a time?

 

Elvis Presley Owned and Worn Pajamas – Found Among his Personal Effects Left on the Lisa Marie:

Elvis Presley Pajamas

This white pair of Munsingwear pajamas was owned and worn by Elvis Presley. The pajamas were recovered from the Lisa Marie, among a number of other personal items, after he passed away in August 1977. The silky-feeling nylon pajamas, with four-button front closure, have black trim around the collar, front closure, pocket and cuffs of the shirt and pants. The shirt’s collar tag reads “Munsingwear 100% Nylon Run Proof Tricot -A-.” The pajamas are offered with a letter from Richard Grob, one of Elvis’ bodyguards from 1967 through 1977, in which he details the circumstances surrounding acquiring the pajamas from the plane:

Shortly after August 16, 1977, when Elvis Presley, passed away, Vernon Presley, Elvis father, asked me to go to the airport and check the Lisa Marie, Elvis’ airplane. The Lisa Marie was parked at the Fixed Base Operator’s parking area. Vernon asked me to remove any items on the aircraft that maybe were left by Elvis when the plane was last used. I told him that I would, however, I felt that the valets probably cleaned the aircraft when they were last on it. I added that the flight crew also probably cleaned it except for any items that Elvis used regularly or that he may have told them to leave on the aircraft. When I got to the aircraft, I went through everything in the main cabin as well as the cargo areas below, in the aircraft belly. The result of my search produced many items which I removed. The items I removed included weapons, clothing, papers and other items. Some of these items I was very familiar with since I was present when Elvis acquired them and I knew he did not wish to take them to Graceland so his father would not know about them. Some items he used when he was on board the aircraft. Items that went with the aircraft were left on the plane such as the stereo earphones. Upon completing my search I informed Vernon of all the items I located. Vernon told me to keep them when I asked him where he wanted the items. These items have been in my possession or in storage since Elvis’ death, as they were given to me by Vernon Presley, Elvis’ father. One such item was a set of white with black trim pajamas, tops and bottoms. Elvis would wear these pajamas on the aircraft while traveling after a concert. Elvis would be hot and sweaty from the show and would strip out of his jump suit he wore during the show and put the pajamas on to rest. When we were about to land he would change from the pajamas into other clothes to leave the aircraft. Elvis last wore these pajamas on the evening o [sic] June 26, 1977 when he left Indianapolis Indiana after doing his last show and was flying back to Memphis.

While there is a certain logic to Dick Grob’s claim that Elvis wore the pajamas on his final flight since they were still aboard the Lisa Marie after Elvis’ passing weeks later, there is no specific corroborating evidence to support the claim conclusively. Regardless, the offered pajamas are a superior example of the casual costume Elvis often donned for down time.

Other Elvis pajamas have sold at auction before, but none reached the price of $5,250 achieved by this set.

 

Button Down Shirt Gifted to Stamps Member Larry Strickland During 1976 Jungle Room Recording Sessions:

Elvis Button-down Shirt

Larry Strickland was a preacher’s kid from North Carolina who taught himself how to sing after falling in love with gospel music. In 1974, he was hired by The Stamps to sing bass. During his tour with The Stamps in Las Vegas, he met Elvis, who chastised him for looking like a farmer in the denim overalls he was wearing. It was a dream come true for a boy from NC to be playing for The Stamps and Elvis, but it only got better when in 1976 during a recording session in the Jungle Room at Graceland, Larry was informed that Elvis wanted to redo his entire wardrobe and was letting all the guys choose the clothes they wanted directly from his closet. When Larry’s turn came, he went into Elvis’ bedroom closet with him and responded to everything Elvis showed him saying that he liked it and could probably get it fitted to wear, knowing full well that he would never actually wear anything that had rested on the back of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

Elvis always had a flair for fashion and in ’70s high style, he ordered several custom-made shirts from I.C. Costume Company in Hollywood, California, with the high Napoleonic collar that he favored in his stage jumpsuits and the flounced puff sleeves with elastic at the bicep. Larry saved this treasured black, brown, yellow and white patterned shirt in storage for years until his wife, Naomi Judd, was selling her stage clothes for charity and Larry decided to include the shirts in the benefit auction. The men’s fashion trends of the 1970s included glam rock and disco styles, with Elvis always being at the forefront as this groovy shirt exemplifies.

A very popular item among the bidders, this shirt topped out $5,500.

 

Brown-and-White Diamond Pattern Button-Down Shirt Gifted to Stamps Member Larry Strickland During 1976 Jungle Room Recording Sessions:

Elvis Brown and White Shirt

What a thrill it must have been that night in the Jungle Room when Larry Strickland was told by Charlie that Elvis was redoing his entire wardrobe and wanted the guys to come upstairs and pick what they wanted. One by one, each went upstairs and Larry specifically recalls the “pretty surreal” experience of standing in Elvis’ bedroom closet with him having Elvis hold his own clothes up to Larry as if to see if they were a good fit. Larry went home with a jumpsuit made for daily wear rather than stage use, and the offered shirt (as well as the shirt offered in the previous lot). Elvis was known to favor this style of shirt in the ’70s and would have several of the same style in varying patterned fabrics custom made. It features the high Napoleonic collar he also favored in his stage jumpsuits and the elastic bicep band that cinched to create a flounced effect to the sleeve.

Larry left Graceland that night knowing he would never actually wear the shirts, but rather saved them in storage for years. When Larry’s wife, Naomi Judd, decided to sell some of her stage clothes for charity, the shirts were included in that benefit auction and now, after years of careful custodianship, the opportunity to own the shirt off Elvis’ back can be yours. Although this stylish brown-and-white diamond patterned shirt with button-down front and cuffs and high collar has no label, it would have been custom-made by I.C. Costume Company, Hollywood, California

This shirt had fewer bids than the previous one, and it sold for $500 less.

 

Lisa Marie Presley’s Sparkling 10+ Carat Diamond Bulgari Engagement Ring from Nicolas Cage:

Lisa Marie Ring Front View

The fabled ring that made headlines around the globe could be yours! Lisa Marie Presley, the only child of Elvis Presley and actress/author/producer Priscilla Presley, has lived her life in fame and remained in the limelight—and in the hearts of fans—for decades. She has also followed in her famous father’s footsteps with her own musical career.

This was a romance from which fairytales are made: charming, good looking actor is thunderstruck by beautiful singer and falls quickly head-over-heels in love… a true story of love at first sight. Actor Nicolas Cage was bewitched by Lisa Marie Presley and proposed marriage one summer, with the engagement lasting a mere 10 days before vows were exchanged. It was a whirlwind romance that started when the two met at a party, but this fairytale was short-lived and their marriage lasted just over 100 days, with the two realizing that their similarly strong personalities could not be tamed, and the pair were better off simply as friends.

During their swift engagement, Nick took Lisa for a cruise on his yacht, named after his son Weston, in order to swoon his soon-to-be bride. The couple encountered some onboard storms, and in the rough waves of emotion, Lisa Marie’s engagement ring found its way overboard. Nick quickly called in a cavalry of divers to retrieve the precious stone, but their efforts were in vain and the ring remains among one of the great treasures lost at sea.

Many have ruminated over the years on the details of the events surrounding the ring’s trajectory overboard, and much press has surrounded this incident. However, with the only witnesses keeping the details secret, the particulars of this mishap will remain a mystery, and like any good tale, will continue provoking speculation for years to come.

But the story does not end there. With the wedding just days away, Nick promptly replaced the engagement ring with an even brighter and more sparkling diamond to symbolize the brilliance of his love and devotion. It was this very ring that adorned the finger of his stunning bride on their wedding day in Hawaii on August 10, 2002, and is currently being offered herewith.

Lisa Marie's Diamond Ring Side View

It is said that a “diamond is forever,” and a valuable diamond ring is a treasure for any woman. This magnificent example is legendary in its own right, with a story that will always be emblazoned in entertainment and Hollywood history. A true piece of history with a provenance, outshined perhaps only by the Hope diamond, the tale of this engagement ring from Nicolas Cage gifted to Lisa Marie Presley will certainly last as long as the prized diamond itself—forever.

This 10.44 carat, natural, fancy light yellow, cut-cornered rectangular modified brilliant diamond grades SI1, measures 14.16 x 11.47 x 6.98 mm and is cradled in a 14-karat yellow gold Bulgari setting with two triangular-shaped shoulder stones with a total weight of approximately 2.90 carats and each measuring approximately 8.9 mm. The stunning ring measures size 6 1/4, weights a total of 8.6 grams and is stamped “Bulgari” inside the band. This magnificent engagement ring is accompanied by a copy of a GIA certificate numbered 2171509216 and a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Elvis Presley Charitable Foundation.

This Auction at Graceland included four pieces of Lisa’s jewelry, but this ring was the big one. It went for $100,000. If anyone knows what a ring of this size and quality without the Lisa Marie connection would sell for, please put that info in comments.

 

There is just a little months until the Elvis Birthday Celebration in Memphis. Don’t be surprised if the Auction at Graceland comes up with another 140+ items to bid on.

 

 

© 2016 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

ElvisBlog Lip Logo

Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

 

Elvis Versus an Evil Villain

What does the 2016 Presidential campaign have to do with Elvis? Nothing, but I had some fun with it, anyway.

Donald Trump Talking about Big E and the Santa Man

Ah, yes. The villain that Elvis (called Big E by his North Pole friends) and Santa Claus have to battle to save Christmas in my book, BIG E and the SANTA MAN.

BIG E and the SANTA MAN Cover

 

Two weeks ago, I revealed the villain is Scrooge. However, in last year’s promotion, I never mentioned him because it would require a lengthy explanation. After all, Scrooge was last seen in the 1850s, and now I’ve got him alive and kicking in 1977. How can that be?

Scrooge

There aren’t any illustrations in the book, but this picture embodies the despicable traits of Scrooge. Here is an excerpt from the book where Santa tells Big E about how Scrooge reverts back to hating Christmas more than ever.

“So, what’s the story on Scrooge? He couldn’t be around after all these years. And he ended up liking Christmas anyway, didn’t he?”
Santa breathed deeply. “Well, yes he did. In fact, Scrooge truly loved Christmas for several years. But then something happened.” Santa paused. “Look, Big E, don’t ask me how I know this, but I’ll tell you what changed Scrooge and made him hate Christmas again.”
“Okay.”
“The next year after Scrooge had his awakening to the joys of Christmas, he walked around to nearby homes in the city and gave out presents to people he knew. The following year, he bought three times as many gifts and hired a staff to wrap them all. Then they loaded the packages on a wagon. Scrooge walked proudly in front of the wagon, and gave Christmas presents to many, many people.”
“This sounds okay so far,” said Big E.
“Yes, but Scrooge grew compulsive about giving Christmas presents. The next year he had his staff post notices all over town about an event he would have on Christmas Eve in the town square. The announcement said he would give out thousands of presents. But this time he stood on one of the wagons and threw the presents into the crowd. The huge mass of people got greedy and fought over the packages. After that, Scrooge got even more bizarre. He decided he wanted to be the one who delivered the presents at Christmas… to every boy and girl in the world.”
Big E shook his head. “Sounds like trouble.”
“It was,” Santa said. “One day he showed up here at the North Pole in an elaborate sled pulled by a dozen huskies. Scrooge had decided he wanted to buy me out and told me to name my price. I told him I didn’t want to retire because I love what I do. I refused him. Then he argued with me and got kind of nasty. I finally had to tell him to leave the North Pole and never come back.”
“He didn’t get physical, did he?”
“No, but he was furious. As he stormed off, he said, ‘You’ll be sorry for this. If I can’t deliver the presents on Christmas Eve, I’ll make sure you can’t either.’ As he drove away, Scrooge shouted a lot of rambling gibberish, like he had totally flipped out.”

 

Scrooge's Space Station above the North Pole

Here is the explanation of how Scrooge ends up in a space station hovering over the North Pole where he will launch his plan to ruin Christmas. This time it is Scrooge speaking to his henchman Weasel (more on Weasel in two weeks).

Weasel wrinkled his brow. “How did you get this spacecraft?”
“Oh, that’s easy. I bought it on the black market.”
A quizzical look appeared on Weasel’s face. “There’s a black market for space ships?”
“Hmmph, there’s a black market for everything.”
“It must have cost plenty. Where’d you get all the money?”
“With gold. A long, long time ago, I sold my business and converted most of the cash into gold. Then I buried it before I began my quest. You wouldn’t believe how much the price had gone up when I finally went back and retrieved it.”
“Your quest? What was that?”
“My quest for magic… sorcery, actually. I knew if I was going to beat Santa at his game, I would need to put some kind of evil spell on him.”
“Wow.” Weasel’s eyes grew large and he looked intrigued. “I gotta hear about this quest.”
“Actually, it didn’t turn out so well. I went to Haiti and searched for a Voodoo doctor who could teach me his dark arts. I thought I had found the perfect guy, but he turned out to be a phony that was just trying to rip me off. Then I went to China and found a mysterious old magician who was supposed to have all sorts of special powers. This time, I was cautious and had him show me what he could do. He did all these grand demonstrations, but I was able to figure out his tricks. Big charlatan. I couldn’t get any sorcery from him, either.”
“Man, you’re right. It didn’t go good at all.”
“Then it really got worse.” The old man let out a sigh. “I went back to England and managed to find out about a weird scientist who lived alone in a gloomy palace. There were rumors he had vanquished his enemies by putting curses on them. So, I traveled to see him, and I’ll tell you, he was scary. He had the most evil eyes I ever saw. I told him what I was trying to get, and he just laughed at me. That made me mad and we argued, and I yelled some unfortunate epithets at him. And, you know what that bastard did?”
“What?”
“He put a spell on me. I was under his complete control, like a slave. He made me work as his assistant doing all kinds of weird scientific experiments. The only good thing I got out of his spell was that I never got any older. He didn’t either, so he thought he was set forever with a captive slave assistant.”
“Man, how long did that last?”
“About a hundred and twenty years. Until he became big enemies with another mad scientist. But this guy didn’t mess around with spells. He just shot him, and when he died my curse was broken.”
“Yes, yes.” Weasel seemed genuinely happy.
“So, I was free, I knew everything there was about science, and when I dug up my gold, I was incredibly rich.”
“And you still hated Santa?”
“Oh, yes. That never went away while I was under the spell. I came out just as determined to keep him from delivering the presents at Christmas. Then, I realized I didn’t need to cast a spell to stop Santa. I had the knowledge and the means to do it myself. So I bought this spacecraft and hired you Humbahs to be my crew.”
“And in a few weeks we get to carry out your plan to ruin Christmas.”

 

They say a good villain is a must for a successful novel, and Scrooge fills the bill nicely in BIG E and the SANTA MAN. In fact, two of the five reviews on Amazon specifically mention Scrooge. Now you’ll know what they are talking about.

Big E and the Santa Man Page on Amazon

 

So how about it? Are you ready to read how Elvis and Santa battle Scrooge to save Christmas?

Are you ready to read the strangest Christmas story ever written?

Are you ready to tell someone in your family to go on Amazon and buy this book to give you at Christmas?

 

Hillary Clinton on Big E and the Santa Man

 

Click here to go to Amazon and order BIG E and the SANTA MAN.

 

Thank you,

PHIL ARNOLD

Original ElvisBlogmeister

 

ElvisBlog Lip Logo