Author Archives: Phil Arnold

Bargains on Elvis International Magazines


As you may know, the experience of writing for Elvis International led me to start this blog back in 2005. I had accumulated so much reference material that sharing little bits of it each week on a blog post seemed like a natural progression.

Elvis International editor, Darwin Lamm, used almost 40 of my articles over a twelve year span. During that time, I not only got multiple copies of all the issues in which my work appeared, but also almost all of the prior issues.

I can’t take this stack of magazines with me when I downsize, but I also don’t want to take them to the recycle bin. They deserve to be in the hands of loyal Elvis fans, so here are great deals on five groups of them. All prices are delivered, no sales tax, no shipping costs (I cover the $7-8 postage).


The Legacy Issues:    $25 

Note:  This group has been sold.

This is a group of 13 issues from 1988 to 1992. Note that this includes the very rare premier issue, top left. There is a copy of it for sale on Amazon at $29. Included in the dozen+ articles in each issue were regular features by two close Elvis friends, Eddie Fadal and Joe Esposito. Others close to Elvis, like DJ Fontana and Carl Perkins, contributed strong articles.


Photographs Become More Prominent:    $22

Fourteen issues from 1992 to 1997. Although the earliest issues had some photographs, they were mostly small and black-and-white. As Elvis International moved into its sixth year and beyond, photographs became a more important feature. The number increased, full-page pictures appeared, more and more color shots were included, and the first of many Al Wertheimer photographs were given full-page treatment.


The Birthday and Anniversary Issues Come into Being     $25

Note:  This group has been sold.

Fifteen Issues from 1997 to 2002. Elvis International was by now the class of Elvis magazines. More and bigger color photos, many full-page, including the first two-page centerfolds. The concept of celebrating Elvis birthdays and anniversaries with special editions in January and August began with this group. The quality of the writing got better, too, as I became a regular contributor in the last seven issues.

The Change to Two Issues Per Year     $20

In 2004, Elvis International went from four issues a year to two. In addition to strong subscriber sales, the magazine was also now heavily marketed at the Elvis Birthday Celebration and Elvis Week. With more articles, great color photos, and covers of slick, heavy stock, these magazines were intended to be souvenirs the fans took home after their visits to Graceland. A sign of things to come, the 30th Anniversary issue was so thick it could not be stapled, so it was produced with a flat spine. I had time to write multiple articles in these issues, with four being my all-time record.


The Big Finale – The Last Four Years     $35

Note:  This group has been sold.

Elvis International had by now morphed into true collectors items for folks who made the trek to Memphis to celebrate Elvis. There were more pages and they were a heavier stock. The size was much larger than the earlier editions, and every issue had a flat spine. The covers were glossy, very heavy stock, and many were embossed. The array of full-page color photographs was stunning, and most issues had centerfolds.

These eleven copies offered here are absolutely first class in every way.


If you want one or more of these Elvis International packages, let me know by email at . Please don’t put it in Comments. Do indicate if you want a PayPal invoice, and I’ll get one right out. If you’d rather pay by check, I’ll hold your magazines for you until it arrives.

Speaking of sending checks, here’s a reminder. If you wish to keep reading ElvisBlog after it goes static online in a few weeks, please send a check for $10 to

Phil Arnold
159 Browning Dr.
Greer, SC 29650

Do that and you will be getting 100 ElvisBlog posts sent by me direct to your email.

I keep finding more Elvis stuff that you fans might possibly like to own, so I need to do a few more posts to put them all out there. These will be balanced by an equal number of regular posts. When that’s all done, ElvisBlog as you have known it online will come to an end.

Eye Candy (6) for Elvis Fans

Six great musical talents. Do you know what’s different about Elvis than the others? He’s the only one who didn’t write music. Didn’t seem to hurt his career any.


Awww. What a cute little guy. His Nana is an avid Elvis fan, and she knitted this jumpsuit for him. He’s even got a TCB medallion necklace on. Good job, Nana.


This is how much Elvis earned for a week at Crown Electric back in 1954 — basically a dollar per hour. With inflation, that equates to $9.50/hour in today’s money.

Look how the signature on the check has been crossed out and another written in. Would banks honor a check like that today?


Clever, but impossible. Wouldn’t you hate to shake one and mess up all that work if it was real..


I think Dick Williams went off the deep end here. Elvis’ Frantic Sex Show. Give me a break. Please check out this ElvisBlog post from 2008 about the entire column. You won’t believe some of the stuff Williams said. Fake news back in 1957.


Viva Elvis is long gone, but I’ve got a file full of unique images from the Cirque de Soleil show.


Have you ever seen ELVIS JUICE for sale anywhere? Here’s what the website says about it:

Primed with tart pithy grapefruit peel for a citrus assault on the senses. This zest zenith delivers intense US hop aromas. Gigantic grapefruit notes are tail-gated by orange and pine. All piled high on a caramel malt base.

I think I’ll pass.


How about a cute Elvis piggy bank? With an American Eagle Jumpsuit design.

Here’s another cutie. He’s got better shades than the other.


I think I used this before, but it still makes me laugh.


That’s some serious artwork. Wonder what gave the artist the idea.


This comes from a Hard Rock Café in Nagoya, Japan. I like the hound dog between Elvis’ legs.


Believe it or not, there is a website where.people post photos of little scenes they have created using Peeps. Peep Elvis is about to sing for the fans.


I like it better when folks Photoshop Elvis into pictures like this. No attempt to fool people.


That sure seems like something Elvis would have said. And it works very well with the image. Would you like to come up with something else Elvis-like that would work?

What would you put in the box?


I’ve got several of these Elvis/elves cartoons and they are all about as bad as this.


This is a scene from The Golden Girls, season 4, episode 7, when Sophia got married.  A group of Elvis impersonators provide the music at the ceremony.  The guy highlighted  in the back is Quentin Tarantino making a spirited cameo.


Elvis hound dog plush toys have been around for decades. This newer one is funny to me. Love the eyes. Too bad the labeling doesn’t show because you really can’t tell it’s an Elvis hound dog.


Nicely done. I don’t get the message, but I love the image.


© 2020 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved



There will be two more regular posts and one or two more posts where I’ll have Elvis media stuff for sale. After that, will become a static site. For those who wish to continue as a paid subscriber, I will send new posts to your email inboxes. To receive 100 new posts over the next two years, please send a check for $10 to:

Phil Arnold
159 Browning Dr.
Greer, SC 29650

I appreciate your support.


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

Rock & Roll Books for Sale

Like I said last week, there will be just three more articles posted on before this blog moves to email direct delivery that I send. Actually, I am going to stretch it out a bit. While there is still a wider audience, I’ll mix in some posts about stuff I’d like to sell.

Most of it will be Elvis goodies from my Fuzzy Room, but this time it will be great Rock & Roll books I collected over the years. If your interest in music reaches beyond just Elvis, you may find some books here that interest you.


The Roots & Rhythm Guide to Rock

This book contains 304 pages of brief profiles of hundreds of rock artists, plus thumbnail descriptions of every significant album they made. At the back, there are 78 pages of rock anthologies – album collections of various artists, some with a particular theme, like The Best of Do-Wop Ballads. This book touts itself as the most comprehensive guide to the golden age of rock and roll.

$10 to US locations; probably double that to Canada. That includes packaging and shipping costs. Nothing to add.


Hollywood Rock

Marshall Crenshaw is a songwriter, guitarist and singer who had a couple of hits in the 80s. He also is a student of rock & roll music in the movies. In his book he reviews over 300 movies with plot summaries, notable quotes, and description of every rock song in the movie. He also has a rating system showing his opinion of the overall music content. He is opinionated, but it is a very fun, interesting read.

$8 to US locations. Double to Canada (same on every book here). Shipping costs are on me.


The Heart of Rock & Soul

The subtitle tells it all – “The 1001 Greatest Singles Ever Made.” That is according to the author Dave Marsh, a famous rock writer. Marsh is very opinionated in explaining his selections. It starts off with “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Marvin Gaye as his #1 choice and counts on down the list. Elvis made the list fourteen times, with “Mystery Train” coming in the highest at # 12. This is a fun read through the entire 717 pages.

$10. This book is heavy and I’m eating a lot of shipping cost on it.


Rock On: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Rock N’ Roll

I have looked up stuff in this book so frequently that it is showing some signs of wear, but that means this valuable reference source is available for cheap. It covers the 50s and early 60s, and includes profiles of over 1,000 artists. It lists the members of every group, how every artist or group got started, and a list of hits, release date and record label. 672 pages. Frankie Valli is quoted on the cover sleeve, “Absorbing and entertaining… a book to read through or dip into at random.” He’s right.

$8. Shipping is probably going to cost me half of that.


Rock Facts

The subtitle is, “The inside story on over 1,500 of rock& roll’s best kept secrets.” If you like trivia, you will love this book. It’s amazing that someone could dig up all this obscure stuff. For example, on page 1 we learn that four #1 songs had just three letters in the title: Why – Frankie Avalon, War – Edwin Starr, ABC – Jackson 5, and Ben – Michael Jackson. They’ve got all kind of things like that. You’ll keep busy for a long time reading all this trivia.

$10. Canada is double because there is no book rate to there.


Feel Like Going Home

Peter Guralnick is one of the foremost rock authors. He has done three books on Elvis. In this book he covers both blues and rock. There is a long chapter on the early years of rock & roll, citing both the good and bad elements. He voices some pretty strong opinions. Then there are chapters on Elvis, Sun records, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Chess Records. The blues gets a similar treatment – a lengthy history plus portraits of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and others.



The Billboard Book of Top 40 Albums

This is not only a wonderful reference book, it is intriguing reading. Organized by recording artist, it lists the album name, when it first charted, how high it rose on the Billboard charts, and the number of weeks it stayed there. Bonus info includes the titles of any hit songs that came from each album, and the names of the members of every group plus when and where they were formed. This book was published in 1987, so it has nothing about albums after that.



Roots of Rock

24 early rock stars from Bill Haley to Chubby Checker are profiled in articles that previously were published in Goldmine magazine (for record collectors). There are interviews, history, editorial opinion, and more. It is especially relevant for record collectors with listing of the most collectible 45 and most collectible album for each artist.

$12. This is a bigger, heavier book.


This is a superbly crafted coffee-table book produced by seven leading music writers. It’s in like-new condition. Starting in 1955, the authors cover 380 albums by 300 artists. They give history, opinion, and over 1,000 excellent color photographs of the album covers and the artists. Readers will learn so much from this book.

$15. This is an even bigger and heavier book. Gonna cost me a lot for shipping.


If you want one or more of these books, let me know by email at Please don’t put it in Comments. Indicate if you want a PayPal invoice, and I’ll get one right out. If you’d rather pay by check, I’ll hold the book for you until it arrives.

I appreciate the support you’ve given in earlier sales, so I hope it works for books, too.

Speaking of sending checks, here’s a reminder. If you wish to keep reading ElvisBlog after it goes static online, please send a check for $10 to

Phil Arnold
159 Browning Dr.
Greer, SC 29650

Do that and you will be getting 100 ElvisBlog posts sent by me direct to your email.

Responses have been coming in at a slow pace, so a few extra posts about Elvis goodies will give more time to make sure every reader understands that ElvisBlog as you have known it online is about to end..

Keep an Eye Out for this Guy.

During the LSU/Clemson championship game Monday night, the cameras will certainly show several shots of fans. I think it’s a good bet they will find this fellow called the LSU Elvis in the stands.

His name is Dixon McMakin, and he is a fixture at all LSU games. He’s been an Elvis fan since he was six-years-old when his grandmother told him how she lived next-door to Elvis in Memphis.

You will notice he is wearing a replica of Elvis’ famous Tiger Jumpsuit. That works well since the LSU team is called the Tigers. (But so is Clemson).






During the LSU/Clemson championship game Monday night, the cameras will certainly show several shots of fans.  I think it’s a good bet they will find this fellow called the LSU Elvis in the stands.


His name is Dixon McMakin, and he is a fixture at all LSU games.  He’s been an Elvis fan since he was six-years-old when his grandmother told him how she lived next-door to Elvis in Memphis.


You will notice he is wearing a replica of Elvis’ famous Tiger Jumpsuit.  That works well since the LSU team is called the Tigers.  (But so is Clemson).

Elvis for President – A Familiar Theme


Did you get this in your email last week from the Graceland Official Store? They had a long string of promotions and sales in the weeks leading up to Christmas, but then came some time to fill before the inevitable Elvis birthday promotion. So, Elvis for President fit the bill, nicely.


Here we have a 6’ by 4” magnet. The pitch is that you could put it on your car. I like this one because of the way the V in Elvis contains the TCB lightning bolt. I’m surprised they didn’t think of this before now. Anyway, the magnet goes for $8.99


Here’s the T-shirt that’s on the email flyer. I suggest more color would have been an improvement. It looks like the image of a campaign poster on the front, but surprisingly, the Graceland Store doesn’t offer the poster. They might have missed a good opportunity there. If you’re interested in the T-shirt, it goes for $24.99.


What’s a presidential campaign without buttons? I like the “It’s Now or Never” theme.” This button is 3” round and costs $4.50.


This is an 11-1/2” by 3” bumper sticker that goes for $4.99. That’s a pretty good deal. I like how they used the TCB lightning bolt on this as well.


There were other items available that didn’t particularly interest me, but you may have a different opinion. So, check out the Graceland Official Store.


Oh, look. Graceland was pushing the idea of Elvis for President four years ago. Something tells me we will be seeing it again in 2024.


I like the round button for 2020 better than this one for 2016.


It looks like there was no Elvis for President promotional campaign in 2012, but I did find a couple of pictures to illustrate the idea for 2008.


I like the “Seeing Eye Squirrels for Dogs.” Or maybe, “10-Foot woman Goes On Rampage in New York.” You gotta watch out for those 10-foot women.


The rest of this post will just be an eclectic collection of random Vote for Elvis stuff.


I like the message here, the rest of it is dull. It’s got color printing, so why not a good color photo of Elvis?


I think this is the cover of a bootleg concert DVD of Elvis’ performance in Charlotte in March 1976.


I like the colors of this. It’s a little fuzzy because I blew up a small picture. Behind the stars, I see a letters f and e, but I can’t figure out the rest. Any help?


Here is that design on one of the many items of clothing offered during Elvis for President 2016.


This is a great message that was ruined by a horrible caricature of Elvis. I wasn’t even going to post it, until I got the idea to white-out the face. The artist did do a good job on Elvis’ hair, though.


Another great message. I didn’t white-out this face; it came that way. It seems there is just no end to the different images people have produced from Elvis’ classic Jailhouse Rock pose. I’ll add this one to my collection of them.


I was curious about the words above the eagle’s head, so I looked them up in a Latin dictionary. Rerum means things. Procurum is the action of taking care of, hence management, stewardship. In other words, taking care of things – or taking care of business. Very clever


It looks like this Elvis for President idea has been around since the 50s.


I’m so glad Joe Petruccio is cool with me showing his art on ElvisBlog and making comments about it. I love his artwork, and this is just one of his best creations.


I like the use of red, white, and blue on those first buttons above, but this combination of white, gold, and black is pure Elvis. He’s got my vote.


UPDATE: There will be just three more articles posted on

As noted before, blog Subscribers who already get new posts delivered through their email will have the option to receive 100+ more (until post # 1,000 is reached). There will be a very small charge of $10 for those who choose to continue receiving ElvisBlog.

PayPay payment requests have started going out by email. It’s a fairly slow process, so it won’t be finished for another 3 days or so. I notice that almost half of you don’t have PayPal accounts, but there is a Note on the PayPal request that advises alternate payment by check can be mailed to me.

Phil Arnold
159 Browning Dr.
Greer, SC 29650

Those of you who have not previously signed up as a Subscriber will not receive the PayPal request. However, if you do want to continue getting ElvisBlog by email, just send a check for $10 to that address. Be sure to include your email address, so I can put you on the list.

Frankly, I am surprised at the slow pace of replies (both those accepting and those canceling) to the PayPal requests. I worry that many folks are like me and briefly read an email message when it first comes in, but plan to get back to it later. Then more stuff comes in, and the message gets scrolled down and is soon out of sight and out of mind. If this happens, you may realize in February that no new posts are coming to ElvisBlog online. How about making the call now. It will help me set up the new email subscription list.

Thanks to everyone for reading ElvisBlog over the years. I look forward to providing two more years of posts for those of you who wish to continue.

Phil Arnold

Happy Birthday Elvis

A Look at Elvis’ First Weekend of Each New Year

I have a number of Elvis reference books I use when researching topics for new blog posts. Sometimes I just scroll through one to get an inspiration. That worked for me this week with ELVIS: Day by Day by Peter Guralnick and Ernst Jorgensen.


On a hunch, I said, “Let’s see what Elvis did on his first weekends of each new year.” I tutnrned out to be a good idea.


1955 – 01 Saturday:   Change in Manager

Elvis performed in a concert billed as the “Grand Prize Saturday Night Jamboree” in Houston, TX. That’s quite a name, but nothing notable occurred at the event. However, January 1, 1955 was the date Bob Neal’s contract to manage Elvis went into effect.

Scotty Moore was glad to turn it over to Neal, who he knew could do a better job. But you have to wonder how Neal let it slip away into the hands of Colonel Parker.


1956 – 01 Sunday: No More Concerts at High Schools

By now Elvis was part of a Grand Ole Opry package tour headlined by Hank Snow and featuring Webb Pierce. They performed that night at a concert in an auditorium in St. Louis.

However, the next night, Elvis teamed up with Johnny Cash for a concert in Charleston, MS. Elvis was billed as The King of Western Bop. I looked up Western Bop, and Wikipedia had nothing, but Google had this:

The significance of this concert is that it is the last time Elvis performed in a high school. He was had already appeared in larger venues, so this must have been contracted well before his popularity exploded, and Elvis was fulfilling the deal.


1957 – 04 Friday:   Pre-Induction Physical

Elvis drove his Cadillac Eldorado from Graceland to the Kennedy Veterans Hospital for his Army pre-induction physical. Then he left by train to New York for his third and final appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show two nights later.

The Memphis Draft Board held a press conference to announce that Elvis was classified 1A and he would be drafted in the next six to eight months. He wasn’t inducted until fourteen months later, so I guess Col. Parker did a good job negotiating some delays.


1958 – 03 Friday:   Side Show Medicine Pitch

Back in 2005. 101 Strings released an album of Elvis songs done in classical fashion.

However, the idea was originally brought to Col Parker on January 3, 1958, and he hated it. He had a brash response to the RCA executive that suggested it. Parker said it sounded like a “Side Show Medicine Pitch.” I guess a classical reworking of Elvis’ music was a better idea after he was dead.


1959 – 04 Sunday: The Dream

This new year found Elvis in the Army and stationed in Germany. The time difference between there and Memphis may not have mattered to Elvis as he called Col. Parker at 5 A.M. local time.

But Parker shook off his sleep and ended up talking to Elvis for an hour-long chat. Parker joked that the call interrupted a dream he was having about Elvis getting an early release. I know plenty of female Elvis fans dreamed about him, but I doubt the Colonel did.


1960 – 08 Friday:   Planning for Life After the Army.

There was nothing noted in the book for Elvis’ first weekend of 1960, but the second Friday, Elvis’ birthday on January 8, was very interesting.

Dick Clark had arranged to celebrate Elvis’ 25th birthday on American Bandstand by interviewing him by phone from Germany. It’s interesting that most of the conversation concerned up-coming plans for after Elvis returned home. This included a recording session (that resulted several singles and the album Elvis Is Back), his appearance on the Frank Sinatra TV show, and his next movie, G.I. Blues.

None of this would happen until late March or April, but obviously, Col. Parker had the deals already cut by early January.

Later in the day, Elvis hosted his own birthday party in Germany. The gang presented him a trophy with a wordy inscription.

“Elvis Presley: Most Valuable Player.
Bad Nauheim Sunday Afternoon Football Association, 1959.”

I tried to find a photo of this trophy, but apparently one does not exist.


1961 – 06 Friday:   King Karate

During the first week of 1961, Elvis was in Hollywood filming Wild In The Country. The cast and crew through him a birthday party two days before his 26th birthday.

In keeping alive the tradition of weirdly-titled awards, they gave Elvis a plaque saying:

“Happy Birthday, King Karate”

There is no photo to be found of it, either.


My reference book had nothing listed for the first weekends of 1962, 1963, 1965, and 1966, so we’ll skip them and move on.


1964 – 03 Friday:   Picking Out New Wardrobe Items.

The highlight of this weekend was apparently going to Lansky Bros. to shop for new clothes. Elvis’ visits to Lansky’s were frequent and continued over a long period of time.


1967 – 06 Friday:   Elvis Gets Into Horses

On this date, Elvis supervised the renovations of the Graceland barn to accommodate his recent horse purchases. He bought a registered palomino named Midget’s Vandy, that he promptly renamed Rising Sun.

Although Elvis also bought Midnight Sun for his father and a Tennessee walker named Traveler, he soon started calling the Graceland barn “The House of the Rising Sun.”


This was fun to do. We will return to this subject again someday and cover the last ten new years of Elvis’ life.  I hope there will be less about Col. Parker in them.  I’m not a big Col. Parker fan, but if he’s a factor on the date, I’ll have to write about him as well as Elvis.


© 2020 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved



There will be only four more articles posted to After that, ElvisBlog will be sent direct by email to those who want to continue for a very low fee. Please refer to the post on December 14 with all the details. Next week I will start sending out PayPal payment requests to everyone who has signed up as an ElvisBlog Subscriber.

If you want to continue receiving ElvisBlog by email, you approve the payment request. It will have alternate instructions if you would rather send a check. And, if it doesn’t seem worth $10 to get 100+ posts, just delete the payment request.

If you’ve been enjoying ElvisBlog but never signed up as a Subscriber, you can get on the list by using the box at the top of this post. I’ve been pleased with the number of new people who did this after reading the December 14 announcement.

Thank you, Phil Arnold


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

Happy New Year

The End of a Decade — 10 Years, 10 Elvis Pictures

How do you link Elvis and the years in the last decade? By finding pictures of Elvis with text on them that includes a year – calendars, Elvis Week logos, Photoshop creations, etc.

Then you remove all the text but the year.


These stamps come from Mustique, a small private island that is one of the Grenadines, a chain of islands in the West Indies. I wouldn’t mind having a strip of these.


You may recognize this as one of the many calendars featuring photos of Elvis taken by Al Wertheimer. They put a bit of color into this iconic Elvis photo.


I like the use of an Elvis silhouette in addition to a nice Elvis photo on this one.


I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen this picture before, but it’s in my files now. I like the scarf around Elvis’ neck.


I cropped and deleted parts of the original to get this. Apologies to Sandi Fox. She does nice work.


It also took some clean-up here to result in this. I’m glad I could save the silver and blue swirl that compliments Elvis’ jumpsuit. 2015 is my favorite picture, so far.


In an ElvisBlog article about Elvis caricatures, I included a quote about his sleepy-eyed look. It said, “It’s the low riding eyelids… the confidence and control factor half-mast eyes seem to exude.”

Elvis had that going here, didn’t he?


How cool is this? 2017 is my new favorite, slightly ahead of 2015.


This is another picture I don’t have in my files. Elvis has got some big-time sideburns goin’ here.


You could Photoshop this one and have Elvis smoking a pipe. If anybody can do that, please send me a copy.


This must be a picture from “Love Me Tender.” Serious-looking Elvis.


While I was researching this, I found a lot of earlier years, too.  There will probably be other decade pictorials like this in the future.




And I hope 2020 will be a great year for all of you, too.



© 2019 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved


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


Merry Christmas