Category Archives: ELVISBLOG NEWS

Guest Blog: ElvisBlog's Greatest Hits, Volume 1

This is Tygrrius, filling in again for Phil.

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As an Elvis fan, you are undoubtedly used to “greatest hits” and various other methods of re-packaging existing material. Today, I'm going to steal a page from RCA's playbook by taking a look at ElvisBlog's Greatest Hits.

We'll start our compilation with a look back at the early days of ElvisBlog.

RILEY KEOUGH PRESLEY? (February 6, 2005)

Phil's early posts were shorter than his more recent work and also contained fewer photos. This instant classic was a look at Lisa Marie's daughter, Riley Keough, as she started her modeling career. This post gained ElvisBlog some of its earliest readers. Writing about models will tend to do that.

Nearly five years later, Riley is now twenty. In a certain way, she's following in her grandfather's footsteps. She's at work on her first movie, The Runaways. It's a film about the 1970s girl band of the same name that featured Joan Jett. Dakota Fanning will star as Jett, while Kristen Stewart will play Cherie Currie. Riley will appear as Marie Currie in the movie, scheduled for release in 2010.

ELVIS AND CAPTAIN MARVEL JR. (November 20, 2005)

Was Elvis' life influenced by comic books? A clever series of articles over at the excellent Dial B for Blog compared Elvis with Captain Marvel, Jr., and caught Phil's eye. Elvis himself would seem to agree with Robby Reed, writer of the original piece. “When I was a child . . . I was a dreamer. I read comic books, and I was the hero of the comic book. I saw movies, and I was the hero in the movie. So every dream I ever dreamed has come true a hundred times,” Elvis said in 1971.

WATCHING ELVIS IN 'WALK THE LINE' (March 26, 2006)

Here, Phil takes the 2005 hit film Walk The Line to task for implying not only that Elvis used drugs in 1956, but that he also helped to get Johnny Cash hooked as well. Not being a Cash fan, I can't say I've even seen the movie. The only thing interesting about it to me is Reese Witherspoon, but she has plenty of other movies I'd rather see her in.

Tyler Hilton, a professional singer in his own right, played Elvis in the film. He actually has a couple of songs on the soundtrack, great versions of “That's All Right” and “Milkcow Blues Boogie” that I bought as individual MP3s from Amazon. “That's All Right” gets covered every now and then, since it was Elvis' first single, but “Milkcow” is pretty rare. Hilton makes occasional appearances on the TV series One Tree Hill.

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Thanks again, everyone.

/Tygrrius, The Film Frontier

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 4/7/09

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Choose The Next Blog:  Your dedicated Elvis Blogmeister has not been very dedicated with another time-sensitive function – doing my taxes.  Now that I have put them off until the final eight days, it is time to get going.  I do this best with no other tasks to divide my attention, so I need to cop-out on next week’s ElvisBlog column.  It will still be posted, but instead of writing about anything, I will simply present a pictorial essay on an interesting Elvis subject.

 

And, you readers get to pick the subject.  Here are four topics from my files of Elvis photos.   I will probably never write a real article about any of them (except for Linda Thompson, but I’ll save half of her pictures for that).  I think you would find any of the choices interesting, and nobody has ever covered the first three before.

 

Bare-Chested Elvis

 

Elvis Impersonator Losers

 

Elvis Images Made from Weird Stuff.

 

Linda Thompson

 

 

Pick the one you would like to see and e-mail your choice to philarnold@charter.net.  The winning subject will be posted on April 12.

 

 

A New Way of Counting Hits:  Over the years, I have reported it when ElvisBlog passed significant milestones in the number of hits to the site.  However, it seems I have been using the wrong measurement.  My blogware reports something they call “Distinct Hosts Served,” which means the number of computers that visit a site.  That pretty much means the same as the number of people who visit a site.  There might be a slight undercount if several people use the same library computer to visit ElvisBlog in the same day, but that’s not very likely.

 

I have learned that most other website counters use “Page Views” when reporting hits.  My blogware does this, too, calling them by the charming name “HTML Requests.”  So, I’ve gone back to the beginning of ElvisBlog in January, 2005, and tabulated the total of all the monthly page views.  It turns out that another milestone has been passed.  As of February, 2009, ElvisBlog has surpassed 500,000 page views.  A half-a-million hits!  Thank you, folks.

ELVISBLOG'S NEW YEAR'S REVELATIONS

 

During the past week, I learned five new things about the blog world and ElvisBlog’s participation in it.  Four of the things were good, and the fifth was funny.

The year-end numbers for 2008 are in, and ElvisBlog had a great year.  Total hits jumped to 154,000, up from 88,000 in 2007.  So, that was obviously one of the good things.  Page views were up similarly to 306,000, and some consider that to be the more important measurement.

Also, I recently received an invitation to post ElvisBlog articles on a website called www.collectibles-articles.com. They manage a very thorough Collectibles Articles Directory. They had 1541 articles in 32 categories, but they had only one Elvis story. The decision to boost that led them to me. They are interested in eight or nine of my blog columns that have to do with Elvis goodies. No money, but they say I'll get a nice boost in traffic, because there is a little bio paragraph at the end of every story, with two links to ElvisBlog. I should pick up a bunch of new Elvis fans over time. I have sent in four old columns so far, and they all have been accepted.  So, that’s more good.

The initial exploratory e-mail from Mr. Jack Straw at Collectibles-Articles.Com extolled their esteemed PR3 rating from Google.  I had no idea what that meant, so I asked.  Here is the answer:

“Google's Page Rank system is how they determine what pages are 
most important and useful to searchers when they put in search terms.  
The ranks go from 0 (lowest) to 10 (only a handful of sites).  The 
vast majority of sites are skewed at the low end (0 or 1), with 
rapidly diminishing numbers of sites as you go up the scale.”

Well, that made me curious, and I e-mailed back and asked if he could look up ElvisBlog’s Google PR number.  I was so tickled when he came back with:

“You should be quite proud of a PR4; few niche-focused sites get that high.”

OK, I will be proud.  I never suspected ElvisBlog would get a higher number than the one he had been so proud of for his site.  So, that was more good.

PR number was not the only thing Mr. Straw extolled.  He also noted they were ranked in first place in their category by Google, so I wrote back and asked how he knows that fact.  This time, I was a little embarrassed to hear the answer:

“Do a search for Elvis blog or other similar terms and see how Google ranks the sites.”

Duh!!  I have done that dozens of times and the answer is still the same every time.  If I type Elvis blog in the Google category box, the page that opens up will have ElvisBlog at the top of the list.  So, all this time, I could have been saying: “Ranked #1 Elvis blog by Google,” but I was too stupid to know it.  Other than the stupid part, this was another good thing.

E-mail brought me something else interesting. A PR lady asked if I would write an article about a party at a restaurant on Elvis’ birthday, January 8, 2009.  The restaurant is MAC 24-7 in the Hilton Waikiki.  This resulted in the article I posted last week.  However, in an e-mail reply from the PR lady, she used a term that confused me.  She said, “Great SEO!” 

Here we go again.  I had to e-mail back and admit my ignorance of that one.  She replied:

 “SEO means search engine optimization. It’s the process of improving your website traffic from search results. Basically, it means that when you type in “Elvis blog” into a search engine, such as Google or Yahoo, you have the best content, link backs (other people linking back to your site), keywords, etc. that make your blog the topped rank.”

Wow.  I was starting to get a big head about all this, but then I learned something else that brought me down a few notches.

My blog software allows me to see what people have been searching for on Google when they linked to ElvisBlog.  Most of the search items make sense, like Elvis Jumpsuits, for example.  But some of them are pretty weird.  I couldn’t imagine why anyone had typed in one very strange search term last week, but ElvisBlog made the first page of results.

So, in the same week that it hit me ElvisBlog has this great #1 site rating, I also found out that my creation is #7 in “Crummy Elvis Shit.”

©  2008    Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister,  All Rights Reserved    www.ElvisBlog.net

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 8/20/08

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No Elvis Week for Me This Year:  I’ve tried not to dwell on it, but I sure did miss going to Elvis Week 2008.  There are mementos from last year still pinned on the wall and the bulletin board near my computer, and looking at them makes me sigh with regret.  I couldn’t even bring myself to write a blog column to commemorate the 31st Anniversary.  The closest I came was considering a possible diatribe about the lack of Elvis movies on cable TV this year, but that was too negative.  What happened at TCM, Nickelodeon, Disney Channel and others who ran them in the past?  I hope the absence of Elvis movies wasn’t because of bad ratings in previous years.  If you made it to Elvis Week 2008, I know you had a great time.  If you’ve never been, you need to do it some year.  It is a totally unique experience.  But, plan to spend a bunch of money.

 

A Quarter of a Million Hits:  Somehow, when ElvisBlog passed 200,000 hits, I failed to mention it in ElvisBlog News.  I had some bad karma about the date it occurred – April 1.  Well, nothing bad has happened.

I’m not going to miss announcing the next milestone.  As of August 7, Elvisblog  has achieved 250,000 hits since it began in January 2005.  My blogware provider calls these “Distinct Hosts Served.”  I understand that other blog platforms report “HTML Requests,” and by that measure, ElvisBlog’s accumulative total is over 600,000.

August is the biggest month every year for traffic to the blog.  During the 30th Anniversary celebration last year, tons of folks looked for Elvis information on Google.  Lots of them ended up at ElvisBlog.  This August had a little increase, but nothing like the big jump generated by the 30th Anniversary.

 

HotLinking:  Have you ever heard of HotLinking?  It is also called Sourcing, but that sounds too legit.  HotLinking is when other websites use your bandwidth.  I won’t bore you with technical stuff about bandwidth, but I had to buy more last February, so I could continue blogging.  Some folks had basically been streaming photos from my site (not using their own bandwidth). I had to fork out another $40 dollars a year, but I did get a ton of additional bandwidth.  Three months later, I noticed something strange in the daily Referer file.  The count for an Asian website showed that more people had linked from that site than ElvisBlog’s total hits for the day.

That couldn’t be, so I contacted the tech support for my blog platform (by e-mail only, of course), and learned about hotlinking.  The bad news was very clear.  I was paying for the bandwidth that some other pirate site was using.  It was happening only with pictures, not text.  Good news:  there is a way to stop it.  With tech guidance, I navigated deep into Security Settings.  The next-to-last one was a check box called Allow Sourcing of Photos, and I unclicked it. 

 

3-Column Format:  Despite my best attempts, I can’t seem to keep this blog simple.  The articles are longer, there are many photos in most of them, and a ton of content is piling up.  There are 231 articles posted now, and that is a lot for new readers to dig through.  So, some reorganization is needed.  There will be a few new categories coming up soon. 

First, there is ElvisBlog News.  There have been three or four ElvisBlog News reports every year, and they really shouldn’t have been in there with the Elvis Presley stories.  For those who care, this link will provide a chronological time-line for the evolution of ElvisBlog.

Next is Elvis Commentary Mini-Nuggets.  No other Elvis website or blog does commentary mini-nuggets, so it is time to show them off.  This is one of my favorite column themes.  When you string them all together, it totals a pretty impressive list, one that deserves its own link.

Finally, there is Odd Elvis Websites.  I keep running into these things on the internet, so I save the URLs and post a column about them when I have enough.  This is getting to be a pretty sizable list, also.

Down the road a bit, I want to add another chapter to my “Elvis Claus Trilogy,” and make it a continuing novel.  Maybe each year, I can come up with another surprise Christmas romance for Elvis Claus and Judy.

All these new categories require a format change.  ElvisBlog will be going to 3-column in a few weeks.  In the right column will be links to ElvisBlog News, Elvis Commentary Mini-Nuggets, Odd Elvis websites, and, someday, “Elvis Claus, the Book.”

 

 

                                                                                                Phil Arnold

                                                                                                Original Elvis Blogmeister

 

©  2008   Philip R Arnold   All Rights Reserved   www.ElvisBlog.net

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 2/2/08

Happy Birthday ElvisBlog:  It has now been three full years since ElvisBlog was launched.  Happily, readership keeps increasing, and I haven’t run out of new ideas to write about.  There’s a lot of cool stuff out there in Elvisworld, so you can expect the commentaries to continue for a long time.

 

A Record Number of Hits in 2007:  It’s a bit late to report this, but ElvisBlog received almost 88,000 hits in 2007, more than double the number from the year before.  Not surprisingly, the best month was August when almost 12,000 Elvis fans checked in to read about the King.  January is always the second-best month, and the count just closed at over 10,500 for January 2008.  Thank you so much for your continued support.

 

New Header Banner:  If you are reading this, you have seen the new ElvisBlog banner at the top of the home page.  I hate to admit it, but it took about ten hours to read the manual, create the banner, and use the blogware File Manager system to upload it to this blog.  Lots of mistakes and trial-and-error before getting it right.  Fortunately, I’m more proficient as a writer than I am as a computer person.

 

Another Vacation:  Retirement is a great time to go on vacations, and my wife has been relentless in planning them.  We leave February 14 for three weeks in Italy, and we will see Rome, Pompeii, Naples, Sorrento, and the Amalfi Coast.  As always, I will be on the lookout for Elvis stuff to report about on ElvisBlog.  There will probably be a two-week gap during which no new columns will be posted.  However, if I can get a few articles ahead, I may talk a friend into adding them on the second and third Sundays while I'm gone.  To be advised…

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 12/11/07

A Correction (Sort of):  On September 2, 2007, I posted a blog article titled, “Vancouver celebrates the 50th Anniversary of An Elvis Riot.”  I have now heard from two readers who say it was not a riot.  One is Alan Hanson author of the book “Elvis '57: The Final Fifties Tours,” which contains a 10,000-word chapter on the concert.  The other was from an anonymous reader who said she was there, which gives her some credibility.    OK, let’s say we’ll agree it was not a riot, just a display of boisterous enthusiasm that caused the concert to be ended after twenty-two minutes.  Very boisterous.

 

Numbers for The Year Almost In:  With two weeks to go, it’s easy to calculate that the number of hits on Elvisblog this year will easily double the number for 2006.  Cumulative hits since Elvisblog started in February 2005, is now at 153,000.  The big thing that caused the jump was all the folks who discovered the site for the first time during Elvis Week 2007.  It looks like a lot of them came back as regulars.  Thanks to everyone for your support. 

 

No New Posts over Christmas:  As in previous years, I will take a break and not add any new Elvisblog articles on Sunday, December 16 and Sunday, December 23.  However, there will still be new content – pretty special content, too — the third installment of “The ELVIS CLAUS TRILOGY.”   Episode 3 is titled, “Elvis Claus Upstages an Elvis Impersonator,” and it continues the love story of pretty Judy Parker and the mysterious man behind a Santa beard.  There will be more on this episode and the whole trilogy in the annual Christmas message from Elvisblog next Sunday, December 16.  “Elvis Claus Upstages An Elvis Impersonator” will be posted on that date, as well.

 

More Numbers Stuff:  My blog platform provides me with links back to the Google/Yahoo/etc. searches that led people to Elvisblog.  On one Yahoo search for “Elvis Presley,” Elvisblog was link #374.  That means that somebody had to go through 37 pages of other sites before getting to the screen that held #371 through #380.  That’s some determined searching.  I wasn’t too pleased to be #374, until I noticed how many total links Yahoo found – 66 million.  Is Elvis on a lot of websites, or what?

 

Ike Turner and Elvis:  Ike Turner died this wee at age 76.  There is a small connection between him and Elvis.  According to several internet sources, in the early 50s, Turner was the house boogie-woogie piano man in a West Memphis “blacks only” club.  Young Elvis often snuck in and hid next to the piano to study Turner's boogie style and woogie-wild legs.  The news reports of Ike Turner's passing mentioned that many historians credit him with making the first rock & roll record, “Rocket 88.”  Did you know it was recorded at Sun Records three years before Elvis ever showed up?  Click here to read an article I wrote about Ike Turner's historic recording session with Sam Phillips at Sun.

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 10/5/07

We’re Back:  Vacation was great, but now it’s time to get back to the business of writing Elvisblog articles.  Nothing was posted the past two Sundays, so I moved the schedule up to Friday, 10/05.  I hope you will enjoy, “Searching for Elvis in Reno, Salt Lake, and Jackson Hole.”  We’ll get back to the regular Sunday cycle on October 14.

 

Wrong Assumption:  I was pleasantly surprised to see that 3400 readers checked in during the past two weeks when there was no new content.  It seems there are more Elvisblog readers than I guessed, but many don’t access the blog each week for the new article.  I’m the same way with some websites – I check in every once in a while and catch up on what’s new.  Fair enough, but I’ll still be adding new articles to Elvisblog every Sunday.

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 9/17/07

Vacation Time Again:  There will be no new articles posted to this blog on the next two Sundays, September 23 and 30.  Sorry for the two-week break, but your Elvisblog host will be on vacation out west.  We are going to four national parks: Yosemite, Grand Teton, Yellowstone, and Rocky Mountain – with stops in Reno, Salt Lake City, Jackson Hole, and Estes Park (Colorado).  This country has outstanding natural grandeur, and we are going to check out some of the best of it.  Of course, I will be on the lookout for anything interesting about Elvis to provide the basis for a future blog article. I imagine my best hope will be in Reno, but you never know.

 

Bragging Again:  A month ago I mentioned how interest in the 30th Anniversary Elvis Week caused a big spike in reader visits to Elvisblog in mid-August.  Well, it appears that many of these new readers liked it enough to come back again.  During the past three weeks, Elvisblog has averaged well over 2100 hits per week, a 20% jump over just two months ago.  Total reader visits year-to-date are now over 58,000, but I recently saw figures on the hits the Elvis website powerhouses get, so there is still a lot of room for growth.  Thank you for reading Elvisblog.

 

New Links:  The list of favorite links on Elvisblog has grown considerably in recent weeks, and it will get bigger after vacation.  Past blog articles have contained hyperlinks to quite a few Elvis websites and other sites that have some interesting Elvis content.  These will be compiled and added to the favorites list.  By the way, if you hold the cursor over the link name, a box will open with a short description of what the site is all about.  It’s a pretty cool feature.

 

OK, it’s time to go to the airport.  Talk to you in October.

 

Phil Arnold, host of Elvisblog

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 8/20/07

Big Spike in Hits on the Big Day:

 

There is always a jump in interest in Elvisblog during mid-August, especially on the 16th.  However, there was no reason to expect the number of visitors to the website would spike like it did this year.  On Thursday, August 16, Elvisblog received 1256 hits, almost tripling the old record of 425.  The next day, a new second place mark of 862 was set.  The weekly total came in almost 2-1/2 times the old record.

 

But Someone Helped:

 

I check out a lot of websites for ideas for Elvis articles, and one I frequently link to Is the Oldies Music section of About.com (http://oldies.about.com).   I have printed several articles written by the host, Robert Fontenot, and put them in my files for future blog ideas.  In my opinion, this is a website worthy of spending some time on.  However, I have never contacted Robert, or vice-versa.

 

He regularly searches the web for good oldies stories written by others.  The ones he likes get a short editorial tease and a link from his site.  He obviously found Elvisblog and liked one of my stories from last year.

 

On August 14, he posted a great feature:  “30 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Elvis.”  Number 3 was my July 24, 2005, Elvisblog article titled, “Elvira and Elvis.”   Robert’s tease was pretty cool.  It ended with:  “Was this another chorus girl conquest, or was everyone’s favorite Eighties TV horror host a little too innocent for the King?  Read more”

 

It was that read more link that caused a significant portion of the big spike at Elvisblog.  Lots of folks must be interested in Elvira and Elvis – 523 checked in the first day alone.  For all of Elvis Week 2007, this link caused approximately 1000 people to discover Elvisblog for the first time.  I hope these new visitors were impressedand will come back again. 

 

Thanks, Robert, and keep reading Elvisblog.  There are lots of good stories you can recommend.

 

Fans Show Increased Interest in Elvis’ Grandson:

 

People also come to Elvisblog as a result of Google and other searches.  During the past week, there was certainly a lot of interest in Benjamin Keough, Elvis’ grandson.  Almost 1200 people checked out Elvisblog to get more information on young Benjamin.  However, he’s not so young anymore.  On October 21, Benjamin Keough will turn 15.  I’m sure we will be hearing more about him in the years ahead. 

ELVISBLOG NEWS — 7/1/07

Scotty Moore/Rolling Stones Picture Added to May 2006 Article:  Over a year ago, I posted an article titled “Scotty Moore Meets The Rolling Stones Backstage.”  This was before I learned how to post photos with the blogs.  The article was weakened by the lack of a photo, and that has now been corrected.  Please click on the article and see the great picture of Scotty, Keith, Ronnie, and a cardboard stand-up of Elvis.   Many thanks to Ella Shepherd, wife of very talented keyboard player Steve Shepherd, for giving me permission to use her photo on Elvisblog.

 

Weekly Visits to Elvisblog Hit New Record:  Sorry to brag again, but something has caused the number of hits on Elvisblog to jump.  Last week the count jumped up to 1880, an 11% jump over the old record.  A new daily high of 333 hits happened on Thursday, June 21.  The previous record was also on a Thursday, so maybe there is a pattern here.  Anyway, thanks for visiting Elvisblog.