E-Alert #163.........Saturday 19 March 2005
finally added the first stage of our online
Elvis Shop to the site this
week. Stage 1 features the collectors label FTD releases at
very competitive prices. A non-FTD section will be added to
the shop shortly.
of the items added to
BMG "Sun" boxset to be released in EU! - Ernst
FTD Elvis Shop launched
Springer to don Elvis jumpsuit and sing
company now owns "American Idol"
recycled unofficial release - rip-off or value for money?
maker looking for rare Elvis photos - can you help?
Week 2005 update
By The Presley's DVD release announced date in Canada
comments on Jailhouse Rock acetate
West heading "downunder"
Rock musical closing in UK to move to US
"Elvis" mini-series to take on hit show, Desperate
book & DVD releases
Elvis related documentaries
Luck Charm debuts at #2
Gold Cuts (CD)
Presley 78's around the world (book)
boxset from EU!: According to a sensational and surprising
posting on the FECC site a new EU label called "Memphis Recording
Service", which allegedly controls all the rights including
the original logos from the 1950s, will release a Sun box.
(News, Source: Mark Wilson on For Elvis
CD Collectors Only messageboard)
buys 'Idol' maker, already owns Elvis estate: Sports Entertainment
Enterprises (CKXE), which owns most of the Elvis Presley estate,
said on Friday it has agreed to acquire 19 Entertainment,
the British company behind American Idol, for about $156 million
in cash and stock. (Full report & press release can
be found on the EIN website)
CDR circulating in EU: An unknown fan is circulating copies
of a CDR in the EU. The unmarked disc contains the following
tracks: Big Boss Man (takes 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9); Beyond The
Reef (takes 1,2); U.S. Male (Takes 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10);
Guitar Man (takes 1,2,3,4,5,6).
Gossip magazines popular on ebay: With interest in Elvis
books variable on the auction scene it is interesting to see
strong bidding for "gossip" magazines featuring
Elvis cover stories. Particularly popular at the moment on
eBay are titles from the 1950s and early 1960s including TV
Headliner; Movie Life and TV Movies Screen. Some issues are
selling at up to US$50.00!
midweek single sales updates:
Tony Christie - "Is This The Way to Amarillo?" - 137,000 copies
McFly - "All About You" - 49,000 copies sold
Elvis - "She's Not You" - 24,000 copies sold
Scarum was filmed in only 15 days!
1978, the album Elvis In Hollywood was a top 20 hit
in Australia peaking at #15
of Elvis' favorite movies was the war film, Patton, starring
George C. Scott
Bill Clinton played Heartbreak Hotel on the saxaphone on
the campaign trail, the Republic of Chad issued an attractive
two-stamp set of Clinton with sax and Elvis with guitar
enjoyed watching I Love Lucy, The Dick Van Dyke Show and
the Road Runner cartoons
King and the Colonel: Tome details Parker's lifetime of hucksterism
Michael Lollar , GoMemphis.com
freshest "revelation" in Alanna Nash's biography of
Col. Tom Parker is that Parker might possibly have bludgeoned
a Dutch grocer's wife with a crowbar then fled The Netherlands
never to return.
that's your enticement to read the book, you should
know the claim is based on an anonymous letter to a
Dutch journalist and is never backed up except by tedious
and repetitious speculation. It serves little purpose
except as the same kind of bait the carnie colonel might
have used had he written the same book.
so, Nash's speculative biography, The Colonel: The Extraodinary
Story of Colonel Tom Parker and Elvis Presley, eventually
rallies past its sordid hook, putting together a rambling
portrait of an abused child whose emotional scars colored
every deal he ever made and every relationship he ever
don't have to be nice to people on the way up if you aren't
coming back down," he would supposedly joke. Parker began
life in Breda, Holland, as Andreas Cornelis van Kujik. His
mother's family were gypsy-like merchants. They fascinated
the child, nicknamed "Dries," who grew up with a seemingly
inescapable need to "snow" the world, separating people from
their money by whatever means.
nine brothers and sisters, Parker worked as a child to help
support the family, mainly himself. They lived above the stables
where his stern militaristic father, a livery man for a freight
handling firm, cared for the firm's horses. Young Dries was
drawn by traveling carnivals, wearing sandwich boards and
riding tall bicycles to promote the shows, then working as
a water boy, animal caretaker, and all-around hustler when
the shows came to town.
his father, he developed an affinity for animals, but when
he tried to demonstrate his carnival skills by teaching the
horses to kneel and curtsy in the livery stable, his father
burst in, beating him with a belt in front of his brothers
and sisters and the neighborhood children. Nash concludes
the incident and his treatment by his father incubated in
Parker a permanent "need to humiliate others, especially those
in subordinate positions."
makes her writing task more difficult by forgoing a straight
narrative approach and bouncing back and forth from Parker's
childhood to his relationships as an adult. In the sometimes
confusing process, his future clients, from country music
stars Eddy Arnold and Hank Snow to Elvis, string the reader
along with what's to come. Parker left Holland in 1929 (roughly
the time of the mysterious robbery-murder there) and made
his way to the United States without visa or entry papers.
carnivals would become both his refuge as an illegal alien
and his passion. Parker worked tirelessly, learning every
promotional trick and every nuance of the carnie. He worked
as animal trainer, concessionaire, barker, promoter, always
frustrated by his inability to land a job in the "front office."
He would get his revenge by returning again and again to "gloat"
once he became the promoter of the world's biggest act.
also worked tirelessly to cover his tracks, changing his name
and registering for the military. Eventually wanderlust or
instability caused him to go AWOL and resulted in an Army
discharge with the diagnosis: "Psychosis, Psychogenic Depression,
acute, on basis of Constitutional Psychopathic State, Emotional
diagnosis seems prophetic for a man often portrayed as cruel,
cunning and greedy - a man who would take 50 percent or more
of the profits from Elvis with seemingly no concern about
the quality of Elvis's music or the "bikini" movies that frustrated
Elvis. Strangely, Nash's story also creates what may be unintentional
sympathy for Parker. He parlayed his carnie skills into music
promotion with his first high-profile client crooner Gene
Austin, who, in the late 1930s, was the Bing Crosby of his
day (his tunes included the hit My Blue Heaven).
worked every angle, often paying Austin's bills with checks
signed by Austin. He told merchants, "That's a real autograph
there. You might want to hang that on the wall." An uncashed
check was money in the bank. Parker usually traveled separately
from his stars, acting as the advance man. When they drove
into town, he often greeted the tour bus at 5 a.m., passing
out hotel keys to the entourage, including Elvis, then heading
to the next town where he worked late into the night promoting,
advertising and making all arrangements for the next concert.
Parker once told a British tabloid that, no, it wasn't true
he took 50 percent of Elvis's earnings. "He takes 50 percent
of everything I earn."
colonel was a master showman, originating the sales of merchandise
at rock concerts, using movies to sell soundtrack albums and
merchandise and, always, surrounding his star with an air
of mystery. Nash rises to a rarely memorable line in the book
on that account: "By not allowing Elvis to be seen or heard
in interviews, Parker made him into an object of nearly limitless
romantic fantasy from a pious innocent who loved his mama
and his Lord to a wiggling, greasy god of sex."
was soon commanding $25,000 a night - 2 times the fee for
the next biggest act of his day, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis.
By the late 1960s, Parker was booking Elvis into grueling
Las Vegas schedules of two shows a night, seven nights a week,
reinforcing the star's need for the uppers and downers that
created the long downward spiral that led to his death. The
colonel was facing his own demon - a voracious gambling habit
that may have consumed more than $40 million and left him
with an estate of less than $1 million when he died at 87
colonel's grip on Elvis had ended in a long legal battle with
the singer's ex-wife Priscilla Presley, as guardian of heir
Lisa Marie Presley, after Elvis's death. By the time Parker
died, longevity had created a measure of respect for him and
what he had done. "I can sleep good at night," he said. At
his eulogy, Priscilla said: "Elvis and the Colonel made history
together, and the world is richer, better and far more interesting
because of their collaboration. And now I need to locate my
wallet, because I noticed there was no ticket booth on the
way in here, but I'm sure that Colonel must have arranged
for some toll on the way out."
"The Colonel: The Extraodinary Story of Colonel Tom Parker
and Elvis Presley"
cover of March 2005 (Issue #69) EIN Newsletter
latest issue of our quarterly newsletter will be posted to
financial members in the next few days.
feature on 1969
Elvis 1969 interview
31st 1969 concert review
Mega Quiz Answers
Which well known Aussie DJ managed to get an interview with
Colonel Parker in mid 1969?
edition's answer: Richard Egan was Elvis' male co-star in
Love Me Tender)
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