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Elvis Presley News

August 2010
Links are provided to the original news sources. These links may be temporary and cease to work after a short time. Full text versions of the more important items may available for purchase from the source. This site provides selected media reports. It does not claim to provide comrehensive coverage.

  • Prince Albert of Monaco, fiancee visit Elvis' Graceland
    ( / AP, August 6 2010)
    Prince Albert of Monaco and his fiancee visited the home of the "King of Rock 'N' Roll" and sampled some barbecue during a vacation stop in Memphis. The couple took a tour Thursday of Graceland, the 38-room mansion where Elvis Presley died in 1977 and is buried.

    The prince says he always wanted to visit Graceland and calls Elvis an "extraordinary figure." He says: "Elvis touched our lives as well and the lives of so many people. We wanted to pay our respects and see what this place was all about."

    Prince Albert and fiancee Charlene Wittstock are on a vacation tour of the United States. They came just before "Elvis Week," a series of events to mark the anniversary of Presley's death on Aug. 16.

  • Elvis' longtime pal Klein to sign copies of his book
    (, August 6 2010)
    By Beth Gooch
    Longtime Elvis fan Dorothy Evans made sure to get her copy of "Elvis: My Best Man" autograhed by author and longtime Elvis friend George Klein.

  • 'Take A Look At This': Elvis trying to become governor
    (, August 6 2010)
    Take a look at this...
    "I need your vote, can I count on you? can count on me" Elvis isn't dead, he's running for governor. Elvis D. Presley filed paperwork to become the next governor of Arkansas on Thursday.

    And despite some suspicious minds, others can't help falling in love with the write-in candidate who says he is serious about being governor, thank-you very much.

  • DVD Review: It Happened at the World's Fair
    Written by General Jabbo
    (, August 5 2010)
    Part of: 1 Elvis Reviewer Can't Be Wrong
    The Century 21 Exposition, also known as the 1962 World's Fair is the setting for Elvis Presley's 1963 film, It Happened at the World's Fair. Presley stars as Mike Edwards, a crop duster whose partner Danny Burke's (a pre-2001: A Space Odyssey Gary Lockwood) gambling habits causes the pair nothing but trouble. While Edwards doesn't trust Burke with the money they have earned and keeps it locked in a safe, unbeknownst to him, Burke has a key and takes the money to go gambling. Meanwhile, Edwards finds time for skirt chasing, singing, "Relax" to a sultry Yvonne Craig, who resists his advances long enough for her parents to return home and her dad to threaten to shoot him. This is standard '60s Elvis movie fair, but Presley's chemistry with the not-yet Batgirl is undeniable. This would not be her only Presley film.

    Burke's gambling turns dangerous when the group he is playing cards with realize he has stiffed them out of a lot of money. Luckily for him, Edwards shows up to rescue him (and get into the prerequisite Elvis movie fight). The pair flies back home, only to have their plane repossessed by an angry sheriff looking to collect on $1,200 that Danny owes. Not knowing what to do, the pair goes hitchhiking.

    Along the way, they run into Walter Ling (Kam Tong) and his young niece, Sue-Lin (Vicky Tiu), who are headed to the World's Fair. Ling agrees to take them as far as the Fair and the pair boards his truck. It's not long before Sue-Lin produces a ukulele that needs repair, which Edwards happily does before singing "Take Me To The Fair." In different hands this scene would be corny, but Presley and Tiu's enthusiasm make it a fun scene and a highlight of the film.

    ... Presley had not become completely jaded with Hollywood yet when this picture was filmed and as such, delivers a more focused performance. The World's Fair footage makes for an interesting time capsule while the music is better than some of the later Presley films, making It Happened at the World's Fair one of the more enjoyable Presley pictures.

  • A man called 'Cajun'
    (, August 4 2010)
    By Wayne Ford
    The bright Georgia sun was unrelenting as the sweltering humidity and heat entombed Carlton on July 25. Inside an air-conditioned home, Melanie Phillips pulled out a few photographs. In one, she and her husband, Tim, posed in front of Elvis Presley's humble birthplace home in Mississippi - a good memory.

    She grew up loving Elvis, and just more than five years ago she fell in love with Tim Phillips, a vibrant and spirited man whose presence could not be ignored. But their home was quiet this day. A cat nursed a kitten on the kitchen floor. The dog lay quietly in the bedroom. The television volume was low. A subdued afternoon is not the way she remembered living with a man that many called "Cajun."

    Tim Phillips was in the yard the morning of July 5, working underneath a 1977 Plymouth Volare, painted orange and bearing a remarkable likeness to the "General Lee" of "The Dukes of Hazzard" fame, but marked with the words "Road Runner." For some unknown reason, the car rolled off its ramps and onto Phillips. In a matter of seconds, his life came to an end in a vise of metal and earth. ...

  • Paying a visit to the home of The King
    (, August 4 2010)
    By Chris Cordner
    THE home of Elvis Presley was on the itinerary when a Hartlepool couple headed to the USA on holiday. They remembered to take a copy of the Mail's tall ships poster with them to spread the word about The Tall Ships Races which come to Hartlepool from August 7-10. Our thanks go to them for helping to get the message out about Hartlepool to the people of America.

    Thousands of you will be heading to see the tall ships when they finally arrive in Hartlepool. ...

  • Graceland and Memphis Prepare for Elvis Week, August 10-16 During 75th Birthday Celebration Year [press release]
    (, August 3 2010)
    As part of the celebration of Elvis Presley's 75th birthday year, Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc. (EPE) is finalizing the plans for an exciting lineup of events for Elvis Week 2010 to be held at Graceland in Memphis August 10-16. The annual, multi-day gathering of friends and fans from around the world celebrating Elvis' life and legacy draws 30,000 to 40,000 people from all over the world to Memphis.

    Elvis Week 2010 will feature several new special events and concerts, including a screening experience of the newly-restored and remastered Blu-ray and DVD versions of "Elvis on Tour" from Warner Bros. This exclusive event on Saturday, August 14, will feature a screening of the 1972 Golden Globe® Best Documentary winner and a specially-produced, retrospective from Priscilla Presley. In addition, the premiere event at The Orpheum Theatre will also include raw, never-before-seen Elvis tour footage from the Warner Bros. vault as well as montage sequences produced by Academy Award®-winner Martin Scorsese, special celebrity guests and a short concert by backup singers who performed in "Elvis on Tour" as part of J.D. Sumner and The Stamps Quartet.

    Other events scheduled during the week include the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest, and Shake Rattle and Roll at the Shell, a benefit for the Alzheimer's Association. Conversations on Elvis, one of the most popular Elvis Week events, returns this year on Saturday, August 14 with two different sessions featuring many of Elvis' friends and associates who worked with him during his career. Other events include 'Classic Sunday Morning Gospel Music Singin', an Elvis Week Finale Celebration Concert, a Club Elvis dance party, a Graceland Trivia Contest, the Annual Elvis Presley International 5K Run to Benefit United Cerebral Palsy, a Midnight Southern Breakfast, Elvis Bingo, Youth Karaoke, Children¹s Craft Activities and more.

    One of the most memorable events of every Elvis Week is the annual Candlelight Vigil, which will be held on August 15th beginning at 8:30 p.m. CT. Thousands of fans gather at the gates of Graceland in Memphis for their chance to walk up the driveway to Elvis' gravesite in quiet remembrance of the music icon who left his mark on music and pop culture. The gates to Graceland Mansion remain open until all who wish to participate in the procession have done so, which typically takes until the early morning hours of August 16, the anniversary date of Elvis' passing.

    Fans unable to join the celebration in Memphis will once again be able to participate online at via LiveCams with Facebook integration, a virtual wall, and photos and videos uploaded throughout the week.

    Special ticket packages as well as tickets for individual events are still available. Visit for detailed ticket and event information.

    For photos of Elvis Week events, please email to request imagery. Video b-roll of Elvis Week events can be requested by emailing or using the information below to download footage.
    User IP address:
    Username: elvis2010
    Password: ElvisLives!
    Port number: 20 (data transfer); to download 21 (view)

  • Elvis Pal Jerry Schilling Reminisces About the King for Newly Reissued '72 Tour Film
    By Alanna Nash
    (, August 3 2010)

    Everett Collection

    On Aug. 3, as part of a yearlong commemoration of the 75th anniversary of Elvis Presley's birth, Warner Bros. released the Golden Globe-winning film 'Elvis on Tour,' the King's 33rd and last, on DVD and in a dazzlingly packaged Blu-ray edition, and as part of 'The Elvis 75th Anniversary DVD Collection,' a box set of 17 of his movies spanning three decades. Upon the film's theatrical release in 1972, Variety called it "a bright, entertaining pop-music documentary detailing episodes in the later professional life of Elvis Presley, the pioneer Pied Piper of rock music."

    Newly restored and remastered, 'Elvis on Tour' chronicles the entertainer's 15-city US tour in April 1972, when his entourage included Jerry Schilling, who went to work for Presley in 1964 but first met the 19-year old Elvis playing touch football. Now 68, Schilling spoke to Spinner about his friend and the making of the documentary.

    You're a former creative affairs director of Elvis Presley Enterprises and worked as a producer of Elvis-related projects. But did you have a role in the production of 'Elvis on Tour' at the time it was filmed?

    Yes, I did. I was on tour with Elvis and had met the filmmakers, Bob Abel and Pierre Adidge, and was really impressed with these young, hip filmmakers. I had left Elvis once before to do film editing, and I asked him if he would have a problem if I went to these guys for a job. He wasn't thrilled about me leaving again, but he said, "If you really want to do it, it's OK." I think Bob and Pierre were a little leery at first, because I could have been the perfect Colonel [Tom Parker]/Elvis spy, right? But they realized I was serious, and I started out as an entry film assistant, coding film.

    Marty Scorsese was the montage supervisor.

    Yeah. Which is kind of mind-blowing, isn't it? I think he was editing 'Mean Streets' at the same time. He put together a beautiful montage of Elvis's life in still pictures, and then the kissing montage of moving pictures. I loved going into his editing room, delivering film, and I would always hang around a little bit and watch what he was doing. Marty was very intense. He wasn't a guy who'd just sit around chatting. He worked very hard, and he didn't say much. One night we worked very late. We were waiting for the guys to lock up, just sitting on the floor. And he said, "Jerry, you know what I've got?" I said, "What?" He said, "I've got 'That's All Right, Mama.' 78. Sun Records." That was his way of letting me know he knew Elvis's music and he liked it.

    What else did you do on the film?

    As the project grew, I had the opportunity to cut the end credits sequence. It was my first film editing. I hadn't been in the union long enough, but they asked me to bring in three or four songs, and I just said, "I have it." And I brought in 'Memories.' So Bob and Pierre said, "If you want to come in by yourself on a Sunday and put together images with this song, we'll give you a shot." And they didn't change a frame, which I was really proud of.

    Some of the fans are disappointed that the new edition doesn't feature 'Johnny B. Goode' under the opening credits, as the film did originally.

    They didn't use 'Johnny B. Goode' because they couldn't get in touch with Chuck Berry. It wasn't a money issue at all. They didn't even get a quote. I know they tried for months. Chuck's almost 84 years old, and he doesn't work on normal business levels. So it was a matter of changing that song or not having this project. Warner Bros. is as disappointed as the fans.

    The film is remarkable in that Elvis seems totally oblivious to the camera, just as he was with Albert Wertheimer's lens in 1956. He makes himself very vulnerable, especially backstage and in the intimate shots in the car after a show, where he's looking out the window.

    It's a great piece of history. The most the cameras ever saw of that was on this film. 'Elvis on Tour' appeared in more than 460 theaters for one night only this past July 29, and in the 22-minute intro documentary that showed prior to it, I made a comparison to that Wertheimer picture where he's looking out the train. He's got that same look. Whatever he was looking for in '56, he was still looking for in '72. Bob and Pierre really got to a side of Elvis that nobody had or has since.

    Like when Elvis says to Joe Esposito, "We came over too soon, didn't we?" He's nervous backstage.

    Yeah. He said to me, "It's like when Muhammad Ali has his hands wrapped. He's burning up adrenaline. I'm burning up adrenaline when I put the wardrobe on." He never liked to get there earlier than 10 or 15 minutes before the show. As you see him backstage, he's pacing. There's small talk, and a few instructions, but you can tell he's only thinking about the show.

    The film was made at such a crossroads for him. Vegas had whipped him into remarkable physical shape, and his shows received glowing reviews, but his divorce had devastated him.

    He still had great movements, and he was still doing uptempo stuff, like 'Burning Love,' which was so new he had to hold the lyrics. But he had a tendency to choose material by how he was feeling. There are a lot of ballads [in the recording session sequence], like 'Separate Ways' and 'Bridge Over Troubled Water.' So it's almost the dichotomy of Elvis, from the rock and roller to even his joy in gospel music.

    When the Stamps sing 'Sweet, Sweet Spirit,' the close-ups of Elvis' face show him in the grips of almost transcendent beauty.

    When we did the postproduction, I looked at that from my young rock 'n' roll perspective and thought, "This is a throwaway." I look at that now and it's one of my favorite pieces of footage on Elvis. It's so personal. But that look on his face is very different look from the one in the car.

    There's an incredible picture of him in the Blu-ray booklet. He's down on one knee, with his cape spread out, and his eyes fixed intently on something that is not of this world.

    The first time I ever witnessed that in person was in 1966. We were up in Nashville at RCA. The other guys had been to so many recording sessions they always had a poker game going. I was still fascinated to hear the musicians tune up and see Elvis basically produce the sessions. And when he did 'How Great Thou Art,' it was like his soul briefly left his body. He went down to one knee and turned white as a ghost. He was just someplace else. All of his energy was gone. And when he finished, he knew he had done something great. He looked across the room and saw me sitting in a chair, and he gave me that little-boy smile as his energy started coming back. It's one of those moments I'll never forget.

    Do you know what he thought about his relationship with God?

    I think he was searching for that. He knew he was given a special gift. As he always said, "There is no such thing as coincidence." But don't forget you've got the other times when he's got no hits, and he hates the movies [he made in the '60s]. So you have to take the whole person with the ups, the downs, the spiritual and the nonspiritual. It's like you see most of his movies and you think Elvis Presley is such a nice guy, which he was. But he chose to be a nice guy. He had a lot of fun and success, but he also had a lot of pressure and responsibility, a lot of disappointments and a terrible temper, and that makes for a very complicated, sometimes moody person.

    He was far smarter than people thought. Performers today have all kinds of creative advisers, both on stage and off. Other than when producer-director Steve Binder gave him direction for the 'Comeback Special,' essentially Elvis was completely organic. He came up with all of it, from wardrobe to stage movements to song selection, at least of what he was allowed to record.

    He came up with all of it that was within his power. This guy was a thinker, and always ahead of his time. I don't know if the world has ever gotten that. But as the machinery got big, and everybody got important, the creativity got hurt. Nobody would listen to him. Colonel [Parker] made some really good decisions in the beginning [as Elvis' manager] and kept him in front of the public when he was in the Army. But as Elvis got older and wanted to do things other than just be the race car driver and the boy next door in the movies, it fell on deaf ears. I think there was a lot of sabotage on his [unfinished but recently released] karate project, because the people in charge of films and management and records didn't want Elvis to be too smart. They always tried to undermine it and make it look silly and unworkable. This was part of his split with the Colonel, as was the [lack of] overseas touring -- all this stuff that I was in the middle of from time to time. I feel very strongly that I lost my friend at an early age because of creative disappointment. The drugs were Band-Aids.

    The DVD collection is only his MGM films. There has never been a complete Elvis movie collection on DVD or VHS.

    I would think it would be difficult, unless the studios loaned out their material. But anything's possible these days.

    You were Lisa Marie's first manager. What was it like launching the career of Elvis' daughter?

    That was exciting, and a real honor. I really believed in her as an artist. I still do. And I never forget what this is all about. It's about my friend Elvis. And in situations like that, I feel that he would be pleased. We wound up getting a major deal at CBS/Epic, and she backed out as the contract was delivered. It's OK. We spent a good year listening to demos and going into the studio for the first time. She's a hell of a writer. You still may see something musically in the future with her. She's quite a girl.

    The Memphis Mafia, Elvis' entourage, is often misunderstood. You were part of that, but Elvis also saw you as something of a little brother.

    I'd like to think that. I certainly saw him as a big brother, and he really was to me. We had some heavy conversations or disagreements, but they just made our friendship stronger. I think I'm the only guy he never fired. Sometimes he fired everybody. I just wasn't around then. And these other guys become our brothers, as well. There were some strong individuals in the group, not what most of the public thinks--a bunch of yes men and hangers on. There was a true bond with us guys. I miss all that. It was, in a lot of ways, us against the world. I don't think there was a guy who wouldn't have given his life for him. It just shows how strong Elvis was. After we lost him, everybody kind of went crazy. But it's like families. People live different places, have different opinions, and take different paths. Life goes on.

  • Complete Elvis Presley Masters Features 30 CDs With All 711 Master Recordings
    (, August 3 2010)
    Legacy Recordings have announced a birthday present for Elvis fans: At last, the ultimate tribute to the ultimate artist. For Elvis Presley's 75th birthday, the definitive collection of all his master recordings is being made available in stunning fashion.

    The Complete Elvis Presley Masters is the crown jewel in RCA/Legacy's 2010 "Elvis 75" campaign. This limited edition, individually-numbered deluxe set contains 30 CDs with all 711 master recordings released during Elvis' lifetime, sequenced in strict chronological order. Also included are 103 rarities: additional masters, alternate takes, session outtakes, demos, rehearsal jams, home recordings, live performances and radio recordings. This triumph of musicology is the definitive document ­ a magnificent audio chronicle of the inspiration, pain and genius that make Elvis the world's most enduring musical and cultural icon.

    Available exclusively at, The Complete Elvis Presley Masters will be available for pre-orders starting August 2, in advance of the October 19th delivery date. Only 1,000 numbered sets will be available for sale worldwide in this limited edition first run.

    Complementing the music is a beautifully designed 240-page hardbound reference book produced exclusively for this collection. A magnificent volume in its own right, this silk-screened, silver-gilded edition printed on archival paper is the ultimate reference work on the music of Elvis Presley. The discography was painstakingly researched by compilation producer Ernst Mikael Jorgensen, the respected director of RCA's Elvis catalog for over two decades and author of Elvis Presley: A Life In Music (St. Martin's Press, 1998), and co-written by him with award-winning author Peter Guralnick.

    Jorgensen and Guralnick's extensive historical entries cover every song selection from the perspective of a scholar and a fan, with enlightening background stories and historical context, along with release dates, chart positions and other info. The discography includes recording dates and locations, full musician credits, technical notes and a song index. In addition, the book reproduces the artwork for every 45 rpm single, EP and LP release. The book is full of rare and classic photographs from throughout Elvis' life and recording career, beginning with the cover photo by legendary Williams 'Popsie' Randolph from Elvis' first official RCA photo session at RCA Studios in New York, on December 1, 1955.

    Anchoring the book is a brand-new 6,000-word essay by Guralnick, noted biographer of Elvis Presley. Guralnick's two volumes ­ Last Train to Memphis: The Rise of Elvis Presley (Little, Brown, 1994) and Careless Love: The Unmaking of Elvis Presley (Little, Brown, 1999) ­ are widely acknowledged as the definitive biographical studies of Elvis' life. In addition to writing the foreword to Jorgensen's Elvis Presley: A Life In Music, Guralnick also collaborated with him on another great reference work, Elvis Day by Day: The Definitive Record of His Life and Music (Random House, 1999).

    Years in the making, The Complete Elvis Presley Masters has been compiled from the original analog master tapes where available, using 24-bit technology for greater sonic resolution and dynamics. Each track has been carefully restored to achieve the best sound reproduction without compromising the audio quality of the original master. The only exceptions are found on the rarities discs, which "derive from a variety of sources," as Jorgensen writes. "First priority has been given to vividness of performance, historical significance and rarity of repertoire."

    The Complete Elvis Presley Masters is the newest release in RCA/Legacy's "Elvis 75" campaign, which commemorates the 75th anniversary of Elvis' birth, celebrated on January 8, 2010.

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