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THE SEARCH FOR ELVIS
| || ||Elvisly Yours will organise Britain's biggest ever Elvis Street Party on July 5th 2004 to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll...50 years of Elvis so we want 50 Elvises, one for each year of "Rock 'n' Roll". At the time of writing we have 34 Elvis Tribute Artists, (ETAs) and we need 16 more. If you know any professional ETA please inform them about our historic day and ask them to join in all the fun. They should just send me an email with their contact details, brief CV and attached jpeg photograph to: firstname.lastname@example.org (promo photo Elvis Shmelvises, black Elvis, Sid)|
We would like to thank the following ETAs for joining our Elvis Party on July 5th :
Jay Ashton, Black Elvis, Gary Blue Fox, Gary Curtis, Chinese Elvis, Danish Elvis,
Craig Davies, George Elias, Emerald Elvis, Elvis Shmelvis, Mama Shmelvis, Brother Shmelvis,
Elvis Shmelvis Jnr, Elvis Shmelvis Jnr 2, Cousin Shmelvis, Grandpa Schmelvis, Maltese Elvis,
Scott Elvis, Gary King, Matt King, Michael King, Phil King, Billy Lambert, Nasar, Danny Owen, John Reid, Deke Rivers, Rusty Wells, Anthony Shore and
Dean Lee Vegas (click on a name to see details of each ETA, where provided)
The Elvisly Yours 50th Anniversary Celebrations will be FREE for the public and there is a £5,000.00 prize for the BEST Elvis and one ETA will win a £500.00+ Elvis jumpsuit kindly donated by Deke Rivers. The BEST Elvis will perform at a future, new and spectacular Venue that will be announced July 5th 2004.
The celebrations July 5th will start 12 noon with a photo call for all 50 ETAs at a famous London landmark, followed by the ETA competition from 1pm - 3.30pm (venues in the next Newsletter). The Grand Finale is at 5pm with all 50 Elvis Tribute Artists on a double-decker London Bus outside Elvisly Yours at 233 Baker Street, London NW1 singing "That's All Right" to coincide with radio stations all over the world simultaneously playing the song (11am Memphis time). Throughout the day the ETAs will be helping us to raise money for the "Lynda Jackson Macmillan Centre".
We will make sure the world will know Elvis Presley started the whole world "rocking" on July 5th 1954 at that historic recording session in Sun Studios and now Elvis' music is as fresh and brilliant fifty years later. Come along and join in this historic day. This will be the last time in our lifetime that will have such International significance for Elvis. So take a day off work and join in the greatest Elvis Street Party the world has ever seen...
Those whom the gods would destroy,
they first make mad
I have been talking to deaf ears trying to explain what EPE have been doing for years is madness and now more and more Elvis fans around the world, particularly in America, are starting to realize the truth. When Graceland opened to the public any Elvis fan that applied for a job and ticked a box declaring they were an Elvis fan immediately were rejected. I have been told by insiders the same principal is applied today. Jack Soden the CEO of EPE doesn't like Elvis fans, he doesn't even like Elvis yet has probably made tens of $millions personally running EPE. Priscilla allowed him (now Lisa Marie) to just get on with it. Why is an Elvis hater and Elvis fan hater given the most important Elvis job in the world? But, it didn't matter because Patsy was also there to protect Jack Soden from the wrath of the fans, whatever ridiculous decision he made, but more about Patsy later...
It would be very interesting to be a fly on the wall at an EPE Inc board meeting. I have been told they chose exotic locations such as Hawaii to hold board meetings, with no expense spared, after all the Elvis fans are paying for it. Is it Jack Soden, Gary Hovey, Priscilla, Lisa Marie or one of the Scientologists who think of more and more ways to upset, aggravate and humiliate Elvis fans, the backbone of their business?
Whoever comes up with the ideas there must be board approval because some decisions are leaning towards the criminal. It is a criminal offence in the UK to disclose private information about address and personal details from a database, as indeed in many countries. So EPE demand Elvis fan clubs around the world release names and addresses of their members. Elvis Fan clubs that are "officially" recognised have to sign away all their rights and be under the Big Brother control of EPE...the great protectors of the name and legacy of Elvis Presley?
Then one of these bright sparks thought why not charge fan clubs $5,000.00 to use the name "Elvis" for their shows and conventions, even though the word is purely descriptive and not trade mark use. So the name "Elvis" will disappear from the US language except as licensed by EPE because fan clubs, promoters and dealers are dropping the name Elvis and instead using various forms of words with "King" in the title.
One person has brought more money to Graceland than probably anyone else, Todd Slaughter of the now, "Unofficial Elvis Presley Fan Club of Great Britain" who has run trips to Graceland from Europe taking thousands of fans for years. He apparently has been told he cannot use the name "Elvis" and has to drop the title "Official" from his fan club. Slaughter provided evidence against Elvisly Yours in our lawsuits in the USA and the UK trying to destroy us, has made EPE $millions, even paid huge sums to rent EPE artifacts for the aborted Elvis Museum in Blackpool and now even he is treated like a pariah.
"Jailhouse Rock the Musical" is banned from using the song of its title and any of Leiber and Stoller's songs in the Show losing EPE potentially $millions in lost royalties. Hundreds of Elvis Shows have been threatened and stopped production, more $millions lost. Then there was the best musical production ever for Elvis, the magnificent Danish Ballet called "The King". The producer, Peter Schaufuss offered EPE 15% of the box office just to use some Elvis songs, an unbelievable offer that was rejected by EPE.
How can you NOT make a success of the only Elvis Restaurant in America when its location is Memphis, Tennessee ? Even on slow years 600,000 people visit Graceland each year and you only need a tiny percentage of those pilgrims to be bussed downtown to make a fortune in an Elvis Restaurant. But, not when you harass, intimidate, threaten, abuse and insult your core customers, the Elvis fans. In contrast, there are seven Elvis theme Restaurants in London alone all making good profits and most have been operating 15 or more years.
There are a million stories about the way EPE treat Elvis fans but there was always Patsy Andersen to take the flack, always there to calm the fans, make them feel important and needed and to fight a thousand battles for Soden. I have no idea what Soden paid Patsy from the $millions he has made destroying the legacy of love that was symbolised by Elvis himself and his beloved Graceland. Patsy was worth ten, twenty times her salary to all the management of EPE but they let her go...they are truly mad!! I believe this is the beginning of the end. For years EPE Management have believed Elvis would not last but there was always another Elvis anniversary, a new project brought to them. When I lost my case against EPE in America within one week they announced the release of the Elvis stamp which made EPE tens of $millions. The "Elvis in Concert" World Tours was a project suggested to them that has made $millions, the 25th Anniversary was a godsend for EPE. The release of "A Little Less Conversation, the NIKE commercial and "Lilo and Stitch" gave other huge boosts to business.
This year will be the big year with the 50th Anniversary of rock 'n' roll...but then what ? The 70th birthday will be a small affair and a long time from the 50th Anniversary of Elvis' death. All the original Elvis fans are gradually dying so they have already started to cut back on: brochures, the Memphis restaurant, staffing, advertising while continuing to humiliate and alienate Elvis fans. There are many whispers that Graceland and all the rights will be sold to a Casino. I hope the rumours are true because if decent, energetic, imaginative people were running EPE there would be a hundred more years of fabulous business in prospect.
Elvis was so talented, so inspiring, so handsome, so caring and sharing his love throughout the world that he will never die but extremely bad management at EPE is trying to destroy Elvis' legacy. In the UK companies like EPE have to disclose their accounts publicly. I would love to see the accounts and how much all the management pay themselves and what about the lawyers? In 1982, before Graceland opened the Trust had to publish accounts publicly in Probate Court. Lawyers took $812,000.00 in fees and the Trustees $210,000.00 from a total income of just over $2,000,000.00. You can just imagine management salaries for a company turning over $40,000,00.00? Yet, they could not pay Patsy any more wages....those whom the Gods would destroy, they first make mad !
We still have the original SACK JACK and HIT the ROAD JACK button badges from 1985. If anyone has Lisa Marie's address please let me know because I would like to send her some badges. The worry is...does she know what is happening? Does she care ?
FINGERPRINTS of ELVIS MUSEUM
We have been informed by a director of the "Beatles Story Museum", Liverpool that their associated Museum "Fingerprints of Elvis" has gone into Administration. The world's worst Elvis logo has finally bitten the dust in less than 12 months of operation.
Even before they had opened the doors I felt the Museum would never last. It was located in Liverpool, the wrong city, the wrong name, the wrong logo and the management knew nothing about Elvis Presley. I was not given any prior information about the Museum even though they launched it at "Hard Rock Cafe" in London. I was on the phone to one of the owner's partners the same day it was being launched. He did not tell me about the launch and that he was with David Stanley who I had helped arrange to bring to Britain for August 16th 2002, some months earlier. I found out there was to be an Elvis Museum in Liverpool from the Elvis Fan Club of New Zealand, 12,000 miles away but I was not invited to the launch.
At the opening of the Museum in June 2003 I was invited to Liverpool by their PR company,at my own expense, even though I was there to help them promote and advise. The managing director of "Fingerprints of Elvis" gave me 2 minutes of his time in 2days so I left Liverpool on the third day not even being able to discuss the £2,000.00 of books I had left the Museum on sale or return. Seven months later these books on SOR were never opened from their boxes and David Stanley's book "Life With Elvis" was removed from the shelves. Stanley, who was paid a substantial fee as a consultant, didn't want his OWN book sold because it was, in his words, "full of lies!".
The Museum had so many faults it was ridiculous. Entry was far too expensive for a very small museum. There was a whole wall of Sun Records, but you could see copies Sun labels badly cut out then stuck on other 45 rpm records. Many artifacts were not owned by Elvis but this was never disclosed. The Mercedes was owned by Dr Nichopoulos, the jumpsuit was a copy, the drum set and microphone could have come from anywhere. Probably the final straw for me was to stick a replica of Elvis' grave on the pavement outside the Museum for August 16th. I dissuaded them putting it on a floating platform in the Dock while gospel singers sang hymns. I never received any promotion leaflets to mail out or put in our shop. They never put out our leaflets, either, that were left for their brochures. Although I completed their application online for their newsletter I never received one email from the Museum. If you wanted to buy Elvis souvenirs online you were ridiculously directed to the Beatles Story website.Today, if you click on to www.fingerprintsofelvis.com up pops the Beatles Story without any explanation. So it went on, mistake after mistake. Then, there was the £million "Partner's Cross" Elvis supposedly gave to Priscilla and kept his own copy always close(?). No one had ever heard of this "Cross" including Larry Geller, Marty Lacker and even Elvis' jeweller, Lowell Hays.
Whatever the project, bad management will always destroy any new business, even an Elvis Museum in Liverpool(?), using an awful logo, the wrong name, poor PR, even worse marketing, and a complete lack of understanding of the business in which they were operating. The owner of the "Fingerprints of Elvis" is a multi-millionaire who continually told me he wanted to work with us. Instead, he completely ignored us for the very expensive, but bad consultancy of David Stanley and installed a nervous "accountant" to run an Elvis Museum who just did not have the knowledge, experience or "people skills" to cope. He always regarded our advice as a threat instead of a helping hand.
STOP GIVING FREE PUBLICITY TO BMG and EPE
Elvis fans all over the world are up in arms over the way EPE treats them and BMG. So what do 99% of all Elvis web sites and fan clubs do around the world, give FREE publicity to BMG and EPE ? The new ' 68 Comeback and Aloha DVDs are being promoted worldwide for FREE on Elvis websites. BMG has a huge promotional budget to promote these DVDs but that budget is substantially reduced because Elvis fans are stupid enough to promote BMG product for free. There is a joint venture between BMG and EPE to market the DVDs so every time you give free publicity to these products you are making these corporations richer and fan clubs poorer.
There is a simple solution...let BMG and EPE start to give back to the Elvis World what they have pillaged. CHARGE them for advertising! If you know of any Elvis website in the world that is giving free advertising to the latest products ask them to take that advertising off their websites or in their Newsletters and magazines and set an advertising rate for BMG and EPE. Why should you advertise Elvis products for FREE ? Do you think fans will not see new Elvis product in the stores, why do the marketing job for BMG ? Have BMG and EPE ever thanked you for all the years of free advertising ?
If every Elvis website refused to promote the latest BMG product perhaps BMG would start to treat the fans differently instead of taking anti-Elvis actions, eg in the UK when they removed "A Little Less Conversation" from the shelves to make way for "Gareth wimpy Gates" latest single. They replaced Elvis' voice on "Lilo and Stitch" singing 'Suspicious Minds' with that of Gates and used the expression, "and Gareth has left the building". You know BMG and EPE don't care about Elvis fans so why advertise their products for FREE? CHARGE them, they can afford it! If they can advertise in the media they can pay Elvis clubs and websites to advertise and give something back to the Elvis World.
You do NOT have to advertise "Elvis" and "Elvis Presley" are trade marks of EPE on your websites. This is a free advert and should be removed. In fact, in the UK we cancelled a large number of EPE trade marks and it is false advertising and subject to prosecution. You will notice that in some instances EPE use USPTO for their trade marks (US Patent and Trade Mark Office). For fan clubs in countries outside the USA this is irrelevant and false because US Trade Mark Laws have no jurisdiction and legally should be removed from all non-USA Elvis fan club websites. False advertising should be reported to the the legal authorities in each country, usually a Government Department, who will investigate.
STOP PRESS....STOP PRESS... Record chiefs face jail for fly-posting Executives from BMG now face jail over illegal advertising and the above feature answers their prayers. Instead of ruining our neighbourhoods with illegal fly-posting, BMG can pay to advertise on Elvis fan club web sites, giving income to struggling Elvis fan clubs, thus finally putting something back into the Elvis World.
5th Anniversary of the death of
Screaming Lord Sutch
Read a fascinating new biography of Screaming Lord Sutch by Graham Sharpe
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A BAD ELVIS EXPERIENCE
June 4th 2004 is the date of the trial of Sid Shaw v Jamcat Music Ltd at Watford County Court.
N.B. You have not missed the May Newsletter, we just run out of days with delays caused by the organisation of our huge Elvis Celebration on July 5th, so we jumped to June for issue no.19
GOING DOWN MEMORY LANE
ALWAYS CHECK YOUR PASSPORT
On October 1st 1988 I was invited by the International Elvis Presley Fan Club of Luneburg, Germany to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Elvis landing in Germany to start his army service. It was agreed I would take my life size Elvis statue to Bremerhaven for the special celebrations. The statue would be unloaded by a crane from a ship at the same spot as Elvis landed and there would dancers, singers and even the little boy in 1958 who got Elvis to sign an autograph as he came down the gangplank at the dock (he was now 40 years old).
I would drive the Elvis statue in my van to Harwich, catch the overnight ferry to Hamburg then drive the next day to the port of Bremerhaven with my host, Gerd Schuster, for the big promotion at the quayside. I deliberately got to Harwich early and waited around for several hours until it was time to drive the van on to the ferry. Then all hell broke lose when I looked at my passport to find it was not my passport but that of my partner Maureen. In those days there were no mobile (cell) phones so I had to run about one mile to the UK Immigration Office and ask advice. They said I could leave the country but there was no guarantee I could get enter Germany or return to the UK without a valid passport.
I ran another half mile to the nearest telephone and phoned my London office who phoned Gerd in Germany who phoned the police who agreed to give me special papers. I am sure to this day that German official was an Elvis Presley fan. All this was done with just 30 minutes to go before boarding the ferry.There was a delegation of Police to meet Elvis and me and give me special papers to stay in Germany for 3 days.
The promotion on October 1st 1988 was hugely successful. We had five TV News film crews, all the German Press and 500 people turned out. After the promotion we drove down to Bad Nauheim where the German Fan Club had a convention. When we arrived about 1,000 fans came out of the convention to greet us and they lifted the life size statue above their heads and carried Elvis into the auditorium. I remember we had to wait over 30 minutes to meet the president of the Fan Club because he was too busy, even though we had come from England at our expense. Meanwhile all his members were there to greet us. We took the statue outside Elvis' home in Bad Nauheim and the local newspaper took a photo but they never sent me a copy.
Fans who used to visit Graceland in the early years after Elvis died will remember Beth Pease and today Beth still lives in the Memphis area. Of all the people I ever met when I first went to Graceland Beth was the most hospitable. Whereas, it is a common trait in the USA to be told "you must come over for dinner", with Beth it was always honoured. I used to spend a lot of money in Memphis buying Elvis souvenirs, photos, books and magazines but I rarely got invited to dinner except by Beth and her family.
I first met Beth when she worked for Grayline Tours and Beth, the consummate saleswoman, wanted the tour business of the Elvisly Yours Fan Club. She showed me the sights and took me to Blues Clubs and was the perfect hostess. Later she started Graceland News, a wonderful newspaper for fans giving them all the news and gossip about Memphis and Elvis. We still have just a few copies left. With our first ad in she spelt my fan club name "Elvishly Yours".
Graceland News should have been bought out by EPE but because they don't care about Elvis, his fans or even what they want to buy the paper eventually died. Beth always said, "Sid, you have to learn to kiss ass!" meaning that of Jack Soden, but I always responded, " if you kiss ass you can get AIDS". It really didn't do Beth any good and nor of any of the American Elvis Fan Club Presidents.
When I think back, what better title for a regular Newsletter published by Graceland ? Yet another stupid decision by EPE management.
Elvis in Communist Countries
I went to Hungary in the late 1980's trying to do business on a barter basis. I would sell Elvis Presley souvenirs in exchange for Hungarian tinned food and then find a buyer for the food in the UK. Sadly, the Communist Government changed the rules and banned such barter for and the deal collapsed.
But I did discover an unusual difference between fans in west Europe and those in Communist countries. In Britain fans hold their meetings often in pubs and usually in working class areas. It is interesting that Elvis conventions in Hungary are held in the best hotels and men would dress in dinner suites and women in gowns. The historical reason for this is that in the 1950's when Elvis first became famous the only people who could listen to rock 'n' roll in the Communist Bloc and could afford radio receivers were the intelligentsia and the leaders who would frequent the best hotels. Rock 'n Roll was not known by the masses for many years and was banned. I gave out a few copies of my book "Elvis A King Forever" but some crook in Hungary published it in Hungarian without my permission. Now that Hungary are in the EC perhaps I can get some compensation. I learned about the Hungarian rip-off of my book from Pete and Jen.
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Elvisly Yours statue at Bremerhaven
The perilous unloading of Elvis from a ship that docked at the exact spot Elvis landed in 1988
Beth Pease in deep discussion with Daphne Brown (October 1982)
£6.95 (p&p £1.00)
Cover of the Elvisly Yours magazine No. 35. Notice our Communist "hammer and sickle" and shortly after, the Berlin Wall came down.
includes a thesis by Sid Shaw, DisGraceland and 21 more papers by experts in the Elvis World
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