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Elvis And You
Elvis And You
by Laura Levin
Edition: Paperback
18 used & new from CDN$ 8.90

5.0 out of 5 stars ElvisNews Review, Dec 28 2000
This review is from: Elvis And You (Paperback)
Probably because the book is this massive it is printed on very thin paper. Especially because this guide will function as a reference book often, this is a pity. We bet there will be only a few in perfect condition after a couple of weeks. Also a lot of the pictures used in the book deserve more than the exposure they get now, also due to the poor paper-quality. On the other hand: this work on quality paper might hardly be affordable for a lot of people, so the choice is understandable. Let's see if the content is good enough to hope for a "deluxe version" someday.As we always do with new books, we thumbed through it looking for new pictures. On first sight it looked a little complex, with a lot of repeats, we thought. Well, we weren't completely wrong about that, but starting from the beginning we soon found out it has a reason, and a well considered one. All chapters are build in the same way: a more or less short essay about the subject, facts ("Essential Elvisology"), references ("Your Elvis Education") and tips how to enrich your own experiences regarding the subject ("The Elvis And You Experience"). This consistent design makes it pretty easy to find what you want, most of the time. Unfortunately there is no index to this guide, so when you are looking for something really specific... it can be a very hard job.During the acknowledgements it becomes clear that the book has "a heavy Internet base". The reader familiar with the Elvis-scene on the Internet will recognize a lot of the names. Of course this results in a lot of references to the Internet throughout the book.The book is split up in 33 chapters, starting with the man himself: a short biography, mainly a time-line of important dates, his death, his records, his movies, his TV-work, his shows and his personal interests. There are a couple of chapters that are devoted mainly to the fans: Collecting, The Pilgrimage, Your Elvis Shrine, Impersonators and such. As stated before, all chapters start with an essay. Those essays are very well written, and even though nothing new comes up, the point of view from the authors makes them very enjoyable. The guide part of these chapters is very good, directing the reader towards the more important available works. Because the Internet-addresses (the so-called URL's) are often very long and hardly readable, the references to the sites look pretty cluttered. A better solution would have been to list just the site-names, with an alphabetic overview including the URL's in the back of the book. Since this book has its own site (that is: they are constructing the site, so far it looks like they only registered the URL), it might be a nice idea to include all links used in the book on that site, if possible per chapter. Since the Internet is evolving constantly, this might be a good idea anyway. Before such a list returns from the printer it may be outdated already.In general we can say the Elvis part of the guide is reliable, there are some mistakes, but they are in every book it seems, and we didn't find real major misses. The "You"-part is often going towards the ridiculous, especially the chapters we mentioned before. This certainly doesn't mean you can easily skip them. Again, the essays are well written, including a lot of wit and the "tips" are often so ridiculous it gets really funny (e.g. the "Dos and Don'ts of Impersonation" and "How to get started impersonating"). Having met all kinds of people ourselves (especially on the Internet), we know it's not complete nonsense written in those chapters, but sometimes we can't help but think it's too crazy to be true. In opposition to the main media, that love to use those exceptions to stereotype the average Elvis fan, this book shows it in a light-hearted, funny way. Probably the poor souls suffering the "handicaps" in these chapters won't even recognize it and take it seriously, so they'll be happy too.  Our conclusion is that this guide is really what it claims to be: "the guide to the pleasure of being an Elvis fan". Interesting, well researched and very enjoyable, thus it gave a lot of pleasure. We can only say that supported by a well maintained website it certainly deserves a "deluxe edition". "So now let's have a tremendous hand for a very nice book"

That's The Way It Is
That's The Way It Is
4 used & new from CDN$ 76.58

5.0 out of 5 stars We want more!, July 12 2000
This review is from: That's The Way It Is (Audio CD)
Finally the long awaited "That's the Way it Is" re-release is available. We first mentioned this re-release in one of our first editions and almost one year later it's released. Was it worth waiting for?
Design
Gladly we knew what to expect regarding the artwork, because there's a big change between the "old" and the "new" That's The Way It Is. From the classic dark cover of Elvis on stage to the bright look it has now. Opening the package, a plastic case with information printed on it, we find three digipacks, in this so called "deluxe edition" it reminds us very much of the "Artist of the Century" box that was released last year. It has the same kind of design and typography. The other version of the TTWII release is a 3cd box jewel case.
The three digipacks are white and contain one silhouette of Elvis on the front in black and white and a "coloured" picture of Elvis inside. On the back is the design of Elvis blouse blown up with the tracklistings. All three digipacks are done this way with different images. Probably it is modern art or something, but we have a kind of feeling the printing went wrong somewhere. Were they out of ink?
There's one twenty-four pages booklet with all the information of all three CD's. The cover reminds of the movieposter, a bright orange/ yellow "sun" with again a black and white image of Elvis in front of it. There's a brief description of the history and the greatness of the show and how it came about on a 'rainbow-like" background. The rest of the booklet is filled with images from albums, singles and some artwork for each CD. It ends with a great action shot of Elvis on stage like we know him from the movie.
Unfortunately there's no other information in the booklet than what we mentioned above, and that's a chance BMG missed. There was so much excitement building up to the actual release, and BMG promotes it like one of the best Elvis' products ever, if not the best! So you might expect some more information, for example press reviews from the concert, movie or album and so on. That could really emphasize the "legendary" surrounding the release.
Content
It took some self-control to do our review like we are used to do, starting with design. Upon receiving the set we didn't know what to do. We felt like kids in a candy shop, not knowing what to take first. Should we play CD2 or CD3 first? CD1 will have to wait until we are recovered from the other two. Just kidding, we listened to that one too already. Well, we decided to use our skip button often and went for CD3. "Stranger in the Crowd" live was what we were waiting for. And not in vain! What a marvellous performance Elvis gave, accompanied by a band and background singers that were up to it too! No, wait we are making a mess of it, our behaviour isn't really of interest to you, let's do it in our usual professional way.
The 1st CD starts with the original TTWII "soundtrack" followed by 7 additional bonus tracks. Of course the old remark that it isn't really a soundtrack is still valid. But all together it is still a great CD to listen too. And with the additional tracks it only lasts longer. Unfortunately "Bridge Over Troubled Water" is still the faked live version, that is the studio version with overdubbed audience. Disregarding this minor the quality is amazing, it sounds clear as never before.
More interesting for the fans is the second CD with the complete August 12th, 1970, midnight show. If you listen to it you can only conclude it's probably one of the best shows Elvis ever gave. He is full of energy, giving it all and really firing up the band backing him up. "Words" for instants sounds so great; Elvis really had much more control of his voice than in the known 1969 versions. "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'", partly known but with a great reprise. We can name all 22 tracks as highlight but the entire thing is so great that you have to experience it yourself completely, believe us, when you close your eyes you really feel like being there! It only makes us longing for a boxset with all recorded concerts...
The last CD (yes, the one we already mentioned) is another highlight itself. The first nine tracks are recorded live and lifted from several shows. "The Next Step Is Love" and of course "Stranger in the Crowd" are indescribable, but also "known" live songs like "I Can't Stop Loving You" and "I Got a Woman" got a special treatment by Elvis in those days. The rest of this CD is from several rehearsals, of which we got some on bootleg before, but never in this great quality. Some of the recordings still doesn't sound great regarding sound quality, but as BMG states they are included for historic content. And they made a good decision in this case! "Santa Claus Is Back in Town" isn't destroyed by scissors, like it would have been a couple of years ago, "Oh Happy Day" is just... well, orgasmic... Sorry, we'll have to stop and concentrate on our own pleasure now. Listen to it yourself!
Only thing we can say is we hope that the re-release of the movie will receive the same treatment like this - by far the best ever - BMG-release.

Vol. 1-2-Good Rockin' Tonight:
Vol. 1-2-Good Rockin' Tonight:
Offered by Vanderbilt CA
Price: CDN$ 34.98
2 used & new from CDN$ 34.98

3.0 out of 5 stars The most complete Hayride Collection, June 27 2000
Cover Art
The design of the set is done with taste. It's most black and white with golden fonts. This is a good choice since all photographs are also black and white. There are some great shots of Elvis on the Louisiana Hayride including images of Elvis playing the drums and accordion.
The booklet is about twelve pages in a fold out style with a lot of images and the storyline of the documentary and background information on music in the fifties. The CD's are "picture disks" besides the besides the track listing and the title there are two small images of Elvis on the disks.
Content
The title of this 2CD release is very well chosen since the content has been done in the form of a documentary. We can follow Elvis "evolution" from Elvis' first appearance on October 16, 1954 in front of a crowd of several hundred people to his final special appearance before over 10,000 people on December 16, 1956.
This live radio show, which began airing in 1948, rivaled the Grand Ole Opry for appeal in its day. You get to hear what the audience heard ...The evolution of Elvis Presley from a an nervous kid who wanted to be a country-western singer to the King of Rock and Roll.
The story is told as a documentary by Frank Page, one of the original announcers for the Louisiana Hayride and the man who first introduced Elvis on their stage. He takes you backstage at the Hayride and on the road with Elvis. His recollections provide wonderful insight to Elvis' performances on this renown radio show.
Frank tells the story of Elvis Louisiana Hayride appearances as an introduction to the recordings of the actual performances that survived the test of time. Starting of with an 'impression" of an evening out in the fifties to the Louisiana Hayride. It's a bit like you're there, looking around. We can hear Elvis "evolve" from a shy boy on his first appearance to the king at this last performance on the show.
Unlike all the other budget releases with various Hayride recordings simply put together this release gives the tracks in the right order with background info on the actual performance. Besides that this release is complete covering all available Hayride recordings from 1955 to 1956 in a very good quality.
We must make the remark that this is not the kind of release you put in your CD player and listen to while doing something Else. Since it's a "documentary" you have to pay attention since there's a lot of 'talking' on these CD's between the tracks. Another option is of course to program the musical tracks.
When Elvis left the stage after his final Louisiana Hayride performance on December 15, 1956, the show's producer and announcer Horace Logan tried to quiet the crowd so the show could continue by uttering for the first time the now-famous words "Elvis has left the building". The claim on the CD that this now famous announcement has never before been released on CD is untrue. It was released on another Hayride archive, the 3CD box "The Louisiana Hayride Shows" released by the Goldies label in 1998 (also presented by Frank Page). But for those of you who don't have that one it is now included so you can can add this piece of Elvis history to your collection.
Conclusion
This release is the complete history of Elvis Louisiana Hayride performances and therefore a great addition to your collection. If you buy this you can throw away every other Hayride collection you have since those are not as complete as this release, and don't have this audio quality. Well, perhaps you should keep one other CD, because listening to the same documentary again and again might get boring at some point.

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