Another Flaming Star/ FTD book saw the light of day, this time it is dedicated to Elvis’ benefit show for the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial.
As usual the book is very well designed. The lay-out is very easy on the eye, as is the font size. Pictures and memorabilia are spread well over the pages in a good balance with the text.
With the release of Memphis Recording Service’s Such a Night this show was already well documented. This release makes it probably the best documented show ever, maybe only outdone by that other show of Elvis in Hawaii, more than a decade later.
The book starts (after preface and introduction by good ole Johnny Saulovich) with a bit of history about the USS Arizona. The preparation by Col. Parker has some space and then it’s time for the real thing. Elvis’ trip to Hawaii starts in LA. About 70 pages are reserved for this trip (or better: the arrival at Hawaii mainly).
The largest part of the book is used for the press conference (about 100 pages): many unseen pictures, mainly black and white, but some in full colour. The actual show gets about 60 pages, with mainly known pictures, unfortunately. The last few chapters are dedicated to the numerous bootleg outings of the show.
Of course it’s mainly a picture book, but it is decorated with tons of memorabilia, like newspaper clippings, bills, and letters. Memories of people who were there makes the picture complete as possible.
The CD has no new source, unfortunately. The remastering by Jean-Marie Juilland does not make it outstanding either. It is better than the Silver Box version, without any doubt, but I can’t decide if I prefer this one or the MRS one. Too bad, since this show certainly deserved a professional recording, but we have to settle with this poor tape.
Beautiful documentation of an outstanding Elvis-event. Too bad we have to settle with this and don’t have a professional recording or even better… a professional film to accompany it.