Juliens 'Icons & Idols' auction was held last weekend. Elvis got a seperate chapter in the catalogue. The three most valuable items are:
1. Red velours pullover from the single 'You'll Be Gone'. $90,000 (€68.000)
2. Black pants, shirt and silver belt $25,000 (€18.800)
3. The third spot is shared by three items (watch and two rings). Each item was sold for $12,800 (€9.700)
Although these and other auction items are well beyond my reach, I always try to pick up a copy of the catalogue. These can be found on ebay and other such sites for fairly modest sums. They usually have great photographs of the items. I was browsing through the ones I have recently and noticed something very interesting. At one auction in the nineties a set of five Sun singles was sold. A couple of years later, they turned up in another auction catalogue. I knew they were they same ones because a couple of them had promo stamps which matched exactly. The only difference was that in the newer photo they suddenly had Elvis' signature on all five of the labels! Yes, quite so! They did of course come with a certtificate saying that the autographs were genuine. The frightening part was that the signatures looked just like the real thing, the forger was obviously a master of his art.
Very interesting point this from Tony C. There are so many fake autographs doing the rounds now, not to mention fake Suns as well. Just because "Reputable" auction houses are selling these items it does not mean they are genuine – certificates of "Verification" or not. They are all running businesses designed to extract money.
Bernard is right about being wary of the certificates that go with these items. The person that fakes the item can easily fake the certificate as well.
At one time I did spend time looking for fake items on ebay and tried to get them withdrawn for sale. I restricted my search to items that could not possibly be genuine, items that were post-August 1977 yet autographed! Two of these were LPs, the UK 1979 "Love Songs" compilation and the French early eighties re-issue of the HMV 10" LP "The Best of Elvis". I did not crash in with any accusations, I just e-mailed the seller asking them to confirm the catalogue number as the internet stated the records were released after Elvis died. I played it dumb and innocent. In both cases, I got no reply so took my concerns to the auction site. They washed their hands of it, they just said that it was merely my opinion, although the release dates were a matter of historic fact. Both items sold for big sums. Because they did not bother to investigate, I don't waste my time looking anymore. Buyer beware.
The one time I did get a different reaction was when a man in France was selling a US copy of "My Way"/"America" with Elvis signature on the sleeve (yes, quite so!). I e-mailed the seller and within the hour got a message back thanking me for letting him know exactly when the single was released. He had already withdrawn it for sale and thanked me for not allowing a fake to go through his hands. He said that it had come from a reputable source in the US, but he did not specify whom.
A little PS to Bernard. I watched my Memphis 1983 fan club video yet again recently, a great bit of filming, my friend.