Nearly two months after its release… my view on Ernst Jorgensen’s A Boy From Tupelo. It’s not only my fault or laziness that it took so long. I was waiting for the package and then found out not everyone can be trusted to keep his word… Anyway, I got the book with 3 CDs only a couple of weeks ago and needed some time to experience it.
Only 10 never before released recordings are on the 3 CDs according to the book. Well, to me it sounded like they were all new recordings. The remastering has been done so well, that I still need to get my jaw closed. E.g. when playing Fool, Fool, Fool I had to check if was the same as on the 50s box. Not only the obscure live and radio recordings have improved a lot, but also the masters sound better than ever before. The parts of How Do You Think I Feel are fun and a complete new song like Little Mama is just a marvellous extra. Elvis’ Sun recordings were always among my favourites, and that only got stronger with this release.
It’s just too much… to read I mean. If I waited with a review until I am finished, it will take a couple of months extra. Just thumbing through the book takes a couple of hours, especially since your eye falls on something you want to read every time.
The dedication put in this project is amazing. As Ernst stated in his foreword it is a cooperation of many Elvis fans, EPE and many others. At times like this I feel proud again to be a fan and actually having met some of the people makes it even more enjoyable.
After some introduction the book really starts in the week of Elvis’ first professional recording, July 1954. Seventy-eight chapters are used to describe every week – day by day - of the remaining of 1954 and 1955. I think no-one’s life is documented as well as this period of Elvis’s. The lack of unreleased music is completely compensated with the tons of unseen pictures and unknown information in this book.
The last two parts of the book are dedicated to the recordings and the song influences.
The book is put together in a very tasteful way. If I have to name a minor on it, it would be the weight. It’s bloody heavy and you have to put it on a table to enjoy it, unless you are a weight lifter.
This book is one of the best parts of my collection. Anyone complaining about the price is totally nuts, it is worth at least 10 times as much. Especially knowing what I paid for garbage compared to this over the years. Personally I take a deep bow for Ernst and all the others who put their time in the project. A humble thankyouverymuch is all I can add.
In the past Ernst has (regrettably) been criticized so many times for almost everything. A Boy From Tupelo is without any doubt a true labour of love ! So yes, wholeheartedly agreed with this review, and a well meant "thankyouverymuch" indeed ! Always El.
I agree Lex. This is one amazing, monumental piece of work that took Ernst years to complete. It was well worth the wait and a welcome addition to my collection.
Lex, well stated - every word of it. This is what ELVIS is all about, for me at least. I skipped some of the FTD releases, but spent all that money on this unique set. Worth every cent, penny, nickle.
The postman said "Be carefull, it's heavy" and boy, was he right. I am absolutely amazed with this set. Tha audio, as Lex says, is outstandingly good and the book, which I still haven't managed to plough my way through yet, is indeed a labour of love from Ernst and I'm delighted and proud to own a copy. Thanks Ernst and everyone who assisted him, brilliant!
It's so easy to label a great deal of Elvis items as "junk", worthless", "C-R-A-P", etc... However, when something like this is released, I really am at a loss for the superlative that truly sums up this set. It is (from the music to the book) simply a work of art that is jaw-dropping, head-scratchingly beautiful. In the words of Mr. T., "I pitty the fool" that didn't save up for this one.
I wish I could have it but it is very expensive... :(
Now Ernst has covered the years 53-55 and 56 (A boy from Tupelo, Young man with the big beat), if we are lucky he will continue, maybe with the years 57-59, I know that I will buy that also.
This release was criticized on this site even before being released. But like the "Big Beat " package from last year it is a fantastic labor of love which definitively chronicals a very important part of Elvis' career. To me , this was a necessary release - we now know everything about Elvis pre- breakout Sun years. The book defies description - just so much info there. Fantastic sound on the reconstructed masters, and improved sound on the rare tracks . Excellant job all the way around. No wonder it sold out . Lets hope for similar sets on 1957-58, and the 1969.
alanfalk, Lou A: The years 57 to 59, how much is there much to be released from? Not an expert in Elvis. But the best find would be some listenable audios from his one and only Canadian concert tours...But anyway, that's too much of wishful thinking! What is out there to come up with? Anyone?
I'm not an expert either . I just know what I read in the various Elvis books and publications. There's probably not much audio - possibly a few more outtakes including what's left of the binaurals . But maybe the live Canadian material IS lurking out there somewhere. Ernst seems to be able to find stuff like that . There are probably enough new photos and clipping to make a book similar to the one that came with "Big Beat'. To me that's the idea - to celebrate those classic years and cover all of Elvis classic 50's years in detail . The day is coming when there won't be any more CD's - only downloads or MP3 files , so lets enjoy this stuff while we can.
Hello, does anyone know exactly what the software used by Ernst and his team actually does? The overall timbre is softer, the sense of separation between the instruments is amazing, and Elvis actually sounds a little louder. Unbelievable.
sitdown revamped – There is some audio available out there of Elvis singing live in Toronto and Vancouver, but it’s only excerpts of songs. You hear a reporter talking then you get to hear Elvis singing (among the many screams) for about 10 – 15 seconds. I don’t know if a complete song exists, let alone the entire concerts, of these 1957 shows in Canada. There are the Ottawa and Vancouver press conferences available (Elvis - A Canadian tribute CD). The only thing available live from 1957 it’s his last appearance on the Ed Sullivan show. Since there were no more Louisiana Hayride shows in 1957, there are not much ‘live’ recordings in 1957 out there. Unless Ernst can come up with something rare (like Little mama).
As for 1958, there is only the King Creole soundtrack and the June sessions available, which we already have. He went in the Army after that. For 1959, you would only have the home recordings in Germany and the interviews he did. That could be a nice FTD package. A boy from Tupelo is the best FTD release so far! TCB
I am really happy to own this set. Amazing sound and a superb source of information. What more can you ask for? It wouldn't exist if there were only commercial motives. It feels like a labour of love. Thanks to all that helped make it happen and especially a big thank you to Ernst. Well done!!
Troubleman: Thank you. Yes, I remember these audio excerpts and Canadian Tribute. Not much to surface than, and yes: Ed Sullivan last show of January 57. Seems like it would a wounderous discovery needed...;-) Or is there any rporter out there having taped Elvis in Canada? Would be great. But on the other hand, if there was a tape available, it would have been released in the past 35 years. Sherif Hannah is another possible source...or all of a sudden, MRS pops with something...Anyway. Enjoy what is out there and available.
Amazing that the great brain of Parker didnt know history was being made by never recording one 1957 or 1961 concert. Guess he wasnt that smart after all!
Understand somewhat that no shows in the 50s were taped as Elvis was on television during these years. It remains amazing though that the '61 concerts were not taped indeed, and only an overflow of studio material would be rational explanation for this at the time. I think that the Colonel also expected that Elvis would start touring again in '62 as he was in serious negotiations about this with RCA and other parties. This explains the relatively low level of productivity in that year compared to '61 or the six years that would follow consequently with three movies per year and sometimes additional studio or television work. Nevertheless, I would give the Colonel a pass for the period from Heartbreak Hotel to Viva Las Vegas, after that the cost cutting on movies resulted in ridiculous product that was not genius at all but almost killed the career of the greatest entertainer in the world. Another pass from the NBC TV Special to Aloha From Hawaii, but then the Colonel moved into career killing mode again, not allowing new bursts of creativity with a serious movie role or a world tour. In the end, there is still great legacy to enjoy in spite of the frustration about lost opportunities to even have more enjoyed Elvis his enormous talent.
I cannot believe that anybody is criticizing negatively this box. To me it is a real masterwork and if I want to listen to the 'original' sound, I pick an old vinyl of mine and play it. Even though, I am not sure if this is the sound that Sam Philips produced as long as I will not have been able to get one of the original singles released in 1954/'55. From my point of view the remastering was the only right thing to do. Who wants to listen to the Sun material how they sounded in the 70's? I do have a choice now and I can compare and decide upon which version I will listen to most in the future. Many thanks to Ernst for this outstanding œuvre and I cannot appreciate highly enough all the efforts that must have been necessary to make this happen!
Does anyone know if there are any plans to produce more of these sets? It re-appeared on Elvis.com as "coming soon" a couple of weeks ago, but it has since been deleted from that site.
Deano1 what is happening is they are getting returns,and i suspect its because they have the errors such as uncut pages.
I have spoke with the manager,these are sold out.
Thank you mature_elvis_ fan75. That makes sense, but I still wonder why they don't produce more of these sets if they know they can sell them. I have the single disc that was put out by another company on order, so I probably would not buy this one, but I now some people who would love to have the opportunity to buy it.