Ernst Jørgensen did a Q&A on January 13, 2018 in Oslo at an event organized by the Norwegian Flaming Star fan-club.
Asked about future projects he says the "big" thing happening in 2018 will be "The Searcher". He also had this to say about the future of FTD: "There is from time to time rumours that FTD is going to stop. But that is something I don't know anything about."
He said there is always an anniversary for something in the Elvis world and that this year it is the 50th anniversary for the '68 Special and next year for 1969. Both big years for Elvis. We could maybe take that as a hint for one or two future releases? He did confirm a 3 CD set of “Viva Las Vegas” according to a posting on the FECC forum.
He talked about "Elvis On Tour" and "Elvis In Concert" without revealing any plans for either one of those specials. Regarding "Elvis On Tour" there are several parties (Warner, SONY and EPE) that need to talk to each-other for that to happen, and there is a costly project of transferring the old film footage and restoring it which means there is very little money to be made. The film company, not RCA, paid for the audio recordings, that's why they can't release it without their consent. He said it's possible that they will release the concerts on CD but it won't be in 2018 or 2019.
Other topics he talked about:
- Ernst talked at length about the 50's box set from 1992. BMG in Germany believed in the project from the start, but the American record label thought it might sell 10,000 at most. It ended up selling 400,000 in the US, and 600,000 in the rest of the world.
- Will there be an updated version of "A Life In Music". Ernst doesn't really answer this, he says he doesn't want to do it just to make money, there has to be a real good reason to publish a new edition.
- Any surprises? Ernst says no, but that sometimes things turn up like the wire recording of "I Forgot To Remember To Forget". He also says that when they acquire new unreleased material, they will try to release it as soon as possible, and mentions "Live A Little", "Speedway" and "Kissin' Cousins" as examples. An unreleased Elvis recording is no longer a sensation, it will not make headlines, so it makes no sense to keep secrets from the fans - if he finds anything, we will know about it.
- "Elvis In Concert" - Lisa Marie doesn't ever want it released and they respect her wishes. Ernst has no wish to release the concerts on audio, because of the bad shape Elvis was in. So that seems to rule out an FTD release.
- The "Aloha" and "Madison Square Garden" LP:s will eventually be releases in FTD:s classic album series.
This is really bad news. So no reason to wait for an interesting official release of Elvis On Tour like we get it these days from Amiga. And in my eyes it would make sense to release at least the 2 concerts recorded for Elvis In Concert, because they are not worse than some of the 1976 concerts already released. The ‚Lisa Marie wish‘ seems to be a bad excuse for the audio release, might work for the visual release. Consequently the only real interesting releases to expect from FTD are the remaining -yet unreleased- 1969 concerts, which is not much to keep FTD really interesting for spoiled fans like me. Consequently Ernst cannot distract from the point that FTD will fade away. Sad.
Sony/FTD can´t release on tour material but didn´t they release a concert on the close up set in the 90´s ??? And FTD released a Cd with rehearsals ? What´s the problem ?
No official release of Elvis in Concert 1977 is no problem at all. We allready have it for years on bootlegs and it's all over internet and YouTube. At the seem time I think it's a bit hypocrite to decide not to release it. It's all part of his legacy whether he was sick or not at that time.
If I was in control of releasing the 'Elvis in Concert' DVD I would redo it all. The key to greatly nullifying the negative aspect would be clever/thoughtful editing. The Omaha segment, even for someone like me who accepts most things in his career, is tough viewing so I would rely 95% of the time on Rapid City and introduce songs like Unchained Melody, It's Now or Never, Trying to Get To You, and perhaps Little Sister from Omaha. Currently the less than sharp filmed outtakes on YouTube do no favours to the appearance of Elvis so make the whole performance seemingly worse. Added to that I would smooth out his unnnecessary 'rambling', which I think overall would result in something not at all perfect but much more enjoyable. Yes I know it all costs money so I guess it will not happen but please let me dream.
Such a pity that they dont want to release Elvis in Concert in FTD. It was a part of his life and the music is not that bad as some people say. I love the versions of You gave me a mountain, How Great Thou Art, Hurt, My way, Trying to get to you, Early morning rain, And I love you so. The visual aspect ok I can image. He didnt look very well, he looked ill; he was ill!!! Although again: it was part of who the man was! But about the aural aspect I think its a shame that they don't release the CD at FTD with upgraded sound and the 2 whole concerts. I know they exist on CD but the sound quality, even of the official CD Elvis in Concert from 20 years orso ago, can be much better.
Why not release the EIC original on one disc (minus the compression) and then the entire Rapid City show on disc 2. Much more listenable than what we got on the Unchained Melody and Amarillo '77 FTD's. Forget Omaha ! I think the gravel road release used the filmed recordings as their source and not the RCA audios. Correct me if I'm wrong.
bad news for me too, I was really expecting an EOT box with the 4 recorded concerts and EIC at FTD, I can understand that they do not want to release DVD (although we find everything on YOUTUBE!) but CD I do not really see where the problem is, as it was said above many concerts 76 and 77 are already out and often of inferior quality! really weird ...
To split this into the different items:
Elvis On Tour: After releasing one of the concerts (with not the best mix) already on 'Close Up' it seems hard to believe why the other 3 concerts cannot be released right now. And a 4 CD box with all concerts would be perfect, because this could be high quality, very listenable. But the comment 'not in 2018 or 2019' is water on the mills of the Amiga release.
Elvis in Concert: As Dazman wrote below it would be fine for the classic album series. Still, I would also like to get the Omaha concert. Forget the video release, all can be found on youtube, and who wants wo watch it more often than once a year?
Aloha & MSG concerts: After to many official releases those can be skipped in the FTD classic album series. What could be offered on a second CD we did not already have? And the original mix of the LP fans have either on the Legancy release, or with the complete masters, not to mention all other old CD releases when those concerts could be bought for the first time on CD.
EOT: As each year passes with no further releases of this material, I find that I care less and less.
EIC; I'd like to have the original LP audio remastered/remixed, and re released. I have no interest in ever watching any of the video again.
Personally I can't see why the powers-that-be can't plan EOT for this year. The '68 Comeback Special has been comprehensively covered by both Legacy and FTD. On EIC, maybe FTD could release the Rapid City gig as a single disc release. It doesn't sound fair to moth-ball it on account of the poor showing from Omaha.
Very sad news but I have to disagree. With the correct advertising and packaging EOT could sell well. The companies don't have confidence in their product. Quite surprising since the Presley and Clint Eastwood catalogues were the first to be exploited when VHS and DVD first came on the scene.
EIC however is another story. Locked away by Priscilla, Lisa and EPE and yet widely available on the internet to the rest of the world this show is still controversial many years later. Would i like it officially released? Definitely. Will it? No.
Dont care about Elvis On Tour (we already have a movie of it, not much else will differ), and I certainly dont care about EIC. What was mentioned was the restoration of the Sullivan shows. How about that happening for the rest of the 50's TV appearances, Dorseys, Allen, and Berle? The real Elvis and the birth of a revolution of music and culture. Its much more important and historic than 70's Elvis.
For EOT, now after 45 years, it is too late. I waited so long for the official release of the show, now with this talk from Ernst I just bought the Amiga release. Really bad timing to tell at the time of such an extraordinary release of all the EOT material that there still is no official release planned. If the release it for the 50's aniversary in 4 yours, I can wait another year until the prices drop, as they did for the TTWII deluxe box. This feels like the release policy RCA had wit Elvis releases in the 70's, they really miss this opportunity for so long.