The original vintage Shure Brothers 55S microphone, used by Elvis Presley on the Louisiana Hayride, is the highlight of the Hollywood Memorabilia Auction on December 16, 2005 in Beverly Hills, California. The auction includes over 350 pieces of Hollywood memorabilia ranging from props and costumes to artist's sketches and vintage photographs worth over Two Million Dollars.
From the pressrelease:
Elvis Aaron Presley, known the world over simply as Elvis, truly was the first international "Superstar" and is one of the most important figures of twentieth century popular culture. He sold over 1 billion records, more than any other artist. He was one of the highest paid actors of the time. His musical influences came from pop, country, gospel and R&B. No one has been as celebrated in the history of music. His sound and style transformed the traditional clapping audiences into throngs of screaming and fainting fans, which created a whole new music audience of groupies! Elvis created a music phenomenon which stands as popular today (30 yrs. after his death) as it was in the beginning of his career, from his first performances at the Louisiana Hayride.
This Shure Brothers Model 55S was used at radio station KWKH located in Shreveport, Louisiana. It was purchased by the station sometime in the mid 1950s, and appears in photographs taken at the station as early as 1956. It was owned by the station until June 10, 1975 when it was sold, along with the name and assets of the Louisiana Hayride radio program. In addition to its use in the KWKH studios, it was also used on the world famous Louisiana Hayride radio program from the mid-1950s until the end of its primary run in August of 1960, and saw continuous use on occasional Louisiana Hayride package shows throughout the 1960s. Artists signed by KWKH or guest- starring on the Hayride who would have used this microphone include Johnny Cash, George Jones, Roy Acuff, June Carter, Hawkshaw Hawkins, Jean Shepard, Roy Clark, Minnie Pearl, Ray Price, Roger Miller, Johnny Paycheck, Hank Williams Jr., Flatt & Scruggs, Mac Wiseman, Nat Stuckey, Leroy Van Dyke, Charley Pride, Freddie Hart, Bob Luman, Grandpa Jones, Marty Robbins, The Wilburn Brothers and countless others.
The most famous role for this Model 55S came on the evening of December 15, 1956 when Hayride announcer Horace Logan first spoke the words "Elvis has left the building" into the microphone as the young Presley exited the Hirsch Youth Building in Shreveport after concluding his final Louisiana Hayride show. Simply trying to encourage the crowd of teenagers to take their seats for the remainder of the Hayride show, Mr. Logan had no idea how famous his words would become in later years!
The microphone is offered together with the full rights to the "Elvis has left the building" sound recording, as made by Horace Logan on that December evening. (The full rights, title and interest in the recording will be transferred to the successful bidder from the current owner when the sale is complete.) The microphone comes with letters of authenticity from Frank Page, an employee of KWKH from 1947 to present, and Joey Kent, son of the Louisiana Hayride owner.
A wonderful, historic piece of sound equipment from the Louisiana Hayride show, through which one of the most famous phrases of the 20th century -- "Elvis has left the building!" -- was first spoken.
Source: Google / Updated: Nov 29, 2005