Posts Tagged ‘Elvis’
In 1980 American Express teamed up with John DeLorean for a Christmas promotion, offering a limited edition of 100 24-karat gold-plated DeLoreans for $85,000 each. The response to the promotion, as to the car itself, was underwhelming: only two were sold– though a third gold-plated car was assembled in 1983 with spare parts that were required by American Express in case one of the other two that were built were damaged.
But in fact there was a fourth golden DeLorean. Michael Feldman, who’d paid $28,000 (including an early delivery premium) to get the first production model, decided that he’d do the plating himself. He found an electro-brushing facility and had his car gold-plated, panel by panel, to a 24-karat luster. The process cost him an additional $8,000– not chump change, but a comparative bargain. Still, a golden car wasn’t the most practical vehicle in the world; Feldman sold it in 1981 to the first a series of subsequent owners.
As we keep our eyes peeled for Doc and Marty, we might recall that it was on this date in 1956 that “Heartbeak Hotel” earned Elvis Presley his first Gold Record. Presley’s first million-seller (and his first release on RCA, after moving from Sun), the record sat at number one on Billboard‘s Top 100 chart for seven weeks, topped the Country and Western chart, and reached number five on the R&B chart. It continued to sell– it was eventually certified Double Platinum– and was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1995.
A selection of entries from Music History in GIFs…
As we tap our toes, we might recall that it was on this date in 1946– on his 11th birthday– that Elvis Presley received his first guitar. Elvis had coveted a bicycle or a rifle, but his protective mother (“She never let me out of her sight,” Elvis later said) took him to the Tupelo Hardware Store and convinced him to accept a $7.75 Kay guitar instead. The rest is, as they say, history.
Girls on Donkeys #0117
The collector: Lisa Wood, artist and jewellery designer, San Francisco.
The collection: Photo postcards of girls on donkeys.
The story behind the collection…
This collection started about 5 years ago when I came across my first photo postcard of a young girl on a donkey taken around 1910. She was clothed in a beautiful dress, a big bow in her hair and shiny black boots that buttoned up the side. I loved the juxtaposition of the girl dressed in her Sunday best on a seemingly stinky old donkey…
One of the many labors of love on display at Obsessionistas, a showcase for unique and evocative collections.
We believe that in a world of homogeneous ‘me too’ lifestyles, products and brands, individuality can at least in part be expressed through our particular obsessions and what we seek out, keep and collect.
More on Ms. Wood’s collection here.
* Ursula Andress
As we dust our shelves, we might recall that it was on this date in 1956 that serendipity yielded one of the coolest collectibles ever: rockabilly legend Carl “Blue Suede Shoes” Perkins was recording at Sam Phillips’ Sun Records in Memphis; Perkin’s buddy Johnny Cash, a Sun artist and a country star by virtue of his recent hits “I Walk The Line” and “Folsom Prison Blues,” was hanging out in the booth; and soon-to-be-famous Jerry Lee Lewis was playing piano (for a $15 dollar session fee– “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” was set for release a few weeks later).
A couple of years earlier, Phillips had launched Elvis Presley with “It’s Alright Mama”; but in 1955, as Elvis’ career exploded, Phillips had sold his contract to RCA, and Elvis moved on. But The King was back in Memphis that fateful day; he stopped by Sun to say hello… and an impromptu jam ensued. Phillips had the presence of mind to order his engineer, Jack Clement, to roll tape– a tape that was promptly shelved, forgotten, and unheard for 20 years. The recordings of what was arguably the first “supergroup” were found in 1976 and finally released in 1981… since when, they’ve been treasured by fans– a new crop of which has emerged with the success of the Broadway musical Million Dollar Quartet.
Hooktheory, a system for learning to write music, analyzed 1,300 popular songs for how chords were used.
First we’ll look at the relative popularity of different chords based on the frequency that they appear in the chord progressions of popular music. Then we’ll begin to look at the relationship that different chords have with one another. For example, if a chord is found in a song, what can we say about the probability for what the next chord will be that comes after it?…
It will surprise no one who has done time playing rhythm in a band that the most common chords used overall were G, F, and C.
[TotH to Flowing Data]
As we reach for the Rickenbacker, we might recall that it was on this date in 1968 that Elvis Presley took the stage for the first time in over seven years to record the NBC television special Elvis, remembered now as “the ‘68 Comeback Special.” The King’s informal jam session, recorded that night in front of a small audience, was the inspiration for the “Unplugged” concept, later popularized by MTV.
(The chords that ran through the repertoire fit Hooktheory’s pattern precisely; c.f., “Can’t Help Falling in Love With You.”)