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Ernst Jorgensen's FTD SUN Project Updates

By: Ernst Jorgensen
Source: FECC Forum
January 21, 2008
Elvis Book News, Elvis CD News, Elvis News

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The Follow That Dream Label's Sun book and CD project is due out at the end of 2008, and and expected to be in it's final form over the next 3-4 months. There will be 3 CDs with the book, and they will be worth having because of Kevan Budd's excellent work, but they are the bonus - the book is the main issue.

Ernst Jorgensen said today, "There are many reasons why the book has been delayed, but none more important than the fact that my daytime job takes almost all my time (not a complaint). Another reason has been the release of 4 related publications: Rockin' Across Texas, Joey Kent's Hayride book and the two MRS releases. A little much on this one subject for such a short period of time. The last reason for the delay was the hope that if we researched a bit more we might come up with more information and photo material. We got lucky and there are still a few more leads to pursue." And added the following ...


1) The SUN tapes have been researched endlessly by many people including Kevan Budd and myself. We have had full co-operation from Shelby and John Singleton at SUN, The family of Sam Phillips, EPE and obviously Sony/BMG. You will get every little bit we have, but really only a few bits on 'Harbor Lights' and 'When it Rains, It Really Pours' are previously unreleased. I don't even have a rumor to pursue anymore.

2) AS for live recordings I can obviously not know whether somebody, somewhere has something we don't know about. The owners of the 6 track 'Little Mama' acetate have NO plans for it's release and money is not a factor.

The Book

The book is not so much a narrative as basically hundreds of quotes and interviews, facts and people's stories. It's a little more like 'Day By Day' that I wrote with Peter Guralnick rather than 'Rockin' Across Texas'. The book will be 58 chapters. The first six are the 6 months of 1954 and followed by next 52 being week by week through 1955. So it has the calendar as the thread but improves over 'Day By Day' with a lot more details. We've discovered a lot more unknown Elvis shows and corrected previous mistakes. The book is also about the photos - You will have never ever in your life seen so many Elvis pictures from that period in one place.

Additional elements the book are the Steve Sholes notes on the actual boxes RCA received. These will all be included, but they are not a complete picture of Elvis' recording activities at SUN.

These notes have no mention of any tapes containing 'Milkcow Blues Boogie' and You're A Heartbreaker'.

Historically, the back ground for the book is Ger Rijffs 'Long Lonely Highway' and Lee Cotton's 'Did Elvis Play In Your Home Town?'.

Obviously Peter Guralncik and I took the 'Elvis day-by-day' logic a bit further with our joint book. In most cases what has been done before help establish what needs to be done now. 'Rockin' Across Texas' is a good reminder that more detail and more photos can be found if you put your mind to it, and you are willing to work hard. Stanley worked very hard for very long.

All of the virtues of the mentioned publications I will try to expand, but both Joey Kent's latest Hayride book, and the two MRS publications, remind me of something else: The problem of the endless repetition of erromous information that comes about when the material is simply rehashed without any critical review.

I obviously need not look no further than my own work to find the same problem. After all I did about 5 books on Elvis' recording career, and it's still not complete or 100% correct. I can also find countless pictures that have been captioned wrong by me over the years, but my aim with this book is to try and improve our common knowledge on the Sun period. Eventually I will be able to correct several misunderstandings, and without dount, I will also add new mistakes - not willingly. Somebody else will be able to point these mistakes out - starting the day after the release of the book.

At first I thought the book needed to included every known photo of Elvis from the period, but thankfully that's not possible anymore - I have too many. However, I do want to try and find EVERY show date, and I'm still about 10 short. There is no point in rewriting Guralnicks 'Last Train To Memephis' or Hopkins biography, but I will need to use some of their findings and viewpoints to create a text element that puts all the bits and pieces together. Where both Hopkins and Guralnick in their narrative were able to paint a full portrait of the young Elvis Presley, I do not have such talent. My mission is to create a source book of facts, photos, music, memorabilia, memories of those who were there, and try and link it together for those are not already familiar with the basic story. Exactly how to do this is what's going to to be sorted in the next few months.

Elvis Presley, Bill Black, Scotty Moore & Sam Phillip's February 3, 1955

Just in case you were under the illusion that I have collected all this material myself, I will mention that without Hopkins, Guralnick, Lee Cotton, Rijff, Sean O'Neal, Kevan Budd, Sebastian Jeansson, Sherif Hanna, Bill Burk, Trevor The Man and my two exceptional detectives Luca Fabris and Brian Petersen this would have been a much poorer project, and my life would have been nowhere as much fun as it has. Additionally dozens of people have made their photos exclusively available for this project - (I hope that this is respected!!)


The CDs with it will be an extra added bonus. No, we don't have 'Uncle Penn', 'Tennessee Saturday Night' or 'Rock Around The Clock' as mentioned in the rumours that keep circulating. However we have a great selection on three CDs. The first will be The Masters, the second The Outtakes and then the third with everything else that we could get hold of. However I don't think people should be buying this release just because of the CDs, but because of the photos, the information and the complete package.

Ernst says - without commitment - the following tracklisting could very well be extremely close to the final - with or without the 4 acetate sides.

CD1 / Studio
Harbor Lights [all takes]
I Love You Because [all takes]
That's All Right [all takes, including DRY master]
Blue Moon Of Kentucky [both takes]
Blue Moon [all takes]
Tomorrow Night
I'll Never Let You Go (Little Darlin') [both takes]
Just Because
Good Rockin' Tonight [all takes]
I Don't Care If The Sun Don't Shine [all takes]

CD2 / Studio
Milkcow Blues Boogie
You're A Heartbreaker
How Do You Think I Feel? [guitar slapback tape, Elvis off-mic]
I'm Left, You're Right, She's Gone [all takes]
Baby, Let's Play House
I Forgot To Remember To Forget
Mystery Train
Trying To Get To You
When It Rains It Really Pours [all takes]

CD3 / Louisiana Hayride
16 Oct'54:
That's All Right
Blue Moon Of Kentucky

06 Jan'55, radio appearance in Lubbock TX
Fool, Fool, Fool
Shake, Rattle and Roll

15 Jan'55
Hearts Of Stone
That's All Right
Tweedlee Dee

22 Jan'55
Money Honey
Blue Moon Of Kentucky
I Don't Care If The Sun Don't Shine
That's All Right [includes steel guitar]

19 Mar' 55, remote from Houston TX
Good Rockin' Tonight
Baby, Let's Play House
Blue Moon Of Kentucky
I Got A Woman
That's All Right

30 Apr' 55, remote from Gladewater TX
Tweedlee Dee

25 May'55, radio appearance in Meridian MS
That's All Right

16 Jul' 55
I'm Left, You're Right, She's Gone

20 Aug '55
Baby, Let's Play House
That's All Right

... and anything else that can be found.

- Elvis Presley 1953-1955

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