Elvis Presley letters surface, up for auction in the UK
A fascinating archive of letters chronicling the birth of Elvis Presley’s career with Sun Records is up for auction in the U.K. this weekend.
The letters, which were originally acquired from Sun Record Company in Memphis, span the period from July 1954 to December 1955.
Auctioneer Andrew Aldridge told Fox News that the letters constitute one of the most important archives relating to Presley’s early career to have come to auction in recent years. “It relates to the earliest part of his career at Sun Records and the release of his first record ‘That’s All Right Mama’,” he told Fox News, via email. The archive even includes a rejection letter from an LA record company, claiming that "Elvis Presley records would not sell in Los Angeles".
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Aldridge notes that nine months later, Elvis released “Heartbreak Hotel.”
Another letter, which was sent from a Miami record producer to Sun Records owner Sam Phillips, describes the challenges of distributing “That’s All Right Mama,” which is referred to as “Sun 209.” The distributor writes: “I think it is a great record, my immediate reaction in Miami was good but in the northern part of Florida, they won’t touch it as they consider it too racy.”
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July 19, 2019, marks the 65th anniversary of the release of “That’s All Right Mama.”
The letters cover all 10 Elvis songs released at Sun Records.
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The archive has a pre-sale estimate of $50,981 to $63,727 and will be auctioned by Henry Aldridge & Son on Saturday, June 22.
Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers