These pictures look familiar not just because they’re a subset of Wertheimer’s album Elvis at 21 (2006). Several are among the most famous photos of anyone ever taken, which should ensure crowds for the traveling exhibition this book catalogs wherever it goes. The exhibition launches in Los Angeles on January 8, 2010, the day Elvis would have turned 75. Its organizer, Chris Murray, makes the most telling comment about it when he remarks that these pictures, starting with performance shots of Elvis on the Dorsey Brothers’ TV show and concluding with another of him in action at a homecoming show in a Memphis park attended by 14,000, capture the time during which Elvis became a celebrity. He walks New York’s streets and travels in trains from Penn Station to Tennessee, and no one notices him except right before, during, and right after shows. Wertheimer didn’t know that was what he was immortalizing, but he intuited something, because he went on his own dime to track Elvis. Presented full-page and larger, these images are history. --Ray Olson
offers black and white photos by Alfred Wertheimer taken during the year Elvis turned 21, and offer a fine visual record of a defining time for rock and roll. It was the year Elvis released his first record, made his first TV appearance, and more - and it offers a definitive visual portrait unavailable elsewhere. Any music library strong in rock and roll history needs this, which pairs Alfred Wertheimer's photo with essays by E. Warren Perry, Jr. and Amy Henderson."California Bookwatch
"This book features a beautiful collection of 72 tri-tone shots that expertly capture Presley's dramatic and electrifying journey to stardom." Foreword
vividly captures the year Elvis meteorically rose from obscurity to superstardom featuring Alfred Wertheimer's iconic photographs of Elvis - some never-before published or rarely seen - and his recollections...For a new generation of Elvis fans, the book provides an inexpensive edition of Wertheimer's memorable photos with spectacular tritone printing of the king's sensational impact in 1956 on the emerging popularity of rock and roll."Elvis.com
"...In many way the most exciting and intimate portrait of the legendary entertainer...You don't have to be an Elvis fanatic to recognize the importance of this book. It sheds significant light on the early days of one of the true legends of show business."
- Cinema Metro
"Remarkable...The times, they were a-changing, and changing quickly. Elvis and his music were both part of and a cause of that change. Collectively, Wetheimer's photos capture that time as if the photographer and his subject knuew that the moment would not last. Elvis 1956
will appeal to a broad segment of reader, including those who still carry a torch for Elvis, those interested in photography, and those with an interest in 1950s America."
-John Michael Senger, Foreword Reviews
"Wertheimer's photographs show Elvis in every aspect of his life — in performance, with his fans, in the recording studio, and at home with his family. The book is lavishly illustrated with 72 tri-tone photographs, and features an introduction by curator Chris Murray, along with essays by E. Warren Perry, Jr. and National Portrait Gallery historian Amy Henderson."
is truly The King before he was The King, and the images are both insightful and stunning. Recollections by Wertheimer regarding time, place, and circumstances of each photograph offer further revelation into the daily events that paved the way for this true American idol."Her Nashville