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Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:33 am

poormadpeter wrote:
joshferrell wrote:
Brian Quinn wrote:
Jaime1234 wrote:Let's take it optimistically. In 2006, Elvis didn't appear in the top 20 list of Soundscan catalog artists. The leader was the Beatles. The next to last time i saw, and that was in 2007, he was now inside the Top 20. The Beatles, still on top. Then, last year, he was inside the top 15, landing at 14. The Beatles still on top. And this year, he's went inside the top 12, landing at number 11, the Beatles still on top. Same with the RIAA, in terms of albums. In 2007, as was the case in 2010, and even now, it's the Beatles, followed by Elvis, 99 percent of nthe time, with Garth Brooks getting ahead of Elvis once in that period, but the period being very short, as Elvis bounced back to second place real quickly. It's the Beatles and Elvis, in alnums, and Elvis and the Beatles, in singles sales in the US and the4 UK, the world's two largest markets. When you add all the countries of the world, only they, Elvis and the Beatles, can reach a billion units of singles, albums, and boxes.


Hi Jaime,

Billboard’s 2012 Year End Catalog Artists

1. Whitney Houston
2. Adele
3. Taylor Swift
4. Eminem
5. The Black Keys
6. Lady Antebellum
7. Florence + The Machine
8. Guns n' Roses
9. Zac Brown Band
10. ELVIS PRESLEY

Brian

Interesting that there is no Beach Boys or Stones since they both celebrated 50 years last year


But we need to look at these figures and what they mean. If we are going by total albums sold, the picture isn't so rosy as it looks. Elvis is there a number 10, yes. But think how many Elvis CDs are out there - how many greatest hits, how many legacy edition, back catalogue albums etc. Because the catalogue is so vast, only a relatively small amount of units of each CD would need to be sold to get Elvis on to that list?

Looking at that more closely, Amazon UK (as an example) has 84 guns n roses CDs that are available via Prime (I'm using Prime as a rough indication that they are in still in print)
The same site has 263 Elvis CDs available via Prime - the search I did was for "Elvis Presley Sony", in order to avoid the public domain issues. A further 56 come up under the search "Elvis Presley BMG" (making approx 327 Elvis Sony CDs in stock)
That means there are four times the amount of Elvis titles out there as Guns N Roses. Or, to put it another way, Guns N Roses need to sell 4 times as many copies of each CD as Elvis does to reach number 10 in the above chart - but actually they are above him.

If you look at it that way, Elvis CD aren't selling in high numbers, there is just a high number of CDs available.



Agreed - but it still seems a considerable achievment, and other artist dead or alive would die (no pun intended) to get these overall sales.
Perhaps Sony are happy with this sort of bitty sales over a large catalogue as it seems to work for Elvis and needs little promotion.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 1:30 am

I'm sorry, but when you have a product as good as elvis music, if you don't sell it then you're not marketing it well enough. No need to go back to 2002. Just take a look at what happened recently with an afternoon in the garden.

And one more thing: sorry to tell you, but besides real music fans, the sun era, and even the 50's and 60's elvis is hard to sell for the general public. They'll found the 68-73 era more "palatable". I have tons of music lovers friends and they always marvel at something like in the ghetto or madison square garden and don't care about blue moon of Kentucky or teddy bear. It happens with the sinatra Columbia period too...the only 50's material that usually makes some impact on them is part of the king creole album.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:07 am

Watch the TV Show American Idol and you will find that as a general rule the American public has terrible taste in music.

They voted in Taylor Hicks and then proceded to NOT buy his CD. What's the deal?

Of course, the American people have what is available to them via the record companies who shove this crap down our throats.

And then you have the radio stations that play this crap over the air for our displeasure.

I remember back in the 1960's and 1970's, I liked most of Dick Clark or Casey Kasems top 40 countdown.

Now, I am lucky if I like one song in the top 5. Needless to say, I no longer listen to radio.

Most everything released in today's market place is sub standard, and most will be forgotten in the coming years.
Last edited by ekenee on Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:33 am

:arrow: Having attended a round of 70-something near and dear relative' funerals in recent years and this week ( many of whom were either fans or of that era), let's not forget that the passage of time affects demographics and ultimately interest in Elvis. Being frankly middle-age (having picked up Elvis fandom from My mother and siblings in the '70s) and now a few years past Elvis' sad early exit, I try to accept this. I hit a lot of record stores and see both reassuring signs but also negative ones.

I expect similiar drop-offs in all 60s acts and yes '70s acts, as oldies radios re-define oldies as post-1980 in most cases, as much as I tend to dislike the dumping of musical heritage from our airwaves.

Elvis' historical legacy in the big picture is fine, however. All later acts will rest or fall on their impact and recorded legacy and I trust that fans will come to Elvis even if the frenzy is much muted. I'm fine with that. I think Crosby, Hank Williams, Duke Ellington, Muddy Waters, Sinatra, et al are here for the ages to discover and love as will be the great Elvis Presley and all the great rock acts that followed.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 7:16 pm

No doubt that Elvis' music will never die, It's just a shame that all used record shops in our area do not have Elvis in their bins.Yesterday my husband and I drove out to Rainbow records in Newark, Delaware with about 15 albums he had spares of, just to see if he could sell them. Long story short..the dealer looked at them and passed.So my huband said no problem and put them back in the car.This store also had no Elvis section, but plenty of Bowie, stones and high priced Beatles!

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 7:59 pm

Hi there!! :D :D :D.

sgoodyear62 wrote:No doubt that Elvis' music will never die, It's just a shame that all used record shops in our area do not have Elvis in their bins.Yesterday my husband and I drove out to Rainbow records in Newark, Delaware with about 15 albums he had spares of, just to see if he could sell them. Long story short..the dealer looked at them and passed.So my huband said no problem and put them back in the car.This store also had no Elvis section, but plenty of Bowie, stones and high priced Beatles!


As stated before Elvis never got a big spot on the USA East-Coast :cry:. He had a big spot in the Mid-West.
The East-Coast belongs to Beatles & Stones :wink:. Bye for now :smt006.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:57 pm

I grew up on the East Coast. Although there are some Elvis fans, he was not popular at all when I went to high school, mid-60's. He already was thought of as passé and less hip than Dean Martin who had a very popular TV show then. I once asked a classmate about Elvis' music, and his response was, 'Isnt he just a movie star now?' This was about 1966. So much for that. Yes, The Beatles , Stones & Dylan, plus Motown ruled here. Elvis' movie years harmed him more than u can imagine.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:06 pm

Hi there!! :D :D :D.

r&b wrote:I grew up on the East Coast. Although there are some Elvis fans, he was not popular at all when I went to high school, mid-60's. He already was thought of as passé and less hip than Dean Martin who had a very popular TV show then. I once asked a classmate about Elvis' music, and his response was, 'Isnt he just a movie star now?' This was about 1966. So much for that. Yes, The Beatles , Stones & Dylan, plus Motown ruled here. Elvis' movie years harmed him more than u can imagine.


Thank you for confirming this! ::rocks. Bye for now :smt006.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:10 pm

frus75 wrote:I'm sorry, but when you have a product as good as elvis music, if you don't sell it then you're not marketing it well enough. No need to go back to 2002. Just take a look at what happened recently with an afternoon in the garden.

And one more thing: sorry to tell you, but besides real music fans, the sun era, and even the 50's and 60's elvis is hard to sell for the general public. They'll found the 68-73 era more "palatable". I have tons of music lovers friends and they always marvel at something like in the ghetto or madison square garden and don't care about blue moon of Kentucky or teddy bear. It happens with the sinatra Columbia period too...the only 50's material that usually makes some impact on them is part of the king creole album.


The Columbia Sinatra comparison is interesting, and one that I hadn't thought of before. I'm a huge Sinatra fan, but can't get excited about those early years - but perhaps for a different reason. The Sinatra Columbia catalogue is heavily weighted towards beautifully sung ballads - there is relatively little upbeat music in comparison. Therefore the hard-swinging recordings of the 50s and afterwards are, if nothing else, more fun to listen to to a modern audience who is not swooning over the singer. With Elvis it's a bit different though - the early 70s is a period of ballads in the main, and not upbeat material. The issue there though is that they sound somehow more relevant to modern audiences, perhaps because of their beefier sound and altogether bigger arrangement. Or perhaps they are just more adult songs - can even a teenager really relate to the lyrics ofTeddy Bear or Don't Be Cruel in 2013?

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:55 pm

It just seems that since the last couple of years, Elvis is not relevant in used record shops.I can remember going into some in the late '90's and early '00's and always found Elvis product.What caused this turnaround? And the theory that Elvis was not big on the east coast is off kelter. Our local record shops were always stocked with Elvis records when I was growing up.He played sold out shows in Philadelphia, Maryland, New York..not popular on the east coast? I beg to differ. As much as I like the Beatles I sometimes think the fuss over them after all these years is unwarrented. Yes they made good music but so did alot of other groups! i don't deny that they were a major force in music but there is no comparrison between them and Elvis. No one wants Bing Crosby music nowadays or Perry Como, or Don Cherry. They just want the auto-tuned crap that gets churned out that I turn off. My Elvis collection will be with me until I die. Maybe it will be worthless like old '78's are, but i don't care.Every new Beatles release is hyped, why not Elvis? Yes, he's been dead for 35 years, but two Beatles are dead too. I just don't know what happened that Elvis is so "not cool" in used record shops anymore.I think it's unfair and he should be counted especially since he was a major force in the early years of Rock N' Roll. Now i know i think like this because I grew up listning to his music and buying the records and Cassettes and CD's into my adult life. It just makes me sad.It bugs the crap out of my husband too. He always included a couple Elvis songs in his set when he was playing in bands and it always went over well.He wonders now if people would boo or walk out if Elvis songs were performed by a band today.Maybe the imitators ruined it. who knows? It's left both of us scratching our heads.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:50 am

sgoodyear62 wrote:It just seems that since the last couple of years, Elvis is not relevant in used record shops.I can remember going into some in the late '90's and early '00's and always found Elvis product.What caused this turnaround? And the theory that Elvis was not big on the east coast is off kelter. Our local record shops were always stocked with Elvis records when I was growing up.He played sold out shows in Philadelphia, Maryland, New York..not popular on the east coast? I beg to differ. As much as I like the Beatles I sometimes think the fuss over them after all these years is unwarrented. Yes they made good music but so did alot of other groups! i don't deny that they were a major force in music but there is no comparrison between them and Elvis. No one wants Bing Crosby music nowadays or Perry Como, or Don Cherry. They just want the auto-tuned crap that gets churned out that I turn off. My Elvis collection will be with me until I die. Maybe it will be worthless like old '78's are, but i don't care.Every new Beatles release is hyped, why not Elvis? Yes, he's been dead for 35 years, but two Beatles are dead too. I just don't know what happened that Elvis is so "not cool" in used record shops anymore.I think it's unfair and he should be counted especially since he was a major force in the early years of Rock N' Roll. Now i know i think like this because I grew up listning to his music and buying the records and Cassettes and CD's into my adult life. It just makes me sad.It bugs the crap out of my husband too. He always included a couple Elvis songs in his set when he was playing in bands and it always went over well.He wonders now if people would boo or walk out if Elvis songs were performed by a band today.Maybe the imitators ruined it. who knows? It's left both of us scratching our heads.


As I've said before, popularity comes in waves, and you can't expect an artist that has been dead 35 years to still be as popular as he always was without something to give him a boost - and that boost hasn't arrived due largely to lacklustre product at retail level that has failed to spark interest.

Also you are generalising far too much here. To say that "people" just want auto-tuned crap is not only assuming everyone has the same tastes, but also assuming that all modern artists are crap, which in both cases is not true. If you think the music of today is crap, then you are sounding just like your parents did when they moaned in 1956 that they couldn't hear what Elvis was singing about. In other words, today's music isn't meant for the older generation. Pop music is for the young in the main, not the old/middle-aged, and they should be allowed to have what's theirs without us grudging it at every opportunity.

I don't know about Bing Crosby specifically, but there has been a vast re-release programme on CD recently of a number of classic acts in the jazz and easy listening fields. EMI have issued some nice double discs of classic jazz albums recently, which are hot on the heels of the 4CD sets they issued last year. Meanwhile Verve (Decca/Universal) have issued a new line of twofer CDs containing less well known jazz albums from the 50s and 60s. If they weren't selling, they wouldn't be releasing them. Likewise, the entire Reprise catalogue of Sinatra albums were re-issued a year or two ago, mostly remastered, and seem to have sold well - again, that reissue programme wouldn't have continued if the first batches didn't sell.

Perhaps if Sony got their backsides in gear and issued the original albums in their remastered forms at a decent price and in a logical fashion, people interested in Elvis but not major fans would be able to start their own collections, but at the moment there is nowhere for them to buy the original albums unless they want the FTD versions - and if you have limited resources and are exploring the catalogue for the first time would you really want all those outtakes. The Legacy series is OK for what it is, and Original album series is cheap enough but have multiple errors on them (Pot Luck is on the movies set; E P Boulevard is featured twice in the same 3 CD set!) and are shoddily put together in Elvis's case, no matter how cheap they are. What's more, someone who buys the Legacy Aloha, for example, isn't going to want to buy the same album again in the Original album series.

no-one can make Elvis popular again by simply reissuing his albums. But they can at least make the catalogue look attractive and classy for those that do want to explore it. As it is, and FTD aside, it's a complete shambles, and cluttered with needless multiple greatest hits collections, multiple christmas collections and more. Quantity over quality has always ruled when it comes to Elvis product, and Sony is continuing that trend at retail.

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:03 am

poormadpeter wrote:No-one can make Elvis popular again by simply reissuing his albums. But they can at least make the catalogue look attractive and classy for those that do want to explore it. As it is, and FTD aside, it's a complete shambles, and cluttered with needless multiple greatest hits collections, multiple christmas collections and more. Quantity over quality has always ruled when it comes to Elvis product, and Sony is continuing that trend at retail.

Well said!

Re: wow! Elvis doesn't sell? I am shocked!

Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:59 am

I recently hit a vinyl shop in West Virginia. Its been in operation since 1961 by the same owner. The husband whom had passed away years ago was an Elvis fan and apparently had quite a collection. The current inventory on hand for singles about 400 and LPs about 40. Firstly the shop had 100,000+ records. I was told that Elvis doesn't sell not even at Christmas time where when Elvis sold well. People do look for the Beetles but only to hang on the wall.

While those statements hold merit. The prices were outrageous. The LPs quality and selection were poor in condition and those that are common. The singles were impressive. Some very rare titles. But again full book no haggling. I mentioned eBay and what records are a tally selling for and that insulted the owner.

A long story short. I bought a good pile of records. Not everything on my list. I will not be back. The prices are unreasonable and unrealistic.

When ever I find a large collection of Elvis records, the quality is poor, selection common, and prices exceed expectations.

My recent experiences with eBay has been alarming. The market favors the few not all sellers. I have sold several pieces which were in vg+ range and documented uncommon variants for less than $5 each after several relistings. Some in shrink.

Times are tough. It is a buyers market. However it has been said many already have completed their vinyl collection.

These are just some of my observations.