In this section you can submit questions to people that knew Elvis, or to other important people in the Elvis World.

vic's progress on the book

Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:48 am

hi all,

the book is done, but it is far from finished. i am satisfied that i have everything that occurred down on paper.

however, this is just the beginning. now that i have written down all that happened from beginning to end, the next step is to make it a delicious read. for that, i will be rewriting and rewriting. many passages are fact after fact. they need to be "sexed up." that is, i have to make them entertaining as well as informative. that is the next step. i get feedback from my creative writing class, an advanced class of decent writers, and i listen carefully. everyone agrees i have an interesting story to tell. to keep the reader's attention while relating all that occurred is a challenge. elvis fans, many of them, will enjoy what i have written thus far. i want everyone to enjoy it. i'm told i need to be funnier, that i am a funny guy in person. true, people have been laughing at me all my life. so, we will go through a number of rewrites until i think i have it write. i mean right. right?

with all the facts, details, incidents, what have you, down on paper, it will be easier now than trying to put everything into some sort of alluring style from the get-go. bear with me, i want the finished product to be something that people will say they truly enjoyed. elmore leonard i'm not, but i can come up with some biting wit to spice up the tale. i shall endeavor (endeavour for those across the pond) to do just that. i want you all to say, "well done." i don't want anyone to say, "it was interesting, but..."

back to the rewrite board,

sam

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:58 am

just so no one is confused, here is an example:

i list all the steps involved in taking an idea and a tape and transforming it into an album. from the master lacquer we go to father, mother, stamper, and record. the first is positive, the next negative (if you played it, it would sound like it was backwards), etc.

those things i want everyone to know, i think they are intergral to the story. to just list them gets stupefying.

so, i'll alter it to something like:

okay, paul, you made an album. tell me how to do it.

first you have to take the tape to a recording studio and have them make a master lacquer.

what's that?

that's what the presser needs to make the record.

it's that easy?

no, there are lots of other things. you better write this down.

(so i start writing. and i keep writing. and i keep writing.)

hey paul. i'm getting confused. go slower.

it's easy. don't worry.

i'm not worried. tomorrow i'm going over to kaiser hospital to see if i can still get my job back. i think it'd be easier making pocket-sized nuclear devices.

something like that. you'll enjoy it much more and get the same info.

now, for all those who read this far, i remembered a little funny thing that happened and inserted it where it went. my forte is beating the system. this time i got an A+

here's that passage:

I sent Paul a few copies of the album Express Mail. I had done this before, and there were two options: Delivery was guaranteed by ten the next morning if the item was sent Post Office to Post Office; delivery was guaranteed by three the next afternoon if the item was sent to an address. The Post Office was so proud of their new offer, putting them in a position to compete with FedEx and UPS, they offered a money–back guarantee if delivery was not made on time. Paul had things to do that next day, including an early morning stop at the Post Office. Thus, I opted for the morning delivery; it didn’t get there on time. Great, we’d get our money back. I had a thought: could they actually get anything to the Ruxton, MD Post Office by ten the next morning? Express mail was accepted until five in the afternoon. That was eight at night on the east coast. The Post Office had fourteen hours to get my package from Glendale to LAX, get it on a plane to Dulles in Washington, D.C., the nearest airport to Ruxton, and then get it unloaded, sorted out, and delivered to Ruxton. I doubted it and decided to find out. I sent Paul a box of fifty records, Post Office to Post Office, that weighed in at thirty pounds. The Express Mail charge was almost forty-seven dollars. Paul went to pick it up the next morning; it didn’t arrive until after noon. Over the next month I sent Paul almost 100 boxes of albums via Express Mail. Not a single one arrived on time.
Paul dutifully saved the receipts. I took them all, the time delivered officially noted by the Ruxton P.O., over to Glendale’s main branch. I didn’t want any heart failure at my local outlet. You would have thought the money was coming out of the clerk’s pocket. He sputtered, fumed, muttered, spit, and turned fire–engine red. He tried to tell me I couldn’t get a refund for all these packages. Nice try. They guaranteed delivery; nothing was specified about not honoring the guarantee for more than one delivery. Each one was a completely separate incident; each one was a failure they had to make good on. It took almost three hours before I walked out of the Post Office with a check for over $4,600. Oh yeah, they no longer guaranteed Express Mail delivery from Glendale to Ruxton after that.

back to work,

sam

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:16 am

I hope I'm not letting the cat out of the bag, but as someone privileged to have the honor to read and proof-read this great volume (and only half-way through it) , I can tell you already it's a true page-turner, even in it's unfinished form!

I'd say it also has the potential to have a wider status as a classic in the broader field of music books and books about rock music. It's funny, thrilling and has the arc of what could be possibly a very interesting movie. If they could make a an acclaimed film about record stores and record collectors - " High Fidelity," then this one actually has a real plot and speaks to the tension between art , fandom and commerce that continues to this day, especially in the "free" file-swapping era as the record industry is in its death throes.

If this book is not a hit among you all, then I don't know you very well at all - and I'm confident I do at this point - most of you anyway. It really speaks to what we love about being an Elvis fan - particularly on this forum. There's a mix of of heroic fandom and entrepreneuralism and moxie in this story and I can't wait to read another chapter. (I should turn this damned thing off is what I should do...!) :lol:

You're all going to love it. It's made me wish I was around for that era. I came close - I think I saw a Vic Collonna ad in a magazine or two and scratched my head over it but had to wait until the last decade to know the great unofficial Elvis world's many fruits. It's enough to make me want to collect the old LPs of this era.

Stay tuned, folks.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Mar 26, 2009 10:32 am

I knew right from the start that this would be a book that could also appeal to people outside the Elvis world. You don't need to be an Elvis fan to appreciate Vic's story, and he has shown many times that he is a witty and entertaining writer too, and that's why I suggested he should get in touch with a publisher like Helter Skelter -- this story is too cool and too important to be sold within the Elvis world only, it deserves a larger audience. I know that if Vic had released Led Zeppelin bootlegs instead I'd still be interested in this book!

Keith Richards, Jr.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:58 am

Sounds great sam, it'll be well worth the wait I'm sure.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Mar 27, 2009 12:09 am

okay, thanks for those kind words. i just spent the last four hours out in the back yard putting the finishing touches on the shrine i just erected to chris, keith, and little darlin'

i knew they'd say something nice after the checks i sent cleared, but they went above and beyond.

now that, as i mentioned, i have all the major and most minor stuff from those years down on paper (actually in bits and bytes watched over by little green men) i will think of some more cute little incidents that were essentially offshoots of that time. not directly related to the story, but without the elvis boots they wouldn't have happened and they should make good reading.

one is about the time i took my parents to vegas, another about a guy from france who came to visit. one is hilarious, the other a cute look at my parents' generation. without the boots those events would not have taken place.

so, much to add, much to apply finishing touches (i printed it out and have eight pages of little corrections so far that i couldn't spot on the computer. stuff like a missing comma or misplaced quotation mark or a missing word).

this is going to be a succes or my name isn't...

never mind, we did that one before.

sam/vic/pop-pop/daddy/pappy/%^$@&^ (you wonder why i'm confused?)

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Mar 27, 2009 5:05 am

8) Great to hear it coming Along Vic and i really enjoy your writing style! :lol:

Re: vic's progress on the book

Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:30 am

some nice pix of poster and box set at end of vic colonna thread. thanks.

know for my marketing genius, praised for being ahead of the curve (i stopped paying my bills years ago. been living in a dumpster for over a decade), hailed for creativity, i just wish those plaudits were true.

book will have appendix with pix of all LPs and track listings. some advertising reprinted. maybe some pictures of me and others. thanks to photoshop my face will look exactly like tom cruise.

have just started another appendix titled, "for the record" in which i will correct the erroneous statements made in the three articles that appeared in Billboard and a section in Clinton Heylin's book "Bootleg: The other recording industry."

WANT TO HELP? IF YOU HAVE ANY CATALOGUES OR FLYERS FROM THOSE DAYS I WOULD LIKE TO BORROW THEM TO PHOTOGRAPH.

EMAIL ME AND TELL ME WHAT YOU HAVE. I'LL GET BACK TO YOU.

oh, you don't want to know what i threw away after the feds arrested me. i'll tell you in the book. lots of history went to the landfill. ouch.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Apr 02, 2009 12:37 am

Vic, if you don't hear back from people on this thread, there are quite a few of your items scanned into various threads from even before you came on here. One would have to spend some time with the search function.

And yes, having read the text, I'm dying to see the wax creatures that caused all this ruckus! Even shots of the studios that dubbed the tapes, a shot of that little microphone you used during your trip to Joan Dreary's office, etc. What a read this book will be!

Photos are a natural - in living color and with your wacky cast of rogues and heroes, you being, of course, in the latter category.

I know there are differences of opinion about Ms. Dreary (I've heard it said she was a "nice woman" and such) but I got a load of her (paid) 1999 NY Times obituary after reading your book and had to laugh a bit at the revisionism. No disrepect to the dead intended and may she rest in peace but they have positioned her to be a true advocate for more inteligent Elvis releases. Not to make your blood boil, but it serves as nice counterpoint about how the system too often (not in the case of Ernst, however) rewards mediocrity or at least ignores those in the trenches.

Image

Paid Notice: Deaths LUNN, JOAN DEARY
Published: Thursday, October 7, 1999

-Joan Deary. Died October 2, 1999. Joan Deary Lunn worked at RCA Victor records under the name of Joan Deary for over 40 years. She moved to Hollywood in the early 1960's where she was in charge of A&R administration for the California office under Steve Sholes.

Joan was the first woman Manager, Director, and Executive Director in RCA Victor history. She ended her career with RCA Victor as the Executive Director of all A&R Administration. During her tenure at RCA she worked with numerous recording artists.

However she is best known as the originator and producer of RCA's Elvis Presley anthology series of albums. This series of creative works included historically relevant information, previously unheard recordings, and 'out-takes' of Elvis's recording sessions, providing Elvis's legions of fans access to behind the scenes antics, and allowing them to understand more about the man behind the legend.


Joan received numerous gold and platinum records, awarded by the recording industry. She was the producer of the Elvis Presley 'Silver' album set, an eight record set which also achieved gold album status.

She was nominated for a Grammy award in 1984 for the Elvis album 'A Golden Celebration.
'

She was active with, and frequently served as the invited speaker before Elvis Presley fan clubs throughout the United States and Europe.
She was recently honored for her outstanding work in support of the Elvis Presley Memorial Chapel by the Elvis Presley Memorial Foundation of Tupelo. She is survived by her sister, two sons, two grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. Services were held on Wednesday, October 6 at Saint Charles Roman Catholic Church in North Hollywood. Following the services a burial was held at Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills, California.

http://www.nytimes.com/1999/10/07/class ... deary.html

It might even work in your book as a reminder of how way things worked out..
Last edited by Gregory Nolan Jr. on Thu Apr 02, 2009 12:45 am, edited 2 times in total.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Apr 02, 2009 12:42 am

Vic, this book is eagerly awaited by everyone. I can't wait to read all these stories of what it was like before I was even a twinkle in my mums eye :)

It's great to read what you write on here also.

Thanks.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Apr 10, 2009 2:07 am

thanks for that joan deary stuff. i may be a bit harsh on her in the book, but that is how i felt at the time. i have mellowed, but this book is about then, not now. rca, and the recording industry in general, just didn't get it. they thought rock was a fad, they thought outtakes wouldn't sell.

i pitched the idea of offering an LP of every concert on a tour, making a generic cover that would change only by date, place, and song selection, and offering it for a limited time via mail order in the cities/area the concert was held. no major was interested. they scoffed at the idea. if you went to see elvis/van halen/bowie/moody blues/katzenjammer kids wouldn't it be cool to have a record/cd of the concert you attended? i always thought so. some artists tour 50 or more shows. bet they could have sold 10,000 per venue. that's half a million albums. probably better gross than the souvenir booths. but, what did i know?

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu May 28, 2009 7:24 am

viccolonna@gmail.com wrote:book will have appendix with pix of all LPs and track listings. some advertising reprinted. maybe some pictures of me and others.


Vic, any idea what this book going to cost us fans?
(sorry, if you've already posted that info)

btw, the more pictures the better.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Aug 07, 2009 5:19 pm

well...? Any progress, Sam?
It's been a long time since you posted here.
No health problems again, I hope?
Should you ( hopefully) ever need the candids
of yourself from the late 70s/ early 80s as
seen in The Man And His music mag with
your story, just ask.
Hoping to hear from you soon again, and
help making the jungle room not just a
room to lock up the silly and sad....

Re: vic's progress on the book

Tue Aug 11, 2009 5:55 am

I mentioned this earlier this year but I had the pleasure of reading an early draft , etc. and was blown away by the tale - and I just saw that I'm repeating myself (from above) but allow me to say it again with verve.

We're all going ga-ga over photo books (most, rightly so); umpteenth concert releases but I do hope fans turn out to support this landmark story by "Vic." I am hopeful it has broader musical appeal to the rock world and even think it has movie potential. It reads like a novel at times and is , unfortunately in some cases, all too true and yes, forgotten occasionally by the youngster downloaders complaining about this or that CD's sound even if they've never held it in their own hands. One wonders if the critics appreciate what a guy like Vic (et al.) went through , in effect bequeathing us this great hobby in 2009?

For most people who log on to this site and enjoy and even just wonder about the mysterious world of imports (I know I have and still do!), this book is like hearing it from the Grand Old Man of the hobby.

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 10:21 am

TALLHAIR 2 wrote:well...? Any progress, Sam?
It's been a long time since you posted here.
No health problems again, I hope?
Should you ( hopefully) ever need the candids
of yourself from the late 70s/ early 80s as
seen in The Man And His music mag with
your story, just ask.
Hoping to hear from you soon again, and
help making the jungle room not just a
room to lock up the silly and sad....


Now watchit Ger.....Sam will get really mad at you and tells you that you belong in highschool..... :wink: :wink:

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 3:50 pm

Now watchit Ger.....Sam will get really mad at you and tells you that you belong in highschool..... :wink: :wink:


Ok Sun Hero a little word in your shell like :D

Now I know you're a bit of a joker and I can go along with that in your dislike of Adam Lambert etc but this is a little different.

I'm very fortunate to be able to call sam a friend of mine and when people tend to make fun or have a pop at one of my friends jokingly or not, I get a little defensive about it so here goes.

I don't know if you are aware or not of who sam is and what he has done for the fans in the Elvis World -- if not I suggest you look up his name -- I won't put it all on this thread because it's easily available on the net so....anyway I was one of the people fortunate to be in right from the getko on this book and when sam showed me some other work of his, of his time in Vietnam I actually told him to ditch the bootleg book and try and get that published instead......go on ask him....he'll tell you. So.....let's show a little respect here after all if it wasn't for sam and the rest of the gang the Elvis World would be that little bit poorer. Now I know you weren't being really serious hence my restrained post :D

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 7:22 pm

First of all I am fully aware who Sam/Vic is.....and what he did for the Elvis world.
I still remember the good old eighties in wich I bought bootlegs for only a few dollars....now you pay topmoney for them.....all this before the raid !
Most of my bootslegs came directly from him.....so thank you again for giving the fans what they needed....good Elvis stuff !!!!
Now.....like I said before I did not attack Sam or attcked his upcomming book.
So there was no need for Sam to "spank" me....
I'm sure you had more serious comments regarding your "escapes"...uhh ...releases :wink: .
I know dealing with the Elvis bootlegworld can be tough from time to time.
And LD and Sylvie......being protective over your friend is cool......but don't close your eyes because he is your friend.
As soon as his book is released it will get reviews....good ones....average ones and bad ones. That's life !!!
I'm not judging a book by looking at it's cover only....I want to read it and then have my opinion !

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 7:43 pm

Sun Hero wrote:


You appear to be confused. I did not spank you about any book -- on the contrary I was merely pointing out the remark about the high school to Ger....which I think, had he been around, would have spanked your bot a little bit harder than I did.

So you're aware of what went on yes? So therefore sam deserves a little bit of respect no?

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 8:28 pm

Little Darlin wrote:
Sun Hero wrote:


You appear to be confused. I did not spank you about any book -- on the contrary I was merely pointing out the remark about the high school to Ger....which I think, had he been around, would have spanked your bot a little bit harder than I did.

So you're aware of what went on yes? So therefore sam deserves a little bit of respect no?



LD I think you're confusing here.....I did not say that YOU spanked me....I said it was Sam !!!
Please re-read my note again....and you'll see I am awere of sam's position in the Elvis world and you also will read that I also wrote that most of my bootlegs back in the eighties came from him....I was nice enough to give him the credits for the good stuff he released.
LD....like I said...I'm NOT attacking your friend or his book
Read both topics on Vic's book.....put my posts in order of time...and you'll see why I made that smart ass comment on Ger's note.
I think we can put Ger and Sam on the same level when it comes to the work they did (and still do) for the Elvis world.....right???

I have a funny feeling that this will go on and on and on.....just because I was making a simple joke !!!!!!

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:34 pm

Sun Hero wrote:
I have a funny feeling that this will go on and on and on.....just because I was making a simple joke !!!!!!


Well that won't be of my doing because I have better things to do. :smt006

Re: vic's progress on the book

Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:42 pm

Little Darlin wrote:
Well that won't be of my doing because I have better things to do. :smt006


:smt006

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Aug 14, 2009 1:59 am

:smt006

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Aug 14, 2009 11:51 pm

Francesc wrote::smt006


Oh Dear......another day......another smartarse.

Are you waving hello or waving goodbye francesc?

Re: vic's progress on the book

Fri Aug 14, 2009 11:56 pm

Little Darlin wrote:
Well that won't be of my doing because I have better things to do. :smt006


:wink: :wink:

Re: vic's progress on the book

Sat Aug 15, 2009 12:02 am

Little Darlin wrote:
Francesc wrote::smt006


Oh Dear......another day......another smartarse.

Are you waving hello or waving goodbye francesc?


Whatever brings you more drama!