Elvis at 21

Elvis at 21 Cover

Elvis at 21

New York to Memphis

By Alfred Wertheimer (Photographer); Peter Guralnick (Foreword by); Chris Murray (Introduction by)

Insight Editions, Hardcover, 9781933784014, 253pp.

Publication Date: October 31, 2006

Description
In 1956, a twenty-one-year-old Elvis Presley was at the beginning of his remarkable and unparalleled career and photographer Alfred Wertheimer was asked by Presley's new label, RCA Victor, to photograph the rising star. With unimpeded access to the young performer, Wertheimer was able to capture the unguarded and everyday moments in Elvis' life during that crucial year, a year that took him from Tupelo, Mississippi to the silver screen, and to the verge of international stardom and his crowning as "The King of Rock 'n' Roll. As Alfred Wertheimer photographed Elvis during 1956, and again in 1958, he created classic images that are spontaneous, unrehearsed and completely without artifice.
Wertheimer's photographs of Elvis are extraordinary and he appears almost ethereal, whether reading a newspaper while waiting for a cab, or washing his hands during one of his many train trips. After 1958 and Elvis induction into the army, the world seemingly forgot about Wertheimer's magical photographs- for nineteen years- until Aug 16, 1977, the day Elvis died and Time Magazine called. The phone hasn t really stopped ringing in the last thirty years, observes Wertheimer.
Many of the photographs in this visual treasury are previously unpublished and some have become almost as famous as the man himself.


About the Author
Alfred Wertheimer (1929-2014) was born in Germany, emigrated to America and settled in Brooklyn as a young boy. Wertheimer s photographs, which first gained national attention after Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977, capture the metamorphosis of pop music and the cultural transformation of America.

Peter Guralnick is the author of numerous seminal works of music and popular culture, including Searching for Roberth Johnson and a two-volume biography of Elvis Presley. He lives in West Newbury, Massachusetts.

Murray is director of Govinda Gallery in Washington, D.C. and has organized over 100 exhibitions of paintings, drawings, and photographs. His love for India and its spiritual culture has led him to travel there frequently.