August 26, 2021 Rock & Roll, Entertainment, Sports and Americana
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 8/26/2021

Offered is the VERY FIRST ADVERTISEMENT for an Elvis Presley record. Ever. The handpainted, cardboard ceiling hanger promoted the 1954 release of "SUN #209", exclaiming "It's Here". Attesting to its early creation is the fact that "Blue Moon of KY." is listed BEFORE "That's All Right"--it was the more well-known of the the two songs, and who knew during those first few heady weeks what was going to be the regional hit! This is an incredibly historically significant artifact--an object that defines the two sides of history as we now know it: those eons before Elvis, and everything to do with popular music and the broader American culture since. It emanates from that magical period when the storybook events were still unfolding, when the record gets made and heard on the radio within days. When the phones light up so fast it has to be played over and over, and the record has to be pressed with a few days more, and Elvis is on stage even sooner. It is from those moments from when Elvis was just becoming ELVIS.

Popular Tunes, founded just after World War II in 1946 by Joe Cuoghi and John Novarese, was a record store in Memphis where Elvis shopped and hung out. It is rumored that when he released a new song, Elvis would hide around the corner to watch people go in and buy his new record. This very advertising hanger would have been hanging from the ceiling on one of those first such nervous visits to Poplar Tunes.

The sign originally came from the personal collection of Rosalind Cranor, author of the authoritative Elvis Memorabilia hobby guide, and it comes with a letter from Brian Beirne on “Mr. Rock n’ Roll presents Legendary Entertainment” stationery, which states:

My name is Brian Beirne. I was a radio personality for over 40 years and have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. My entire life I have been a major collector of records, posters, and Hollywood memorabilia with the main focus on Elvis items. About 30 years ago I purchased a number of items from Rosalind Cranor (EP expert who wrote the first Elvis Collectibles books). Rosalind was ill at the time and many Elvis items from her collection. Among the items I purchased was the earliest Elvis concert poster from the Eagle's Nest. I also purchased from her this original circular record store mobile for Sun 209 "That's All Right" which she said had hung at Poplar Tunes Record Store in Memphis. Ms. Cranor told me both the mobile and the Eagles Nest poster had belonged to a gentleman from Memphis who became an Elvis fan in 1954.

The hanger measures 14 inches in diameter and presents with areas of paper still adhered to the reverse, most likely from being attached to another round sign or perhaps a wall. Otherwise the piece is in remarkable, NEAR MINT condition.

1954 Elvis Presley Ceiling Hanger Advertisement from “Poplar Tunes” Memphis Record Store for His FIRST Sun Record “Thats All Right/Blue Moon of Kentucky”
Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $1,500
Final prices include buyers premium: $63,250
Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000
Number Bids: 36
Auction closed on Thursday, August 26, 2021.
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