Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                              January 1, 1956 (Sunday)

Elvis and Red West flew from Shreveport to take part in a 'Grand Ole Opry' packaged show headlined by Hank Snow and Webb Pierce.

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow, Webb Pierce, Elvis Presley, The Blue Moon Boys.

The Kiel Auditorium, St. Louis, Missouri. (2 shows) (3:00 pm and 8:00 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                             January 2, 1956 (Monday)

Elvis and Red returned to Memphis to begin a five day tour.

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Elvis Presley, The Blue Moon Boys, Johnny Cash, David Houston

The High School in Charleston, Mississippi.

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

 

Elvis was billed as "The King of Western Bop".

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                            January 3, 1956 (Tuesday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Elvis Presley, The Blue Moon Boys, Johnny Cash, David Houston

The Von Theatre, Boonesville, Mississippi. (2 shows) (6:00 pm and 8:00 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

 

Elvis was now billed as "The Folk Music Fireball" which further proved that no-one really knew how to market or promote this new talent.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                     January 4, 1956 (Wednesday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S)

The Community Centre, Jonesboro, Arkansas.

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                          January 5, 1956 (Thursday)

No information.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                                 January 6, 1956 (Friday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S)

The High School, Randolph, Mississippi.

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                           January 7, 1956 (Saturday)

Red joined Elvis as he flew into Shreveport for an 8:00 pm  performance in the Municipal Auditorium on the

"Louisiana Hayride" that included George Jones.

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Louisiana Hayride - Elvis Presley, Hoot and Curley, Jack Ford, Betty Amos, Werly

Fairburn, Johnny Horton, Jeanette Hicks, David Houston, Jimmy Newman, Buddy Attaway, Buzz Busby and the

Bayou Boys, George Jones

The Municipal Auditorium, 705 Grand Avenue, Shreveport, Louisiana. (8:00 pm - 11:30 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J.

Fontana.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

Most Played By Jockeys: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD C&W CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #4

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Love, Love, Love" by Webb Pierce.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #3

Most Played By Jockeys:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #4

Mystery Train" by Elvis Presley. #13

BILLBOARD R&B CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters.   

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"At My Front Door" by the El Dorados 

Most Played By Jockeys:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters. 

BILLBOARD POP CHART

Honor Roll of Hits: 

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

The Top 100: 

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (LP)

No LP Chart

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (EP)

No EP Chart

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                             January 8, 1956 (Sunday)

Elvis and Red flew back to Memphis in the early hours of the morning and the Colonel woke Elvis by phone and wished him a Happy 21st Birthday.

 

The two cars used by Gladys and Vernon were insured by Elvis: The pink and black '55 Cadillac Fleetwood and the '56 Plymouth Station Wagon.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                             January 9, 1956 (Monday)

Steve Sholes arrived in Nashville to produce Elvis' first recording session for RCA Victor.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                         January 10, 1956 (Tuesday)

RECORDING SESSION: (RCA Victor)

RCA Studio, 1525 McGavock Street, Nashville, Tennessee. (2:00 pm - 5:00 pm)

Producer: Steve Sholes

 

Engineer: Bob Farris.

Musicians: Lead Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Electric Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana - Guitar: Chet Atkins - Piano: Floyd Cramer

The building that housed the recording studio was shared with the owners, the Methodist TV, Radio and Film Company. RCA recording star Chet Atkins played guitar on this session except for "I Got A Woman" and Floyd Cramer whom Elvis, Scotty and Bill knew very well played piano.

The tracks recorded over the next two days were mostly covers of songs by various black artists that had influenced Elvis.

The session began at 2:00 pm and continued until 5:00 pm. Three songs were recorded: Ray Charles' "I Got A Woman", "Heartbreak Hotel" which Elvis got from Mae Axton, and "Money Honey", a 1953 hit for Clyde McPhatter and the Drifters. (audio)

I Got A Woman - Elvis Presley
00:00 / 00:00
Heartbreak Hotel - Elvis Presley
00:00 / 00:00
Money Honey - Elvis Presley
00:00 / 00:00

Chet Atkins

Floyd Cramer

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                  January 11, 1956 (Wednesday)

RECORDING SESSION: (RCA Victor)

RCA Studio, 1525 McGavock Street, Nashville, Tennessee. (2:00 pm - 5:00 pm)

Producer: Steve Sholes

 

Engineer: Bob Farris.

Musicians: Lead Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Electric Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana - Guitar: Chet Atkins - Piano: Floyd Cramer

- Backing Vocals: Gordon Stoker, Ben Speer, Brock Speer.

Back at the Nashville Studio, backup vocalist Gordon Stoker from"The Jordanaires" joined brothers, Ben and Brock Speer.

Two more songs both of which were ballads were laid down; "I'm Counting On You" and "I Was The One". (audio)

I'm Counting On You - Elvis Presley
00:00 / 00:00
I Was The One - Elvis Presley
00:00 / 00:00

Ben Speer

Brock Speer

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                       January 12, 1956 (Thursday)

No information.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                              January 13, 1956 (Friday)

In Memphis, Elvis went to his local record shop 'Poplar Tunes' which was located near his house and spent $3 on some records.

Afterwards he made an unannounced appearance at Humes High School and performed for about ten minutes at a Father's Night show. 

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                        January 14, 1956 (Saturday)

Elvis bought a new 1956 Harley Davidson (#56KH-1459) motorcycle (photo) from the Memphis Harley Davidson Company. It cost $1143.00 and he received a $438.70 trade-in on his ST1603. He owed $903.19 which was paid from February 15 in monthly instalments of $50.15 until July 18, 1957.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Louisiana Hayride - Elvis Presley, Hoot and Curley, Jack Ford, Betty Amos, Johnny

Horton, Jeanette Hicks, David Houston, Jimmy Newman, Buddy Attaway, Johnny Cash, Buzz Busby and the Bayou

Boys, George Jones

The Municipal Auditorium, 705 Grand Avenue, Shreveport, Louisiana. (8:00 pm - 11:30 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J.

Fontana.

Talent agency, William Morris told their clients in Hollywood "not to miss Elvis Presley when he makes his

national television debut on The Dorsey Show on the 28th".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

Most Played By Jockeys: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD C&W CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #3

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #3

Most Played By Jockeys:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #4

"Mystery Train" by Elvis Presley. #13

BILLBOARD R&B CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters.   

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Hands Off" by Priscilla Bowman & Jay McShann's Orch

Most Played By Jockeys:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters. 

BILLBOARD POP CHART

Honor Roll of Hits: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

The Top 100: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (LP)

No LP Chart

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (EP)

No EP Chart

1956 Harley Davidson (56KH-1459)

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                           January 15, 1956 (Sunday)

The band participated in a five day package tour of Texas which was headlined by Hank Snow.

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow Tour

The Municipal Auditorium, San Antonio, Texas. (2 shows) (3:00 pm and 8:00 pm).

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

 

Elvis was billed as "RCA Victor's Newest Singing Sensation".

This was the last time he appeared as a supporting act. The box office gross for the day was $6,800.

 

During this time, Elvis visited D.J.'s aunt and uncle's restaurant, causing him to miss a cocktail party held by the field office at RCA. This upset both the Colonel and Bob Neal, who reminded him of his professional obligations.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                           January 16, 1956 (Monday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow Tour

The Municipal Auditorium, Galveston, Texas.

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                         January 17, 1956 (Tuesday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow Tour

The City Auditorium, Beaumont, Texas. (2 shows) (7:00 pm and 9:00 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Songs performed: "Good Rockin' Tonight", "Baby Let's Play House", "I Got A Woman", "Only You", "Tutti Frutti", "That's All Right", "Heartbreak Hotel".

There had been a lot of negativity within the higher echelons of RCA regarding Elvis' recording of "Heartbreak Hotel" some executives even questioned had they signed the right Sun artist and that maybe they should have gone for Carl Perkins instead.

These murmurings had now reached the attention of Steve Sholes, so he put in place separate plans for an album and extended play in case the new single flopped.

 

Because there wasn't enough new material to fill an album, Sholes went through Elvis' back catalogue with Sun Records to see if there were any strong contenders that could be included.

He also informed Elvis by letter that his debut single would be released around January 30th and also forwarded on six demos for the next recording session which was booked to take place in New York later this month.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                 January 18, 1956 (Wednesday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow Tour

The Austin Coliseum, Austin, Texas.

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Songs performed: "I Got A Woman", "Heartbreak Hotel"

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                       January 19, 1956 (Thursday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow Tour

The Memorial Auditorium, Wichita Falls, Texas. (2 shows) (7:00 pm and 9:00 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Songs performed: "Baby Let's Play House", "I Got A Woman", "Only You", "Tutti Frutti", "That's All Right", "Heartbreak Hotel".

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                              January 20, 1956 (Friday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Hank Snow Tour

The North Side Coliseum , Fort Worth, Texas

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

 

This show concluded the Hank Snow package tour of Texas.

Elvis received $1,800 for the tour.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                        January 21, 1956 (Saturday)

LIVE PERFORMANCE(S) - Louisiana Hayride - Elvis Presley, Hoot and Curley, Jack Ford, Betty Amos, Johnny

Horton, Jeanette Hicks, David Houston, Jimmy Newman, Buddy Attaway, Johnny Cash, Buzz Busby and the Bayou

Boys, George Jones

The Municipal Auditorium, 705 Grand Avenue, Shreveport, Louisiana. (8:00 pm - 11:30 pm)

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Lead Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J.

Fontana.

Without any respite, the band continued with their regular Saturday night appearance on the Louisiana Hayride.

Bob Neal informed the Colonel that due to his new work commitments, he would have to miss out on participating

in the upcoming February tour. This officially marked the end of his association with Elvis Presley and allowed the

Colonel to gain full control.

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

Most Played By Jockeys: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD C&W CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #3

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #3

Most Played By Jockeys:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #4

BILLBOARD R&B CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters.   

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Hands Off" by Priscilla Bowman & Jay McShann's Orch

Most Played By Jockeys:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters. 

BILLBOARD POP CHART

Honor Roll of Hits: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

The Top 100: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (LP)

No LP Chart

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (EP)

No EP Chart

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                           January 22, 1956 (Sunday)

Elvis and Red West flew home to Memphis from Shreveport.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                          January 23, 1956 (Monday)

While at home on Getwell, Elvis and the band rehearsed for their national television appearance on "Stage Show". 

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                         January 24, 1956 (Tuesday)

Elvis and the 'Blue Moon Boys' signed a business contract (photo) with 'Jamboree Attractions' (Colonel Tom Parker) that signified the start of 'The Elvis Presley Show' with performance dates penciled in between February 5th and February 26th. Other artists contracted were: Mother Maybelle and the Carter Sisters with June Carter, The Louvin Brothers and the Alabama Sandbusters, Justin Tubb, Benny Martin. 

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                  January 25, 1956 (Wednesday)

In preparation for his Dorsey appearance, Elvis and the Colonel arrived in Nashville and at 11:42 am, flew first class to New York City, they paid $107.69 per ticket.

 

While in New York, they stayed at the Warwick Hotel on 52nd Street, near 6th Avenue, and had dinner at the nearby Hickory House restaurant.

Elvis contacted his parents by telephone from his hotel room.

The management contract between the Colonel and Elvis was created while Elvis was still under age. It was updated now that Elvis was twenty one.

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                       January 26, 1956 (Thursday)

Sometime in January, Elvis bought a used blue 1955 Cadillac Fleetwood Series 75 Limousine. It was bought from Southern Motors of Memphis and the purchase contract was co-signed by Vernon Presley.

1955 Cadillac Fleetwood Series 75 Limousine

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                              January 27, 1956 (Friday)

Scotty Moore, Bill Black and D.J. Fontana arrived in New York by car from Memphis.

 

This is the most probable date for an photo shoot booked by RCA. Elvis took along his Martin D-18 guitar to use as a prop. The photographs were taken by David B. Hecht in his New York Studio.

PUBLICITY PHOTO SESSION: David B. Hecht's Studio, Carnegie Hall, 7th Avenue and West 56th Street, New York

RCA shipped their first original Elvis Presley single:

"Heartbreak Hotel"/"I Was The One" (20/47-6420)

RCA Victor 20-6420 (78rpm)

RCA Victor 47-6420 (45rpm)

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                        January 28, 1956 (Saturday)

TELEVISION APPEARANCE: "STAGE SHOW" (National TV Debut)

CBS Studio 50, 1697 Broadway, Manhattan, New York City. (8:00 pm)

Rehearsals where held in the morning at the Nola Studios which were located between 51st and 52nd Streets.

Musicians: Rhythm Guitar & Vocals: Elvis Presley - Electric Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J.

Fontana.

Elvis and the band made their National Television debut on "Stage Show" hosted by the Dorsey Brothers, Jimmy

and Tommy. (photo) The live show aired from CBS TV Studio 50, New York City.

Elvis was introduced to the watching nation by Cleveland disc jockey Bill Randle. The band didn't  choose any of the

tracks from the recently released new single, but instead picked songs that they used as part of their live show: 

"Shake, Rattle and Roll"/"Flip, Flop and Fly" (video) followed by the recently recorded "I Got A Woman" (video)

"Shake, Rattle and Roll"/"Flip, Flop and Fly" (improved sound)

"I Got A Woman" (improved sound)

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

Most Played By Jockeys: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD C&W CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #5

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #7

Most Played By Jockeys:

"Sixteen Tons" by Ernie Ford.

"I Forgot To Remember To Forget" by Elvis Presley. #5

BILLBOARD R&B CHART  (singles)

Best Sellers in Stores:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters.   

Most Played In Jukeboxes:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters.    

Most Played By Jockeys:

"The Great Pretender" by the Platters. 

BILLBOARD POP CHART

Honor Roll of Hits: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

The Top 100: 

"Memories Are Made of This" by Dean Martin.

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (LP)

"Oklahoma!" Soundtrack.

BILLBOARD POP CHART  (EP)

No EP Chart

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                           January 29, 1956 (Sunday)

Elvis, Scotty, Bill and D.J. stayed in New York and enjoyed the sights. 

Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                          January 30, 1956 (Monday)

RECORDING SESSION: (RCA Victor)

RCA Studio 1, 155 East 24th Street, Manhattan, New York. (11:00 am - 2:00 pm)

Producer: Steve Sholes.

Engineer: Ernie Oehlrich.

Musicians: Vocals: Elvis Presley - Electric Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana.

Another recording session for RCA, the first though to take place in their New York Studio 1 for Elvis. Steve Sholes was again on hand to produce. Shorty Long was added on piano. The musicians recorded  two songs earlier in the day. Carl Perkins' "Blue Suede Shoes" which might have been Elvis' next single under different circumstances. (he had already promised Sam Phillips earlier that he wouldn't want to clash with the song writer's version which was already recorded for Sam on the Sun label) and Arthur Crudup's "My Baby Left Me".

 

Later that day, another two songs were cut "One-sided Love Affair" and Arthur Crudup's "So Glad You're Mine".

Blue Suede Shoes - Elvis Presley
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My Baby Left Me - Elvis Presley
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One-Sided Love Affair - Elvis Presley
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So Glad You're Mine - Elvis Presley
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Elvis: "A Day in the Life"                                                                                                                         January 31, 1956 (Tuesday)

RECORDING SESSION: (RCA Victor)

RCA Studio 1, 155 East 24th Street, Manhattan, New York. (12:00 noon - 3:00 pm)

Producer: Steve Sholes.

Engineer: Ernie Oehlrich.

Musicians: Vocals: Elvis Presley - Electric Guitar: Scotty Moore - Bass: Bill Black - Drums: D.J. Fontana - Piano: Shorty Long.

Everyone returned to the recording studio to complete another two cover versions: "I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry (over you)" a hit previously for Roy Hamilton, and Little Richard's "Tutti Frutti".

 

 

 

While in the studio, Elvis was interviewed by Fred Danzig, a young reporter from New York.

I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry - Elvis Presley
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Tutti Frutti - Elvis Presley
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Later that day, Elvis and the Colonel went to the William Morris Agency office located at 1740 Broadway, New York and signed a contract with Harry Kalcheim and Nat Lefkowitz. William "Popsie" Randolph took photographs to mark the event.