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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Never-Before-Published Photo of Elvis From His Hometown in Tupelo, Mississippi

 By Alanna Nash

Elvis Presley is one of the most photographed figures in music history. But in the nearly 37 years since his death, every significant picture of rock’s swivel-hipped pioneer has been widely seen. Or has it?

Wade Jones, 50, a lifelong Elvis fan from Mount Holly, North Carolina, has been “constantly looking at photos” since 1977, when he smuggled a tape recorder into one of Presley’s last concerts. And so in 2005, when the late Janelle McComb—a Presley family friend from Tupelo, Mississippi—sent Jones a childhood picture of the future king of rock ’n’ roll, Jones was dumbstruck.

“I had never seen that image in my life,” says Jones, who looked at the photo of a young teenager leaning on his bike—his head tilted back, his hooded eyes nearly closed in the Tupelo sun—and realized it was the first shot placing Presley (who would have been 13 that year, 1948) on the streets of his hometown. “Just his pose, and the fact that he was in a candid situation, surrounded by normal people, was kind of eerie.”

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