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That Mystery Buyer Who Snapped Up Elvis Presley’s First Recording for $300,000? Yep. It was Jack.

Back in January, Elvis Presley’s first-ever recording–an acetate made at Sun Recording Studios as a birthday present for his mom–went up for auction. At the time, he was just an 18 year-old truck driver who liked R&B.

Elvis Presley - My Happiness

But after hearing what Elvis had done (it was almost a year later), Sun Records owner Sam Phillips tracked him down, signed Elvis to a record deal and the result was rock’n’roll.

There is exactly one of these acetates in existence. One.  In other words, not only this is the rarest record in the history of rock, this recording the Ur-record of all rock’n’roll.

Here’s one of the sides of that recording from July 18, 1953.

Now here’s side two.

When the auction finished, the winning bid of $300,000 USD was from a mystery buyer. But thanks to an interview in Billboard, we know that it was Jack White who shelled out the big dollars.

And Jack’s just not going to store the thing in a vault somewhere, either. On April 18–Record Store Day 2015–Jack is going to reissue the recordings on Third Man Records. On vinyl, of course.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 37808 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

One thought on “That Mystery Buyer Who Snapped Up Elvis Presley’s First Recording for $300,000? Yep. It was Jack.

  • gotta give our boy Jack some credit – not only for being a dedicated music fan, but also for having a savvy business mind. he could end up making a ton of money from this move.


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