Arts & Entertainment

Somerville: Elvis is in The House – But He’s Looking to Leave the Building

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Credits: Rod Hirsch
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Credits: Rod Hirsch
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Credits: Rod Hirsch
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SOMERVILLE, NJ – One of America’s original rock’n’roll icons, Elvis Presley’s legacy goes beyond his 18 No. 1 hits like “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Hound Dog," Jailhouse Rock,” and “Don’t Be Cruel,” even beyond his fleet of Cadillacs, a penchant for bling and his indulgent, over-the-top mansion, Graceland.

Not to be forgotten are the 27 movies where he received top billing, and hundreds of live performances from the Ed Sullivan Show and the Grand Old Opry to the glitter and glitz of the Las Vegas strip where he made his comeback in the 1970s after spending nine years in Hollywood making films.

His legacy even extends to the world of high-end collectibles and kitschy items like paintings on velvet - and paper dolls.

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A 35-year-old copy of “Elvis: The Paper Doll Book” was added this week to the eclectic inventory of antiques and collectibles for sale at Gallery on Main at 30 West Main St.

First published 35 years ago by St. Martin’s Press, this particular example is in mint condition - no folds, no creases, no cuts, and no crayon or pencil marks.

The cover is dominated by a profile of Elvis in his trademark sequined cape and bell bottom pants, popularized in the later stages of his career on stage in Las Vegas where he performed over 700 sell-outs at what was the Las Vegas Hilton.

Inside the book there are scantily-clad cut-out figures of Elvis and his wife Priscilla, whom he met while he was in the Army in West Germany when she was 14; her family was also stationed there.

Elvis and Priscilla were married when she turned 21. There are several images of Elvis and Priscilla on the inside pages with more pages of cut out clothes.

The centerfold is a collage of black-and-white photos of Elvis dating from his days in the US Army.

For now, Elvis is in the house – but he’s looking to leave the building – Gallery on Main co-owner Shaun Daley is selling the paper doll book for $25.

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