About Poplar Tunes
Poplar Tunes Publishing is the company behind the Elvis Presley 'Day by Day - The Year In Review' yearbook series. These yearbooks are based on the popular Elvis Day by Day news blog, that compiles a daily overview of all the latest Elvis Presley news from around the world with additional in-depth reviews, articles and interviews by Elvis experts, authors and fans from around the world. You can find the blog at www.ElvisDayByDay.com.
The Elvis Day By Day blog was established in 2010 and has operated as a non-profit online fan-club, officially recognized by Elvis Presley Enterprises. The aim of the Elvis Day By Day fan club is to promote the legacy of Elvis Presley, with respect for “the man, the artist and the image". Elvis Day By Day does this by collecting and sharing the latest news for fans and people interested in Elvis Presley.
The Elvis Day By Day blog, founded January 1st 2010, was inspired by the great 'Elvis Day By Day' book by Peter Guralnick and Ernst Jorgensen.
In 2020 the first volume in the 'Elvis Day By Day - The Year in Review' yearbook series was published. Until now yearbooks on 2018, 2019, 2020 have been released and a new volume on 2021 was published in January 2022, in cooperation with the Danish Memphis Mansion Publishing.
In the "Bookstore" section of this website you find an overview of the available volumes, background information and previews. In the "Reviews" section you find the reviews and reactions from the experts and readers.
If you have any questions, please contact me.
Behind the blog
When I talk to people about my Elvis Presley hobby and mention I blog on a “daily basis” about Elvis news the common reaction is "Elvis died a long time ago, what is there to tell?" Looking back on the last twenty years I tell them "pretty much!". The close to 3500 blog-posts, with over 5000 combined news-updates posted the last ten years alone, on the Elvis Day By Day blog clearly show that the Elvis-world is very much alive today.
Elvis Presley may have been gone for almost 45 years, but he left a permanent mark. Hardly a day goes by without some news item, magazine article, new movie or advertisement that features Elvis as a reference point. With all that news mainly available online and in part in fan-club magazines I decided to return to compile 'everything Elvis Presley' in one physical illustrated chronology.
These yearbooks, based on the Elvis Day By Day blog with with additional reviews and articles fans, author and experts like Carlos R. Ares (Argentina), Piers Beagley and Nigel Patterson from the Elvis Information Network website (Australia), Andy Pendl (Austria), Michael Sander (Germany), Giuseppe Castiglia (Italy), Rogier Van Luyken (The Netherlands), Shane Brown, Joan Gansky, Phil Gelormine, Robert Gilbert and Trina Young (United States) compile all the news, as it happened, when it happened in one comprehensive full-color physical yearbook.
Great to see Elvis still connects fans around the world!
INTERVIEW WITH MEMPHIS VOYAGER (2022)
Today we’d like to introduce you to Kees Mouwen.
Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I have been a lifelong Elvis Presley fan and have been writing about the Memphis Flash for over twenty years. The first 10 years on ElvisNews.com, which he co-founded, and since 2010 on my Elvis blog ‘ElvisDayByDay.com‘.
My main subjects are today’s Elvis news and reviews of new books, music, and movie releases.
When I talk to people about my Elvis Presley hobby and mention I blog on a “daily basis” about Elvis news the common reaction is “Elvis died a long time ago, what is there to tell?” Looking back on the last twenty years I tell them “pretty much!”.
The close to 4000-plus blog posts with close to 6000 combined news updates, posted since 2010 on my Elvis Day By Day blog alone, clearly show that the Elvis world and Elvis’ memory are very much alive today.
Elvis Presley may have been gone for more than 45 years this year, but he left a permanent mark. Hardly a day goes by without some news item, magazine article, new movie, or advertisement that features Elvis as a reference point. The new Elvis biopic by famed director Baz Luhrmann, starring Austin Butler as Elvis Presley and Oscar winner Tom Hank as his manager Colonel Tom Parker, will only reconfirm this.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
In this day and age you can do a lot of things online yourself, but in the old days, say before the year 2000 when I started out, you had to do everything yourself, including building your own online presence through writing the HTML code yourself.
The only tools available back then were basic tools like ‘Geocities’, remember those? Today you can do pretty much anything online with a few clicks from your phone using Blogger.com or share the latest news and updates through your social media channels.
And if you wanted to write and publish a book, Microsoft Word was pretty much your only friend, even if you managed to find a publisher interested in publishing your book. But 20 years later companies like Blurb.com and Amazon.com turned things around offering tools to publish and sell your own books worldwide. Moving along with the development of the internet, tools, and especially social media, those challenges became enablers of my dream. Thanks to these modern tools I was able to publish my first Elvis Presley yearbook two years ago. Since then, three volumes have been released since then, and two other volumes are in the works.
But besides the tooling, it is the concept and the content that counts. With a daily news site on an artist who had a global presence, but has also been gone for 45 years, the news is scattered all over the place. And with news, I mean serious news on everything that happens in the Elvis Presley world, not stuff related to impersonators.
It is hard work and it takes discipline to bring the latest news and review new releases every single day.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
Some readers asked me why I started the ‘Elvis Day By Day’ yearbook series, especially with everything available online. The answer is simple: the things we take for granted today, are the collectibles of the future. And in this digital day and age, we take pretty much everything online for granted.
Being an Elvis Presley fan, don’t you just love to read original Elvis Presley magazines, newspaper clippings, advertisements, flyers or concert or LP reviews from the fifties, sixties or seventies? Or, as the late great Ger Rijff used to call it, read those “smelly papers”.
And aren’t old scrapbooks and diaries great time capsules? Some of them are used by renowned biographers and curators of Elvis’ legacy like Peter Guralnick and Ernst Jorgensen, as fans wrote down all the songs Elvis Presley performed at the Louisiana Hayride or they kept the little newspaper advertisement of a young singer touring the southern states of the United States. If you check a few of the Elvis books, CDs, or LPs in your collection, many will be illustrated with original memorabilia, placing the content of that release in the correct historical context.
Almost everything “Elvis Presley” is still collectible, and new material is still being discovered and documented each year. Just look at the number of discography books released just recently; you could have bought a new discography book almost every month if you wanted to. And there is so much still to be discovered!
But what about the collectibles of the future? Where in the “old days” everything Elvis Presley had a physical appearance, so the chance that it was preserved was considerable, nowadays everything is shared digitally on the world wide web. It’s here today but gone tomorrow.
In the ‘Elvis Day By Day – The Year In Review’ yearbook series I try to capture everything Elvis Presley “day by day, and year by year” as we don’t always realize how soon we forget. Do you remember what you did three years ago, let alone what happened in the Elvis Presley world?
I kind of consider myself an “artist” as I do everything myself, I do the research write the texts, articles, and reviews myself (also inviting guest writers from around the world), do the complete design and layout of the website/blog www.elvisdaybyday.com, my online shop www.poplartunes.com and of course the design from front to back of the Elvis Presley yearbooks I publish.
I love being factual (no fake news!) and creative in how to present my writing. Fortunately, the reviews of my work acknowledge that, giving me the energy to continue.
This book series preserves Elvis Presley’s modern legacy, the future collectibles. All the news, as it happened, detailed all the new books, music, and movie releases, including in-depth reviews of the most important ones. The Day By Day yearbook series is your Elvis Presley reference, today, tomorrow, and forever.
How can people work with you, collaborate with you, or support you?
A job like this isn’t something to do all alone. Talking – online and in-person – with like-minded people, and those who were there when Elvis Presley still lived, gives much energy and inspiration!
Besides that, to keep a legacy alive and interesting it is good to include the perspectives of many people, which keeps it interesting as we all have our points of view, opinions, knowledge, and so on. We’re all different, but we come together around this Memphis musician who touched our lives in some way.
The last yearbook on 2021 contains contributions by Carlos R. Ares (Argentina), Piers Beagley, Nigel Patterson and Geoffrey McDonnell (Australia), Andy Pendl (Austria), Robert Gilbert (Canada), Michael Sander and Thomas D. Weiß (Germany), Rogier van Luyken (The Netherlands), Giuseppe Castiglia (United Kingdom), Phil Gelormine and Trina Young (United States), making this a real international edition.
I’m especially proud that some big names in the Elvis world were willing to write a foreword for my book. Acclaimed author and biographer of Elvis Presley and his manager Colonel Tom Parker, Alanna Nash wrote the foreword for the 2020 edition, visual biographer Paul Bélard the foreword for the 2018 edition and Elvis Presley songwriter Michael Jarrett did the last edition.
To keep this memory alive, we need to connect and help each other out. As said before, Elvis Presley is a global phenomenon so to be complete on ‘everything Elvis Presley that happens, day by day, I need to cover the world.
So people from all corners of the world can help out by keeping me informed on the latest news on Elvis Presley like-new books, movies and music releases, people that knew or worked with him, the latest relevant news from his hometown, and so on. Together we can keep his memory alive. I hope Elvis Presley Enterprises picks one of these up one day. ☺
Elvis Presley still matters today, when you have one of the Elvis Yearbooks, you hold the proof in your hands.
Interview with Kees Mouwen By Nigel Patterson (2020)
Interview by Nigel Patterson from the great >>> Elvis Information Network website on the release of the first volume in the 'Elvis Day By Day Series' as featured in the Danish Elvis news magazine.
NP: Kees, you have a long background in the Elvis world. Please tell us about your involvement?
KM: It all started 40 years ago with an Elvis cassette tape I got from my parents … no seriously I have been a fan pretty much all my life, but active in the Elvis world since 1995, mainly on-line.
Many of us remember when the latest on everything Elvis, like news, reviews and all other information was spread through fan-club magazines and events. Then the internet happened. Fans connected and some of them started websites for their club or as a platform for their Elvis hobby sharing images, movies, music and of course news.
For me this opened a brand new world. The result was that there was a lot of material available, but it was scattered all over the world wide web. Knowing the material was ‘out there’ I still had to collect it.
From there the idea rose to collect and distribute all the news in one place. Together with a friend I founded the Elvis Telegraph (an ‘old world newspaper’ name) but we quickly renamed it ElvisNews.com (a fitting ‘new world newspaper’ name). This was 1999, and the site is still up-and-running over twenty years later.
In those ten years we pretty much set the standard for Elvis Presley news sites, got to know and interview a lot of people from the Elvis (fan) world and made some good friends.
After 10 years we split ways and January 1st 2010 I started the blog ElvisDayByDay.com, a no nonsense blog with a focus on today’s Elvis Presley news. The name is of course inspired by the Elvis standard “Elvis Day By Day” by Peter Guralnick and Ernst Jorgensen. In line with the original book I do believe that this blog is the most complete unbiased news archive covering pretty much ‘everything Elvis’ - excluding the tabloid news - from 2010 until today.
NP: What gave you the idea for Elvis Day By Day 2019?
KM: The idea for an Elvis Presley yearbook is an old ambition. Like all (news) media you see Elvis magazines have to re-invent themselves and reconnect to their members in this digital and social media era. All the news is made available on-line and through fora and social media and thereby again scattered all over the place.
The idea behind the Day By Day book was to create a physical yearbook to bring it all together. A 2.0 edition of the old "Elvis Special" annuals once put together by Albert Hand in the United Kingdom.
This book offers something to hold, read and keep as a reference. This concept is something new and might take some getting used to when I read the reactions from fans.
When I announced the book some asked why write a book like this when most of the material is available on-line and for free. But when people read the book they saw it for what it was, a reference of everything Elvis 2019 and they saw what they missed with additional information on some of the main releases of the year.
With the additional reviews and articles the news got some more in-depth background. It is kind of like a fan-club magazine covering an entire year. Perhaps it is a nice idea for fan-clubs to make this book part of their subscription, as not all the fans are on-line as much as the active members. At the end of the year you get a yearbook with the best of the year. Just like in the old days when you could buy binders to keep your magazines together.
On a personal note, I have been writing about Elvis Presley on-line, and little to show for it, physically. This book marks 20 years of writing about Elvis Presley. Thanks to the self-publish platforms available today I was able to realize my personal ambition without any help of a publisher.
NP: Being essentially about Elvis news rather than being a biography, photo journal or focused on Elvis’ music or films, your release is very different to other Elvis books. Was this in your mind as you put the book together?
KM: Yes it was. The last ten years we saw the release of a lot of books from the Elvis Files and Follow That Dream teams writing books on everything between 4 days in 1956, specific movies, his gospel recordings and eight volume pictorials on his life. All look back at the time Elvis lived.
But as the current Elvis world seems very ‘alive’ and ‘active’, I thought there could be room for a book on ‘Elvis Today’ (to quote a classic album title). As I said before the book is a physical reference to everything Elvis Presley from the year 2019. A 2.0 version of the old Monthly yearbooks.
This is kind of an experiment, to see if fans like this kind of release. Fortunately first reactions are positive!
NP: Elvis Day By Day 2019 is a well-designed and high quality book with many great color photos. Are you happy with how the book has turned out?
KM: Thank you for the compliment! Writing and designing the book was a nice discovery. Although graphics always had my interest I’m no professional at this, so I’m happy with how it turned out.
The risk in a book like this is that it becomes a ‘big magazine’ and a bit boring as it covers all the updates from the complete year. Therefore I decided to add the reviews. I choose a fan-club magazine style for the news and added a bit of color with the reviews and articles. The result makes it a nice book to browse through.
It is not a coffee table picture book, but I do think you can leave it on your coffee-table, especially the hard-cover edition.
NP: The book is not just about the Elvis news in 2019, it features a lot more on no less that 300 pages! Please tell us about what else readers will find in the book.
KM: When I started out with this project I had not expected it to become this big! I started out with a basic blog to book concept, but to make it more interesting I asked the guys from the Elvis Information Network, Piers Beagley and Nigel Patterson, if they wanted to cooperate on this project. Their articles are among the best available.
I thought the addition of their in-depth long reads to the short news updates would create a nice balance and improve the appeal of the book. For this 2019 edition I also want to thank Joan and Paul Gansky for sharing their personal memories on the release of the 2019 Record Store Day LP and Shane Brown for his review of the 2010-2019 decade we closed last year.
NP: And some of that additional content is exclusive to Elvis Day By Day 2019?
KM: With most of the news-material available on-line there should be added value to buying the book. We added additional content on the main 2019 releases by adding new and illustrated articles and reviews. We tried to add at least two - in-depth or additional - articles to each month to create an interesting reading experience and future reference.
NP: Kees, what were the highlights for you around Elvis in 2019?
KM: My personal highlight for 2019 was the moment I sent out the press-release on the release of this book. From there on there was no way back on this project.
Elvis-wise this is a harder question! I really enjoyed the release of the “Elvis in Paris” book as I visited all these spots last year, “Elvis: Through The Lens of Phillip Harrington” as I really enjoy reading about the early years of our man’s career and of course the release of “Elvis Live 1969” as he really rocked when he returned to the stage fifty years ago.
The “Elvis Now in Person” book was a great illustration for these concerts. As a fan of his early work I liked the release of the Memphis Recording Service “Made in Germany” as it documented the historical home recordings and “Elvis: Back In Living Stereo” for the great music. The same goes for the “Elvis is Back Sessions”, these are essential for every fan and always a pleasure to listen to.
The “The Making of Viva Las Vegas” definitely set a new standard for Elvis Presley books and therefore I am a bit reserved towards Erik Lorenzen’s “That’s The Way it Is” trilogy as the authors of the “Viva Las Vegas” book announced they will release a “That’s The Way It Is” book in 2020 too. Their “Viva Las Vegas” book holds a lot of promises in that regard.
NP: Why should fans buy Elvis Day By Day 2019?
KM: Ha ha, a good question! Like Milton Berle said when Elvis Presley appeared on his show: “keep buying them records, he needs the money” :-).
All kidding aside fans should get this book as a keepsake of ‘everything Elvis 2019’. With all the news, reviews and information available online you can say I have easy access to everything with a few mouse-clicks, but we all know that that to keep up-to-date ‘on-line’ works great, but in the end it you want to hold something in your hand for easy and more in-depth reading. It is easier to hold an entire year in the palm of your hand than to have to search for all separate items on-line.
NP: What formats is Elvis Day By Day available in?
KM: As the book aims to bring the digital world back to the old fashioned paper “Elvis Day by Day 2019” is only available as a physical book, not as an e-book. In that regard I consider my blog and the Elvis Information network as ‘e-books’.
The book is available as a hard-cover and a soft-cover edition. The content is the same, it is a matter of taste and economics what you prefer and are willing to spend as the paperback, available through Amazon, is a bit cheaper than the hard-cover edition.
NP: Do you have any plans for an Elvis Day By Day 2020?
KM: Another good question. As said, it started out as a personal ambition and experiment, the reactions are positive. So yes, there are plans to do a 2020 edition, and several parties offered their services in making this possible. Let’s see how this evolves.
I have had questions if I could work back the last ten years to 2010 when I started my Day By Day blog. I would love to see this evolve into a new series of annual yearbooks for years to come.
NP: Kees, where can we buy Elvis Day By Day 2019?
KM: The book is available from my website (obviously) in a hard-cover and paperback edition at www.ElvisDayByDay.com and also at PoplarTunes.com.
The book is also available from Amazon worldwide and through various fan-club websites and shops. If fans would like to get a personalized copy, simply contact me though my website.
NP: Kees, is there anything else you would like to say about Elvis Day By Day 2019?
KM: Compiling, writing and designing “Elvis Day By Day 2019” was a great experience, thanks you for your contribution Nigel, could not have done this without you. I’m very proud of the result and the first reactions from readers.
I’m glad it reconnected me to fans around the globe and the contributions from guest-writers. I hope readers will see this in this book while they (re)enjoy reading about ‘everything Elvis 2019’. I’m looking forward to reactions from fans!
Thanks for the interview, it was a joy talking to you.