a mystery that Ed Bonja, who was Elvis' tour photographer
and responsible for nearly all covershots of singles
and LPs of the 70s, names the book "World's
Best Kept Secret".
When we talked with Sandi about Tahoe she responded:
"You must absolutely talk to Sue!"
"Sue McCasland from Vegas?"
"Yes, THAT Sue!"
"Sue is MISS Tahoe!"
That was the birth of the "World's Best Kept
Secret: Elvis live at Del Webb's Sahara Tahoe".
When the book was announced, for the first time
a surge went through the Elvis World. It was said
that it is impossible to write a book about Tahoe
and a pictorial about Elvis in Tahoe - not true.
Although Elvis performed five engagements in Tahoe
and performed in a small, but idyllic resort area,
only a few photos exist. (And most of the few were
taken by Sue McCasland!)
Up to today, Tahoe is still a mystery why such a
little known venue where sold out concerts occurred
had been forgotten in contrast to Las Vegas. Photos
of Elvis and Sahara Tahoe memorabilia are some of
the rarest collectibles in the world. A really difficult
beginning situation for an informative pictorial
definitive book. But Sue really did it! She fantastically
managed to dig out the most unknown information
and with hundreds of unpublished photos to disclose
the "best kept secret".
Her unique connections and contacts to people in
the Elvis scene helped her to gain memorabilia expert
Joseph A. Krein as the co-author for her book. Sue
saw the professional work of the Praytome Publishing
team. During the research for "Elvis On Tour
'75", Sue had been already on site to witness
the various single important sections of the work
done together with the team. Soon it was obvious,
that she shared the enthusiasm of the team and the
love for detail and for Elvis in order to give her
precious photos their worthy treatment. Precious
on the one hand for the author, because the photos
are a perfect completion for her memories of that
time with Elvis, and precious on the other hand
for the fans, who had not been in Tahoe. In order
to let the photos look brilliant again, not only
a grade of accuracy and love for detail is necessary,
but also the use of the most modern techniques as
well as the reproduction.
Important features are:
Like "Elvis On Tour '75" all pictures
were in chronological order. Memorabilia is not
only displayed but also explained and with several
detail advancements, evolution instead of revolution
was the motto.
Like on all Praytome Publishing products we attached
also in this book great importance to the information
content and it should not only be a book which contains
random pictures on a single page but if possible
precise details concerning place and date as well
as authentic stories of people which were there
on the different occasions. Equally important for
the producers were background information you can
get through newspaper articles or show reviews,
bills, checks and other paperwork.
Photos which have lost color intensity due to their
age, should be post-worked. We wanted to use every
possible technological help to remove kinks, cracks
or stains to come up to the historic photos. To
compile a defintive book about the performances
at the Sahara Tahoe we used also every source available,
even the amateurish instamatic shots / negatives.
* Cost & Performance
Due to the fans reacting positive to the improved
paper quantity and print quality in the "Born
To Rock"- book, we decided to contine using
the same material on this project like we did during
the prodcution of "Behind The Image 2"
and "Elvis on Tour '75", to achieve again
excellent results. This means for the customer and
fan great quality while the already low cost / performance
ratio, which was already established by the very
first book of Praytome Publishing "Elvis -
Behind The Image 1", was maintained.