Remember back in 1985 an Album called: "Reconsider Baby"? (rereleased on CD in1990).
It had Peter Guralnick essay in the booklet, it starts like this:
"I remember the first time I met the great bluesman, Howlin Wolf, in 1966. He started talking about white blues singers... He liked Paul Butterfield, he said, also "that other boy -what?his name? somewhere out in California, that "Hound Dog Number". He was talking about Elvis Presley. But surely Elvis couldn?t be considered strictly a blues singer, somebody pointed out. Maybe not, conceded Wolf in the great hoarse growl of his, but "he started from the blues. if he stopped, he stopped. Its nothing to laugh at. He made his pull from the blues".
Elvis was a tremendous blues singer, he had that powerfull voice, but more than that he had the blues, not everybody have it. He grew up hearing this music, he loved this music and he was able to perform it as much as well as Gospel music, he knew so much about it.
And people like the Woling Wolf and the great Muddy Waters respected for sure ELvis as blues singer, they were impresed when that boy first apeared; as far as 1956, Muddy Waters made a record called "All Aboard", it was obvious on that one that he had been following ELvis trace since "That All RIght Mama".
Joe Cocker called him "The greatest Blues singer in the world" and Jimi Hendrix who saw Elvis live in 57 aknowledge him "As a fine blues singer". Eric Clapton told Jerry Schilling that "it would be an honor to play with Elvis and James Burton".
THere had been loads and loads of Elvis Country compilations same with gospel, needless to say: Love songs (aka ballads) and of course: Elvis rockers. (same year appeared an album called Elvis the Rocker Great album cover by the way, I treasure that CD as much as Reconsider Baby)
But as far as I know, with the exception of the import: Elvis Rythm and BLues, "Reconsider Baby" stands alone as the only Blues complitation on Elvis catalogue, and actually is deleted for a long time. Pretty soon the abomination of Elvis History would be released, a non sense move, "one broken heart for sale" nice toon, but don?t think Elvis win anynew fans on that one, neither any artistical recognition among the new generations. Would bee much much better to pull some projects like the release of a compilation of ELvis BLues and R&B music? with a well planed publicity campaing, even a tv documentary about it, and a new essay inside from Guralnick ore someone like him, maybe some interviews with people like B.B. king and so... wouldn?t do so much better for Elvis than something like the history release?
But of course something like that wouldnt make so much money as the history volume will. But in the end, stuff like History will burn Elvis and there would be no more money, while other proyects like a Blues CD will preserve ELvis by the means of showing his true atistic value.
But I guess is better to bet for the safe buck way of think, and then in the future will say; well, none of ELvis 1 Second to None and History volumes lost any money. For sure no money lost, but Elvis true artistic value may will remain unknown for the newer generations