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WILL ELVIS PROMPT "BURNING LOVE" FOR THE KING'S CATALOG?

Baz Luhrmann’s cinematic phantasmagoria Elvis had a strong opening at the box office during the last weekend of June, earning north of $31m and dislodging reigning champ Top Gun: Maverick from the #1 spot the latter had occupied for four weeks.

Particularly considering its adult audience, this is an impressive bow for the Warner Bros. film, which is accompanied by a star-studded RCA soundtrack. What biz-watchers are wondering, though, is whether this visually arresting experience will ultimately boost the King’s catalog, soon to be highlighted in several never-before-in-this-order boxed sets and other Sony releases.

One song from the film’s soundtrack, Doja Cat’s “Vegas,” is a bona fide hit, and the ST is the #7 album at iTunes as of this writing. 

Meanwhile, since Luhrmann’s film hit screens, we have seen some streaming action on a handful of the King’s classic cuts; Elvis catalog streams are up 70% week to date, led by “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” “Suspicious Minds,” “Jailhouse Rock,” "Burning Love," “Hound Dog” and “Unchained Melody.”

Once Elvis is available on demand and via TV streaming services—and especially once the next awards season is underway—we wouldn’t be surprised to see a whole new generation of music fans discovering his seismically influential body of work.

As the Kate Bush/Stranger Things phenomenon has amply demonstrated, the integration of classic music and a compelling story can result in enormous streams; this in the wake of the revival of Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” via TikTok and an artfully wielded Ocean Spray bottle, Queen’s hits from the smash film Bohemian Rhapsody and a number of early-’90s hip-hop and R&B hits thanks to the Super Bowl.

Could classic Elvis prove as tasty to playlisters as a fried peanut butter-and-banana sandwich? Will Hollywood finally see the wisdom of remaking Clambake? Don’t you wish someone would say, “HITS has left the building?” Stay tuned, TCB and thankyouverymuch.

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