The Tankcaster – Issue No. 7 (1961)
By Ger Rijff
Welcome to the 3rd installment of the legendary TANKCASTER bibliography!
The number 7 issue contains no less than 20 pages, making it the biggest edition to date, and is loaded with interesting little ditties about Elvis Presley (“He was wearing a little mustache, which looked great on him”) written by the person who stood closer to the Boy From Tupelo than any other fan: GARY PEPPER.
This issue of The Tankcaster is also a good excuse to focus on the collectible BLUE HAWAII LEIS that pop up in auction from time to time. The Hawaiian leis were manufactured in different colours while the medaillon always had the same picture of Elvis on the front. The back of the medaillon came in two versions: one promoted the Blue Hawaii movie, the other the RCA soundtrack. An exception was the lei with the small medaillon that read “ELVIS WE LOVE YOU” on the front. The back is unknown to me (probably blank considering it’s small size), and I also haven’t seen any other versions of the small one pop up.
Enjoy Gary Pepper’s legendary “THE TANKCASTER” !
THE TANKCASTER – ISSUE No. 8 (1962) can be found HERE!
And be sure to check out THE TANKERS ANNUAL 1963 HERE!
On page 13 Gary mentions that the Tankers can send a stamped and self-addressed envelope in order to receive a candid of Elvis at his front door taken by his mother.
In The Tankers Annual 1963 Gary printed the photo in question (in b/w).
On pages 14 and 15, Gary thanks certain people for their help, and these include Colonel Parker and Tom Diskin for sending him the Hawaiian leis (page 15).
Noteworhty is also that Gary appears to actually have the coverphoto for this issue of The Tankcaster professionally done since he thanks Leemans Portrait Studio in Memphis (page 14) for arranging and photographing this photo.
On the final page of this issue (page 16) Gary announces the Contest and the amazing prizes to be won:
1. A piece of carpet from Graceland
2. A signed Blue Hawaii album (shown to the right —>)
3. A signed Something For Everybody album
4. Uncle Travis Smith’s uniform shirt
A photo similar to the one on the leis was used to send out the 1961 Christmas Card.
It leaves very little doubt that Gary and his family were on Elvis’ Christmas list.
However, the photo on the Christmas card is not just of a bad quality, but also reversed.
Not related to Gary Pepper and his Tankers in any way, but this interesting TIKI MUG seems to fit the subject. It was produced in only a small quantity, given out on the Opening Night of Blue Hawaii in New Orleans, and just like the leis it has become a much wanted piece of movie-memorabilia among collectors selling for around $ 500.