Elvis always on his mind
A great-grandad has revealed a collection of Elvis memorabilia so complete it even includes an “authentic” strand of The King’s hair.
In his younger years, Albert Mack, says he bore a striking likeness to his hero - the man they called The King of Rock and Roll.
Now aged 76, Albert has been putting together his collection of Elvis records, statues, books, pictures and memorabilia for more than 60 years.
“I’m not a hoarder, I’m a collector,” said Albert, “Elvis wasn’t a onehit-wonder, he was a one off - to me, he’s always been the greatest.
“I started collecting in 1956. I have no idea how big my collection is. How can you count that lot? You must be talking about 4,000 or 5,000 pieces.”
Albert’s extensive collection includes just about anything an Elvis fan could ever dream of.
One framed record even has a plaque that boasts: “This gold record contains an authentic strand of Elvis Presley’s hair.” But Albert isn’t convinced. “How could you ever know?” he said.
Among Albert’s most prized possessions is a super-rare 1954 bootleg of Elvis’ first ever demo recording - “That’s all right”.
“The label says Hillbilly Cat,” said Albert. “That’s what Elvis was called at first, because of where he came from they called him a Hillbilly.
“That’s probably the rarest, oldest and most valuable thing I have.
“It cost me £5 in 1957 - nearly half a week’s wages.”
Because the recording was pressed illegally in 1954, the 45RPM record is still subject to particular rules of resale.
“Because it’s a bootleg, I can only sell it to a collector, not to a dealer,” said Albert.
Originally from Southwark, London, Albert worked as a lift engineer in the capital for 25 years but moved to Guisborough with his wife Edith 15 years ago.
Sadly, after almost 40 years of marriage, Edith passed away in November last year.
Albert is now retired but still takes the time to volunteer at the Salvation Army shop in Guisborough.
A photo of Albert and Edith at Elvis’ famous Graceland estate in Memphis, Tennessee, hangs on the living room wall of their Guisborough bungalow.
Albert said: “We were married nearly 40 years; she was 81 when she died.
A photo on the wall depicts a 21-year-old Albert and there is a definite resemblance to The King himself.
“They always used to say, ‘you don’t half look like someone I know,’” said Albert.
Albert Mack pictured with just part of his Elvis collection