Wigan schoolboy's role in new book on legend Elvis

John-Paul Melling
John-Paul Melling

A Wigan schoolboy is featured in and has helped to write a book in tribute to the legendary Elvis Presley.

John Paul Melling, who is a musician that regularly performs Elvis tracks under the stage name Johnny B Goode, has a starring role in the book I called her Lisa Marie, which is written by author, photographer and fellow Elvis fanatic, Clementine Schneidermann.

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The first part of the book is about The King of rock ‘n’ roll himself, but the second part focuses on the 11-year-old Orrell St Peter’s High School pupil and includes photographs of his trips to Memphis and Porthcawl, with the text under these pictures being written in John Paul’s handwriting.

Schneidermann first met John Paul in 2014 in The Cabin Bar in the South Wales seaside resort, where he won the Elvis competition and was crowned King of the Cabin.

In 2016, she travelled with John Paul and his mum, Alison, to Memphis, where it all began for Elvis, and photographed him recording at Sun Studio.

She documented their pilgrimage across the Atlantic and created the book, which is described as a “visual travel diary”.

Back in 2016, the talented Billinge youngster helped to raise £200 for Wigan Infirmary A&E and the North West Ambulance Service by performing Elvis’s songs at Birchley St Mary’s Catholic Club.

It was held in memory of his grandad Frank who had died the previous November.

Mrs Melling said: “All of our family are proud of him for his achievements and particularly of the fact that the edits to the photographs are written in John Paul’s handwriting.

“I feel that John Paul is very lucky to have this amazing opportunity to be part of a book.

“I also feel he will set a good example and image for his school.”

One of the points that Schneidermann is making is how Elvis Presley and his music is continuing to attract young new fans and imitators more than 40 years after his tragically early death.

The book is due to be published this week.

Both John Paul and Clementine will be available for a book signing session at the Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool on May 30 between 6.30pm and 7.30pm.

I called her Lisa Marie retails at €40 and will be available for purchase at the book signing.

It is also available to order online at: https://www.chosecommune.com/book/icalledherlisamarie/.