Another Elvis/Celine Dion Connection: In 1987, Dion’s husband and manager Rene Angelil was in Las Vegas to see a Wayne Newton tribute to Elvis Presley. Angelil recalls, “For $5 you could visit the suite at the Hilton where Elvis lived. So I go, and the Colonel is there selling souvenirs.” (That sounds so true to character, doesn’t it? Elvis had been dead for ten years, and Col. Parker was still making money off him.) He did offer a suggestion to Angelil, who mentioned to him that Celine Dion sang in French, but she was a Barbara Streisand type. The Colonel said, “Let me give you some advice. Never compare your artist to another artist.” Well, the Colonel may have given free advice, but I’ll bet he didn’t give Angelil any free souvenirs.
Another Souvenir Story: This came from the Virginia Pilot in an August 16, 1997 article. Back when Priscilla Presley was acting in the TV show “Dallas,” she made this quote at a cast party about her early days with Elvis: “I didn’t seem to realize how famous he was. The degree of it came to me one day when I looked out the window and saw some fans taking my discarded eyelashes out of a garbage can. They wanted the eyelashes for a souvenir? I couldn’t believe it. That, I think, is when I first realized how famous Elvis was.” Here’s a Pricilla trivia question for you. What was her character’s name on “Dallas?” Answer at the end of this column.
How About An Anagram?: It can be a fun challenge to form a new phrase out of the letters in another phrase, and here’s a good one for our hero:
Elvis Aaron Presley = Seen alive? Sorry, Pal.
Elvis’ Voice Characteristics: I don’t know all these music terms, but this description from Wikipedia sounds pretty authoritative: “Elvis Presley was a baritone whose voice had an extraordinary compass – the so-called register – and a very wide range of vocal color. It covered two octaves and a third, from the baritone low-G to the tenor high-B, with an upward extension in falsetto to at least a D-flat. Presley’s best octave was in the middle, D-flat to D-flat.” That’s very impressive, even if you don’t understand what it means. However, the next part of the description I understand quite well: “He has always been able to duplicate the open, hoarse, ecstatic, screaming, shouting, wailing, reckless sound of the black rhythm-and-blues and gospel singers.” Could he ever.
Elvis Lipstick Colors: According to an article in an old Elvis International Forum magazine (1990 — # 4), the line of Elvis Presley lipsticks marketed back in the 50s had these names: Tender Pink, Heartbreak Pink, Love-ya Fuchsia, Hound Dog Orange, Tutti-Frutti Red, and Cruel Red. Although I have never seen any of them, I am sure Tutti-Frutti Red would be my favorite – but Hound Dog Orange sounds pretty good, too.
Elvis The Guitar Player: Did you know Johnny Cash thought Elvis was a great guitarist? Here’s what he had to say in his cleverly named autobiography,“Cash – The Autobiography”:
“I remember Elvis at the Eagle’s Nest … I thought Elvis was great. He sang “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon of Kentucky” once again (and again) plus some black blues songs and a few numbers like “Long, Tall Sally”… The thing I really noticed that night, though, was his guitar playing. Elvis was a fabulous rhythm player… The way he sounded with [Scotty Moore and Bill Black] was what I think of as seminal Presley, the sound I missed through all the years after he became so popular and made records full of orchestration and overproduction. I loved that clean, simple combination of Scotty, Bill, and Elvis on his acoustic guitar.”
Yeah, me too.
Quiz Answer: Priscilla Presley’s character on Dallas was named Jenna Wade Krebbs. Good job if you knew that.
© 2007 Philip R Arnold All Rights Reserved www.elvisblog.net