Mt. Rockmore: The photo in Caption Contest 7 came from the entrance to the now defunct Hard Rock Park in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The permanent sand sculpture depicted Elvis, John Lennon, Bob Marley and Jimi Hendrix. In my opinion, the artist who created it did a better job on the likenesses of Elvis and Lennon than he did on Marley and Hendrix. And what’s with Bob Marley on there, anyway? If you’re memorializing great dead rock stars, I could see Buddy Holly, James Brown and several other rockers before Bob Marley. Believe it or not, this is not the first Mt. Rockmore sculpture. Here is another from the Flintstones Theme Park in Custer, South Dakota:
Elvis Songs Describe Blago: The Chicago newspapers have been full of commentary about deposed Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich. Two of them even mentioned Elvis. According to Stefano Esposito of the Chicago Sun-Times, “He liked to crank up Elvis Presley’s ‘Blue Hawaii’ and sing along to the stereo. Chuck Goudie of the Daily Herald listed some famous Elvis songs that fit Blago’s bill: “A Fool Such As I,” “Put The Blame On Me,” “Suspicious Minds,” “T-R-O-U-B-L-E,” “There Goes My Everything,” and maybe eventually “Heartbreak Hotel.” It’s too bad Elvis never had a song called, “Devious Scumbag Politician.”
A Peek At The Future: EPE has three new Graceland exhibits for 2009. “Graceland’s 70th Anniversary Celebration” is already open. Coming in March are “Elvis in Hollywood” and “Elvis Lives: The King and Pop Culture.” The press release for “Elvis Lives” reads in part:
“This interactive exhibit showcases Elvis in action as he entertains crowds in a stunning video presentation. Visitors can trace Elvis’ impact on pop culture by taking a trip down an Elvis time line, test their knowledge at an Elvis trivia kiosk and explore Elvis’ music through listening stations that feature classics from the king of Rock ‘N Roll.”
If you ever wondered what EPE is going to put on all those acres of land it bought around Graceland, “Elvis Lives” gives you a good clue. However, I think video presentations, trivia kiosks and listening stations are just the tip of the iceberg. Get ready, big-time Interactive Elvis is coming.
Stupid Reporter Questions: Over the years, reporters have posed lots of stupid questions to Elvis. Possibly the worst questions came from Luther Voltz of the Miami Herald on August 4, 1956. Voltz asked Elvis how he felt about some strange subjects: the Andrea Doria ship disaster, the popular Empire waistline in fashion, prominent politicians Estes Kefauver and Adlai Stevenson, and famed cellist Pablo Casals. Elvis told the reporter he would rather keep his views to himself because he did not want to be labeled. That was fast thinking by Elvis, because, as he later admitted to friends, he had never heard of any of those people or things. Elvis always enjoyed telling the story of how he outsmarted the reporter who tried to embarrass him.
Keep That Pelvis Far from Me: Did you know Elvis was mentioned in the lyrics of one of the songs in the movie Grease, starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John? “Look At Me, I’m Sandra Dee” was sung by co-star Stockard Channing’s character Rizzo. Here are some of the lyrics:
Look at me, I’m Sandra Dee, lousy with virginity.
Won’t go to bed till I’m legally wed. I can’t, I’m Sandra Dee.
I don’t drink or swear, I won’t rat my hair, I get ill from one cigarette.
Keep your filthy paws off my silky drawers. Would you pull that crap with Annette?
Elvis, Elvis, let me be, keep that pelvis far from me.
Just keep your cool, now you’re starting to drool. Hey, fungool, I’m Sandra Dee.
Not Worth $200 To Me: Somebody might pay $200 for a 20 inch long statue of Elvis riding on a motorcycle if it really looked like Elvis. However, this so-called collectible on a Phoenix antique website just looks terrible. It may be the worst reproduction of Elvis’ face I have ever seen. Look close, that’s not a bazooka strapped to Elvis’ back, it’s a guitar case.
That Hep Presley Cat Is A Gas: When Elvis performed at the New Frontier Hotel in 1956, some negative comments appeared in the Las Vegas Sun. This prompted several letters to the editor, including an unusual one from Mr. Ed Jamison. Here are two excerpts:
“This cat Presley is neat, well gassed and has the heart. His vocal is real and he has yet to go for the open field. He is hep to the motion of sound with a retort that is tremendous. These squares who like to detract their imagined misvalues can only size a note creeping upstairs after dark. This cat can throw ‘em downstairs or even out the window. Presley’s voice is that of American youth looking at the moon and wondering how long it will take to get there.” What??? At least Mr. Jameson followed with, “He deserves his ever-growing audience. Nobody should miss him.” Now, that I understand.
The King Of Las Vegas: Elvis didn’t make much of a splash with his 1956 performance in Las Vegas, but when he came back in 1969, he up shook the place. I like this quote from Nick Naff of the International Hotel: “The first time he was booked here, some of us had our doubts. I mean, we opened July Fourth with Barbra Streisand, who’d just won an Oscar, had three pictures going. She was one of the hottest entertainment properties in the world. We knew we had something. Elvis [who was the second performer at the new hotel] was an unknown stage property. He hadn’t appeared anywhere in eight years. We knew he’d be something of a draw, but my God! Elvis was a blockbuster.” Elvis turned out to be an even bigger draw in subsequent runs at the International. I’m not sure how this figure was verified, but it has been reported the Maitre d’ and head waiters split $10,000 in tips per night when he performed the following February.
Strange Elvis Memento On Display: Back in 1976, Elvis was headed by car to a concert in Roanoke, VA. As the car passed through Lynchburg, Elvis felt the need to go to the bathroom, so they stopped at the Koffee Pot restaurant to use the facilities. Once finished, Elvis took the toilet paper roll and autographed it for owner Estelle Meadows. Here is a picture of the memento, which has been on display at the restaurant for years. Note, Elvis even drew a TCB logo on it.
© 2009 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net