Like all of you, I look forward to a better year in 2021.
Elvis spent his last New Year’s Eve performing on stage at the Civic Center Arena in Pittsburgh. At 11:25 PM on December 31, 1976, Elvis came on stage and ignited the 16,000 fans who had come for a big party.
According to Mike Kalina of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, “Presley bounded on stage, [and] you would have thought the clock had struck 12. He received an ear-deafening ovation punctuated by thousands of blasts of flashbulbs and a patchwork of ‘We Love You Elvis’ signs hoisted aloft.”
A few tears ago, I discovered some candid photos of this performance. So, Happy New Year, Elvis, as we look at the 44th anniversary of this event.
Elvis and Ginger Alden Arriving Backstage Prior to the Concert
Elvis and Bodyguard Ed Parker Backstage
Elvis wore his Black Phoenix jumpsuit. It was part of a series of Phoenix jumpsuits that he used in 1975 and 1976. The others were a red one and a turquoise one generally called the Blue Phoenix.
Candid shot makes it look like Elvis is headless
Elvis may not have been in the best of health on New Year’s Eve 1976, but he sure gave the fans a good show.
Promotional Poster for Elvis’ New Year’s Eve Concert
Rare Double Album of Elvis’ Complete 1976 New Years Concert
At the stroke of midnight, the house lights went up and Elvis led the crowd in singing “Auld Lang Syne”. No one in the audience that night could have imagined that less than eight months later Elvis would no longer be with us. Now, forty-four years later, he is still with us in our hearts.
© 2020 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net
Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.
Did you watch The Christmas Chronicles 2 on Netflix over the holidays? I think they could have done without the Elves speaking their own language called Elvish.
Even Santa used it when talking with them. More surprising was Santa speaking Elvish when commanding the reindeer.
I guess the movie’s producers didn’t know there already was an Elvish. It was all the nicknames Elvis had for the women who were important to him.
Dodger: His grandmother Minnie May (Vernon’s mom)
Satnin: Elvis used this for his mother, Priscilla, and June Jaunico
Little: Girlfriend Anita Wood
Here’s something to make your Christmas Eve lively. After spending considerable time previewing YouTube videos, I have picked five that are unique. Unless you are a Grinch, you will enjoy them a lot. Sorry about the ads that come before the good stuff. Don’t forget to click the icon that let’s you watch them in full-screen.
The first is a clip from the 2018 Netflix movie The Christmas Chronicles. Kurt Russel does a pretty good job singing the Elvis classiC “Santa Claus Is Back In Town.”
Next is an animated video of Chuck Berry singing a terrific song he wrote called “Run Rudolph Run.” This song has been covered by dozens of other singers, but you can’t beat Chuck’s original.
I have purchased just about every rock & roll Christmas album and CD there is. In my opinion, Randy Bachman (of Bachman-Turner Overdrive) has produced the absolute best.
If you can find this CD, buy it. You will be super happy you did. Do you remember the BTO hit “Taking Care of Business”? Randy Bachman has redone it as a Christmas song.
Years ago, I discovered a song by the Tractors called “Santa Claus Is Coming In A Boogie Woogie Choo-Choo Train.” It has been a favored part of my Christmas playlist ever since.
My buddy Troy has an Elvis blog called “The Mystery Train.” When I saw this next video, I sent it to him and suggested it would be perfect for his blog. Well, it hasn’t showed up there yet, so here it is on ElvisBlog.
And we will end with an Elvis classic “Blue Christmas,” with a little help from Martina McBride.
Well, I hope you enjoyed this selection of unique Christmas music videos.
Did you see this photo of Vice President Mike Pence getting his Covid 19 vaccine shot yesterday? The news commentary suggests that this might help assure folks who are jittery about getting it.
But did you know Elvis did the same thing for the Polio vaccine?
During a period when polio plagued the country, Elvis received a polio vaccine on live TV during a 1956 airing of The Ed Sullivan Show.
While most children were getting vaccinated at that time, many teens and young adults didn’t think they were at risk from polio and were reluctant to get the vaccine.
As a young, healthy celebrity, Elvis’ decision to publicly get the vaccine was intended to be major push for teens and young adults to get vaccinated themselves. There is some agreement that his action was a catalyst in getting younger adults to understand the importance of the shot.
This helped slow the highly contagious disease of polio, which was eventually eradicated by the vaccine Dr. Jonas Salk developed in 1955.
Here are two photos of Elvis goofing around prior to getting the shot.
I posted this photo years ago on ElvisBlog, but I didn’t know the details.
This one is brand new to me.
Anyway, we can all be proud of Elvis for his contribution to the elimination of polio.
Let’s hope the same happens with Covid.
I got up early on the morning of January 8, Elvis’ birthday, so I could watch Harum Scarum on Turner Classic Movies. They were doing an all-day marathon of Elvis movies, but I knew my wife would give me a lot of grief about wasting so much time watching films I had seen many times already. At least, she would still be asleep while I took in the first one.
However, because I had seen Harum Scarum quite a few times, I also turned on my laptop and opened e-mail. You know, multi-tasking. To my surprise, there was a message form Chris Kensler, Director of Entertainment/Style at FoxNews.com. They were putting the finishing touches on their article celebrating Elvis 75th Birthday, and they wanted permission to use a picture of old Elvis from a 2008 ElvisBlog article titled “Fun With Elvis on Photoshop – 2”.
Well, I had to be honest with FoxNews. It wasn’t my photo. I found it on the web and have seen it numerous places since. So, I wrote back and told him that the picture belonged to the tabloid Weekly World News and that they had used it on at least two of their covers over the years.
The first one appeared during the 2004 Presidential campaign between George Bush and John Kerry. Don’t you just love the headline: “Alien Slimes Teresa Heinz Kerry – With Ketchup”
I bought the second issue a year later. And it was the inspiration for the ElvisBlog article “Elvis Is Alive – and Running for President.” I also enjoyed reading about the “Seeing Eye Squirrels for Dogs.”
As I stated in my article, old Elvis looked really good in this picture. Unfortunately, that is not the case with most of the other depictions of 70 or 75 year-old Elvis that have appeared on the web. Here is probably the one where he looks the worse.
From a technical standpoint, this one is very well done. You can still see recognizable elements of Elvis, but why the bald head? Elvis’ dad, Vernon, still had a full head of wavy hair when he died, so I’d like to believe Elvis would have retained lots of good looking hair had he lived until his seventies.
Here is a different attempt. In a quickie Photoshop effort, someone simply changed Elvis’ hair color to gray. However, nothing else is altered, so it doesn’t look very realistic.
Here is the reverse. This terrible picture still keeps the young Elvis hair but has aged all the facial features. Given the choice, I would pick the one above. Maybe, it’s the jumpsuit.
The last two old Elvises are interesting because they show the original “before” Elvis picture alongside the altered “old” Elvis picture.
I guess this is a pretty accurate illustration of the aging process, but I don’t like it. Maybe, it’s because I see a little of George Wallace in it.
This could be the most accurate guess at what Elvis would look like at 75. Do you see a little resemblance to Arnold Palmer?
The handsome Elvis picture from Weekly World News is probably too good to be true, but you can see why FoxNews.com would have wanted to use it in their story. I’m sorry I couldn’t help them, because I would have asked for a link to ElvisBlog, which might have brought lots of people to the site. But things turned out OK, anyway. ElvisBlog had 6,214 hits on Elvis’ 75th birthday, so I had two things to celebrate.
We are all familiar with the original photo used for this. I have it in my files somewhere, but I couldn’t find it. I’m glad Elvis still has all his great hair, even if it isn’t black anymore.
The other day as I surfed the internet, I discovered that Frank Zappa once recorded a song titled “Elvis Has Just Left the Building.” What a bizarre combination – Zappa and Elvis. So I Googled it to see if I could find the lyrics, or even better, the paper jacket for the 45 record if it had been released as a single.
My search found the lyrics (nothing special) but no picture sleeve, because it was not a single, but a cut from a live Zappa album of his 1988 world tour. However, my search did bring up numerous links to things connected to the classic phrase, “Elvis Has Left the Building.” Here is a brief history of this iconic five-word phrase and some of the more interesting ways it has been used.
“Elvis has left the building” originated at the Louisiana Hayride on December 15, 1956.
Between October 1954 and April 1956, Elvis performed forty-nine times on the Louisiana Hayride. He was contractually obliged to make more appearances there throughout 1956, but his soaring popularity put Elvis in much so demand nationally that Col. Parker worked out a way for Elvis to skip those shows. Parker cut a deal to pay the Louisiana Hayride $10,000, roughly $400 for each missed appearance. Plus, Elvis would do one last grand performance on December 15, 1956.
To accommodate the expected large crowd for this event, the venue was switched from the usual Shreveport Municipal Auditorium to the much bigger Hirsch Youth Center at the Louisiana Fairgrounds. Ten thousand kids jammed the Youth Building and screamed at the top of their lungs for the duration of the King’s 45-minute show. After Elvis had given his final encore and left the stage, the crowd headed for the exits, even though many other acts were still waiting to perform. Hayride founder and producer Horace Lee Logan took the microphone and made a plea to the audience just after Elvis walked off stage.
“Please, young people . . . Elvis has left the building. He has gotten in his car and driven away. . . . Please take your seats.”
Apparently, the fans’ screaming had made it useless to try and record the show, so there is some disagreement about what Logan actually said that night. Here is another version from Wikipedia.
“Alright, alright, Elvis has left the building. I’ve told you absolutely straight up to this point, you know that he has left the building; he left the stage and went out the back with the policeman and he is now gone from the building.”
The man usually associated with the phrase is Al Dvorin. He first met Elvis in 1955 and worked with him for 22 years, helping to organize his tours and personal appearances. It was in the early 1970s that Col. Parker asked Dvorin to inform fans after a concert that Elvis would not be coming back for an encore. Dvorin took the stage and made his now legendary announcement: “Ladies and gentlemen, Elvis has left the building. Thank you and goodnight.”
“Elvis has left the building” continued as a staple at Elvis concerts and has become part of the Elvis legend. It has lived on long past his death. Now the catchphrase has universal meaning that is clear to all: the show’s over, the curtain has fallen, the sun has set, that’s all she wrote, the fat lady has sung, our work here is done, end of story.
Now for some of the stuff this famous phrase has inspired.
This crudely drawn cartoon was inspired by the phrase’s origin, but the artist felt it necessary to ridicule the announcer’s Southern accent and Elvis’ hair.
This is much better. Elvis’ friend and the leader of the back-up group The Stamps released a tribute album after Elvis passed away.
Of course, EPE never misses a chance for a marketing opportunity and came up with this keychain for $9.
This 4” x 3” belt buckle appears on a Australian website, so it may have been made without any licensing from EPE (or copyright payment to Al Wertheimer for his photographic image).
This is one of several T-shirts bearing the phrase “Elvis has left the building.”
This is the artwork for an article in the Westbourne Academy on-line newsletter. “Elvis has left the building” was selected as their English Idiom of the Month. I wish they had selected a better picture.
This is a play that has appeared in local theaters around the country. We looked at it in an ElvisBlog article two months ago.
This is a pretty clever movie from 2004 starring Kim Basinger and John Corbett. ElvisBlog covered it six years ago.
This is from the opening credits of the movie. The pink lipstick is part of the storyline because Kim Basinger is a cosmetic saleslady who wears pink clothing and drives a pink Caddy convertible.
We could go on and on with examples of how “Elvis has left the building” has been used, but we’ll end here. This phrase makes the perfect title for a picture of Elvis and a collage of newspaper headlines from the day he died.
Here are two variations.
And here are two differing definitions:
Frankly, I prefer the words I wrote back in 2012:
What do you think?
It’s been a month since I pulled out some more Elvis stuff to sell. As I’ve said before, pretty soon we’ll have to move to a much smaller place, and I’d like these goodies to be in the hands of other Elvis fans by then. So, please look the items over and see if there isn’t something you’d like to have under the Christmas tree.
You’ve probably seen the Memphis papers for August 17, 1977 for sale before, but the one from Tupelo is much rarer. Naturally, I looked it up on eBay to see what kind of prices it was going for. There are three listings ranging from $50 to $131 delivered.
I tried to sell this back in January for $40, but I guess that wasn’t cheap enough. So, let’s cut that in half and offer it at just $20 delivered.
It is in generally good condition except for one tiny torn out piece. It has darkened with age, but has been stored in plastic for decades. This would be a great addition to your Elvis collection.
This is a very classy single blade knife. It is 7-1/2” long and has the same Elvis image on both sides. The metal case is quite attractive and is in perfect shape, just like the knife.
I found one for sale on eBay for $17, so let’s beat that and price it at $10 delivered.
This is a Franklin Mint Collector Series Elvis Presley stainless steel folding dagger knife with original case. The knife has never been used and is in mint condition. It is also 7-1/2” long but is much heavier.
As you can see, the blade has the TCB logo at the top of an engraved guitar fretboard, plus a simulation of Elvis’ autograph. The guitar design is continued in the shape of the knife’s body and features an inlaid picture of Elvis.
I looked for this on eBay and found only one. It goes for $106. I want one of you fine Elvis fans to buy this from me, so the price is just $20. When you show off your Elvis collection, you will get a lot of compliments on this knife.
For the week of July 4-10, 2004, TV Guide produced four different covers with photos of Elvis. Here are the covers.
Each one came with a bonus CD of Elvis singing “That’s All Right.” All four are shrink-wrapped together in clear plastic as a set.
If you go on eBay, you can find one for $15.40 Let’s try it at $10. If that doesn’t work, I’ll open the pack and sell them individually.
These are all priced at $3 each delivered.
The last one looks a little weird because this is a hologram and doesn’t photograph well. Look at it one way and you see Elvis with his lips puckered up. Tilt it a bit and see Elvis doing a lip snarl. Very cool. This one is $5.
If somebody comes in early and wants to buy all four, the price is $10.
You could post Elvis all over your house with these five magnets. They are good sized – the one in the middle is 7” high. Just $4 delivered
Not just Elvis, but the 100 greatest singers of all time. The tribute to Elvis is written by Robert Plant, legendary lead singer of Led Zeppelin.
Not just Elvis, but all ten charter members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Plus a special Rolling Stone interview with Sam Phillips.
As the cover says, this issue celebrates the first four decades of rock, but the emphasis is on the 50s. There are nice articles on Carl Perkins, Dick Clark, Buddy Holly, Lieber & Stoller, and others. Plus the Rolling Stone picks for the 50 most essential recordings of the 50s.
This group of three outstanding Rolling Stone magazines is a bargain at $12. As a bonus, I will include a six-page photo essay of nine shots taken by photographer Jay Leviton of Elvis during tours in August 1956. (The cover of this issue has Motley Crue on it. I figure you’d rather have just the special Elvis section.)
I offered this wonderful item back in October for $23 delivered, and there were no takers. This surprised me because the prices for it on eBay ranged from $37 to $100. I have figured out a way to offer it for less. In the photo above, you can see the packaging includes a rigid flap on the left. This required a large box to ship in and extra postage. So I have cut that flap
The figurine is still encased in tough plastic. McFarlane Toys is well-known for top quality, highly-detailed figurines, and this is a shining example.
See the fringe hanging down from the sequined white jumpsuit typical of those Elvis wore in Las Vegas? This shows how excellent the detail work on the entire figurine is.
This outstanding Elvis collectible can be yours for $15 delivered. You will be super proud to have “Las Vega Elvis” displayed with your other Elvis goodies.
These have been good sellers in the past, and I have just enough left for one more offer. Here are 12 issues with tons of color photos and articles. Five of them are the special extra-thick Birthday and Anniversary Collectors’ Editions. An excellent buy at $20 for all delivered.
This is a still-sealed two-pack of Elvis playing cards. There is a slide-out inner box inside the nice outer box. Plus, there is a different picture on every card. Looks like a great stocking stuffer to me. Just $7.
You can get thirteen Elvis postcards for just $4. Very good deal.
Okay, If you like any of these offered items and would like to purchase them, let me know by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please don’t put it in Comments. These offers are for delivery to USA locations only. Figure double or more to destinations in Canada.
Please indicate if you want a PayPal invoice, and I’ll get one right out. If you’d rather pay by check, let me know, and I’ll hold your selection for you until it arrives.
Thank you so much for your support.