Category Archives: FRIENDS of ELVIS

Some Elvis Pictures I’ve Never Seen Before – Part 12

Elvis on his Knees - 1st April 1957 - Buffalo NY

This photo shows why Elvis had to ditch the gold lame pants. He liked getting down on his knees while performing, but after a while, the gold started to wear off. According to the tag on this picture, it was snapped on April 1, 1957 in Buffalo NY.

 

1957 Elvis Seattle concert

Here’s Elvis at it again later that year in Seattle.

 

Elvis' Smalest Crowd Ever

I labelled this one, “Elvis’ Smallest Concert Crowd.” To be honest, I screen grabbed it from an Elvis movie. Do you know which one it was?

 

Elvis Presley TCB Band

I’ve had fun trying to figure out who is who here. The easy ones are Charlie Hodge – top right, Ronnie Tutt – bottom right, John Wilkinson – bottom left, and James Burton top left,. I’m pretty sure that’s Jerry Scheff in front of Burton. So, that leaves the two guys in the middle. Any ideas? I did some research, and one of them has to be Larry Muhoberac, the keyboard player for less than a year before Glenn D. Hardin joined the group.

 

Two Elvis bootleg LP's that featured the Elvis Ed Sullivan recordings

This is the cover of a bootleg album. It featured the songs Elvis performed on the three Ed Sullivan shows.

 

Elvis and Mary Ann Mobley

Obviously, this shot didn’t appear in the movie Girl Happy, but Elvis and Mary Ann Mobley seem to be enjoying themselves during a break in the filming..

 

Elvis And Eddy Arnold

This is Eddie Arnold with Elvis. Neither one seems to be enjoying this encounter. Both have their arms folded, and Elvis is looking away.

 

Elvis Blocking the Light

I like to put photos of young Elvis into these pictorials. Unfortunately, the tag said nothing about where or when it was taken.

( Thanks to two reader comments, we now have the uncropped photo and an explanation of what is going on.)

This is cousin Gene Smith with Elvis on May 27, 1956. in Dayton, Ohio. They are playing a made-up game they used to play when they were bored to pass the time. It was possibly a truth or consequence type, where the loser would get smacked on the forehead when they answered wrong.

Thank you Sandy and Leon’a for providing this.

 

3AM Concert Labor Day, September 2, 1973

In the second Eye Candy for Elvis Fans post, I showed a poster for his 3am performance at the Las Vegas Hilton on September 3, 1973. Here is a photo that is supposed to be from that concert, but I don’t believe it. The audience is too big for a hotel ballroom.

3AM Concert Labor Day, September 2, 1973 - Blowup of Stage

I enlarged and cropped to get this view of the stage. It might hold Elvis and the band, but where would the Stamps and the Sweet Inspirations fit? The background is too plain for a classy hotel venue. This has to be somewhere else.

 

Dirty Elvis in Jailhouse Rock

This is the dirtiest you will ever see Elvis. It was on the screen in Jailhouse Rock for a just a couple of seconds, so you hardly had time to notice it.

 

Charlie Hodge, Lamar Fike, Elvis and Rex

The caption under this is hard to read, but it says, “Charlie, Lamar, Elvis and Rex (laughing) in front of the house with a dog.” Charlie Hodge, Lamar Fike, and Rex Mansfield were Elvis’ buddies when they served together in Germany. However, I don’t see a guy laughing.

Anyway, the house mentioned in the tag is this one:

Elvis' Home in Germany

 

 

Elvis in front of Jukebox - Warrior Hotel, Sioux City, Iowa, May 23, 1956

Elvis enjoying free time before performing at the Warrior Hotel, Sioux City, Iowa, May 23, 1956. Guess he hadn’t gotten into big, expensive watches yet.

 

Elvis Army Photo

Think about this. Your brother gives you an autographed Elvis photo he got while they were in the Army. Then a friend of yours who doesn’t like Elvis tears it up. That would make her an ex-friend in my book.

Reader Kathy Kessel says the other fellow in the picture is not her brother and wonders who he is. It’s a long shot, but does anyone have an idea?

 

Elvis in front of Gold Curtain

Let’s end with a splash. How do you like that gold curtain? I didn’t know that Elvis made curtain calls.

 

 

(Note: The movie with Elvis’ smallest concert crowd is Loving You, and he sang the title track.)

 

 

© 2019 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net
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Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

Some Elvis Pictures I’ve Never Seen Before – Part 11

I haven’t done this in three months, and my files are full of stuff to show you.

Elvis Performing on a Flat-bed Truck

This is obviously from the very early days. Elvis and the guys are performing on a flat-bed truck. I especially like the picnic table right in front. Elvis definitely paid his dues. Can anybody identify this show?

 

Elvis and the Teen Town Singers

I can’t say that I ever heard of the Teen Town Singers. But how could they miss with those cool hats?

 

Elvis and 7 Chicks

Here’s some nice artwork. I think it’s a Italian poster for an Elvis movie. Let’s see, there’s Elvis and seven girls in bikinis. Could it be Clambake or Spinout? No, Bagnino means lifeguard in Italian, so the movie had to be Fun in Acapulco.

 

Elvis on location in Florida with co-star Anne Helm from Follow That Dream.

This is Elvis with Anne Helm, his costar in Follow That Dream. You’ve probably read the same stuff I have that says there was some serious kissing between these two off screen.

 

Well It's 1 for the Money

Well It's 1 for the Money - Copy

This is clever.

 

Speaking of Blue Suede Shoes, how do you like this picture?

Elvis Presley Autographed Facsimile Signed Blue Suede Shoes Poster 24 x36

This is a 24 x36 poster with a wonderful shot of Elvis. That is a fabricated signature at the bottom.

 

Elvis Taking A Break - Flaming Star

Here is Elvis taking a break from filming Flaming Star. He’s got the Indian make-up on his face and neck, but the rest of his body looks pretty white.

 

Elvis with Fans in Las vegas

This is Elvis with fans in Las Vegas. How do you like that coat? How do you like that hairdo?

 

Elvis Disco

The Elvis Disco was alive and well in 2018.

All Visual – All Night – Elvis Presley – Done Right…. OK!!

 

1960-04-20 train to California - Elvis with Joe, Charlie and Sonny

This was taken on April 4, 1960 during a train ride to California. With Elvis are Joe, Charlie, and Sonny. Don’t they all look young?

 

Elvis Presley and Scotty Moore between shows in the UD Fieldhouse in Dayton - May 27, 1956.

If you’ve been reading ElvisBlog for a while, you know I’m a big fan of Scotty Moore. This is a nice candid shot of Elvis and Scotty working on a song backstage before a performance at the UD Fieldhouse in Dayton on May 27, 1956.

 

Elvis Performing on May 27, 1956

Here is another photo from that show. But check out this.

Scotty Moore and Elvis Floating in Space

I love this version for the way Scotty and Elvis are lifted off the background, and they just seem to be hovering in space while Scotty is playing guitar and Elvis is dancing. I think this is the best picture there is of the two of them together.

 

Elvis and Bobby Dick

The small print in parentheses says, “Bobby’s the short one.” He’s also the one with the worst last name. The kids back in high school must have given him a lot of grief about that.

 

Elvis Presley and Carolyn Jones . She holds a cup of tea.

It looks like Carolyn Jones was drinking a cup of tea when Elvis moved in on her. Do you think she spilled any? If that had been you Elvis was smooching, could you have kept from spilling the tea?

 

Elvis is the air - Blue hawaii

So what do you think? Is this Photoshopped or could Elvis actually jump that high?

 

May 26, 1955 - Elvis Presley with Jimmie Rodgers Snow on Elvis´ pink Cadillac Fleetwood in Meridian, Mississippi - Jimmie Rodgers Festival parade....

The website where I found this shot had this tagline:

May 26, 1955 – Elvis Presley with Jimmie Rodgers Snow on Elvis´ pink Cadillac Fleetwood in Meridian, Mississippi – Jimmie Rodgers Festival parade.

Jimmy Rodgers Snow was Hank Snow’s son. Elvis said he bought this pink Caddy for his mom, but she didn’t drive, so he obviously had other motivations. This looks like a pretty good use for the car to me.

 

A screaming crowd of teenage girls are restrained by police outside an Elvis concert in 1956.

The tagline for this photo said: “A screaming crowd of teenage girls are restrained by police outside an Elvis concert in 1956.” I wish there had been more information. It is a legit photo because you can see one girl holding up a picture of Elvis and a couple of folks are wearing those Elvis hats the Colonel sold at every concert. Can anybody identify where it occurred?

The photo certainly paints a graphic picture of the impact Elvis had with teenagers early in his career. Pretty impressive.

 

 

© 2019 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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A Belated Goodbye to George Klein

Yesterday I checked back with Graceland.com to see if the ticket prices for Elvis Week had been announced, but they weren’t. While there, I clicked on the News tab, and was surprised to learn that Elvis’ buddy George Klein had passed away. For those of you who have not read that post, here is what EPE had to say:

Graceland.com - Remembering George Klein

Nicely done. George Klein was one of the good guys. Unlike the others in Elvis’ Memphis Mafia, George was never on the payroll. He had his own career as a radio DJ. When he hung out with Elvis at Graceland or traveled to movie sets with him, George did it because they were buddies.

Elvis, Larry Geller, George Klein, Alan Fortas.

Elvis, Larry Geller, George Klein, Alan Fortas.

 

So, I did a search to see what I had written about George Klein on ElvisBlog over the years. He has been mentioned dozens of times, but I never wrote an article just about him. The closest I did was a funny story in a post about Elvis and Ann Margret. Here it is from August 28, 2005, just seven months after the blog was launched (and years before I started adding pictures).

Elvis and Ann-Margret ElvisBlog Post

Here is the rest of that article:

One night, during the filming of Viva Las Vegas in 1963, Elvis invited Ann-Margret over to his house. He specifically told all his buddies to disappear before she arrived, but Alan and George Klein asked if they could stay if they promised not to leave their rooms. Elvis agreed, but he should have known better.

After Ann-Margret had been there awhile, Alan and George snuck on to the patio and peeked into the den. According to Alan, “They were dancing and cuddling and talking, and George and I were going crazy.”

Then, Elvis left the room to get something and walked around to another part of the house. From this vantage point, he could see the two spies plain as day. When Alan and George realized they had been caught peeping, they panicked. George tried to run off and slammed right into the glass patio door, nearly breaking his nose.

 Alan Fortas, Lamar Fike, George Klein, and Elvis

Alan Fortas, Lamar Fike, George Klein, and Elvis

 

 

This is George Klein’s autobiography. The text above the big ELVIS is a quote by Priscilla, “You told your story with class, mister. Elvis would be proud.” I agree. This is not a tell-all of bad stuff about Elvis. If you haven’t read it, you should. My copy has a cover price of $29.95 on it, but you can get a copy for as low as $6 on Amazon. A great book at a low price.

The photo on the book’s cover was taken at George’s wedding to Barbara Little. Here are some other pictures of this event from my files.

Elvis at George Klein's Wedding 1970

I liked this one because Elvis is holding a gun to George’s head. Please note he does not have his finger on the trigger.

 

The Presleys and the Kleins

The Presleys and the Kleins. I have read often that Elvis didn’t smoke, but there are quite a few pictures around showing Elvis with a stogie in his mouth.

 

This photo is both good and bad. I like the shot of George and Barbara’s hands on their Certificate of Marriage. However, the certificate showed up for bid at auction a few years ago, probably because it had Elvis’ signature on it. Kind of sad.

 

1954 Humes High School Class Officers

As the press release said, George Klein and Elvis became friends at Humes High School. The above picture from their 1954  yearbook shows that George was senior class president.

 

George Klein Text about Elvis

George is not in this picture, but the text has an interesting quote from him.

 

Elvis Palbearers Jerry Schilling, Joe Esposito, George Klein, Lamar Fike, Billy Smith, Charlie Hodges, Gene Smith, and Dr. Nick

This shot had a caption identifying Elvis’ pallbearers as Jerry Schilling, Joe Esposito, George Klein, Lamar Fike, Billy Smith, Charlie Hodges, Gene Smith, and Dr. George Nichopoulos. I believe George is the second on the right. He had longer curly hair in 1977.

 

George Klein and Elvis 1957

The tag on this simply says 1957. Backstage at a concert? Or maybe on a movie set?

Speaking of movies, George Klein had bit parts in at least four Elvis movies.

George Klein in Elvis movies

 

Here are a few other photos of Elvis and George Klein.

George Klein and Elvis Leaning on Car

 

set of Speedway- Standing – Jerry Schilling, Marty Lacker, Larry Jost (sound department), Elvis, Don Sutton, and Richard Davis. Kneeling – George Klein and Joe Esposito

On the set of Speedway. George with Elvis, four Memphis Mafia buddies, a sound guy, and baseball pitcher Don Sutton (second from right).

 

Elvis on train to NY to embark on the SS Randall for Germany. The train stopped briefly in Memphis which is why George Klein is in the picture. Elvis is kissing a fan

This strange shot was taken in 1958 when Elvis was on the train to NY before embarking on the SS Randall for Germany. The train stopped briefly in Memphis which is why George Klein is in the picture. Elvis is kissing a fan.

 

Red West And George Klein with Elvis first guitar

Red West and George Klein with Elvis first guitar. This photo was taken just two years ago.

 

 

George Klein - Elvis Presley's Friend

 

Good bye, George Klein. We’ll miss you. Say hi to Elvis for us.

 

 

© 2019 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net
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Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

ElvisBlog Mini-Nuggets # 24

 

A Star Is Born 2018

I’m sure most of you readers are aware of all the media hype for the latest version of the movie A Star Is Born. This one pairs up Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga (or Stefani Germanotta, her real name, as listed on the above poster).

How many of you also know that Elvis was offered the male lead in the 1976 version?

A Star Is Born 1976

According to the definitive book ELVIS – His Life from A to Z, “Barbra Streisand wanted to costar with Elvis, in what would have been his finest screen role. But an agreement couldn’t be reached with Colonel Parker, who wanted one million dollars plus top billing for Elvis, rather than to settle for a percentage of the movie’s gross.”

So Kris Kristofferson got the role.

Probably not one of Col. Parker’s best moves.

 

Jerry Seinfeld in an Elvis Jumpsuit:

Rolling Stone Cover o Seinfeld in Elvis Jumpsuit

Do you save old magazines with good intentions to read them again? I’m bad that way, but lately I’m culling out anything I can use on ElvisBlog, and throwing the rest away. Here’s the cover of the September 22, 1994 issue of Rolling Stone magazine. It may be hard to tell in the small photo here, but the full-sized cover shows this is an expensive original design that probably weighs 40 pounds like some of Elvis’ jumpsuits did.  And his attempt at an Elvis lip curl is really lame

Jerry Seinfeld in Elvis Jumpsuit

This is a different pose that accompanies the lengthy article celebrating the end of Jerry Seinfeld’s twelve-year run on the TV show Seinfeld. There is no mention of the jumpsuit in the article, so it must be just to emphasize the subtitle on the magazine cover: The King of Prime Time Comedy.

There was one other picture of interest in this magazine.

Lisa Marie Presley and Michael Jackson

Supposedly, this was the first photograph of Lisa Marie and Michael Jackson after they were married in 1994.

 

Here are pictures of some other showbiz folks dressed up in Elvis jumpsuits.

Bill Murray in an Elvis Jumpsuit

 

 

Britney Spears 2007 in an Elvis Jumpsuit

 

 

Glen Campbell Wearing Elvis Jumpsuit - 1975

 

Andy Kaufman in Elvis Jumpsuit

 

Geraldo 1992 in Elvis Jumpsuit

 

Nathan Fillion (Rick Castle) in his Elvis Jumpsuit

The guy in the middle is Nathan Fillion In an episode of Castle.  Check out the twin Elvi’s with matching American Eagle jumpsuits and white scarfs on each side.  Does anybody know what the storyline was to have Fillion dressed up like this?

 

Who was Elvis’ Favorite Auto Mechanic?

Earlier this week I got an email from an ElvisBlog reader in Spokane who makes and collects guitars. After negotiating on the phone to buy a double-neck guitar, he went to pick it up.

Double -neck guitar

It turned out the owner also had many other guitars, including one he says he got from Elvis. It is an electric guitar with the same inlay as the acoustic guitar below.

Elvis Presley Guitar -

 

The man claims to have been Elvis’ go-to automobile mechanic for many years up until Elvis’ death.

This is the story the ElvisBlog reader relates about the mechanic, who we will call Al for now.

‘Elvis’ car broke down on his way to Tahoe. Al was a mechanic at a local car repair place. His boss asked if he could put a new motor in this Lincoln, and he agreed to work all night so Elvis could leave in the morning. Well, I guess he finished around 3 AM, and a guy came to pick up the car, but they started drinking beer and the guy was too drunk to drive.

“Meantime Elvis shows up, thanks the guy, asks Al’s boss if he could offer Al a job, to which Al said yes, and thus became his mechanic for years. Elvis would have his private plane pick him up and fly him to his various places like Bel Air, Memphis and I think he said Florida, where he had vehicles and Al would make sure they were tuned up and ready to go. He got paid $2400 a month which he says was really good money back in the sixties/seventies. He became really good friends with Priscilla and Lisa Marie, and he claimed he was like an uncle to Lisa.”

 

When the collector got to Al’s house for the double-neck, he found a very protective/reclusive type old man.

“He lets me in and I noticed he is packing a gun on his hip. He finally started to loosen up a bit after he realized I truly enjoy guitars and that’s when all the stories started coming forth. Really want to believe him but … I have some doubts.”

The story goes that Elvis gave Al the electric guitar with the fancy neck inlay. It was a movie prop although it really played. Elvis also gave him a gold album award, photos, and lots of other stuff.

The guitar collector says, “It all sounds really cool, but there is that slight twinkle of doubt that is bothering me.” He hopes there is someone out there who knows about a car mechanic/guitar collector with strong connections to Elvis, and has asked my help.

So, if anyone is familiar with who worked on Elvis’ vehicles from late 60s until Elvis’ death, please reply on Comments and add some credence to this story about Elvis’ favorite auto mechanic.

 

 

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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Some Elvis Pictures I’ve Never Seen Before — Part 6

Young Elvis is Cool jacket

This is a shot of young Elvis that’s new to me. I was tickled with the caption for it on Pinterest describing what Elvis is wearing:

A jacket given to John W. Heath by one of hiHumes High Scteachers who was the son of a man who got the jacket from a girlfriend who got it from Elvis after a concert.

I’ve complained before about incorrect tags on some Elvis photos, but this one is just plain confusing. Here’s another look at the jacket.

a jacket given to John W. Heath by a Humes High School teacher who was the son of a man who got the jacket from a girlfriend who got it from Elvis after a concert.

 

How about a little quiz? This picture was tagged “Only photo that shows the entire wedding party at the Presley Wedding in Las Vegas, May 1, 1967.” I had fun trying to figure out who everybody is.

Only photo that supposedly shows the entire wedding party at the Presley Wedding in Las Vegas, May 1, 1967

I missed the first guy on the left. He is Harry Levitch, Elvis’ jeweler. Then, Richard Davis. Jerry Schilling, and Joe Esposito’s wife Joan. I needed help on the next two: Jerry Schilling’s girlfriend Sandy Kawelo, and Priscilla’s sister Michelle Beaulieu. Next, Vernon’s wife Dee, Priscilla’s mother Ann, Priscilla, Elvis, and Vernon. I needed help on the two fellows on the bottom left: Priscilla’s brother Donny and her father Paul. Then Joe Esposito and Charlie Hodge.

However, the caption on this picture is wrong. Although the reception had a lot of folks, only four Elvis buddies were in the very limited wedding party at the actual ceremony.

Marty Lacker, Elvis, George Kline at Elvis' Wedding

Marty Lacker and George Kline made the cut, but they are not part of the above group picture, so it shouldn’t be labeled the “entire Elvis wedding party.”

Billy Smith

Elvis’ cousin Billy Smith was also at the exclusive wedding ceremony, and he is missing from the group picture.

 

Elvis at June 5 1955 Watermelon Party, Hope Arkansas

I’m pretty confident the caption on this one is correct: “June 5 1955 Watermelon Party, Hope Arkansas.” See the watermelons back there?

 

Priscilla Sticking Out her Tongue

How do you like this shot of Priscilla sticking out her tongue? I cropped it from a photo of her at the top of the stairs leading to her and Elvis’s bedroom at Graceland.

Priscilla at top of stairs leading to Elvis's bedroom at Graceland

To be completely honest, when I first found this picture, I never even noticed the stair railings until I read the caption. Cropping was an improvement

 

casual Hair Elvis

I really like this picture of young Elvis. Apparently, he was doing the low open-shirt thing way back in his teens. But the casual hair style is so different from what we think of as typically Elvis. Does anybody have any idea when and where this was taken? If you do, please put it into Comments.

 

Elvis - Interesting Outfit

Here we have a totally different spectrum of style on older Elvis. That’s not just a regular white shirt. It’s got ruffles on the sleeve cuff, elastic bands around the upper arm, and a big fancy collar. How about the blue scarf with the neckerchief slide half – way down. You don’t see scarves in many Elvis photos. The big attraction for me is the humongous belt. This is like a jumpsuit belt worn over regular pants, not a jumpsuit. It even has chains on the side. Nice wardrobe, Elvis.

 

Elvis Presley AND THE GIRL THAT FAINTS - Copy

I may have seen this one before, but it is nice to look at it again. The tag on the photo said “Elvis Presley AND THE GIRL THAT FAINTS.” Elvis was holding her hand with his. How lucky she was. She’s gonna come out of it with Elvis’ face just inches away from hers.

 

Elvis Presley and Eric Clapton

The caption said, “Backstage with Clapton before his opening night performance in Las Vegas. January 26th 1974.” I can kind of see this as Eric Clapton.

Elvis backstage with Eric Clapton before his opening night performance in Las Vegas. January 26th 1974

Then there’s this profile, and I don’t know. Looks more like another Eric — Eric Burdon (lead singer of The Animals and War).

Eric Burdon

What do you think?

 

Editor’s note:  Alert reader Paul made a convincing argument about why the person with Elvis is neither Eric Clapton nor Eric Burdon.  Alert reader Sandy said it was Sean Shaver, a photographer.  Here’s a different photo of him with Elvis

Elvis and Sean Shaver

I think Sandy is right.  Sean Shaver has published numerous photo books about Elvis:

1979 – The Life Of Elvis Presley
1981 – Photographing The King
1983 – Portrait Portfolio
1984 – Our Memories Of Elvis
1987 – The Elvis Book, vol II
1987 – The Elvis Book, vol III
1991 – The Elvis Book, vol IV : The Candid Elvis
1992 – Elvis In focus

 

Elvis with Badge on

There was no information with this one. Elvis almost looks like a real law officer with the badge and the jacket passants (shoulder-straps). How do you like that huge TCB ring?  I wish the photographer had snapped Elvis with his head up and smiling.

 

Elvis Gtrating on Stage Floor, New Orleans 1956

No wonder Elvis’ early concerts drove the teenage girls bananas. The tag said this photo was taken at a New Orleans concert in 1956. Just for kicks I cropped and blew up the crowd watching Elvis.

Fan Close-up at Elvis Concert ,New Orleans 1956

Not many guys in attendance, and I think I see a couple of dads.  See the two kids on the front left that are leaning?  Scroll back and you will see why.

 

Elvis and Priscilla Caricature

I have a file with 124 caricatures of Elvis in it, but this is the first time I’ve seen an artist do Priscilla, too.  I think he did a good job. Maybe someday I should do a post of my winners and losers in the Elvis Caricatures file.

 

Gladys, Dodger, and Barbara Hearn at Elvis concert, Russwood Park Memphis, TN July 4, 1956

There are many photos out there of Elvis’ July 4, 1956 concert at Russwood Park in Memphis. Al Wertheimer had his camera clicking all night, but I don’t know if this one of his. It’s interesting because of the three women in it. I’m sure you recognize Gladys. Next to her is Elvis’ paternal grandmother Minnie Mae, whom Elvis called Dodger. Do you think she was freaked out when she saw what her grandson did for a living?

And the young lady is Barbara Hearn who was Elvis’ girlfriend at the time.

Barbara Hearn and Elvis' Grandmother Dodger

Here are Barbara and Dodger at Elvis’ home on Audubon Drive prior to the concert.

 

I believe this was taken on the day he graduated high school....1953. Gladys looked so young & pretty here.

Let’s do one more family picture. I like this one especially because of the sentiment of the person who posted it

“I believe this was taken on the day he graduated high school….1953. Gladys looked so young & pretty here.”

 

 

©  2018    Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister    All Rights Reserved    www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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Remembering DJ Fontana

DJ Fontana at center of Band

Perhaps you do the same thing I do when musicians we love pass away. Last year when Tom Petty and Chuck Berry died, I pulled out old albums and CDs and listened to their music as a way to connect with them and commemorate their impact on me.

But when DJ Fontana died two days ago, it didn’t seem as satisfying to listen to Elvis songs. I wanted something unique to DJ. Then I remembered I had his book.

DJ Fontana book - The Beat Behind the King

 

Although I had read it when it came out in 2002, I sat down and read it again. I was wonderful. Everyone who has met DJ knows he is a down-home good ole boy, and his personality shines through the words.

DJ Fontana at Drums

 

But there was a special bonus in DJ’s book. It contained a CD titled “Life on the Road,” and for some reason, I had never listened to it before.

 

DJ Fontana - Life on the Road CD

Well, I plopped that thing into the player and was mesmerized for the next 23 minutes. It was like DJ and I were sitting together at a bar, and he was telling all these wonderful old stories. Now, I’m going to miss him even more.

I’m not sure, but I suspect that the audio on this CD was the taped interview that publisher Darwin Lamm used to write the book chapter also titled “Life on the Road.” Of course, some language was cleaned up and some other editing changed things a bit. There were also short stories that ended up in the chapters titled “Recording with Elvis” and “68 Special.”

 

DJ Played with 20 Singers

Tributes to DJ Fontana are all over the web now, and I would like to offer you something different than the same stuff you’ve already read. For example, DJ was a much in-demand session musician in his career after Elvis. This page from his book lists twenty artists he has played or recorded with.

 

DJ Played with 19 more Singers

Here are nineteen more. And you could add a few more that came along after 2002. I’m not sure why mostly pictures of Elvis were used on these two pages. There are plenty of other photos in the book, half or even full page shots, and DJ is in most of them.

 

DJ in Lederhosen - G.I. Blues

Bet you won’t see this picture in any other tribute to DJ. It was taken on the set of G.I. Blues. All the guys playing in the band in the German bar were dressed in lederhosen. DJ tells a story in the book about how he had to allow make-up to be put on his knees “to give them a bit of color.’

DJ appeared in three other Elvis movies: Loving You, Jailhouse Rock, and King Creole.

DJ's Solo Scene in Loving You

This is DJ’s solo scene in Loving You where he comes out of a high school after a spring hop and removes the sign that announced the performance they just finished.

 

DJ-Fontana-and-Karen-Arrive-on-the-Red-Carpet-at-Rock-and-Roll-Hall-of-Fame-Inductions

This is DJ and wife Karen walking on the red carpet to his 2009 induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Bill Black was also voted in posthumously.

DJ Fontana, Nancy Shockley & Louis Black at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction

This is DJ accepting his statuette. Beside him are Bill Black’s children, Nancy and Louis. At the far right is Max Weinburg, the drummer in Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, who inducted DJ. Weinburg had campaigned for years to get DJ inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Max Weinburg Article in Elvis the Magazine

Max Weinburg Article in Elvis the Magazine

 

Phil Arnold, Joe Esposito & DJ Fontana

This is a picture of me standing behind Joe Esposito and DJ Fontana at Elvis Week 2007. I was supposedly doing security detail (making sure nobody pushed in line or stole the books they were selling and signing), but all the fans were well behaved and it was just fun for me. I met Al Wertheimer a few minutes after this picture was snapped.

DJ Signing Books at Elvis Week 2007

This is a shot from behind the table. DJ signed a lot of books that day. Everybody loved DJ.

 

I’d like to close with words from the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as they remembered DJ:

Drummer DJ Fontana was a rockabilly icon and the indispensable pulse at the center of Elvis Presley’s songs. For fourteen years he played alongside of Elvis as part of the band. Together they recorded hundreds of songs and blew audiences away with rollicking, fun-loving, informal jams.

 

 

DJ Looking Spiffy at Elvis Week 2007

 

Goodbye DJ. We’ll miss you. Say hi to Elvis for us.

 

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Some Elvis Pictures I’ve Never Seen Before – Part 4

Elvis and Lisa

I haven’t done one of these picture posts in a month. They are so much fun because they generate a lot of reader response. Just as a reminder, these are shots I have found on Pinterest, some with descriptive tags (often wrong) and some untagged. Ever since I signed up with Pinterest and set my interest as Elvis Presley, they constantly send me emails linking to new photos people have recently Pinnned. So, let’s take a look at some of them.

 

Elvis and Dolores Hart at set of Loving you 1957. She was the first woman who kisses Elvis Presley in a film

The tag on this one was very good: “Elvis and Dolores Hart at set of Loving You 1957. She was the first woman who kisses Elvis Presley in a film.”

Director Hal Kanter giving Dolores Hart and Elvis Presley instructions on how to do a scene Elvis Forum

This is also from Loving You. I love the caption on Pinterest: “Director Hal Kanter giving Dolores Hart and Elvis Presley instructions on how to do a scene.” Can’t you just imagine that Elvis is thinking, “Hey, man, move over. I’ll teach her how to kiss.”

 

Dan Blocker and Elvis

Elvis with Dan Blocker form the TV show Bonanza. How many celebrities do you think Elvis met in his life?

 

Elvis and Lee Majors

Here’s another one. Lee Majors was called a “blond Elvis Presley” because of his resemblance to Elvis, but his hair doesn’t look too blond here.

 

Bond, Elvis Bond

I know some of you readers hate Photoshopped Elvis pictures, but you have to admit that Elvis makes a great-looking James Bond. (My name is Bond. Elvis Bond.)

 

Elvis and Buddies - Two Unidentified Men

Here’s one taken on the set of Speedway:  Standing – Jerry Schilling, Marty Lacker, Larry Jost (sound department), Elvis, Don Sutton (Pitcher for the LA Dodgers), and Richard Davis.  Kneeling – George Klein and  Joe Esposito.

Elvis Eating Soup on the Way Home from the Army 1961

This shot of Elvis eating soup actually didn’t come from Pinterest. It is a screen grab I made from a video on YouTube. It was filmed in 1961 on Elvis trip back to Memphis after his discharge from the Army.

 

Sunday July 30, 1961, Elvis visited the park Weeki Wachee Springs in Florida, While filming Follow that Dream

This is also from 1961. It was shot when Elvis visited Weeki Wachee Springs during free time while filming Follow That Dream in Florida. These pretty girls played mermaids during the underwater shows.

 

Elvis Guitar Zap

Does this look like Elvis shooting some kind of zap ray out the neck of his guitar? I made this one, too. In a behind-the-scenes video about the filming of That’s The Way It Is, they used interesting tricks to morph from one shot to the next. It took several attempts, but I finally got the screen grab to look like this.

 

Elvis Sleeping

There was no tag to indicate when and where this was snapped. Some readers have stated this is actually Anthony Perkins and not Elvis.  Does anybody have definitive proof either way?

 

Elvis and Shadow

I love this image, and I sure hope it’s not Photoshopped.

 

Elvis Presley cutting Billy Smith;s Hair 1957

I know the Pinterest tag on this is completely wrong. It says,” Elvis Presley cutting Johnny Cash’s hair. 1960.” First, Elvis is wearing the western outfit from Loving You, which filmed in 1957. Second, this is not Johnny Cash. I believe it is Elvis’ cousin Gene Smith. Here he is with Elvis on the set of Love Me Tender.

Elvis - Love Me Tender on Set 1956

Looks like the same guy, right?

(Editor’s note:  I had originally made a typing error and called him Billy Smith.  Within eight hours of posting this, six alert readers made comments pointing out this error.  Sorry)

 

Let’s close with some reader comments from the last time we did these pictures.

 

Elvis Pondering Nashville recording session in April 14, 1956

Reader Dolores R commented, “Elvis Pondering — the photo is a Nashville recording session in April 14, 1956.” I checked the photos in the book Elvis Presley – The Complete Recording Sessions for this date, and they all have Elvis wearing this shirt. You nailed it, Delores.

 

Elvis and Big Tree

My friend Gerard Montz came up with a great tag for this photo:

“Tree Be Nice”

 

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

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Some Fancy, Some Skimpy — Linda Thompson’s Wardrobe

Linda Thompson and Elvis Presley

You all know that Linda Thompson was Elvis’ girlfriend from 1972 to 1976. You might also know that she was third runner-up in the Miss USA Pageant and won the title of Miss Memphis State. But you might not know she was voted the Best Dressed Co-ed at Memphis State University. That tradition of sartorial excellence continued during her time with Elvis.

Elvis loved to dress Linda Thompson up in custom-made designer clothes when she accompanied him on special occasions in public. But he also apparently liked to see her in skimpy, sexy outfits, especially at home in Graceland. We’ll take a look at some of the fancy and the skimpy items Linda kept in her closet while she was with Elvis.

Linda Thompson Evening Gown

This is the evening gown Elvis had custom-made for Linda to wear to the “Aloha From Hawaii” concert filming. It is beige silk with a brown velvet rose pattern, sleeveless, deep V-neck front and back.

 

Linda Thompson In Jungle Roon

This, on the other hand, is something more casual and skimpier for lounging around the Jungle Room in Graceland.

 

Linda Thompson Black Jumpsuit

Elvis loved his jumpsuits so much that he had this sharp two-piece ensemble custom made for Linda. It consists of a long-sleeved bolero jacket with black and white cross-grain ribbon trim and a matching black bell-bottom jumpsuit with spaghetti straps.

 

Linda Thompson Bare Midriff

Linda with a bare midriff is a familiar image if you go looking for photos of her on Google. As we will see, denim was obviously something she preferred.

 

Linda Thompson Eagle' Jacket

So far, this is the only item I have found where Elvis and Linda had matching outfits, but no photos have surfaced with them together wearing these striking jackets. His sold at auction in 2016 for $50,000.

Elvis Wearing Eagle Jacket

Photographed in Las Vegas 1974

They have brown leather yokes, silver leather body and sleeves, multi-colored ‘star’ appliqués affixed to front and back shoulders, intricate rainbow-colored airbrush-painted designs on front and back. They are called the Eagle Jackets because of the added silhouette of black eagle on back.

Linda Thompson Eagle' Jacket - back

 

Linda Thompson Green Feather' Ensemble

This is called Linda’s Green Feather’ Ensemble: a black suede jacket with added black leather patches, adorned with lime green rhinestones and silver-tone studs throughout, trimmed in lime green ostrich feathers.

 

Here is what Linda had to say about the clothing Elvis gave her:

“When I first met Elvis, I was just a college girl at Memphis State University, and my wardrobe highly reflected that. Elvis immediately wanted me to fly out to Los Angeles and accompany him (the same day via Leer Jet) to Las Vegas for the opening of his engagement at the Las Vegas Hilton International Hotel. Elvis was anxious to show off his new girlfriend, so he sent me to the designer & dresser of the stars at the time, Suzy Creamcheese. Suzy outfitted me with beautifully outrageous clothing befitting a rockstar and a rock star’s girlfriend! These absolutely one-of-a-kind, handmade, studded, bedazzled, feathered & furred, Vegas and Elvis inspired 70s outfits are practically museum quality now. I wore each of these to Elvis’s shows in Las Vegas, and sometimes even on tour with him – much to his delight. There was really nothing subtle about Elvis or his taste in clothing…”

 

Linda Thompson wearing Skimpy Denim

Here’s another shot of Linda wearing denim. Not very much of it, though.

 

Linda Thompson Jean Ensemble

And here’s an example of Linda Thompson’s designer denim. She had a number of pants and tops that could be mixed and matched. This top is a cropped jean jacket with added darker jean patchwork and royal blue rhinestones. The pants started out as a regular pair of Levi’s jeans, but designer “Miss Vintage” added jean patchwork and silver-tone studs

Linda Thompson in Graceland Kitchen

This is Linda in the Graceland kitchen wearing a different set of denim co-ordinates.

 

Linda Thompson Purple Dress

Linda Thompson must have looked elegant wearing this to the opening of one of Elvis’ Las Vegas engagements. The dark purple gown had two side slits, long sleeves slit to expose a white lining, deep V-neck front, and tailored waist.

 

Linda Thompson Purple Dress

Not quite so elegant, but Linda sure looks great.

 

Linda Thompson Black Floral Dress

Worn to another Las Vegas opening, this black full-length, V-neck sleeveless gown features outstanding embroidered design.

 

Linda on Elvis' 9ft bed in Graceland

I’m not sure how to describe this outfit, but it’s interesting that she is sitting on the nine-foot bed in Elvis’ Graceland bedroom.

 

Linda Thompson Fur Cape

Linda even got dressed up to visit Elvis in the hospital. The web information on this says she wore it on February 12, 1975 when she went to Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee to visit Elvis in his recovery room. I’m not sure why Elvis was there, but several press photographers were outside the hospital and snapped shots of Linda going in.

Linda Thompson Fur Cape - Wearing

This dusty pink suede, waist-length cape is trimmed in white fox fur, lined in rose-colored satin, and the label reads “Helen of Memphis.”

 

Linda Thompson Elaborate Feathered Jumpsuit

Here’s another jump suit top. – a black suede jacket, adorned with white ostrich feathers, brown peacock feathers, and rhinestones.

Linda Thompson Elaborate Feathered Jumpsuit - back

There’s a matching pair of black bellbottom pants with the same feather and rhinestone treatment. Doesn’t sound very practical to me.

 

Elvis with Linda Thompson in See-Through Dress

This photo of Elvis and Linda Thompson was shot in 1974. It’s not one of Elvis’ better images, but Linda — wow.

 

 

© 2017 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

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Memphis Mafia Organizational Chart

Marty Lacker's chart of Elvis' Memphis Mafia Individual Responsibilities

This image is too small for reading, so don’t try. In this post we will dissect and expand it to show the individual responsibilities of Elvis’ Memphis Mafia circa January 1965. As you know, the men making up this unique group varied as some left (or left and came back) or were added as the years went by. But in late 1964 and early 1965, the guys who took care of Elvis’ every need were:

Marty Lacker
Red West
Billy Smith
Richard Davis
Joe Esposito
Jerry Shilling
Mike Keeton

And there was a specific order of responsibilities as shown in the following organizational chart distilled from the above image.

Elvis' Memphis Mafia Flow Chart

 

So, it appears Red West and Billy Smith had special relationships with Elvis and reported directly to him. But Richard Davis, Joe Esposito, Jerry Schilling, and Mike Keaton all reported to Marty Lacker.

Marty Lacker and Elvis Presley

Marty Lacker as co-best man at Elvis’ wedding

I never knew Marty was such an important member of the Memphis Mafia.

And, like most of you, I had never heard of Mike Keaton.

 

So what is this document that shows the power ranking among Elvis’ guys? It was part of a ten-page lot offered at the recent Auction at Graceland.

1965 Elvis Presley Memphis Mafia Duties and Responsibilities Chart

It had a pre-auction estimate of $5-10,000, but bidding failed to reach the minimum of $2,500. In the early 1980s, Lacker transferred ownership of these papers to Mike L. Moon for display in the Elvis Museum. I suspect we will see them up for auction again.

 

Marty Lacker's Elvis Responsibilities

This blow-up refers to Marty as Foreman, a term I had not come across before regarding the Memphis Mafia. The boxes beside his name, spell out his duties in both Memphis and Los Angeles. With Elvis making three movies a year, he and the guys traveled back and forth between the two cities.

In Memphis, Marty’s responsibilities were:

All personal financial business, including, especially, money.
Elvis’ personal mail
Business with the Col’s office.
Responsible to Elvis for entire operation
Upkeep of bus

Item # 4 is the biggie. We have read that Marty Lacker was Elvis’ personal bookkeeper and secretary, but who knew he was responsible for the whole operation?

The list for Marty Lacker’s responsibilities in Los Angeles is essentially the same. However, one of the other pages in this package expanded on Marty’ functions at both locations. I like this one – Purchase records for Elvis. This makes sense, because Marty had business interests in the recording industry and lots of contacts. So, maybe he had better taste than the other guys in what music would appeal to Elvis.

In L.A, Marty also had to work with the studio heads for Elvis. I guess he was some kind of buffer between Col. Parker. The last two other L.A. assignments make no sense to me – weekly food menu and grocery shopping. It seems strange for the guy running the whole operation to do the food shopping.

 

Red West's Elvis Responsibilities

At the top left of the chart is Red West, Elvis’ friend since high school, and he had a sweet deal – Assistant to Elvis and Available to assist others as needed. So I guess he just got to hang out and be Elvis’ buddy both in Memphis and L.A. Of course, Red served as bodyguard, so I wonder why that wasn’t mentioned.

 

Billy Smith's Elvis Responsibilities

At the top right of the chart is Elvis’ cousin, Billy Smith. The religious symbols drawn below his name and elsewhere must have been some kind of doodling by Marty Lacker, because this document was in his possession at all times. Billy Smith’s responsibilities in Memphis were rather light – Elvis’ shoes, Elvis’ razor, and be available daily if needed by Elvis. However, there is a separate sheet with a more detailed list (and a bunch of drawings of Elvis). It was also the only one to be typed

Billy Smith - expanded list of Elvis responsibilities

Billy had to keep Elvis’ shoes polished and repaired, and Elvis’ razor had to be cleaned and kept charged. A new duty was added: Elvis’ clothes – work with Richard, keep cleaned and hung upstairs in dressing room.

I like the longer explanation of be available if needed by Elvis. Here Marty gets a lot more specific about Billy’s duties: Be at Graceland by at least 2:30 P.M. each day, unless notified otherwise. (If for any reason you cannot make it by that time on any day, please tell Marty the night before).

Unlike Red West who had the same job of being Elvis’ buddy in both locations, Billy Smith had some real responsibilities added when they were in Los Angeles.

Upkeep and care of portable dressing room on set each day.
Elvis’ clothes. (Receive dirty clothes from Richard. Keep a list of them, then send to cleaners. Upon return from cleaners, remove and save tickets, then give clothes to Richard to be hung in closets. Give all tickets to Marty at end of each month to be checked against bill).
Assist Elvis with each change of wardrobe at studio
Keep Elvis’ black kit stocked with needed items and carry it for him when necessary
And Elvis’ shoes and razor as already explained.

 

Richard Davis' Elvis Responsibilities

Now we get to the two men listed as assistants to Marty. All fans know that Richard Davis was Elvis’ wardrobe guy and shopped for his clothes, but he had some other jobs, too. In Memphis, he took care of the vehicles (wash, gas, repairs), and he oversaw the stocking of needed items for Elvis in the kitchen and the rest of the house. He was also expected to be at Graceland by 1:30 every day.

There are two other Memphis responsibilities on his expanded list that I find interesting. Richard had to buy six copies of TV Guide and distribute them to Elvis’ room, the kitchen, Marty’s room, the downstairs den, and two other places with unfamiliar names. The conference room – I guess that was the dining room because Elvis ate all his meals in the kitchen. The Graceland room – I guess that would be the living room.

Richard was also expected to take care of business for Elvis, along with Joe Esposito, in the Marty’s absence. Thus the title of Assistant to Marty we see in the graph.

In Los Angeles, Richard got to oversee the running of the house on Bellagio Road. This included menu preparation and grocery shopping. I wonder why Marty would do that in Memphis and Richard would do it in L.A. Handling fan mail shifted from Marty to Richard, who also handled business calls at the house when Marty was absent.

As in Memphis, Richard Davis was responsible for the cars, bought the TV Guides, and was responsible for stocking the kitchen and bar. But my favorite of his duties is this: Keep water, gum, cigars(ettes), Blistex on set for Elvis when Jerry not available. Among Richard’s wardrobe responsibilities was: Select clothes to take to studio each morning. Return at night to Jerry.

 

Joe Esposito's Elvis Responsibilities

Joe Esposito, the other Assistant to Marty, had few daily responsibilities while Elvis was in Memphis. On an as needed basis, he would drive car for Elvis, handle miscellaneous business for Elvis, and make and confirm appointments such as doctor, dentist, house repairs, and prescriptions. He also had fill-in duties: Assume household responsibilities in Richard’s absence, and take care of business along with Richard in Marty’s absence.

When Elvis was making movies In Los Angeles, Joe had several important functions. He maintained Elvis’ script, marking daily scenes and keeping it available on set. He assisted Marty conducting business with the studio. In Marty’s absence, he handled business with Col. Parker. He assisted Elvis with wardrobe in Billy’s absence

Marty Lacker deserves credit for thinking ahead and making certain all his and the others guys’ functions had back-ups.

 

Jerry Schilling's Elvis Responsibilities

Jerry Schilling had it almost as easy as Red West when Elvis was in Memphis. He was responsible for upkeep of the Cadillac limo. There’s no telling why Richard was charged with all the other cars. Jerry also kept the cigar boxes stocked in the den, car, and Elvis’ room, plus he notified Richard of needed cigar box items. He assisted with Elvis’ clothes. Here’s the one I really like: Be available if needed whenever Elvis comes down from his room.

Marty definitely made sure people were around when Elvis woke up and started his day.

The sheet with Jerry Schilling’s expanded duties included two regarding Elvis’ private screening of movies. He had to check with the theater, and bring Elvis and Priscilla large cups of water at the movie.

When Elvis was in L,A., Jerry got some new jobs in addition to the cigar duty, assisting Billy with the clothes, and being around at night for Elvis’ companionship. Now he took care of the studio golf cart, purchased the afternoon paper at the studio, and kept glasses of ice water, cigarettes, etc on set for Elvis. And here’s the big one: Assisted Mike with ice for set dressing room each morning. How can ice detail take more than one man?

Jerry’s expanded responsibility list had this: Check with assistant director after each take, scene, or delay, as to how much time before next shot and what it will be.

 

Mike Keaton's Elvis Responsibilities

Finally, we come to this fellow Mike Keeton, who has been unknown to us up until now. He was a friend of Jerry Schilling and Elvis hired him in late September 1964. There are several familiar Memphis Mafia names who were not on the organizational chart, even though their tenure started before 1965 and ended after it. So, Charlie Hodge, Sonny West, Lamar Fike, and Alan Fortas must have been away from the scene for a while perusing singing careers, acting, or something else.

Thus, Elvis needed some new blood, and Jerry recruited Mike Keeton. When Elvis interviewed Mike, he learned the new guy was a member of the Assembly of God church, which the Presleys had attended when Elvis was a kid. Then Elvis found out that Mike’s wife was named Gladys. That clinched it for Elvis, and he hired him on the spot.

To be honest, many of the responsibilities listed for Mike in both locations duplicate many of those listed for other guys. The only different jobs listed for Memphis are picking up and returning movies, and maintaining the 16m mm film projector. In Los Angeles, he purchased two copies of the trades papers each morning at the studio, and he brought the daily call sheets to the Colonel’s office.

 

Graceland Kitchen

Graceland Kitchen

The last sheet in the auction package did not apply to anyone. It was a general list of 31 items to be “kept in kitchen and house for Elvis — at all times — every day.” I believe you will be able to read it, so I’ll skip typing it.

Elvis' Graceland 1965 - Items to be kept in kitchen and house at all times

 

So, maybe Marty Lacker’s Memphis Mafia Organizational Chart and related pages didn’t sell for $2,500, but they did give us a free look at how Elvis’ every need was provided by a group of seven men.

 

Next week we’ll look at some of the items at the Auction at Graceland that did sell.

 

 

© 2017 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.

Glen Campbell and Elvis

Elvis and Glen Campbell

Glen Campbell died yesterday, August 8, from complications of Alzheimer’s disease. He was 81.

Elvis and Glen Campbell had been friends for over a decade before Campbell became a star in 1967 with songs like “Gentle on my Mind,” and “By the Time I get to Phoenix.”

Glen Campbell first met Elvis on April 12, 1956 when Elvis performed at the Armory in Albuquerque, NM.

Elvis in Albuquerque

Campbell later recalled, “I saw him in the rough. He was so electrifying.”

They remained friends over the years. When Campbell moved to Los Angeles in 1960, he started playing at a little club called the Crossbow. They had a private room upstairs seating 15 to 20 people, and Elvis would bring the guys and watch Campbell perform.

In 1963, Glen Campbell was in the group of studio musicians that backed Elvis on the soundtrack songs for Viva Las Vegas.

Elvis Presley, Red West, Glen Campbell at George Klein's wedding, 1970

Elvis Presley, Red West, and Glen Campbell at George Klein’s wedding, 1970

 

There is a video on YouTube where Campbell tells a wonderful story about Elvis. In March 1975, Campbell had just finished a run at the Las Vegas Hilton. Elvis was the next headliner, so Campbell stayed around to catch his first show. With Campbell sitting in the audience, Elvis said:

“I’d like to introduce you to a good friend of mine. He just closed here last night…and he should have. I’m only kidding‘, ladies and gentlemen, he’s one of the finest voices around. He plays a fair guitar, his hair never moves, Jack, no matter what he does. Naw, he’s a great friend, Glen Campbell.”

The good natured ribbing continued:

Elvis — Hey, Campbell. I understand you’re trying to do me on stage.

Glen — I am doing you. (Audience laughs)

Elvis — If you don’t stop doing me, me and the boys will sit in the front row and read newspapers during your show.

Glen — If I’m going to do you in the future, I’m gonna have to gain some weight.

With that line, the audience booed Glen Campbell. He and Elvis got together later and had a good laugh about it. Elvis gave him some good-natured grief: “You smart ass.”

 

Glen Campbell Wearing Elvis Jumpsuit - 1975

This is Glen Campbell wearing a jump suit and “doing Elvis” in 1975.

 

Good bye, Glen Campbell. We’ll miss you. Say hi to Elvis for us.

 

 

© 2017 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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