Elvis: 40 Years Later….

2St__Louis_Post_Dispatch_Wed__Aug_17__1977_

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, this is the 40th anniversary of the King of Rock and Roll’s death. Whether or not you thought he truly was the King (I think Little Richard, Ike Turner, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny “Guitar” Watson should  be deemed Rock and Royalty too!) he had that extra “something” that made him, well, ELVIS!

I liked some of his stuff (Heartbreak Hotel, Jailhouse Rock, etc.) but the later stuff was waaaay better (Suspicious Minds, In the Ghetto, and yes, Burnin’ Love–also can’t forget A Little Less Conversation and If I Can Dream!) but there were some songs that fell through the cracks that were surprisingly good–there’s one…I think is called “And I Love You So” that was recorded live in 1973 at one concert or another that made me stop in my tracks. I could actually SEE what people were talking about when they said Elvis was a great singer/performer.

Okay, enough of that, here’s the rest of the recycled post from last year. Enjoy!

I could go over the fact that Presley made a lot of movies—pre Army = good; post Army = terrible, but what I’d like to focus on is what the main idea of this blog was supposed to be—a look at the last known films/performances/appearances of various celebrities.  With Elvis, we have a humdinger of an “IITLtID!” (If It’s the Last Thing I Do!); his June 26, 1977 performance at the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis. While not a sell-out (18,000 attended), there was enough energy and excitement from the crowd to make up for any empty seats.

 

Market Square Arena Indianapolis, IN
Where the final concert took place.

The setlist: (from http://www.oldies.about.com)

Also Spake Zarathustra (opening)
See See Rider
I Got A Woman/Amen
Love Me
Fairytale
You Gave Me A Mountain
Jailhouse Rock
O Sole Mio/It’s Now Or Never
Little Sister
Teddy Bear/Don’t Be Cruel
Release Me
I Can’t Stop Loving You
Bridge Over Troubled Water
(band introductions)
Early Morning Rain
What’d I Say
Johnny B. Goode
(solos by band members Larrie Londin: drums, Jerry Scheff: bass, Tony Brown: piano)
I Really Don’t Want To Know
(solo by the backing Joe Guercio Orchestra)
Hurt
Hound Dog
(Elvis introduces various people from the stage)
Can’t Help Falling In Love
(closing vamp)

The concert (via YouTube, of course!)

The Final Concert

…and that’s it. Enjoy!

 

 

If It’s The Last Thing I Ever Do!

Greetings, fellow degenerates! It’s time for another episode of IITLTED! This time, we’re looking at a work that some consider worse than Kook’s Tour, Atoll K, Blazing Stewardesses, Wagons East, Street Fighter…look, just trust me.

I’ve watched this more than a few times, and I don’t consider it totally cringeworthy…but if you’re expecting “Hawaii Era” Elvis here, you won’t be getting it. The voice is surprisingly strong in some instances, but in others, you just want him to sit down and watch some TV (or shoot out some TV). His stage presence is…well, he’s on stage, there is that. Don’t expect any karate moves or sliding across the stage here–he’s mostly static with the occasional Elvis leg shake thrown in. Pluses: you get to see the cool 70s era CBS Special intro (you know the one!); you get interviews with fans waiting to see The King (note that most of them are young, yet once you see the audience during the performance, they’re decidedly more matronly.) Final note: it’s not that bad to me, but I’ve grown up watching films like Trog and the collective works of Rudy Ray Moore–it takes a lot for me to declare you bad!