Chapter 1; January - March

January 8, 1935

Elvis: A boy from Tupelo - Born the 8th of January, 1935

In the house that Vernon had built with the help of his father and brother in Tupelo, Mississippi, Gladys gave birth to twin boys the 8th of January 1935. The first, Jesse Garon, was delivered stillborn at 4.00 a.m. and would be buried the next day in an unmarked grave in the Priceville Cemetery, near Tupelo. The second, named Elvis Aron was born at 4.35 a.m.

"As an infant in Tupelo, the nationally known singer (Elvis) survived a tornado in 1936 that was ranked as the fourth deadliest in United States history and killed more than 230 people". (Wikipedia)


I huset som Vernon hadde bygget sammen med faren og broren i Tupelo, Mississippi, fødte Gladys tvillinger den 8. januar, 1935. Den første gutten Jesse Garon ble født klokken 4 på natten, men han var dødfødt og ble dagen etter begravet i en umerket grav på Priceville Cemetery, i nærheten av Tupelo. En drøy halvtime etter, klokken 4.35 ble den andre gutten Elvis Aron født.

«Den nasjonalt kjente sangeren (Elvis) overlevde en tornado i 1936 som ble rangert som det fjerde kraftigste i USAs historie. Flere enn 230 mennesker omkom under denne naturkatastrofen» (Wikipedia)

January 14, 1973

Elvis live in Hawaii - January 14, 1973

The 14th of January, 1973 was to become one of the most important days of Elvis' career. His concert at the Honolulu International Center Arena in Hawaii was broadcast live to over 40 countries via satellite (in addition, there were approximately 30 European countries that saw the concert slightly delayed). It is estimated that over 1 billion people watched the TV show; that was significantly more than those who saw the lunar landing live. Never ever has a single artist gained world attention in a similar manner!

"A live concert to me is exciting because of all the electricity that is generated in the crowd and on stage. It's my favorite part of the business - live concerts" (Elvis at the press conference prior to the Aloha from Hawaii the 4th of September, 1972)


Den 14. januar 1973 skulle bli en av de viktigste dagene i Elvis’ karriere. Hans konsert i Honolulu International Center Arena, Hawaii ble direkteoverført til over 40 land via satellitt (i tillegg var det cirka 30 europeiske land som så konserten noe forsinket). Man antar at over 1 milliard mennesker så TV-showet, og som et lite apropos; det var betydelig flere enn de som så månelandingen på direkten. Aldri noensinne har en enkelt artist fått hele verdens oppmerksomhet på tilsvarende måte!

«Konserter er for meg spennende på grunn av all den elektrisiteten som blir skapt blant publikum og på scenen. Det er det beste ved det jeg driver med - å holde konserter» (Elvis under pressekonferansen den 4. september der Hawaii-konserten ble annonsert for verden)

January 16, 1971

Elvis recieves the Jaycee Award - January 16, 1971

On the 16th of January, 1971 Elvis accepted the honor of being named "One of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Nation", an award given by the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce (The Jaycees). This national honor has been given each year since the late 1930's and recognizes young men who have made great achievements in their field of endeavor. It also applauds humanitarianism and community service. Scientists, inventors, performers, film makers, politicians bound for the Presidency, and men of greatness in all fields, have been selected for this award over the years, including John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Orson Welles, Howard Hughes.

Elvis was nervous about his acceptance speech. He was touched, excited and deeply proud. After a expensive dinner and a speech by future President George H.W. Bush, Elvis gives his address, in which he quotes a favorite Roy Hamilton R&B tune, "Without A Song":

"When I was a child, ladies and gentlemen, I was a dreamer. I read comic books, and I was the hero of the comic book. I saw movies, and I was the hero in the movie. So every dream I ever dreamed has come true a hundred times...I learned very early in life that: Without a song, the day would never end; without a song, a man ain't got a friend; without a song, the road would never bend - without a song. So I keep singing a song. Good night. Thank you" (Elvis’ speech during the Jaycees award, January 16th, 1971)


Den 16. januar 1971 ble Elvis tildelt den ærefulle tittelen «One of the Ten Outstanding Young men of the Nation», en pris som ble delt ut årlig av United States Junior Chamber of Commerce (The Jaycees). Denne nasjonale ærestittelen har blitt delt ut hvert år siden slutten av 1930-tallet, og den anerkjenner unge menn som har gjort ekstraordinære prestasjoner på deres respektive felt. Prisen vektlegger også kandidatens innsats innenfor humanitært arbeid. Forskere, oppfinnere, artister, filmskapere og politikere er blant de som har fått denne prisen opp gjennom årene. Prisvinnere inkluderer; John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Orson Welles og Howard Hughes.

Elvis ble svært glad og stolt over å ha vunnet prisen, og Elvis var naturlig nok meget nervøs før han skulle holde sin takketale. Etter gallamiddagen og den innledende talen fra den fremtidige president George H.W. Bush, var det Elvis sin tur til å holde sin tale. Han valgte å sitere sangen «Without A Song» av Roy Hamilton;

«Mine damer og herrer, da jeg vokste opp var jeg en drømmer. Jeg leste tegneserier, og jeg var helten i tegneserien. Jeg så filmer, og jeg var helten i filmen. Hver eneste drøm jeg noensinne har drømt har gått i oppfyllelse hundre ganger ... Jeg lærte veldig tidlig i livet at; uten en sang, vil dagen aldri ta slutt; uten en sang, så har man ingen venn; uten en sang, vil veien aldri svinge - uten en sang. Så jeg vil fortsette med å synge en sang. God natt, og tusen takk» (Elvis’ tale under utdelingen av Jaycees-prisen, 16. januar 1970)

January 28, 1956

Elvis live on The Dorsey Brother's Stage Show - March 17, 1956

On the 28th of January 1956, Elvis makes his debut on national television in the United States. The Stage Show (CBS Studio, New York) was hosted by Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey. Elvis, along with Bill Black, Scotty Moore and D.J. Fontana does two acts; "Shake Rattle & Roll/Flip Flop & Fly" and "I Got A Woman". The single "Heartbreak Hotel" had been released the day before, and many were astounded about the fact that Elvis didn’t perform this song during the show (it was actually not performed before show number three, the 11th of February). The Stage Show was by no means among the most popular TV shows in the United States at the time, and many did not experience Elvis' TV debut. The Dorsey brothers were still very happy when Elvis gave the shows new viewing records with every show he participated in. 

Elvis performed a total of 6 times at The Stage Show in 1956, 28th of January, 4th of February, 11th of February, 18th of February, 17th of March and 24th of March. He performed two songs each time. These shows are found on a number of DVD releases.


Den 28. januar 1956, gjør Elvis sin debut på riksdekkende TV i USA. The Stage Show (CBS Studio, New York) ble ledet av Tommy og Jimmy Dorsey. Elvis, sammen med Bill Black, Scotty Moore og D.J. Fontana gjør to nummer; «Shake Rattle & Roll/Flip Flop & Fly» og «I Got A Woman». Singelen «Heartbreak Hotel» ble sluppet dagen før, og mange har undret seg over at Elvis ikke fremførte denne sangen under showet (den ble faktisk ikke fremført før show nummer tre, den 11. februar). The Stage Show var på ingen måte blant de mest populære TV-showene i USA på den tiden, og det var derfor mange som ikke fikk med seg Elvis’ TV-debut. Dorsey- brødrene var allikevel storfornøyd, da Elvis’ deltagelse førte til at showene fikk nye seerrekorder gang på gang denne vinteren.

Elvis opptrådte til sammen 6 ganger på The Stage Show i 1956; 28. januar, 4. februar, 11. februar, 18. februar, 17. mars og 24. mars. Han fremførte to sanger hver gang. Disse showene finnes på en rekke DVD-utgivelser.

February 1, 1968

Elvis, Priscilla and Lisa Marie - February 5, 1968

Priscilla’ and Elvis’ only child Lisa Marie was born on the 1st of February, 1968 at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Worth noting is that she was born on the day 9 months after the couple’s wedding.

When Elvis died in August 1977, Lisa Marie, along with Elvis' father Vernon and Elvis' grandmother Minnie became heirs to the estate. After Vernon and Minnie died (respectively 1979 and 1980) Lisa Marie remained the sole inheritor of Graceland and all the assets of Elvis. The legacy of Elvis is controlled by Elvis Presley Enterprise, which until 2005 was owned by Lisa Marie. In 2005 she sold 85% of the company to CKX Inc. (Robert FX Sillerman). Lisa Marie, with her mother Priscilla, is still involved in the firm. Graceland and Elvis' personal belongings are still owned 100% of Lisa Marie.

Lisa Marie has always been a public figure, which is a perfectly natural consequence of being a child of one of the most famous people ever, but her exposure in the media escalated in connection with her and Michael Jacksons marriage in 1994. The wedding appeared in many ways as arranged, and nothing could fit Jackson better than him as "The King of Pop", married the daughter of "The King of Rock'n'Roll". The marriage lasted not very long though. Already in January 1996 it was announced that the couple were splitting up, only just eighteen months after the wedding. The couple had no children. Lisa Marie has four children, two children with her first husband Danny Keough (Danielle Riley and Benjamin Storm), and two children with her fourth husband Michael Lockwood (the twins Harper Vivienne Ann and Finley Aaron Love). Her third husband was the famous actor Nicolas Cage.

Lisa Marie has established her own career as a pop singer, and she has released three records so far, the last in 2012.

Priscilla and Elvis divorced in 1972. Priscilla was awarded custody of Lisa Marie. Lisa Marie often visited her father, and she was at Graceland on the 16th of August 1977, the day Elvis died.


Priscilla’s og Elvis’ eneste barn Lisa Marie ble født 1. februar, 1968 på Baptist Memorial Hospital i Memphis, Tennessee. Verdt å merke seg er at hun ble født på dagen 9 måneder etter parets bryllup.

Da Elvis døde i august 1977, ble Lisa Marie, sammen med Elvis’ far Vernon, og Elvis’ bestemor Minnie arvinger til boet. Etter at Vernon og Minnie døde (i henholdsvis 1979 og 1980) ble Lisa Marie enearving til Graceland og alle Elvis’ eiendeler.

Arven etter Elvis styres av Elvis Presley Enterprise, som frem til 2005 var heleid av Lisa Marie. I 2005 solgte hun 85 % av selskapet til CKX Inc. (Robert F.X. Sillerman).

Lisa Marie, sammen med sin mor Priscilla, er fremdeles aktivt involvert i firmaet. Selve Graceland og Elvis’ personlige eiendeler eies fremdeles 100 % av Lisa Marie.

Lisa Marie har alltid vært en offentlig person, noe som er en helt naturlig konsekvens av å være barn av en av verdens mest berømte personer, men hennes eksponering i media eskalerte i forbindelse med at hun og Michael Jackson giftet seg i 1994. Bryllupet fremsto på mange måter som arrangert; ingen ting kunne vel passe Jackson bedre, enn at han som «The King of Pop», giftet seg med datteren til «The King of Rock’n’Roll». Ekteskapet varte da heller ikke spesielt lenge. Allerede i januar 1996 ble det annonsert at paret skulle skilles, bare drøyt halvannet år etter bryllupet. Paret fikk ingen barn. Lisa Marie har 4 barn, to barn med sin første ektemann Danny Keough (Danielle Riley og Benjamin Storm), og to barn med sin fjerde ektemann Michael Lockwood (tvillingene Harper Vivienne Ann og Finley Aaron Love). Hennes tredje ektemann var den berømte skuespilleren Nicolas Cage.

Lisa Marie har etablert sin egen karriere som popsanger, og hun har gitt ut 3 plater, den siste i 2012.

Priscilla og Elvis ble skilt i 1972. Priscilla ble tildelt omsorgsansvar for Lisa Marie. Lisa Marie besøkte ofte sin far, og hun var på Graceland 16. august 1977, den dagen Elvis døde.

February, 1970

Elvis live in Las Vegas - February 1970

When Elvis kicked off his second season in Las Vegas on January 26th 1970, he still had the spark and enthusiasm of the opening season last summer intact. His shows during this season were generally shorter than those he did during the '69 season, but he performed roughly the similar number of songs during a show since his monologue about his own career was omitted (it would anyway have seemed somewhat out of place now that he definitely was back on the concert stage).

Several new songs were introduced in the repertoire; "Blue Suede Shoes" was replaced as the opening tune with "All Shook Up" (a song he during this season still performed with some decency - later in his career the pace of this classic became so utterly breathless that it lost all lash).

From the wonderful Memphis session a year earlier Elvis picked up three new songs in the concert repertoire; "Don’t Cry Daddy", "Kentucky Rain" (which had been released as a single in January, just prior to this season) and "True Love Travels On A Gravel Road" (only performed on a few occasions). It was also introduced some songs Elvis never made studio recordings of, and which several were to become permanent concert standards throughout the 70s; "Let It Be Me", "Polk Salad Annie", "Proud Mary", "Release Me", "See See Rider", "Sweet Caroline", "The Wonder Of You" and "Walk A Mile and In My Shoes".

In addition, Elvis brushed the dust off some old classics he had not performed during his first season in Vegas; "Blueberry Hill", "It's Now Or Never", "Lawdy Miss Clawdy", "Long Tall Sally" and the eventually standard combination of "(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear" / "Don 't Be Cruel".

In short; An artist in high spirits, with a number of great songs and a regained enthusiasm intact: This could not be anything but a triumph! Elvis' second season in Las Vegas is among the highlights of his concert career.

RCA recorded several shows between 15th and 19th of February, and a collection of these songs were later released on the record On Stage.


Da Elvis sparket i gang sin andre sesong i Las Vegas den 26. januar 1970, hadde han fremdeles gløden og entusiasmen fra åpningssesongen året før intakt. Showene under denne sesongen var generelt kortere enn de han gjorde under ’69-sesongen, men han fremførte omtrent tilsvarende antall sanger under et show da monologen om hans egen karriere ble utelatt (den ville uansett ha virket noe malplassert nå som han definitivt var tilbake på konsertscenen).

Flere nye sanger ble introdusert i repertoaret; «Blue Suede Shoes» ble erstattet som åpningslåt av «All Shook Up» (en sang han under denne sesongen fremdeles fremførte med en viss anstendighet – senere i karrieren blir tempoet på denne klassikeren så til de grader heseblesende at den mistet all snert).

Fra den fantastiske Memphis-sesjonen ett år tidligere hentet Elvis frem tre nye sanger i konsertrepertoaret; «Don't Cry Daddy», «Kentucky Rain» (som ble utgitt som single i januar, rett forut for denne sesongen) og «True Love Travels On A Gravel Road» (kun spilt ved et par anledninger). Det ble også introdusert en del sanger Elvis aldri gjorde studioinnspillinger av, der flere av dem skulle bli faste konsertinnslag under hele 70-tallet; «Let It Be Me», «Polk Salad Annie», «Proud Mary», «Release Me», «See See Rider», «Sweet Caroline», «The Wonder Of You» og «Walk A Mile In My Shoes».

I tillegg ble det børstet støvet av noen gamle klassikere som Elvis ikke hadde fremført under sin første sesong i Vegas; «Blueberry Hill», «It's Now Or Never», «Lawdy Miss Clawdy», «Long Tall Sally» og den etterhvert faste kombinasjonen av «(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear/Don't Be Cruel».

Kort oppsummert; En artist i toppform både fysisk og psykisk, en mengde sterke sanger og en nyvunnen entusiasme i behold. Dette kunne ikke bli noe annet enn en triumf! Elvis’ andre sesong i Las Vegas er blant høydepunktene i hele hans konsertkarriere.

RCA spilte inn flere show mellom 15. og 19. februar, og en samling av disse sangene ble senere utgitt på platen On Stage.

February 13, 1955

Elvis in Lubbock, Texas - February 13, 1955

On the 13th of February 1955 Elvis was performing in the Fair Park Coliseum, Lubbock, Texas at 4:00 pm. This was the first gig Bob Neal (who was managing Elvis at the time) received directly from Colonel Parker, and Elvis, Scotty and Bill received $ 350 just for this show. A little later in 1955 Colonel Parker took over the job of managing Elvis full time. The concert was promoted on posters and flyers in the following way: "The Be-Bop Western Star of the Louisiana Hayride Returns to Lubbock".

A young Buddy Holly was the warm-up act, and Elvis lent Buddy his Martin guitar for him to use during his act. Buddy opened for Elvis on two subsequent occasions in the same premises.

Some of the earliest film footage of Elvis is taken from this concert in Lubbock. A local photographer, Ben Hall, made the recordings.

We do not know which songs Elvis performed during the show.


13. februar 1955 holder Elvis en konsert (16:00) i Fair Park Coliseum, Lubbock, Texas. Dette var den første spillejobben Bob Neal (som var manager for Elvis på dette tidspunktet) fikk via Oberst Parker, og Elvis, Scotty og Bill mottok 350 dollar for dette ene showet. Noe senere tok Oberst Parker over manager-jobben for Elvis på heltid. Konserten ble promotert på plakater og flyveblader på følgende måte; «The Be-Bop Western Star of the Louisiana Hayride Returns to Lubbock».

En ung Buddy Holly var oppvarmings-akt, og Elvis lånte Buddy sin Martin-gitar. Buddy varmet opp for Elvis også ved to senere anledninger i samme lokale.

Noe av de tidligste filmopptakene av Elvis kommer fra denne konserten i Lubbock. En lokal fotograf, Ben Hall, gjorde opptakene.

Vi kjenner ikke til hvilke sanger Elvis fremførte under showet.

February 26, 1969

Elvis in Las Vegas - February 26, 1969

On the 26th of February 1969, Elvis is visiting Las Vegas to inspect the at the time present unfinished International Hotel; the hotel in which he will hold his first concert since 1961 just 5 months later. In the picture above Elvis is signing the contract for his first season in Las Vegas since 1956, with the press present. In reality, the contract was first signed in April, so this was actually just a publicity stunt.

After the TV Special show, which was recorded in June 1968, Elvis became very aware of what he desired in his future career. He told his manager Colonel Parker that he was through doing bad Hollywood productions, and that he again wanted to do concerts and contemporary pop albums. As a consequence, Colonel Parker booked Elvis for a 4-week engagement at the International Hotel in Las Vegas.

"I'm planning a lot of changes... You can't go on doing the same thing year after year. It's been a long time since I've done anything professional, except make movies and cut albums... Before long I'm going to make some personal appearance tours... I want to see some places I've never seen before. I miss the personal contact with audiences". (Elvis comments on his future plans after the Comeback show in 1968)


Den 26. februar 1969 er Elvis i Las Vegas for å inspisere det da uferdige International Hotel; hotellet der han skulle holde sin første konsert siden 1961 bare 5 måneder senere. På bildet ovenfor signerer Elvis kontrakten for sin første sesong i Las Vegas siden 1956, med pressen til stede. I virkeligheten ble kontrakten først signert i april, så dette var kun et PR stunt.

Etter TV Special showet, som ble spilt inn i juni 1968, ble Elvis veldig bevisst på hva han ønsket videre i karrieren. Han fortalte sin manager Oberst Parker at han nå var ferdig med å spille i dårlige Hollywood produksjoner, og at han igjen ville gjøre konserter og tidsaktuelle album. Som en konsekvens av dette booket Oberst Parkers Elvis for et 4 ukers engasjement på International Hotel i Las Vegas. mm

«Jeg planlegger å gjøre en del endringer ... Man kan ikke holde på å gjøre det samme år etter år. Det er lenge siden jeg nå har gjort noe annet profesjonelt enn å lage filmer og spille inn plater ... Om ikke lenge så skal jeg legge ut på turné ... Jeg ønsker å besøke steder jeg aldri har vært før. Jeg savner den personlige kontakten med publikum». (Elvis forteller om sine fremtidsplaner etter Comeback showet i 1968)

February 27, 1970

Elvis live in Houston, Texas - February 27, 1970

Elvis held a total of six shows (three 2:30 pm shows and three 7:45 pm shows) at the Houston Astrodome, Texas from 27th of February to 1st of March 1970. In front of a total of 207,494 spectators, Elvis did six powerful concerts. The sound was not satisfying though, since the big dome wasn’t built for good acoustics. The photo above is taken from the evening show on the 27th of February. Elvis wore the Thin Green Leaf Suit.

During the first show on the 27th of February there were only 16,708 paying spectators. In the large hall this felt extremely scarce in the audience, and there were speculations that the concerts would be a failure. Already on the evening show there were over 36,000 spectators, and all of the four remaining shows drew crowds of fans to the dome. Elvis' concerts in the Houston Astrodome broke all previous attendance records in the huge hall.

There are no existing CD releases of the evening show on the 27th of February. There exists one unofficial CD release of the 2:00 pm show the 28th of February (Better Than Ever - VV 2013), and two CD releases of the 2:00 pm show the 1st of March (Elvis At The Dome - King Crown Records 2001 / Closing Strong - VV 2013).


Elvis avholdt i alt seks konserter (3 ettermiddagsshow og 3 kveldsshow) i Houston Astrodome, Texas fra 27. februar til 1. mars 1970. Foran til sammen 207,494 elleville fans, gjør Elvis seks energiske konserter. Lyden skal dog ha vært elendig, da Rodeo-hallen på ingen måte var bygget for god akustikk. Bildet over er hentet fra kveldsshowet den 27. februar, og Elvis hadde på seg Thin Green Leaf Suit.

Under det første showet 27. februar var det kun 16,708 betalende tilskuere. I den store hallen opplevdes dette som ekstremt glissent blant publikum, og det ble spekulert i om konsertene ville bli en fiasko. Allerede på kveldsshowet kom det over 36.000 tilskuere, og alle de fire siste showene tiltrakk seg horder av fans. Elvis’ konserter i Houston Astrodome slo alle tidligere publikumsrekorder i den grandiose hallen.

Det finnes ingen plateutgivelse av kveldsshowet den 27. februar. Det eksisterer en uoffisiell utgivelse av ettermiddagsshowet den 28. februar (Better Than Ever - VV 2013), og to utgivelser av ettermiddagsshowet den 1. mars; (Elvis At The Dome - King Crown Records 2001 / Closing Strong - VV 2013).

March 13, 1956

Elvis' debut album; Elvis Presley - Released March 13, 1956

RCA released Elvis' first LP Elvis Presley the 13th of March 1956. The album debuted at #11 on the Billboard list. After six weeks it reached #1, a position it held for a total of 10 weeks. The album was on the Billboard list in a total of 49 weeks, and it became the first album that sold more than 1,000.000 copies. The album contained seven tracks recorded in January 1956, and 5 previously unreleased tracks taken from different SUN sessions in 1954 and 1955. This might be the most important album in the history of pop music!


RCA lanserte Elvis’ første LP Elvis Presley 13. mars 1956. Albumet debuterte på #11 på Billboardlisten. Etter 6 uker nådde den #1, en plassering den beholdt i totalt 10 uker. Platen lå på Billboardlisten i totalt 49 uker, og den ble verdens første album som solgte mer enn 1 000.000 eksemplarer. Platen inneholdt 7 spor innspilt i januar 1956, og 5 tidligere uutgitte spor hentet fra forskjellige SUN-sesjoner i 1954 og 1955. Dette er kanskje pophistoriens viktigste album!


Blue Suede Shoes / I'm Counting on You / I Got A Woman / One-Sided Love Affair / I Love You Because / Just Because / Tutti Frutti / Trying to Get to You / I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry (Over You) / I'll Never Let You Go (Lil' Darlin') / Blue Moon / Money Honey

March 20, 1974

Elvis live in Memphis, Tennessee - March 20, 1974

Elvis held a total of five concerts in the Midsouth Coliseum, Memphis, Tennessee during three days in March 1974. Initially it was planned four concerts (16 and 17 March), but a fifth concert was set up the 20th of March, when the demand for tickets was enormous. Elvis performed for approximately 60,000 crazy fans during these five completely sold-out concerts in his home town. This was the first time Elvis performed in his hometown since 1961. The fifth concert on the 20th of March was later released on the album Elvis as Recorded Live on Stage in Memphis. The song "How Great Thou Art" from this record was rewarded with a Grammy award.

"Hello Memphis. It's good to be home" (Elvis during the 2.30pm show the 16th of March, 1974)


Elvis avholdt totalt 5 konserter i Midsouth Coliseum, Memphis, Tennessee over tre dager i mars 1974. Initialt var det planlagt 4 konserter (16 og 17. mars), men en femte konsert ble satt opp 20. mars, siden etterspørselen etter billetter var enorm. Elvis opptrådde for ca. 60.000 elleville fans under disse fem helt utsolgte konsertene i hjembyen. Dette var første gang Elvis opptrådte i hjembyen sin siden 1961. Den femte konserten 20. mars, ble senere utgitt på platen Elvis As Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis. Sangen «How Great Thou Art» fra denne platen ble belønnet med en Grammy pris.

«Hallo Memphis. Det er godt å være hjemme igjen» (Elvis under ettermiddagsshowet 16. mars 1974)

March 24, 1958

Elvis' enrollment in the U.S. Army - March 24, 1958

Elvis was enrolled in the U.S. Army the 24th of March 1958. Elvis, by virtue of being a superstar, could probably have asked for an exemption, but he actually wanted to do his duty. The press had turned up in multitudes, and both the enrollment and the obligatory haircut was filmed and photographed. After having completed his months of preparation at the Fort Chaffee, Arkansas and Fort Hood, Texas, Elvis and his company left for Friedberg in Germany the 22nd of September 1958. Elvis served in the armored division. Elvis dimmed the 5th of March 1960 (he was back on American soil 3rd of March). During his stay in Germany Elvis was living outside the military camp in Bad Nauheim together with his family and friends.

His time serving in the army would bring major changes in Elvis’ life. After living "with the pedal to the metal" since his breakthrough in July 1954, the change to a much quieter Military Service made a huge difference in his day to day life. But the biggest change in Elvis' life took take place when his mother died very suddenly of a liver failure in August 1958, while he was still serving in the United States. Gladys's death is probably the single event that influenced Elvis' life the most. He loved his mother more than anything, and many believe that Elvis never truly recovered from her death. It was also during his time in the military that Elvis met Priscilla Beaulieu, his future wife.

Elvis expressed many times during his stay in Germany that he worried about being forgotten. A completely unnecessary concern, since Elvis' first four singles after his return reached #1 on the Billboard chart and his popularity was beyond belief.


Den 24. mars 1958 ble Elvis innrullert i den amerikanske hæren. Mye kan tyde på at Elvis, i kraft av å være superstjerne, kunne bedt om fritak, men han ønsket selv å avtjene militærtjenesten. Pressen hadde møtt opp i hopetall, og både innrulleringen og den obligatoriske hårklippen ble behørig filmet og fotografert. Etter å ha avtjent de forberedende månedene i Fort Chaffee, Arkansas og Fort Hood, Texas, dro Elvis og hans kompani til Friedberg i Tyskland den 22. september 1958. Her skulle Elvis tjenestegjøre i panserdivisjonen. Elvis dimmet 5. mars 1960 (han var tilbake på amerikansk jord 3. mars). Under sitt opphold i Tyskland bodde Elvis utenfor militærleiren i Bad Nauheim sammen med familie og venner.

Tiden i militæret skulle innebære store endringer for Elvis. Etter å ha «kjørt med gassen i bunn» siden gjennombruddet i juli 1954, var overgangen til en langt roligere Forsvarstjeneste enorm. Men den største endringen i Elvis’ liv skulle finne sted da hans mor døde svært brått av leversvikt i august 1958, mens han fremdeles tjenestegjorde i USA. Gladys’ død er nok den enkelthendelsen som påvirket Elvis’ liv mest. Han elsket sin mor over alt annet, og mange mener at Elvis aldri kom over hennes død. Det var også under tiden i militæret at Elvis møtte Priscilla Beaulieu, hans fremtidige hustru.

Elvis uttrykte mange ganger under sitt opphold i Tyskland at han var bekymret for å bli glemt. En helt unødig bekymring; Elvis’ fire første singler etter hans tilbakekomst nådde #1 på Billboardlisten, og hans popularitet var større enn noen gang.

March 26, 1960

Frank Sinatra and Elvis during the Timex Special - March 26, 1960

On the 26th of March 1960 Elvis attended the Frank Sinatra Timex Special. The TV show, which was named Welcome Home Elvis, was first broadcasted on national TV the 12th of May. Elvis' manager Tom Parker had ensured that Elvis would come back with great ordeal after he was drafted from his army service. Nothing suited better than to show off Elvis in the very popular Frank Sinatra Show. Ironically, Sinatra had been very negative towards Elvis just a few years earlier, but this was apparently forgotten this spring. Elvis performed his new pop single; "Stuck On You" and "Fame And Fortune", Frank Sinatra's "Witchcraft", and a duet with Sinatra on "Love Me Tender".

"If it (music) has changed …well, I would be foolish not to try to change with it, you know" (Elvis comments on the forthcoming Sinatra Show and whether the music has changed while serving in the army - Press conference at Graceland March of 7th, 1960)


Den 26. mars 1960 deltok Elvis på Frank Sinatra Timex Special. TV-showet, som ble døpt Welcome Home Elvis, ble først vist 12. mai. Elvis’ manager Tom Parker hadde sikret seg at Elvis skulle komme tilbake med brask og bram etter avtjent militærtjeneste. Ikke noe passet bedre enn å få vist frem Elvis i det meget populære Frank Sinatra Show. Ironisk nok hadde Sinatra vært svært negativ til Elvis bare noen år tidligere, men dette var tydeligvis glemt denne dagen. Elvis fremførte sin nye pop-singel «Stuck On You» og «Fame And Fortune», Frank Sinatras «Witchcraft», og en duett med Sinatra på «Love Me Tender».

«Hvis den (musikken) har endret seg ... så ville det være dumt av meg å ikke endre meg i takt med den» (Elvis kommenterer det kommende Sinatra showet, og i hvilken grad popmusikken hadde endret seg i løpet av de årene han hadde avtjent sin militærtjeneste – Under en pressekonferanse på Graceland den 7. mars 1960)

Sources; “Elvis: Day By Day” – Peter Guralnick, Ernst Jørgensen / “Last Train To Memphis” – Peter Guralnick / “Careless Love” – Peter Guralnick / “Elvis Files Volume 1-6” – Erik Lorentzen / “A King In The Making” – Alfred Wertheimer / Wikipedia / www.elvis.com.au / www.elvisconcerts.com / www.elvis-history-blog.com / ELVIS and his MUSIC