Asheville, North Carolina
By Sandi Hitchcock
Asheville concerts were among the best I have ever seen! However, the audiences
were the least responsive and Elvis noticed it. At each show he made a point of
saying "I don't know what they've told you about staying in your seat. It's
not me. I want you to have a good time"' He never did receive a standing
ovation which he deserved on several songs. Elvis was on stage two hours for
the first two shows, and 1~2 hours for the third show.
I'd like to say what a welcome addition " The Stamps " are to the first
part of the show. They sang 3 songs and were very well-received.Elvis wore the
Indian jumpsuit at the Tuesday show. For Wednesday and Thursday, he had a new
look--a gypsy-type suit, and to me the best choice ever. It accented his
tremendous weight loss and with his tan, he looked like real gypsy! The shirts
are satin, full sleeves, with band around the arms. One was white, the other
light blue. They were topped with a vest in black with a gold design. The pants
have an insert on the front corresponding with the shirt, and decorated with
gold sequins in a flashy design.
Harold J. Newton ©
Asheville, NC. July 22nd 1975
show was opened on Tuesday & Wednesday by " C.C. Rider " and on
Thursday by " That's All Right, Mama ". On Tuesday night Elvis and
various members of his group were presented with boxer shorts decorated in
varied styles, with the names of each on the leg. This was a real show stopper,
and Elvis commented it took a lot of time and a lot of guts! Also on Tuesday,
Elvis presented J.D. Sumner with a 10 carat diamond ring, valued at $40,000, in
appreciation of J.D. singing with him.
On with the shows, " C.C Rider " was followed by " I Got A Woman ", the fantastic "Amen Chorus ", and " Big Boss Man ". Next was the kissing song, " LoveMe ", then " If You Love Me Let Me Know ". Before singing " It's Midnight ", Elvis remarked that it had been written by Billy Ed Wheeler, who was from Asheville. Next was "All Shook Up ", " Teddy Bear ", " Don't Be Cruel ". " Hound Dog ", and " The Wonder of You ". Next was the very beautiful " Turn Around ", with a fast moving " Polk Salad Annie ". Introductions were next, with James Burton playing " Johnny B. Goode " with the guitar behind his head! " T-R-0-U-B-L-E " was next, with a fantastic display of karate at the end, then " Why Me Lord " and the dynamic, moving " How Great Thou Art ". Elvis is playing with his voice range more on this, and holding the notes longer, and if you can believe it, it is even more beautiful than ever. When I say it's moving, I mean spiritually, not physically. This was followed by the bluesy " Shake A Hand ". (Thursday night, someone gave Elvis a surgical glove as he sang this). Elvis really likes this song, and does a dynamite job on it. " Fairytale " was next, then " Little Darlin ". " Mystery Train " was super with the trombones making a train-like sound. This was followed by " Tiger Man ". Then Elvis had the house lights turned on.
Harold J. Newton ©
Asheville, NC. July 23rd 1975
this point at the Wednesday show, Beverly Mickle presented Elvis with a large
memory box containing various articles, including all his gold records,
miniature football helmet, Pepsi bottle, guitar, a picture of Elvis as a child,
and a picture of his mother. Elvis was very impressed with this and thanked her
profusely. Then he introduced his father, saying how sick Vernon had been the
last 6 months, and how glad he was to have him there. Vernon received a standing
ovation, which unfortunately is more than Elvis received.
Next on the show was " Funny How Time Slips Away " and " Now Or Never ". Then Elvis asked Vernon what he'd like to hear. I couldn't hear what Vernon said, but Elvis replied "I don't know that one, Daddy, how 'bout " Promised Land "? On Thursday, Elvis sang "Pieces of My Life" for Vernon. " Promised Land " was followed by Elvis saying that there were four planes that carried his equipment to be sure the fans got the best sound possible, and that " we get our reward by pleasing you, that's what we're here for. " Then the all-too-familiar strains of " Can't Help Falling In Love. "
night, Elvis surprised everyone by throwing his guitar to a man on the front row.
I later learned that the man who caught Elvis' guitar returned it to him later.
This was surpassed by Elvis giving away two rings to fans in the audience. The
rings were copies of his own $16,000 diamond ring. What a fantastic souvenir
from an Elvis concert!
published in “ The Strictly Elvis Generation No. 3 “.