In this section you can submit questions to people that knew Elvis, or to other important people in the Elvis World.

Re: vic colonna

Tue Nov 27, 2007 1:38 am

KingOfTheJungle wrote:Which songs were included from the Vancouver show? These are different from the Toronto snippets that have popped up??

Yes, they are not from Toronto. You get about two minutes worth of the show ->

Heartbreak Hotel
I Was The One
I Got A Woman
That's When Your Heartaches Begin

Then you hear the sound of the tape speeding up and running off the reel!

Talk about don't be cruel.

Re: vic colonna

Tue Nov 27, 2007 6:37 pm

drjohncarpenter wrote:Greybeard and PEP -- thanks for the scans! Those were indeed the only Elvis LPs worth buying between 1977 and 1979. RCA offered the fans garbage by comparison.

Mike C wrote:One thing I have been curious about is the "Got a Lot o' Livin' To Do" LP, which was put out on the Pirate label. Did you put that one out? And, if so,was there anymore audio from the August 31, 1957 Vacouver show? Small samples were included on that LP.

A full release of this recording was promised in the near future according to the album's sleeve notes, but it's been over 30 years and ... nothing.


I know I have been waiting forever to see if the full show would ever turn up. The tease on the back of the LP sometiems makes me cry. The sound of these 4 songs is pretty good, too. I do hope Vic or Paul will provide us with an answer soon.

Re: vic colonna

Tue Nov 27, 2007 6:54 pm

I still have Got a Lot O Living To Do....the movie versions were taken directly from the screen....weren`t they..?? It must have been very quiet in the living room..lol..

Re: vic colonna

Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:13 pm

Welcome Vic!

Re: vic colonna

Wed Nov 28, 2007 12:18 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
KingOfTheJungle wrote:Which songs were included from the Vancouver show? These are different from the Toronto snippets that have popped up??

Yes, they are not from Toronto. You get about two minutes worth of the show ->

Heartbreak Hotel
I Was The One
I Got A Woman
That's When Your Heartaches Begin

Then you hear the sound of the tape speeding up and running off the reel!

Talk about don't be cruel.


Do you get the impression when listening to these Canadian recordings that the actual recording is an off-line recording of the master tape, and the recordist is pressing the pause button every now and then? Surely there is more to that recording.

Re: vic colonna

Wed Nov 28, 2007 12:29 am

Jim Dandy wrote:Do you get the impression when listening to these Canadian recordings that the actual recording is an off-line recording of the master tape ...

Yes -- although if you revisit Red Robinson's LP of Presley's August 1957 interview, you might be in for a surprise.

Image

The ELVIS Tapes (Great Northwest Music Company GNW-4005, 1977)

On side two of the LP, after the 1957 interview, there is a live sequence heard of Elvis as he enters the stadium in his car, Robinson apparently narrating the scene. It is an exact audio match for the beginning of the 1957 live extracts heard on the 1976 bootleg, Got A Lot O' Livin' To Do.

But where is the full tape? Robinson claims he does not have it.
Last edited by drjohncarpenter on Thu Dec 09, 2010 11:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: vic colonna

Wed Nov 28, 2007 9:06 pm

drjohncarpenter wrote:
Jim Dandy wrote:Do you get the impression when listening to these Canadian recordings that the actual recording is an off-line recording of the master tape ...

Yes -- although if you revisit Red Robinson's LP of Presley's August 1957 interview, you might be in for a surprise.

Image

The ELVIS Tapes (Polydor, 1977)

After the 1957 interview there is a live sequence heard of Elvis as he enters the stadium, Robinson apparently narrating the scene. It is an exact audio match for the beginning of the 1957 live extracts heard on Got A Lot O' Livin' To Do.

But where is the full tape? Robinson claims he does not have it.
Is that same as Canadian Tribute CD with alternate "Elvis Today" photo?

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:44 am

Happy holidays all. Durn computer has been in shop for a month. Got it back and they got it working but have a half dozen new problems not present before. That's a problem for next year.

"It is truly overwhelming and humbling to realize how many lives my music has touched so deeply all these years," said Dan Fogelberg, who passed away today.

That made me think: Paul and I made a couple people happy ourselves and that was the best part of it all.

Someone once asked me, after I got back from the hoosegow, if I would have done it knowing the end result. I said, "If the devil popped up in 1975 and offered me a contract stating that the next five years would be spent making Elvis boots and discovering all that great stuff RCA had denied us fans and then I would have to go to jail for a year I would have said, 'Where do I sign?'"

Thank you all, it was a great run and we sure had fun, didn't we?

Vic

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:59 am

here's to ben, born in '91, who laments missing those years when our records were "new":

the tradeoff is that you get to see all the new technology that will come your way over the next 50 years and you'll probably have something that you'll wear on your wrist that is voice-activated and you can instruct your home/car stereo or tenth generation ipod to play whatever comes to mind from your 10,000,000 song deep digital library.

while you're doing that in 2049 i'll be having fun dancing at my daughter's 50th wedding anniversary celebration and hoping one of those good-looking girlfriends of my great-great-granddaughter will come sit on my lap. i know it will feel good, i just hope i'll be able to remember why.

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 17, 2007 12:06 pm

okay, here's one i wrote recently. just to show i got game and i be fly i wrote a rap song. the topic, of course is unrequited love

Vicki—It’s a Wrap

Just one look and I was smitten
Oh how I loved to call her kitten
At least until the fur began to fly, oh my, said I

Would have paid admission just to watch her walk
Been struck dumb just to hear her talk
Nothing she wanted at which I’d balk
Lots of spunk, bit of sass, what a lass

Well I loved her so I thought my heart would burst,
But she mistook me for the worst.
And I treated her so fine. Yes I did. All the time. You know I did.

I remember and I ain’t fibbin’,
I bought her a car with a bright red ribbon.
That topped it off with a bow. Don’t you know. Yeah, that’s so.

Trouble was she didn’t love me,
She didn’t push she just plain shoved me.
Out the door, said no more, I was sore.

Then I looked at my glass saw it was half full,
Reached for my bootstraps and I gave a pull,
And I knew that I would last until,
She was gone completely from my mind.

That day came but it took a while.
I found that I was still in style.
The girls all looked at me with a smile, and said,
We missed you, welcome back, come sit here.

I knew that I was no spring chicken,
But I felt my pulse begin to quicken,
For from all those girls I could have my pick ‘n’,
Va–va–voom, I love girls, bless you girls.

Just a couple more things I’d like to tell ya.
Some crazy nights I think I can still smell ya,
But the mind plays tricks and I say, “Oh well ya
Can’t explain, it’s insane, here comes the rain.”

One more thing just to be fair,
I lost my teeth and I lost my hair.
But I’ve got my wit and a razor–sharp mind,
And I’ve withstood the test of time.
I’m still the best thing money can’t buy,
Got bit once though, so I might be shy.
Goodbye.

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 17, 2007 5:41 pm

viccolonna@gmail.com wrote:okay, here's one i wrote recently. just to show i got game and i be fly i wrote a rap song. the topic, of course is unrequited love

Vicki—It’s a Wrap

Just one look and I was smitten
Oh how I loved to call her kitten
At least until the fur began to fly, oh my, said I

Would have paid admission just to watch her walk
Been struck dumb just to hear her talk
Nothing she wanted at which I’d balk
Lots of spunk, bit of sass, what a lass

Well I loved her so I thought my heart would burst,
But she mistook me for the worst.
And I treated her so fine. Yes I did. All the time. You know I did.

I remember and I ain’t fibbin’,
I bought her a car with a bright red ribbon.
That topped it off with a bow. Don’t you know. Yeah, that’s so.

Trouble was she didn’t love me,
She didn’t push she just plain shoved me.
Out the door, said no more, I was sore.

Then I looked at my glass saw it was half full,
Reached for my bootstraps and I gave a pull,
And I knew that I would last until,
She was gone completely from my mind.

That day came but it took a while.
I found that I was still in style.
The girls all looked at me with a smile, and said,
We missed you, welcome back, come sit here.

I knew that I was no spring chicken,
But I felt my pulse begin to quicken,
For from all those girls I could have my pick ‘n’,
Va–va–voom, I love girls, bless you girls.

Just a couple more things I’d like to tell ya.
Some crazy nights I think I can still smell ya,
But the mind plays tricks and I say, “Oh well ya
Can’t explain, it’s insane, here comes the rain.”

One more thing just to be fair,
I lost my teeth and I lost my hair.
But I’ve got my wit and a razor–sharp mind,
And I’ve withstood the test of time.
I’m still the best thing money can’t buy,
Got bit once though, so I might be shy.
Goodbye.
KOOL!

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 17, 2007 6:43 pm

Vic.., thank you.

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:49 pm

viccolonna@gmail.com wrote:while you're doing that in 2049 i'll be having fun dancing at my daughter's 50th wedding anniversary celebration and hoping one of those good-looking girlfriends of my great-great-granddaughter will come sit on my lap. i know it will feel good, i just hope i'll be able to remember why.


smt174 smt174 smt174 smt174 smt174

Re: vic colonna

Tue Dec 18, 2007 8:36 am

I might as well join the fray, too - Welcome, Mr. Vic Colonna ! I've read and heard interesting things about you over the years. Come and go as you please but please stick around! It's great to have Paul weigh in on occasion as well as Ger, who is a more frequent presence. Your Elvis stories are greatly appreciated and a real treat.

Thanks to Pep for re-posting those scans from Ger's immortal "Them Damn Bootlegs" thread (I can post if it anyone want to see it) and to old reliable, Greybeard himself!


To Ben, I can only say as a fan of Elvis as a kid from the mid-'70s on, I was too young to even know about bootlegs, although I occasionally saw some odd title in a cryptic advertisement in the back of an Elvis magazine from a newstand and also in some record stores over the years. I was young enough to think only "huh"? Is that some kind of rip-off? I had no one to ask...but not having any money until I was about 16, it was a moot point...! :oops: :lol:

So mostly, it was just about waiting on RCA after '77 to allow Joan Deary to maybe let a few things escape -and onward in the Greg Geller era leading up (finally) to the Ernst era, which is thankfully such an improvement, a true embarassment of riches. It's almost a cliche now, but as I think Rob says repeatedly here: there's never been a better time to be an Elvis fan than today - that is, in terms of officially-issued Elvis recordings, save for when he was alive. I'm inclined to agree.

But all that is built on the awesome bootleg legacy - a good part of which marches on today, thankfully! And one can also re-create the mystique of the old bootleg vinyl days to this day by collecting them all over again.

Re: vic colonna

Tue Dec 18, 2007 10:40 am

hey Vic, any chance doing some Elvis related stories here?
You've always have been one of my heroes, and you deserve
your legendary status in the Elvis scene. No doubt about that.
But I rather read about you seeing Elvis perform in LA, back in
1970, than your thoughts on rap... Hope you can consider my
idea...? Take care, and a happy holiday season to you and
the kids.

Re: vic colonna

Thu Dec 20, 2007 12:12 am

TALLHAIR 2 wrote:But I rather read about you seeing Elvis perform in LA, back in 1970 ...

Anything on what Elvis was like on stage in November 1970 would be terrific.

The cover of Walk A Mile In My Shoes, BMG's 1970s box, is taken from the November 14 AS ->


Image

Re: vic colonna

Sat Dec 22, 2007 11:23 pm

Well I see Vic is back and of course Juan Luis GB is at it as usual.

Good to hear from you Greg!

I too am glad everyone liked the LP's Vic and I did and, no matter what anyone thinks, it was NOT done for money. We did some elaborate covers didn't we Vic!!

Not much to say. Weather is cloudy here in Florida so no beach today!!

Re: vic colonna

Sun Dec 23, 2007 2:02 am

Hey Paul! here in same state you are! Miama like the old folks call it!

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 24, 2007 4:35 pm

'tis the day before christmas, elvis playing quite loud, looking back on those boots, of which we are proud

was not for the money, paul said to you all, and that's truly true, for we had a ball

to the poorhouse we went, making records we thought cool, when you refilled our coffers, we went back to retool

now it's thirty years later, not forgotten yet, elvis fans are the best, on that you can bet

i wish to you all, the very best of health, it's the one thing that matters, means far more than wealth

may your family and friends, and all you hold dear, burn brightly tonight, and all through the new year

thanks to you all, vic and paul

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 24, 2007 5:11 pm

viccolonna@gmail.com wrote:'tis the day before Christmas, Elvis playing quite loud, looking back on those boots, of which we are proud

was not for the money, Paul said to you all, and that's truly true, for we had a ball

to the poorhouse we went, making records we thought cool, when you refilled our coffers, we went back to retool

now it's thirty years later, not forgotten yet, Elvis fans are the best, on that you can bet

i wish to you all, the very best of health, it's the one thing that matters, means far more than wealth

may your family and friends, and all you hold dear, burn brightly tonight, and all through the new year

thanks to you all, Vic and Paul

that was very good, you have a talent at writing as well as giving people good packages on LP's. merry Christmas and ha happy new year

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 24, 2007 5:51 pm

i saw a request for a story about what it was like to see elvis live and in person. i'm a lucky guy. i have lived in an era that has enabled me to see some greats. i saw ted williams when i was a kid. i saw willie mosconi five times. those are the gods of baseball and billiards for the few of you who do not recognize the names. i saw led zeppelin. i saw the who. i never saw the beatles. i saw the temptations in 1964. i saw billy joel in a little auditorium. i saw yul brynner live on stage in "the king and i". i saw charlton heston live on stage in a play about sherlock holmes. i saw patti labelle and cher joined her on stage. i would tell you what cher was wearing but i was too busy concentrating on what she was not wearing. i saw raquel welch live on stage in "woman of the year". i stood five feet away from joey heatherton christmas '66 when the bob hope show visited the third field hospital in saigon and i was in from the field waiting to go on my r 'n' r to hong kong. i have seen some truly great entertainers over the years. i have met personally a number of actors. some of them are jerks. the standouts, the ones that are truly "real" people and treat you like a friend are kurt russell, dennis weaver, donny most, and ron howard. what a joy to know them. i met rick nelson backstage.

yes, i have had some memorable moments. oh, there is someone i have yet to mention. someone who completely awed. there are but a few times in my life when i have felt i was on some other plane, that i had transcended reality and been whisked away to some alternate universe where everything was beautiful. one time was the birth of my son patrick. another the birth of my daughter lisa. i was there when they took the stage for the first time. i was also there when mr. presley took the stage for the umpteenth time back in '70 in las vegas. it was the first time i ever saw my favorite male vocalist. the first time i ever got to hear him live. yeah, i had the dubl lp "from vegas to memphis" so i had an inkling of what it might be like. about all i really knew was that he sounded as good live as he did in the studio and not every artist does.

the drums rolled, the lights dimmed, the audience hushed, the anticipation was palpable, and i sat there, like everyone else, in some sort of trance waiting for a guy with a guitar to come strut his stuff. so he walks out on stage with that impish grin and, this i swear is true, i got goosebumps. huh? he's just a singer in a rock 'n' roll band. i mean, hey, i've dug his songs, his hundreds of hits, and only ever tired of a few of them and even those i could stand to hear again; except for a scant few movie songs that were laughable i've enjoyed everything he's sung. there is something about that voice, some undefinable quality that forms an invisible bond between singer and listener that is like no other voice that i have ever heard. i like rock. i like folk. i like it all. but this guy is in another room. i have a bunch of favorites, be they individuals or groups, that i love to listen to. and then there is elvis. just what it is about him i have never been able to figure out or put into words. some say he put real "feeling" into his songs. so listen to paul robeson sing "ol' man river". listen to billie holiday sing "strange fruit". no, it's not just that. other artists sing with feeling but none make me feel the way this guy does. sure, he shot to the top like a rocket and stayed there for years. yeah, he has some sort of charisma that makes people love him and he has more fans than anyone else. but just what the heck is it about that voice that puts him on a different plane? yeah, i was an impressionable kid of twelve in 1956 when he set the world on its ear. but why only him? i loved jerry lee lewis and ricky nelson and chuck berry and all the rest. why is elvis so different? so i make this analogy: having just read edward taylor's, the puritan poet, poem "upon a spider catching a fly" and walt whitman's "a noiseless, patient spider" i am sitting on campus looking around and am unable to find a spider to contemplate. then i notice my coeds and i wonder how they manage to pour themselves into those skirts and jeans. just then the clouds part and a voice booms out of the sky, "ask not how or why my son, just be thankful that they can and they do."
and so it is with that voice. why elvis mesmerizes where other only make merry is not for me to figure out, only to enjoy.
the show was a blur. my time was equally divided between listening to a guy sing that made me sing inside and wondering just what it was that was so magical. that was what it was like the first time i saw elvis. i was dumbstruck. i felt like it was something so special i would never forget it as long as i lived. and i never will. to say that seeing elvis for the first time awed me like my children being born sounds ludicrous and pathetic at one level but it is as close as i can come to describing what it was like to sit there and be entertained by elvis presley for an hour. i think lots of people felt like i did, that he was singing to me personally. maybe that is part of the magic. forget the buildup, forget the hype, forget the myth that had formed because he was elvis. hey, he was only made out of… but when you sat there and he was a few feet away singing those songs it was more than just entertainment, it was electric. the show ended and it seemed like i had not taken a breath the entire time. sure i clapped and whooped but that was mechanical. it was really just elvis and me for an hour in our own little world. he left the stage and i came back to earth, looked around at all the happy faces, figured i was grinning like a cheshire cat myself, and let out a sigh. i have never been to churchill downs on kentucky derby day; i have never been to the brickyard for the indy 500, i have never been to the mardi gras in new orleans. those events are part of americana and i must do them before i leave this mortal coil. seeing elvis live is a part of americana that no longer exists. what a shame. he was bigger than the faces on mt. rushmore. dvds and movies don't even come close. you had to be there.

next up: the other times i saw elvis.

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 24, 2007 8:42 pm

that is one impressive piece of writing, mr Colonna !
If Im not mistaken, you did see him again in LA 1974,
and in the winter of 76 in Vegas, together with Ria
and me... See page 3 of this thread for the snapshot
of you holding the tickets for these shows...
Luckily, the show we watched together was pretty
decent. You'd tipped the waiter a lot, I remember
that... and still we only got halfway in the showroom...
Hilton scum.
Happy Xmas, Vic.
Happy suntan, Paul.

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 24, 2007 8:52 pm

viccolonna@gmail.com wrote:i saw a request for a story about what it was like to see elvis live and in person. i'm a lucky guy. i have lived in an era that has enabled me to see some greats. i saw ted williams when i was a kid. i saw willie mosconi five times. those are the gods of baseball and billiards for the few of you who do not recognize the names. i saw led zeppelin. i saw the who. i never saw the beatles. i saw the temptations in 1964. i saw billy joel in a little auditorium. i saw yul brynner live on stage in "the king and i". i saw charlton heston live on stage in a play about sherlock holmes. i saw patti labelle and cher joined her on stage. i would tell you what cher was wearing but i was too busy concentrating on what she was not wearing. i saw raquel welch live on stage in "woman of the year". i stood five feet away from joey heatherton christmas '66 when the bob hope show visited the third field hospital in saigon and i was in from the field waiting to go on my r 'n' r to hong kong. i have seen some truly great entertainers over the years. i have met personally a number of actors. some of them are jerks. the standouts, the ones that are truly "real" people and treat you like a friend are kurt russell, dennis weaver, donny most, and ron howard. what a joy to know them. i met rick nelson backstage.

yes, i have had some memorable moments. oh, there is someone i have yet to mention. someone who completely awed. there are but a few times in my life when i have felt i was on some other plane, that i had transcended reality and been whisked away to some alternate universe where everything was beautiful. one time was the birth of my son patrick. another the birth of my daughter lisa. i was there when they took the stage for the first time. i was also there when mr. presley took the stage for the umpteenth time back in '70 in las vegas. it was the first time i ever saw my favorite male vocalist. the first time i ever got to hear him live. yeah, i had the dubl lp "from vegas to memphis" so i had an inkling of what it might be like. about all i really knew was that he sounded as good live as he did in the studio and not every artist does.

the drums rolled, the lights dimmed, the audience hushed, the anticipation was palpable, and i sat there, like everyone else, in some sort of trance waiting for a guy with a guitar to come strut his stuff. so he walks out on stage with that impish grin and, this i swear is true, i got goosebumps. huh? he's just a singer in a rock 'n' roll band. i mean, hey, i've dug his songs, his hundreds of hits, and only ever tired of a few of them and even those i could stand to hear again; except for a scant few movie songs that were laughable i've enjoyed everything he's sung. there is something about that voice, some undefinable quality that forms an invisible bond between singer and listener that is like no other voice that i have ever heard. i like rock. i like folk. i like it all. but this guy is in another room. i have a bunch of favorites, be they individuals or groups, that i love to listen to. and then there is elvis. just what it is about him i have never been able to figure out or put into words. some say he put real "feeling" into his songs. so listen to paul robeson sing "ol' man river". listen to billie holiday sing "strange fruit". no, it's not just that. other artists sing with feeling but none make me feel the way this guy does. sure, he shot to the top like a rocket and stayed there for years. yeah, he has some sort of charisma that makes people love him and he has more fans than anyone else. but just what the heck is it about that voice that puts him on a different plane? yeah, i was an impressionable kid of twelve in 1956 when he set the world on its ear. but why only him? i loved jerry lee lewis and ricky nelson and chuck berry and all the rest. why is elvis so different? so i make this analogy: having just read edward taylor's, the puritan poet, poem "upon a spider catching a fly" and walt whitman's "a noiseless, patient spider" i am sitting on campus looking around and am unable to find a spider to contemplate. then i notice my coeds and i wonder how they manage to pour themselves into those skirts and jeans. just then the clouds part and a voice booms out of the sky, "ask not how or why my son, just be thankful that they can and they do."
and so it is with that voice. why elvis mesmerizes where other only make merry is not for me to figure out, only to enjoy.
the show was a blur. my time was equally divided between listening to a guy sing that made me sing inside and wondering just what it was that was so magical. that was what it was like the first time i saw elvis. i was dumbstruck. i felt like it was something so special i would never forget it as long as i lived. and i never will. to say that seeing elvis for the first time awed me like my children being born sounds ludicrous and pathetic at one level but it is as close as i can come to describing what it was like to sit there and be entertained by elvis presley for an hour. i think lots of people felt like i did, that he was singing to me personally. maybe that is part of the magic. forget the buildup, forget the hype, forget the myth that had formed because he was elvis. hey, he was only made out of… but when you sat there and he was a few feet away singing those songs it was more than just entertainment, it was electric. the show ended and it seemed like i had not taken a breath the entire time. sure i clapped and whooped but that was mechanical. it was really just elvis and me for an hour in our own little world. he left the stage and i came back to earth, looked around at all the happy faces, figured i was grinning like a cheshire cat myself, and let out a sigh. i have never been to churchill downs on kentucky derby day; i have never been to the brickyard for the indy 500, i have never been to the mardi gras in new orleans. those events are part of americana and i must do them before i leave this mortal coil. seeing elvis live is a part of americana that no longer exists. what a shame. he was bigger than the faces on mt. rushmore. dvds and movies don't even come close. you had to be there.

next up: the other times i saw elvis.


Thanks for sharing that with us Vic!

Re: vic colonna

Mon Dec 24, 2007 11:03 pm

hi ger. daddy longhair, eh? that fits. for all of you out there wondering what the heck i am talking about i am speaking to ger ryff. he's been an elvis fan since he was 22 seconds old. rumor has it that the first words he said were, "gimme that guitar." ger has the dubious distinction of being arrested 675 times for trying to scale the wall at graceland. and that was just in one week. ger once covered himself with crazy glue and ran after elvis' limousine as it sped away from the hilton. sadly, he tripped over a box of bootlegs and fell when he was just one step away. the box split open and it took five days to peel all those records off of him. he was never happier. ger once made a deal with charlie hodge: charlie would get elvis to give him a scarf and ger would let charlie live. he got the scarf. ger once stood in the rain outside the pressing plant waiting for the truck with elvis' latest album to pull out. the truck left, ger followed, he and his gang forced the driver off the road, tied him up, unloaded all the albums, and sped away. sadly, it was the wrong truck and ger is still trying to figure out what to do with 325,000 englebert humperdink records. ah, ger, i love you ol' buddy. a merry christmas and happy new year to you and yours and tell paul granlund to get in touch with me.

ger knows every move i ever made because when he visited my house in the seventies he planted a hidden camera. for years i wondered how he was able to suggest the track order on the next album when only paul and i knew what the songs were. ger is always smiling, one of the nicest guys i ever met, and if i remember correctly i gave him a box that had one of the original reels of outtakes from radio recorders. i wish i had given them all to him. what was the matter with me?

one thing you do not know my friend is that i saw elvis for the second time in philadelphia in 1971. i was dating a girl named nancy at the time and since my collection of 8-tracks was 2/3 elvis she became a fan in no time. it was elvis on the car stereo and elvis on the apartment stereo 95% of the time. i had a new job and was making decent money so i had bought all the lps (again, for about the fourth time--back in those days we loaned out our albums and sometimes even got them back) and also had most albums on 8-track for the car. i had always played elvis records but the previous few years i was really into the greats of the second half of the sixties. zep, doors, airplane, janis, jimi, joe cocker, stones, and all the ones that no one remembers anymore like the chocolate watch band and randy california. but in 1971 i went back to almost nothing but elvis for months on end. the beatles were no more, credence was beginning to wear, and there was this one guy who never let me down. he even saw me through the end of a great love affair when i played "starting today" a few hundred times until i could finally think that way. nancy had liked elvis but had only one or two of his albums and many of the songs were new to her. it was a short and sweet affair but it just so happened that while we were going together elvis came to town. i went to a ticket agency and spent $60, a princely sum in those days, for balcony seats. but i had powerful binoculars. i even got to look through them for about thirty seconds. nancy didn't actually let go of them, she just held them up to my eyes. even from a distance the show was terrific. i have two snapshot memories of that show: elvis was wearing that suede fringe outfit back then and was thin and trim. a ball of energy on stage, he was in constant motion, going from one side of the stage to the other and getting as close to the fans as he could without falling off. then the lights dimmed so the stage was barely visible and we were unable to make out anything, let alone elvis. silence for a few seconds and then the big hit from an album where my favorite was "wearing that loved on look". the song got lots of airplay, elvis was back big time, but it wasn't one of my favorites. that was probably because they played it to death on the radio and i just tired of it. they did that with "burning love" a few years later and i can still listen to that one six times in a row. probably a combination of that, "oooo, oooo, oooo, i feel my temperature…" and the fact that i thought it was the hottest song he'd done since "a big hunk of love". whatever. so there i was, wondering for just a second if something had happened to the lights and then a spotlight illuminated elvis and those familiar notes began and he just plain took off. talk about a dynamo on stage, the strobe lights helped but he was a blur. he kicked and chopped his way across the stage and back about a dozen times and i was thinking, "man, how can he do that and sing at the same time?" plus, he never missed a beat, didn't sound out of breath, and there was no hint at all he ever strained for a note. he was likely in as good a shape as he had ever been and had been doing what you do to get to carnegie hall. it may have been choreographed down to the tiniest finger flick but it all looked so spontaneous and natural. and the darn song went on forever. here was one i thought i was tired of and i didn't want it to end. when it finally did about six minutes later i have a hunch he was drenched with sweat and had just lost four pounds. this was elvis. he just plain knocked everyone out of their seats. talk about an uproar. the place went nuts. now, the 20,000 strong audience had been cheering wildly for over half an hour but this was not just something special, this was something to tell your grandchildren about. this is why elvis was elvis. folks, twenty thousand strong just got more than the price of admission in just one song. here's elvis going ninety miles an hour on stage and a houseful of people are paralyzed as a result. "suspicious minds" went from ho-hum to "holy cow" in those few minutes and i have never heard the song since without remembering that moment. yeah, elvis could do that. and he did. what else did he do? the usual. i can't name another song that was not a big hit that he did because that memory overshadowed all the rest. and then the familiar strains of "can't help falling in love" came, as they always did, all too soon. he could have gone on forever then and no one would have minded. after three minutes or so he put down the mike, bowed, and then he was gone. i helped nancy with her coat and then we turned to leave. the couple next to us had not moved. i said, "excuse us" and they said, "wait, he'll come back and do an encore." i said, "no, he doesn't do encores. you just saw it all. what's he going to do, come back and be elvis presley?" this being the early years of his touring, most of the audience seeing elvis for the first time, there were but two live albums out, and not everyone knew how the show ended. but you know what? it never ended because i have carried that memory with me ever since.

Re: vic colonna

Tue Dec 25, 2007 2:43 am

Thanks for your memories Vic .. can't wait for the book.