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Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Wed Jan 09, 2013 8:32 pm

I was listening to an interview George Klein was doing with Jerry Schilling this morning and they got on the subject of when Eric Clapton while touring through Memphis in the 70s met Elvis . I've heard the story before about how Elvis didn't know who Clapton was, blah, blah, blah. What I didn't know was that according to Jerry Schilling (with GK's corroboration) the meeting took place at the Crosstown Theater one night when Elvis rented it out and not the Memphian as I originally understood.

Anybody who understood the same, please update your files. Those who challenge, the floor is now open for argument.

http://www.historic-memphis.com/memphis ... stown.html

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:13 pm

intheghetto wrote:I was listening to an interview George Klein was doing with Jerry Schilling this morning and they got on the subject of when Eric Clapton while touring through Memphis in the 70s met Elvis . I've heard the story before about how Elvis didn't know who Clapton was, blah, blah, blah. What I didn't know was that according to Jerry Schilling (with GK's corroboration) the meeting took place at the Crosstown Theater one night when Elvis rented it out and not the Memphian as I originally understood.

Anybody who understood the same, please update your files. Those who challenge, the floor is now open for argument.

http://www.historic-memphis.com/memphis-historic/movietheaters/crosstown.html



Well, maybe fans should not be so fast in updating the "Eric met Elvis" files.

Unraveling the true history, as told by Schilling, takes a keen eye, and sure knowledge of the facts.

In Me and a Guy Named Elvis: My Lifelong Friendship With Elvis Presley, Schilling's 2006 autobiography, he places the meeting at the General Cinema, a 500-seat Whitehaven district theater that opened on November 2, 1966, located at 1243 Laudeen Drive in Memphis. It's minutes from Graceland.

Further, in his book he makes several statements that clearly puts the "Presley-Clapton summit" to June 1975, not July 1974, as has long been assumed:

060817_Me and a Guy Named Elvis p293.JPG


060817_Me and a Guy Named Elvis p294.jpg


060817_Me and a Guy Named Elvis p295.jpg


After reading the above, the following must be considered:

Jerry had enjoyed several shows on the 1975 U.S. Led Zeppelin tour thanks to tour manager Richard Cole. When Cole contacted Schilling about meeting Elvis, he agreed to help. Cole and Zeppelin keyboardist John Paul Jones got a visit at the Presley home after Zeppelin's March 14, 1975 San Diego show. So when Jerry speaks of another call from Cole, to arrange a Clapton meeting, it must be after the March 1975 request.

Here's Jerry with Elvis in Huntsville on June 2, 1975:


750602_w Schilling in Huntsville.JPG


Note Jerry is wearing a Led Zeppelin 1975 US Tour T-shirt:


Led Zeppelin 1975 US Tour T-shirt.JPG


The films we see Jerry recalls as Elvis' current favorites ("Jaws," "The Godfather: Part II," "Monty Python and the Holy Grail") were not in theaters in summer 1974. They were released in December 1974 (Godfather), March 1975 (Python) and June 1975 (Jaws).

Jerry speaks of Clapton's "big show" scheduled at the Liberty Bowl. Well, there were actually two, but not in 1975. It was true for Sunday, July 28, 1974, where Clapton headlined two shows -- with Lynyrd Skynyrd and Foghat as openers -- at the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, touring behind his hit LP, 461 Ocean Boulevard.

Incidentally, "I Shot The Sheriff" hit Billboard US Pop #1 on September 14, 1974, well after his 1974 Memphis concerts. It stayed at the top for 1 week only.

Meanwhile, in 1975, Clapton appeared at the Mid-South Coliseum on Wednesday, June 18, after a show in Mobile on June 17, supporting his new release There's One In Every Crowd. Santana opened the tour. Eric's first song this night at the Mid-South? "I Shot The Sheriff."

Finally, Elvis had his secret "eye lift" cosmetic surgery by Dr. Asghar Koleyni, MD, on June 15 at Baptist Memorial, and was home no later than June 17.

Thus, all indications are that Eric Clapton met Elvis Presley on Wednesday evening, June 17, 1975, at the General Cinema (AKA Whitehaven Cinema), just five minutes from Graceland.

Phew!
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Last edited by drjohncarpenter on Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:28 pm

Lynyrd Skynyrd as warm up for Clapton? Surprised to see that as Skynyrd was pretty big in '74 already?

Thanks Doc nailing down the date and posting the Schilling pages.
I should get that book, looks like a fun read.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:51 pm

It's not a stretch to say that Elvis wouldn't have known who Clapton was or would have vague knowledge of him.

Eric Clapton wasn't on television very much in those days and he wouldn't have been on the radio stations Elvis listened to.

Elvis didn't read rock magazines or anything like that either.

It's not as unbelieveable as some might think.

I believe Clapton's ex-wife Patti also mentions meeting Elvis at a movie theater in her autobiography.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Thu Jan 10, 2013 3:54 am

Thanks for the clarification on the topic, drjohncarpenter.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Thu Jan 10, 2013 4:17 am

intheghetto wrote:I was listening to an interview George Klein was doing with Jerry Schilling this morning and they got on the subject of when Eric Clapton while touring through Memphis in the 70s met Elvis . I've heard the story before about how Elvis didn't know who Clapton was, blah, blah, blah. What I didn't know was that according to Jerry Schilling (with GK's corroboration) the meeting took place at the Crosstown Theater one night when Elvis rented it out and not the Memphian as I originally understood.

Anybody who understood the same, please update your files. Those who challenge, the floor is now open for argument.

http://www.historic-memphis.com/memphis ... stown.html


I had always thought the meeting w. Clapton also took place at the Memphian... and I thought the story was also that Elvis volunteered to have his guitarist James Burton teach Clapton some guitar!

JEFF d
EP fan

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Thu Jan 10, 2013 4:30 am

Blue River wrote:Thanks for the clarification on the topic, drjohncarpenter.


absolutely brilliant work..... and a much later meeting than i previously thought! :D

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:04 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
Here's Jerry with Elvis in Huntsville on June 2, 1975:


750602_w Schilling in Huntsville.JPG





He must have been in a hurry, because that evening I would see him
in Mobile, Alabama.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:19 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
intheghetto wrote:I was listening to an interview George Klein was doing with Jerry Schilling this morning and they got on the subject of when Eric Clapton while touring through Memphis in the 70s met Elvis . I've heard the story before about how Elvis didn't know who Clapton was, blah, blah, blah. What I didn't know was that according to Jerry Schilling (with GK's corroboration) the meeting took place at the Crosstown Theater one night when Elvis rented it out and not the Memphian as I originally understood.

Anybody who understood the same, please update your files. Those who challenge, the floor is now open for argument.

http://www.historic-memphis.com/memphis-historic/movietheaters/crosstown.html



Well, maybe fans should not be so fast in updating the "Eric met Elvis" files.

Unraveling the true history, as told by Schilling, takes a keen eye, and sure knowledge of the facts.

In Me and a Guy Named Elvis: My Lifelong Friendship With Elvis Presley, Schilling's 2006 autobiography, he places the meeting at the General Cinema, a 500-seat Whitehaven district theater that opened on November 2, 1966, located at 1243 Laudeen Drive in Memphis. It's minutes from Graceland.

Further, in his book he makes several statements that clearly puts the "Presley-Clapton summit" to June 1975, not July 1974, as has long been assumed:

060817_Me and a Guy Named Elvis p293.JPG


060817_Me and a Guy Named Elvis p294.jpg


060817_Me and a Guy Named Elvis p295.jpg


After reading the above, the following must be considered:

Jerry had enjoyed several shows on the 1975 U.S. Led Zeppelin tour thanks to tour manager Richard Cole. When Cole contacted Schilling about meeting Elvis, he agreed to help. Cole and Zeppelin keyboardist John Paul Jones got a visit at the Presley home after Zeppelin's March 14, 1975 San Diego show. So when Jerry speaks of another call from Cole, to arrange a Clapton meeting, it must be after the March 1975 request.

Here's Jerry with Elvis in Huntsville on June 2, 1975:


750602_w Schilling in Huntsville.JPG


Note Jerry is wearing a Led Zeppelin 1975 US Tour T-shirt:


Led Zeppelin 1975 US Tour T-shirt.JPG


The films we see Jerry recalls as Elvis' current favorites ("Jaws," "The Godfather: Part II," "Monty Python and the Holy Grail") were not in theaters in summer 1974. They were released in December 1974 (Godfather), March 1975 (Python) and June 1975 (Jaws).

Jerry speaks of Clapton's "big show" scheduled at the Liberty Bowl. Well, there were actually two, but not in 1975. It was true for Sunday, July 28, 1974, where Clapton headlined two shows -- with Lynyrd Skynyrd and Foghat as openers -- at the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, touring behind his hit LP, 461 Ocean Boulevard.

Incidentally, "I Shot The Sheriff" hit Billboard US Pop #1 on September 14, 1974, well after his 1974 Memphis concerts. It stayed at the top for 1 week only.

Meanwhile, in 1975, Clapton appeared at the Mid-South Coliseum on Wednesday, June 18, after a show in Mobile on June 17, supporting his new release There's One In Every Crowd. Santana opened the tour. Eric's first song this night at the Mid-South? "I Shot The Sheriff."

Finally, Elvis had his secret "eye lift" cosmetic surgery by Dr. Asghar Koleyni, MD, on June 15 at Baptist Memorial, and was home no later than June 17.

Thus, all indications are that Eric Clapton met Elvis Presley on Wednesday evening, June 17, 1975, at the General Cinema (AKA Whitehaven Cinema), just five minutes from Graceland.

Phew!


NIce, thorough research that leads in your direction but I'm afraid the jury is still out. The eye maybe not so keen and the facts not so sure. In the George Klein interview Jerry Schilling mentions that Clapton was on his "I Shot the Sheriff Tour". I don't think bands and artists labeled their tours back then as they do now, it was only 'World Tour' or 'US Tour', but it does reference the single that was released in '74 which leads me to beleive that it was a new release at the time Schilling is talking about. Again, in the interview Klein and Schilling both specifically made a point of saying it was at the Crossroad cinema. So basically it comes down to this, we or I should say "I" now know that it wasn't at the Memphian as previously thought. It's basically Jerry's book versus Jerry's interview. Which version has more credibility and is true, who knows. Writing a recollection in a book holds alot of weight, but so does specifically calling something out in a recorded interview. Choose whichever story you like. The only other way to get the truth would be to ask Clapton who probably can't remember anything other than the fact that he met Elvis. The other way would be to hear it from people that were closests to Elvis who were there. If you hear the GK interview that's basically what you heard.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:57 am

intheghetto wrote:In the George Klein interview Jerry Schilling mentions that Clapton was on his "I Shot the Sheriff Tour". I don't think bands and artists labeled their tours back then as they do now, it was only 'World Tour' or 'US Tour', but it does reference the single that was released in '74 which leads me to beleive that it was a new release at the time Schilling is talking about.


If one pays close attention to all the facts Jerry lays out in the chapter of his book which I uploaded, many more point to the time frame I determined, June 1975.

Eric's 1974 tour was indeed for 461 Ocean Boulevard, not "I Shot The Sheriff." And his 1975 tour was for There's One In Every Crowd. Both the 1974 single and album were issued about the time Clapton played Memphis in July, but neither topped the charts until over two months later. In other words, Eric was not a big, huge #1 hit at the Liberty Bowl shows.

Regardless, it's very likely Jerry (and Myrna) saw the 1974 show at the Liberty Bowl as written, but Schilling conflates this memory with the later Clapton visit, arranged in 1975 as a courtesy to Richard Cole after all those 1975 Led Zeppelin shows. Maybe Jerry went to the Mid-South gig in 1975 as well.

intheghetto wrote:Again, in the interview Klein and Schilling both specifically made a point of saying it was at the Crossroad cinema. So basically it comes down to this, we or I should say "I" now know that it wasn't at the Memphian as previously thought. It's basically Jerry's book versus Jerry's interview.


Jerry was 7 years younger when he crafted his autobiography with Chuck Crisafulli. He is now almost 71 years old, and George Klein is 77. They were speaking off the top of their heads on a radio show. The book is likely the more accurate source. All it takes is a clear head, a broad knowledge of the subject and some common sense.

I am glad you appreciate my extensive efforts to nail down the date and location of this momentous occasion.

::rocks

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 3:53 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
intheghetto wrote:In the George Klein interview Jerry Schilling mentions that Clapton was on his "I Shot the Sheriff Tour". I don't think bands and artists labeled their tours back then as they do now, it was only 'World Tour' or 'US Tour', but it does reference the single that was released in '74 which leads me to beleive that it was a new release at the time Schilling is talking about.


If one pays close attention to all the facts Jerry lays out in the chapter of his book which I uploaded, many more point to the time frame I determined, June 1975.

Eric's 1974 tour was indeed for 461 Ocean Boulevard, not "I Shot The Sheriff." And his 1975 tour was for There's One In Every Crowd. Both the 1974 single and album were issued about the time Clapton played Memphis in July, but neither topped the charts until over two months later. In other words, Eric was not a big, huge #1 hit at the Liberty Bowl shows.

Regardless, it's very likely Jerry (and Myrna) saw the 1974 show at the Liberty Bowl as written, but Schilling conflates this memory with the later Clapton visit, arranged in 1975 as a courtesy to Richard Cole after all those 1975 Led Zeppelin shows. Maybe Jerry went to the Mid-South gig in 1975 as well.

intheghetto wrote:Again, in the interview Klein and Schilling both specifically made a point of saying it was at the Crossroad cinema. So basically it comes down to this, we or I should say "I" now know that it wasn't at the Memphian as previously thought. It's basically Jerry's book versus Jerry's interview.


Jerry was 7 years younger when he crafted his autobiography with Chuck Crisafulli. He is now almost 71 years old, and George Klein is 77. They were speaking off the top of their heads on a radio show. The book is likely the more accurate source. All it takes is a clear head, a broad knowledge of the subject and some common sense.

I am glad you appreciate my extensive efforts to nail down the date and location of this momentous occasion.

::rocks



I don't think anybody's necessarily wrong or right with this one, and I recognize that you do plenty of research to back up your claims. At the same time your implications that others aren't clear, don't do any homework and don't pay close attention to the facts is unnecessary. 'Common sense', as you refer to it, also says that when somebody like Jerry Schiling makes statements in a recorded interview with a veteran broadcaster those statements are valid. Forget that it was George Klein. This was a close associate of Elvis' talking about his experiences with him. Yes Jerry Schilling had a different story in the book, so what. All too often when you are challenged on topics like this Doc, your stock answer is that they're all old now and they "don't remember things correctly" and I don't buy that. My dad just turned 70 and he is far from senile, believe me. So from where I sit I'll just agree to disagree with you. And quite frankly, I'm not real stuck on the accuracy of this particular occasion on the Elvis timeline. Crossroads theater, General Cinema whatever. It was one of those places. At least I have somewhat of a clearer perspective on how this happened.
Last edited by intheghetto on Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:56 am

intheghetto wrote:'Common sense', as you refer to it, also says that when somebody like Jerry Schiling makes statements in a recorded interview with a veteran broadcaster those statements are valid.


Like when cyclist Lance Armstrong told a a veteran ABC News broadcaster in May 2010 he was not a doper?
http://abcnews.go.com/WN/lance-armstrong-denies-doping-allegations-floyd-landis/story?id=10701691

Or when Richard Nixon, at a November 17, 1973 press conference, stated emphatically to 400 veteran journalists "I'm not a crook"?
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/watergate/articles/111873-1.htm

This is what I mean by saying one needs a broad knowledge of the subject, and some common sense (no quotes), to accurately gauge historical events and data.

Don't be afraid, the truth is out there. You just have to know how to find it. ;-)

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:53 am

iplayastrat wrote:
drjohncarpenter wrote:Here's Jerry with Elvis in Huntsville on June 2, 1975:

750602_w Schilling in Huntsville.JPG


He must have been in a hurry, because that evening I would see him
in Mobile, Alabama.

Maybe the photo that drjohncarpenter displayed was a morning pic of Elvis in Huntsville... Mobile bound.
Yes, Elvis did a 4:30pm show and an 8:30pm show in Mobile on June 2, 1975.

Driving from Huntsville to Mobile is about 356 miles... so an airplane could cover that distance very quickly.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:11 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
intheghetto wrote:'Common sense', as you refer to it, also says that when somebody like Jerry Schiling makes statements in a recorded interview with a veteran broadcaster those statements are valid.


Like when cyclist Lance Armstrong told a a veteran ABC News broadcaster in May 2010 he was not a doper?
http://abcnews.go.com/WN/lance-armstrong-denies-doping-allegations-floyd-landis/story?id=10701691

Or when Richard Nixon, at a November 17, 1973 press conference, stated emphatically to 400 veteran journalists "I'm not a crook"?
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/watergate/articles/111873-1.htm

This is what I mean by saying one needs a broad knowledge of the subject, and some common sense (no quotes), to accurately gauge historical events and data.

Don't be afraid, the truth is out there. You just have to know how to find it. ;-)


C'mon Doc, you can do better than that. First you're talking about what's the truth as told through faulty memories, then comparing that to people that are deliberately hiding the truth. Bit of a stretch and I don't think Jerry Schilling has a whole lot riding on specifying where this meeting took place. But I understand, you always want to win these arguments. I told you, at this point I really don't care where Clapton met Elvis. There are more important-unimportant things to argue about. If there's ever a meet and greet with Jerry Schilling that I find myself going to at Elvis week or elsewhere I'll ask him myself.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:41 am

intheghetto wrote:If there's ever a meet and greet with Jerry Schilling that I find myself going to at Elvis week or elsewhere I'll ask him myself.


That sounds awesome. Of course, what if he tells you the story is in his book? ;-)

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 2:54 pm

drjohncarpenter wrote:
intheghetto wrote:If there's ever a meet and greet with Jerry Schilling that I find myself going to at Elvis week or elsewhere I'll ask him myself.


That sounds awesome. Of course, what if he tells you the story is in his book? ;-)


Then I guess the story in the book is the correct version and you get a cookie.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:37 pm

Nice detective work, Doc.

It's good to see you back here.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:59 pm

londonflash wrote:Nice detective work, Doc.

It's good to see you back here.


Thank you!

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:09 pm

Thank you, Doc for this accurate information. I read Jerry's book and what I liked were most these meetings with other celebrities. Now I wonder If George Klein's book is better or not.

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:56 pm

Just for future reference, eyewitness testimony is virtually always secondary to documentary evidence. It's not a question of age; memory is a tricky, complex business that varies with individuals, as well as the events that leave more of an impression. I bet Elvis forgot it very quickly, but he remembered that guy Mal Evans. Even recalled the film scene where the guy was swimming. I'll betcha others there took little notice of "Mal." For some reason, he really remembered that guy.

What's "momentous" to us, may be less so to others. And if is less so, the memory will not be as solid.

I saw Clapton in concert, with Muddy Waters. Only one way I remember when. There's a Polaroid of me in a Clapton tee-shirt. In front of Graceland. Other documented factors considered, the picture is from June, 1979.

The concert would have been in the spring. But I still would like to look it up. My "memory" would have put it a year later!

So, think of Jerry's far more "interesting" life . . .

rjm (No. You may not see the picture.)

Re: Eric Clapton meets Elvis

Sun Jan 13, 2013 1:41 am

rjm wrote:Just for future reference, eyewitness testimony is virtually always secondary to documentary evidence. It's not a question of age; memory is a tricky, complex business that varies with individuals, as well as the events that leave more of an impression.


Yup.