Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

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Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

890000_Elvis Rocks Little Rock_FRNT.JPG


Elvis Rocks Little Rock was a fantastic bootleg release on the legendary Bilko label more than twenty years ago, since officially issued by RCA several times, and Presley's appearance at that famous Arkansas city on Wednesday, May 16, 1956, has not been forgotten.

Below are some incandescent memories collected by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette from people who were there, more than half a century ago. Some of the reflections are poignant ("I remember being embarrassed that I didn’t get what seemed so obvious to my peers"), some hilarious ("I was infected with his music"). Evidently, besides blowing the roof off of the Robinson Memorial Auditorium, Elvis brought up to the stage and kissed Priscilla (!!), the president of his local fan club at one of the shows.

Enjoy!


Looking back: Elvis Presley visits Robinson Auditorium on May 16, 1956


..



Remembering Elvis

“I was in the 10th grade and went with three girls. One was my girlfriend of the moment, Peggy Adams, who shortly afterwards moved to Fresno, Calif. When Elvis started singing, everyone, mostly girls, started screaming. So I joined in but did it to mimic them.

“After the concert, I went backstage and stood in line and got his autograph. He was covered in sweat and had long sideburns. He sat in a chair alone with a little table autographing his picture.” — Porter Briggs, Little Rock


“I remember jumping up and down, screaming and my Dad (who drove a group of us there in his station wagon) being shocked at Elvis’ movements. He thought them lewd. We girls were so naive, we didn’t have a clue. Mother bought me a new pleated shirt and matching gray sweater. Rock and roll soft saddle shoes and bobby socks completed the outfit. Hair ... pony tail, of course. The noise was deafening and exciting. Does any one remember Elvis kissing some girl from the audience and she fainted? What a fun, happy, carefree time we had.” — Judi Rogers Clifford, Hilton Head, S.C.


“We knew we were swept away in the beginning of something huge.” — Eleanor Nolan, Seattle, Wash.


“I was more of a Pat Boone fan (loved his white bucks, which my husband still wears every summer), but I certainly became a big Elvis fan and had all his records during my high school years. For me, those were wonderful music years. I have three grown daughters and two of them still love the music of Elvis. The concert was a great experience, and it’s always fun to say you’ve seen Elvis in concert.” — Kaye Lenderman Burton, Little Rock


“I was thrilled and screaming with the rest of the girls. I don’t think my date, Louis Cryer, screamed at all. It just seemed to be the females who were so moved by Elvis. I was infected with his music. I remember a car trip with my parents around that time, when all I wanted was for them to keep switching radio stations so I could hear his songs. I attended a summer camp with girls from other parts of the country ... not many southerners. None of them had ever heard of Elvis Presley. I wrote to my parents and had them mail me my records so I could ‘introduce’ them to the music.” — Trudy Levy Jacobson, Little Rock


“My girlfriend and I left our seats and ran down to the stage, but we weren’t alone. The guards had a tough time even back then.” — Janis Fithen Railey, Little Rock


“I attended the Elvis concert in May 1956 and still have the souvenir program, framed and hanging in my closet. My older brother took me and his fiancee and told us he would do so, but we better not scream like the other girls. So I sat quietly all during the concert. I had a wonderful time, but was embarrassed by his twisting and shaking on stage. Almost 16, I had never witnessed moves like that before and especially with my brother present, my face was red. The program has been my favorite keepsake and it has survived many moves.” — Ginger English, Bauxite



560516_w Scotty Moore_Little Rock.JPG


“My name is Donna Groom Bartell and I attended the concert with my friends Roger Lynn Brown Latsha and David Johnston. We were in Junior High School in Hot Springs so Roger Lynn’s mom drove us from Hot Springs to Little Rock for the concert.

“Seeing Elvis Presley at Robinson Auditorium was a thrill of a lifetime and Elvis put on one of his greatest performances that night! The show started with the Jordanaires just to warm up the crowd and then the spotlight hit Elvis and he started singing, tossing his hair and swiveling his hips and the screaming began and never stopped the entire show. I was hanging over the balcony in my white shirt, full skirt and bobby socks and my friend Roger Lynn was shimmying in the aisle in her strapless white sundress. [Our friend] David Johnston was looking on with amazement. The whole auditorium was in a state of pandemonium and it lasted the whole concert!

“We were 8th and 9th graders. We were still in shock and so excited [after the concert]; we were singing and still raving about Elvis all the way home as Roger Lynn’s mom drove us back to Hot Springs. We thanked her over and over again and told her it was the most exciting thing we had ever done. “I kept my ticket and the write up in the paper, but that summer at Camp Joyzelle an avid Elvis fan paid me a lot of money for my souvenirs so I no longer have them in my scrapbook. I wish I had kept them.” — Donna Groom Bartell, North Little Rock


“I went with my friend Arthur Russel, who had a very sharp 1948 Plymouth. We took three girls with us, Patsy and JoAnn Swain and Linda Screechfield. We drove 50 miles to the concert. I wore jeans and a T-shirt.

“We had to sit at the back of the auditorium because we barely got tickets for the show. Girls were screaming and yelling. I liked all of his songs, but Elvis did introduce a new song, which was ‘Hound Dog.’ Elvis called a girl up out of the audience and introduced her as President of Elvis Fan Club. Then he kissed her. Her name was Priscilla, strange huh? All and all we enjoyed the concert very much, what a great artist Elvis was, we sure miss him. Katie, my wife of 48 years has always been an Elvis fan, we go to Graceland often.” — Charles Hunter, Searcy


“We were four guys 17 years old, just weeks away from graduating from Central High School, the night Elvis Presley came to Little Rock in May of 1956. We all knew Elvis from radio and The Ed Sullivan Show [sic] and some had seen him perform earlier on the back of a flatbed truck at the Louisiana Hayride. Everyone was caught up with him as the biggest thing to hit our lives, being at an especially impressionable age ( I remember my parents not being excited or thinking that he was “any big thing” — little did they know!). Everyone wanted to be like him, imitate him; sing his songs; try to do hair like his and dress like him; even doing his famous moves.

“Somehow my group got about 10th row center orchestra seats; Robinson was absolutely packed. Many of our fellow students were close by in the auditorium and when Elvis came out the screams were deafening. He was still thin then and wore a bright gold glittering suit [sic]; guitar around the neck with characteristic grin and swagger.

“Once he began to sing everyone was constantly thrashing and bouncing out of their seats, into the aisles in a state of nonstop frenzied excitement to the beat of his music; the whole of Robinson Auditorium was rocking and shaking. “When the performance was over we were all drenched with sweat and worn out, but still bouncing to the beat in our heads.” — Joe W. Crow, Little Rock



560516_Little Rock audience.JPG


“I love this memory! It was a passage into adolescence for me, getting the invitation to join a Forest Heights group to celebrate a girl’s birthday ... being a guest at a concert with a group of friends... fond and detailed recall of the excitement of being on the front row, the big crowd ... being confused about this person we were there to see and hear.

“I can bring this memory into high definition focus: the absolutely overwhelming experience of watching Elvis begin his first number and the surprise I felt at the reactions around me as he began performing. Everyone jumped to their feet and started yelling (boys), screaming (girls), laughing (parents).

“I knew what the stage floor looked like (in the 6th grade my class danced in an all-schools program on the boards where Elvis stood). From the front row, I was looking straight into the face-front of the stage. From that vantage the only way I saw anything on the stage was by tilting my head back into an almost painful angle and looking straight up into Elvis’s grinding hips and loosey-goosey legs.

“I honestly did not know why people were so excited, but I knew I’d better act like I was too, so I studied the girls around me and did my best to imitate the screams with hands to my heart and hair and arms waving the air. I remember being embarrassed that I didn’t get what seemed so obvious to my peers. It makes me laugh today to remember that truly there was innocence in my lifetime and it’s my Elvis memory that brings me to treasure it from this thereafter.” — Edie Garland Barentine, Texarkana


“I do remember my parents having concerns about my attending. When their friends found out I was going they let my mother and dad know they thought it a very bad idea. The things I might learn from watching Elvis would stick with me forever. They were right. I can still sing most of his songs and have watched my own children sing them and now my grandchildren are interested in his music. They absolutely cannot believe I heard Elvis in person. I went with Cathie Matthews, Susan Linebarger and Eleanor Cook. My parents felt more comfortable knowing I was with my dear friends and they also felt those parents wouldn’t do anything that wasn’t in the best interest of their kids. We planned for a week the outfit we would wear. Mine? A yellow and white striped skirt with a beanie to match. Did I scream? Of course. Along with everyone else. There is no other memory (not counting marriage and childbirth) that compares with my night with Elvis. He sang only to me.” — Karen Giss Morrical, Carmel, Ind.


“I remember my parents took about three other smitten girls and we were obnoxiously entranced. Elvis was very late for the show but mesmerized all in a hurry with gyrations no one had ever witnessed before! “What memories.” — Patsy Mayes Janes, Forth Smith


“I remember taking opera glasses and looking at Elvis’ arms for needle marks. I had heard he used needles for drugs. I saw none and adored the concert. Our gang continued to dance in the gym at Hall High School in stocking feet before school to Elvis and rock and roll.” — Mary Peirce Connor Burke, Groton, Conn.



560516_w Joyce Hightower.JPG


“I was, indeed there on May 16th, 1956. I had met Elvis previously in February, 1955. In May, 1956, I went to the concert with a lady I worked with at First National Bank in Little Rock. I wore a pink and black dress, with a black scarf around my neck. I knew those were Elvis’s favorite colors. I still have the black scarf. I think I rode the bus, as I usually did when I went to the Robinson Auditorium. The concert was fantastic! I liked all of the songs, especially ‘Hound Dog,’ because Elvis slid across the stage, microphone in hand. It was awesome!

"After the first show, I was lucky enough to go backstage for the second show. While waiting for the second performance to start, Elvis came over and started playing the piano, as he did many times before a show. I visited with him and had a photo taken with him. There were two young men sitting backstage and Elvis walked over, stuck out his hand and said, ‘Hi, I’m Elvis Presley.’ The boys nearly fell out of their chairs. That was the kind of gentleman Elvis was and he was very humble. Ray Green, a DJ was backstage also, and recorded Elvis’s performance that night. He was President of the I Met Elvis Fan Club until about 15 years ago, when he asked me if I would like to take over the Fan Club. Twice a year, Graceland invites the Fan Club President for a get-together on the anniversary of his birthdate, Jan. 8, 1935, and the anniversary of his death, August 16, 1977.” — Joyce Joyner Hightower (Pictured), Tumbling Shoals


“Oh what a night!!!! I went with my sister, Linda, and friends Leora, Hazel and Kent Miller. We all lived in Dardanelle and Kent drove us in his 1955 Chevy.

“I was 16 and had a date that night but couldn’t get in touch with my date to cancel, so I asked Mother to tell him I had gone to see Elvis. He was not happy and I don’t think he ever forgave me, but that’s OK it was worth it.

“I don’t remember what I wore that night but during the fifties we wore full skirts with lots of heavy starched petticoats, loafers and bobby socks. We didn’t wear jeans or tennis shoes back then. We couldn’t wear pants of any kind to school. We always wore dresses or fitted or tight skirts.

“The concert was great. I loved all of the songs that Elvis sang. But my favorite of all is ‘Love Me Tender.’

“After the concert, I went backstage and Elvis signed a picture for me. Being at the Elvis concert was one of the highlights of my life. I’ve enjoyed telling my children and grandchildren about going to see Elvis Presley when I was 16.” — Ann Land Selig, Fort Smith


“My fiancé, my roommate and her fiancé had tickets for the concert. At the last day, both she and my fiancé had to work, so I went to the concert with her fiancé. We took my car, as he did not have one. “I remember that I wore my pink poodle skirt with the black poodle and heels. I do not have the stub and do not remember how much the tickets were, but whatever they were, they were certainly worth every bit.

“Since we had two extra tickets, we turned them in to the box office when we got there and the lady almost had a heart attack when we showed her the tickets. Everyone had been clamoring for tickets.

“The concert was just wonderful. He had everyone wanting to dance in the aisles and he seemed to enjoy himself. The management of the auditorium put speakers out on the front so that the ones who did not have a ticket could hear the concert. The steps going up into the building were full!” — Verniel East, Searcy


“I was with Judy Fagan in the center third row. We were in the 9th grade. I had my hair in a ducktail. All I know is we screamed, hollered, rocked and had a great time.” — Marilyn Thomas Robison, Little Rock



560516_w DJ Ray Green.JPG


“Yes, I was there with my mother. I was 14. Neither of us had any idea of who Elvis was, but my father was given two tickets and since he had to work that night, we went to see what it was all about. The tickets were $1.50 each and we sat in the balcony, front row. It was so electrifying that I was afraid my mother was going to jump over the railing. She was screaming like any teenager. I screamed too. I was glad she was having fun with me. I went home that night a true, devoted fan.

“I fell in love that night. I had never been on a date and I saw this handsome man, singing beautifully. I fell in love like the rest of the audience. Mom got over it when she got home, but I didn’t. I bought his records and magazines, cut out his pictures. One wall in my room was covered with Elvis pictures.

“As I got older, he lost his glow a bit for me. I used to go to his movies, I just wanted to see him, look at him. The movie could have been silent and I wouldn’t have cared.” — Jeanette Jones Green, Layfayette, La.

NOTE: Jeanette Jones Green is married to Ray Green, the disc jockey who recorded Elvis’ concert that night. They have been wed for 50 years. (Ray Green is pictured here with Elvis.)


http://www.arkansasonline.com/elvisextras/
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Last edited by drjohncarpenter on Sun May 16, 2021 11:54 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by elvis-fan »

Nice post John. This was one of my first bootleg purchases... and a concert I'm quite fond of.... love the closing Hound Dog.
I found this comment a little off the wall:

“I remember taking opera glasses and looking at Elvis’ arms for needle marks. I had heard he used needles for drugs. I saw none and adored the concert. Our gang continued to dance in the gym at Hall High School in stocking feet before school to Elvis and rock and roll.” — Mary Peirce Connor Burke, Groton, Conn.


Is that a quote from the time period or was it made at a later date? I'm just curious if it was influenced by the stories of Elvis after his death; perhaps making the comment somewhat made up...



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

elvis-fan wrote:Nice post John. This was one of my first bootleg purchases... and a concert I'm quite fond of.... love the closing Hound Dog.
I found this comment a little off the wall:

“I remember taking opera glasses and looking at Elvis’ arms for needle marks. I had heard he used needles for drugs. I saw none and adored the concert. Our gang continued to dance in the gym at Hall High School in stocking feet before school to Elvis and rock and roll.” — Mary Peirce Connor Burke, Groton, Conn.


Is that a quote from the time period or was it made at a later date? I'm just curious if it was influenced by the stories of Elvis after his death; perhaps making the comment somewhat made up...
Thanks!

In May 1956 Elvis was being condemned by some as a sex-crazed, drug-addicted deviant. So the quote, which I agree stands out, is quite likely from her experience when Presley toured Little Rock in May 1956.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by GuyLambert »

Cool post, thanks Doc. I love reading these 1st hand accounts.



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Joe Car »

Great post Doc. Thanks again for your time and efforts helping us relive that phenomenal show!!




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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by mysterytrainrideson »

Thanks for posting. I still have my copy of this wonderful bootleg. This is one of those truely magical finds...live concerts from the 50's are rare and i remember the excitement this little beauty caused at the time. The front cover pic was a great choice - a sweating Elvis looking dangerous, a pic that would've scared The Col. I love the bit where someone in the audience asks Elvis to do "Ooby Dooby".


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by jurasic1968 »

The Roy Orbison Ooby Dooby-great record also from the Sun Records.



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Rocker »

Yeah, I posted that link a few weeks ago
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=77912&p=1190289#p1190289

That recording is pure gold to have nowadays that we don't have many recordings of complete 50s shows. I just made myself a collection of all 50s live recordings we have and tried to upgrade the sound of Little Rock a.o. Of course we only have this recording done by a radio DJ and not what RCA could've done but it really is fantastic and remembering the circumstances it sounds quite good. I only wish we had more pictures


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Mister Moon »

Thanks Doc and Rocker.

Incredible stuff. As one may imagine, an unforgettable moment for most of those present.

Among the many interesting bits, I liked the one about the girl who says some of her friends from outside the South were not aware of who Elvis was, even in 1956. That soon would change, of course. But in those few early months of 1956, he was still, in a way, an "underground hero", as Peter Guralnick put it.

I also liked the bit about the management of the auditorium setting speakers outside for the people who had no tickets. Can you imagine that mind-blowing music screaming right in the middle of the street ?

And yes, that Bilko bootleg, of which I have the original vinyl version, was one of the coolest Elvis discoveries of all time. Just incredible. And what about "Hound Dog" ? The earliest version available, about a month and half before the studio cut. And the slow ending : "Remember this one thing - LOW DOWN".

Too cool for words.

Thanks again !



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by norrie »

Great article Doc thanks for finding and posting.Oh to have been a teenager in 1956 one of the most exciting years in rock n roll history.
The cover of the bootleg is one of the coolest I've seen.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Tim C »

You know, reading these articles makes me live through the lives of others the excitement they felt. What an exciting time it must have been watching his star rise. I am envious.

The after show signings kept Elvis in contact with his fans and allowed him to slow down a little and just be himself. What a shame he wasn't able to do the same thing in the 70's.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by MikeFromHolland »

Wow, this makes a fantastic read, thanks Doc and Rocker! It's been a while since I listened to the original CD. You inspired me to have a listen again i.o. other versions of this concert. Always liked the Life magazine like cover as well...
Last edited by MikeFromHolland on Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Mister Moon »

Here's more from Little Rock.

Incomplete image of next day's review of Elvis' shows on "The Arkansas Gazette" :
560516 Arkansas Gazette.jpg
And another backstage photo :
560516 Little Rock.jpg
Last edited by Mister Moon on Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by MikeFromHolland »

Mister Moon wrote:Here's more from Little Rock.

Incomplete image of next day's review of Elvis' shows on "The Arkansas Gazette" :
560516 Arkansas Gazette.jpg
A pic from the evening show, the one released by Bilko in 1989 :
560516 Little Rock 9.30pm.jpg
And another backstage photo :
560516 Little Rock.jpg

Fantastic!


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by JamesVRoy »

Mister Moon wrote:
A pic from the evening show, the one released by Bilko in 1989 :
560516 Little Rock 9.30pm.jpg
]
As in the other thread, this is Tampa Aug. 5, 1956




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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Mister Moon »

JamesVRoy wrote:
Mister Moon wrote:
A pic from the evening show, the one released by Bilko in 1989 :
560516 Little Rock 9.30pm.jpg
]
As in the other thread, this is Tampa Aug. 5, 1956
Thanks, James. I removed the pic.

Can't recall where I found it, but they obviously got it wrong.

It's a great photo, though !




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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by epf »

Thanks, guys! Really cool. ::rocks



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

Rocker wrote:Yeah, I posted that link a few weeks ago
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=77912&p=1190289#p1190289

That recording is pure gold to have nowadays that we don't have many recordings of complete 50s shows. I just made myself a collection of all 50s live recordings we have and tried to upgrade the sound of Little Rock a.o. Of course we only have this recording done by a radio DJ and not what RCA could've done but it really is fantastic and remembering the circumstances it sounds quite good. I only wish we had more pictures
Totally forgot you posted that link. And I contributed to your topic!

When I found it again, I read it all the way through and realized the stories were all worth sharing on FECC.

Too busy at work these days. Thanks again.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

GuyLambert wrote:Cool post, thanks Doc. I love reading these 1st hand accounts.
My pleasure! I hope your search for the Golden Fleece continues unabated.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by MysteryTrain »

We as fans are very fortunate to have the recording from Little Rock. I read somewhere that the Little Rock show in May, 1956 was the only May show where Elvis did not sing "Only You." Hopefully, this song is out there somewhere from another May, 1956 show. Great post, Doc? What a magical time the 50s were!

MT



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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Julian Grant »

Nice post John....

Here is another Little Rock candid.
hhygff.jpg
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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

Joe Car wrote:Great post Doc. Thanks again for your time and efforts helping us relive that phenomenal show!!
My pleasure. Given the comments, such an experience stays with you a lifetime.

These people are in their sixties and seventies now, grandparents, and yet the fire still burns, 57 years later.


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by Swingin-Little-Guitar-Man »

That was brilliant Doc - thanks so much!

I wouldn't say no to yet another release of this show if it was beautifully packaged using photo's from the actual tour - and liner notes including all that was in the above article - and the recording lifted from the RCA version on the Today Tomorrow & Forever box set.

I wonder if the transcription discs that the show and interview (and the other announcement as Elvis was ending another set on stage) also feature commercials an/or further material (non Elvis) from the broadcast? Now that WOULD be cool to hear - especially to an Old Time Radio collector like little ol' me!!

Has it ever been discovered which radio Network broadcast this remote broadcast?


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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

Swingin-Little-Guitar-Man wrote:That was brilliant Doc - thanks so much!

I wouldn't say no to yet another release of this show if it was beautifully packaged using photo's from the actual tour - and liner notes including all that was in the above article - and the recording lifted from the RCA version on the Today Tomorrow & Forever box set.

I wonder if the transcription discs that the show and interview (and the other announcement as Elvis was ending another set on stage) also feature commercials an/or further material (non Elvis) from the broadcast? Now that WOULD be cool to hear - especially to an Old Time Radio collector like little ol' me!!

Has it ever been discovered which radio Network broadcast this remote broadcast?
Thank you.

Ray Green was a DJ for KXLR Radio, 1150 AM, in Little Rock, and both the interview and show were meant for local air on that station only.

KXLR 1150 Little Rock
http://las-solanas.com/arsa/stations_item.php?rsid=1297

Ironically, Green felt the tape wasn't of good enough quality for broadcast, so it never aired. And if it had, it'd be long gone today!

Here's the story:
Elvis preserved
Entertainment » Arkansongs
Stephen Koch and Max Brantley | August 11, 2005

On May 16, 1956, Elvis Presley performed at Robinson Auditorium in Little Rock. Accidentally preserved by a local DJ who thought it wasn’t good enough for airplay, the recording is now regarded as the best-preserved of Presley’s early career. Tickets were $1.50 in advance and $2 at the door. There were 7 and 9:30 p.m. shows and both were packed. Presley had been in the public eye for less than two years and was 21 years old. His single “Heartbreak Hotel” had hit No. 1 just weeks before. In fact, the announcer identifies the song as “Heartbreak Motel.” This concert was not Presley’s first Little Rock performance, nor maybe even his strongest, but there is a cornucopia for Presley fans. Presley’s set is nearly complete, and the sound quality — which was probably a single microphone pointed at Robinson’s PA system — is surprisingly good. There’s also a brief backstage interview: “This makes my third visit here. [Little Rock]’s really wonderful, especially tonight,” he said. Asked about his genre, Presley said: “Rock ’n’ roll has been in for about five years. ... It might change, like years ago when the Charleston was real popular, or the vaudeville acts, stuff like that. You could have told those people maybe it was going to die out, and they wouldn’t have believed you. But it’s dead now, see? Maybe four or five years from now, rock ’n’ roll will be dead.”

Under a headline reading “Elvis Cools Cats Down to a Dungaree Delium,” the Arkansas Gazette reported Presley wore a “purple coat and black silk slacks.” Scotty Moore, Bill Black and D.J. Fontana played the show with Presley, and vocal group the Jordanaires also backed him. Eight acts appeared on the bill that night in Little Rock besides Presley, who was billed as “the Nation’s Only Atomic Powered Singer.” According to Central Arkansas radio historian Pat Walsh, the DJ on the Elvis-live-in-Little Rock tape was Ray Green, who worked for North Little Rock’s KXLR. Walsh said Green told him he thought the recording was so bad he didn’t submit it and it never aired. ”How does it feel to be right up there on top, right with the best of them, since you are one of that class?” Green asks. “It feels pretty good,” Presley replied. “It all happened so fast. I’m afraid to wake up, afraid it’s liable to be a dream, you know?”

Had the tape been on the air, it likely would have gotten recorded over later. Instead, Green discovered it decades later in a box. Walsh said Green got permission to market the concert from the Presley estate in the 1990s and issued a hologram CD. In 2002, the Little Rock concert was issued as part of a Presley box set — and it remains an integral document of the most important figure in what was then called “the rock ’n’ roll craze.” “As far as rock ’n’ roll goes, I really like it, I enjoy doing it. And the people have really accepted it great,” Presley said on the tape. “And it just makes me want to say a vow to keep giving them something they enjoy.”

listening • “Heartbreak Hotel” • “Long Tall Sally” • “I Was the One” • “Money, Honey” • “I Got a Woman” • “Blue Suede Shoes” • “Hound Dog”

http://www.arktimes.com/arkansas/elvis-preserved/Content?oid=863770


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Dr. John Carpenter, M.D.
Stop, look and listen, baby <<--->> that's my philosophy!

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Re: Looking Back At Little Rock --> 1956!

Post by drjohncarpenter »

mysterytrainrideson wrote:Thanks for posting. I still have my copy of this wonderful bootleg. This is one of those truely magical finds...live concerts from the 50's are rare and i remember the excitement this little beauty caused at the time. The front cover pic was a great choice - a sweating Elvis looking dangerous, a pic that would've scared The Col. I love the bit where someone in the audience asks Elvis to do "Ooby Dooby".
jurasic1968 wrote:The Roy Orbison Ooby Dooby-great record also from the Sun Records.
Yes! And the fact that this 5-16-1956 tape survives is nothing short of miraculous, as the above article from 2005 proves.

Orbison's great Sun single had just been released, and it's likely Presley heard it. From January to June, Sun Records issued 10 singles. It would seem that of these, Elvis would have had ample time to pick up copies of those that he wanted. From May 29 to June 21 he was in Memphis for about 14 days total, and no doubt dropped by Poplar Tunes and 706 Union during that period.

Elvis attended the Sun Records show at the Overton Park Shell in Memphis on Friday, June 1. On the bill that night: Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash, along with Warren Smith, Eddie Bond, and Roy Orbison. Wow.

Certainly Presley made sure to have most, if not all, of their newest platters.

CarlPerkins-Jun11956OvertonPark.jpg
Carl Perkins backstage at Overton Park Shell, Friday, June 1, 1956

CarlPerkinsEP-Jun11956OvertonPark.jpg
Carl Perkins and Elvis, backstage at Overton Park Shell, Friday June 1, 1956

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Here are the 78 RPM releases from Sun Records between January and June 1956:

January 1956
Sun 230 - The Miller Sisters
There's No Right Way To Do Me Wrong / You Can Tell Me

Sun 233 - Billy "The Kid" Emerson
Little Fine Healthy Thing / Something For Nothing



April 1956
Sun 238 - Slim Rhodes
Gonna Romp And Stomp / Bad Girl

B-side features Brad Suggs on lead vocals, he plays guitar in Elvis' band at the February 25, 1961 Memphis shows.
B-side also includes steel guitar by John Hughey, who does the same at American Sound in 1969 for "In The Ghetto," "From A Jack To A King" and "Rubberneckin'"


Sun 239 - Warren Smith
Rock 'N' Roll Ruby / I'd Rather Be Safe Than Sorry

Sun 240 - Jack Earls and the Jimbos
Slow Down / A Fool For Lovin' You

Sun 241 - Johnny Cash and Tennessee Two
Get Rhythm / I Walk The Line



May 1956
Sun 242 - Roy Orbison and Teen Kings
Ooby Dooby / Go! Go! Go!

Elvis name checks "Ooby Dooby" at his May 16 Little Rock concert.

Sun 243 - Carl Perkins
Boppin' The Blues / All Mama's Children



June 1956
Sun 244 - Jean Chapel
Welcome To The Club / I Won't Be Rockin' Tonight
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Last edited by drjohncarpenter on Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Dr. John Carpenter, M.D.
Stop, look and listen, baby <<--->> that's my philosophy!