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August 15, 2007 6:39 PM   Subscribe


 
I was just saying this afternoon what a total master of schlock Elvis was. What a funny coincidence that you should so perfectly illustrate that for me.
posted by nevercalm at 6:46 PM on August 15, 2007


I've been wanting to make one of these lately. Maybe this is the excuse I've needed.
posted by Bookhouse at 6:51 PM on August 15, 2007


or merely hit your corner store and nab some of these. I've had 'em, they're pretty good.

(I'm a big Elvis fan. He was at my wedding, even)
posted by jonmc at 6:52 PM on August 15, 2007


Got to be Kentucky Rain for me.
posted by Abiezer at 6:55 PM on August 15, 2007


Dude, he is not dead. I was in Vegas a couple months ago and I saw him all over the place.
posted by mullingitover at 6:59 PM on August 15, 2007


Today is the 30th anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley ...

Only the descendant of exiled criminals could make this statement at this time.
posted by y2karl at 6:59 PM on August 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


Love Me Tender was playing the first time I saw a dead body.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 7:09 PM on August 15, 2007


A Little Less Conversation

"You just said the magic word." "Clambake?"
posted by kirkaracha at 7:11 PM on August 15, 2007


Wait...Elvis is dead?
posted by Smedleyman at 7:14 PM on August 15, 2007


"Good career move." --Michael O'Donoghue
posted by RavinDave at 7:17 PM on August 15, 2007


  • Walter Matthau and Elvis in...King Creole!
  • Barbara Eden and Elvis in...Flaming Star!
  • Angela Lansbury and Elvis in...Blue Hawaii!
  • Charles Bronson, and Elvis in...Kid Galahad!
  • Yvonne "Batgirl/Green Star Trek girl" Craig and Elvis in...It Happened at the World's Fair!
  • Teri Garr and Elvis in...Fun in Acapulco!
  • Barbara Stanwyck, Raquel Welch, and Elvis in...Roustabout!
  • Elsa Lanchester and Elvis in...Easy Come, Easy Go!
  • Bill Bixby and Elvis in...Clambake!
  • Burgess Meredith and Elvis in...Stay Away, Joe!
  • Nancy Sinatra and Elvis in...Speedway!
  • Dick "Darrin Stephens...No, The Other One" Sargent and Elvis in...Live a Little, Love a Little!
  • John Carradine, Vincent Price, Dabney Coleman, and Elvis in...The Trouble with Girls!
  • Mary Tyler Moore, Ed Asner, and Elvis in...Change of Habit!
posted by kirkaracha at 7:26 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


a trip to graceland is a true american pilgrimage - and a great time.
posted by Flood at 7:27 PM on August 15, 2007


Some months ago I found a bunch of Elvis songs I never would have thought he sung. Can't find anything online, but if someone wants to look for some, "crawfish", "Vino, dinero y amor" and "chesay" are good titles to look for. Also "Poison Ivy League." (that video used to be on youtube and they took it down, unfortunately.

Funnily enough, my birthday is on August 31, and I turn 30 this year, so I was born 15 days after he died. There has been no way to convince my mother that I am not his reincarnation (despite almost 30 years of hearing my dreadful singing, and believe me, if that hasn't convinced her, nothing will).
posted by micayetoca at 7:32 PM on August 15, 2007


Self-linky Elvisiana
posted by cortex at 7:36 PM on August 15, 2007


And he was so goddam right about those sandwiches. If it wasn't for the music thing, he woulda been a famous restaurateur. "Peebee's", they'd have called 'em, before the government shut the whole booming franchise down in the face of an obesity epidemic that came sooner and harder in that universe than it's even hinted at in ours.
posted by cortex at 7:38 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


That sucker was simple and plain.
posted by Eideteker at 7:40 PM on August 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


"If love truly is going out of fashion, which I do not believe, then along with our nurtured indifference to each other will be an even more contemptuous indifference to each other's objects of reverence. . . . We will continue to fragment in this manner because solipsism holds all the cards at present; it is a king whose domain engulfs even Elvis's. But I can guarantee you one thing: we will never again agree on anything as we agreed on Elvis. So I won't bother saying good-bye to his corpse. I will say good-bye to you." -- Lester Bangs
posted by Kinbote at 7:41 PM on August 15, 2007 [11 favorites]


It's still a real shame that this 30th anniversary of Elvis' death overshadows the 30th anniversary (three days after Elvis) of the death of the American century's greatest comedian, --Groucho Marx. Perhaps if we actually weigh the cultural contributions of both in relation to entertainment history (which are formidable in varying degrees), we can still see who comes out ahead.
posted by Seekerofsplendor at 7:44 PM on August 15, 2007


Excellent use of the "schlock" tag.
posted by Poolio at 8:02 PM on August 15, 2007


Damn Effigy. That's some hard work. Good FP.

You guys can watch all the videos non-stop on Chime.TV [/plug]. And you can make your own Elvis channel there easily.

Here's my Beatles channel.
posted by chime at 8:03 PM on August 15, 2007


August 16, 1977
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:03 PM on August 15, 2007


chime - I noticed that you don't have the Apple rooftop concert in your Beatles channel.
posted by Poolio at 8:11 PM on August 15, 2007


Reese's now makes a pb&b cup. Just though you all should know.
posted by thanotopsis at 8:15 PM on August 15, 2007


Poolio: I do now, my friend :)
posted by chime at 8:15 PM on August 15, 2007


August 16 is also the 10th anniversary of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's death.
posted by mike3k at 8:18 PM on August 15, 2007


And here's a playlist of assorted Beatles studio footage.
posted by Poolio at 8:22 PM on August 15, 2007


Can't stand Elvis. It's the image, mostly, although I often dislike the music of his prime. However, I have to say, the man could sing. Fabulous voice. Anyone that says otherwise, question their criteria.

kirkaracha: thanks for that interesting post. Off hand, it appears to me that playing with Elvis was an excellent career move.

The greatest moment in Elvis' history was the movie scene where he's whipped.
posted by Goofyy at 8:29 PM on August 15, 2007


(I really hope this doesn't seem like self-spamming)

Poolio - Here's your playlist non-stop, zoomed-video. You can keep adding more vids in the YouTube playlist and they'll show up on Chime within minutes (the delay is because of 15min caching of YouTube xml feeds).
posted by chime at 8:30 PM on August 15, 2007


I just watched Don't Be Cruel. Do I need to go down to the drugstore for a pregnancy test?


WTF American Idol? Why can't we have moar like that one?!?!1
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:36 PM on August 15, 2007


You know, every drug Elvis took was one less drug on the street. God bless him for all he did. You know who else was an Elvis fan?
posted by Sailormom at 8:49 PM on August 15, 2007


It's amazing what The Man can steal from the Black Man.
posted by orthogonality at 8:57 PM on August 15, 2007


The green Star Trek girl was Susan Oliver !
posted by rfs at 9:00 PM on August 15, 2007


I'm scheduled to do a gig at a festival in Sapporo next month with a young Japanese pop singer named Hitomitoi, and I did the first rehearsal for said gig just a few days ago. I was a wee bit surprised to see that we'd be doing versions of Elvis hits "Don't Be Cruel" as well as "I Can't Help Falling I Love". And sure enough, she has a video up for "Cruel", on YouTube. Somewhat dismayingly, it has a Disney (yuck) tie-in. Anyway, for you Japan culture watchers and anyone else interested, here's Hitomitoi, with her Hawaiian version of "Don't Be Cruel". And wish me luck up in Sapporo.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:04 PM on August 15, 2007


BTW, here's a link to another anniversary Elvis FPP from yours truly, which commemorated the 50th birthday of Jailhouse Rock.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:08 PM on August 15, 2007


Carl Perkins was better.
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:14 PM on August 15, 2007


Little Richard was better still.

Nonetheless, neither Perkins nor Little Richard had anywhere near the range of expression that Elvis did.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:17 PM on August 15, 2007


It's amazing what The Man can steal from the Black Man.

It sure is.
posted by blucevalo at 9:17 PM on August 15, 2007


My favorite Elvis song. (Don't bother watching the video.)
posted by oneirodynia at 9:20 PM on August 15, 2007


Carl Perkins was better.

... and Eddie Cochran was cuter.
posted by oneirodynia at 9:26 PM on August 15, 2007


Wow, thirty years.

I vividly remember the day Elvis died, oddly enough. I was sixteen years old and working for the summer at my grandfather's furniture store, and I was assembling some tables on the loading dock. This older fellow Bill walked by and said "Hey, did you hear Elvis died?" I straightened up, put my tools down and said "No, Bill, what's the punchline?"

He just said, "No, really - he just died. I heard it on the radio".

I was very sad, not only because I realized that Elvis really was dead, but also because Bill hadn't made possibly the first and only joke he ever told.
posted by yhbc at 9:28 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Psssst! rfs! ...
posted by RavinDave at 9:32 PM on August 15, 2007


I was born in the early part of 1977 and, as corny as it sounds, I'm glad that I shared some time on Earth with the King.
posted by dhammond at 9:45 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


I'm still chuckling at the fact that Bookhouse's post on "Elvis cuisine" was from an Eilert Pilarm site. Ahhh, Eilert, time to dig up that old cassette!
posted by gemmy at 9:48 PM on August 15, 2007


with all due respect to elvis ... the killer is KING
posted by pyramid termite at 9:51 PM on August 15, 2007


I can remember being in a punk club the night he died, the dj announcing it, and a loud cheer coming up from the floor. Ironic really, because the young elvis was punk as fuck, but by the time he died, he was sick, bloated, travesty of the Elvis that conquered the world.

Favourites? Gotta be Mystery Train (young Elvis) and Burning Love (sick drug addled Elvis).
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:55 PM on August 15, 2007


"He ain't no Johnny Cash."
posted by Sailormom at 10:48 PM on August 15, 2007


Heh. I was wondering when someone would post it. I was born on the day Elvis died, so the eternal march of special interest stories and retrospectives marked the years for me. It's getting a little depresing now that it's become History instead of a Recent Event... ;)
posted by verb at 10:50 PM on August 15, 2007


Also:

Hi everybody!
Hi, Dr. Nick!
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:51 PM on August 15, 2007


I'm All Backed Up no strain no pain
posted by hortense at 10:53 PM on August 15, 2007


The King Baby.


Nothing says Elvis like Gospel... How Great Thou Art featuring The Stamps
posted by Duncan at 10:55 PM on August 15, 2007


This is also a current event. It's a very special Elvis Week due to the 30th anniversary. In other ElvisNewsFilter, a fan who was camped out near Graceland died due to the current heat wave. Memphis heat is fierce in the summer, and this summer's been worse than usual. So all you Elvis party people be careful out there. I see you still have events going on.

As for myself, I've never been to Graceland, and I don't intend to go. The virtual tour was more than enough to satisfy my curiousity. It's only since I moved away from Memphis that I can start to appreciate Elvis's music and see what other people see in it. I think it's because I'm exposed so much less to the gimmicky references and the biannual influx of the global fandom (with its accompanying media coverage). I don't dislike the man or his music, but the general loudness of the Media Circus of Elvis does get to me. But again I think it's from my overexposure to it.

As an alternative to Graceland, I'd recommend Sun* Studio* and the Smithsonian Rock 'n Soul Museum* to musically inclined tourists. You get a fuller history of things.

* links play music... but good music!
posted by Tehanu at 11:01 PM on August 15, 2007


I have problems with Elvis, but I've been to Graceland (weird, weird experience in which I heard things like, "For not being a drinking man, Elvis sure had a lot of bars in his house." from someone else on the tour) and I'd say anyone who can should. Honestly, though, Elvis is a pathetic figure that I tend to feel sorry for more than revere and his story makes me a little depressed (he did have sex with Ann Margaret, which makes me both jealous and depressed). I think Gillian Welch said it best with her song Elvis Presley Blues. Anyone who can do Blue Moon so wonderfully must have been great at one point, right?
posted by sleepy pete at 11:08 PM on August 15, 2007


With Elvis out of the way, a young assassin named Osama had his ticket to Afghanistan, and Bill and Hillary Clinton began their rise to power...
posted by 2sheets at 11:17 PM on August 15, 2007


"Elvis Hair continues to whip the market into a frenzy. This clump just sold for a fast 100K to a man who now thinks he has everything. Walter Sculley Forensic Associates was not able to run a check on the pricey clump, so as far as we now, it may be the King’s true grass. But buyer beware: if I were to make wigs from all the E-hair that has entered my shop over the last decade, I'd be able to dress the heads of Mount Rushmore."
posted by tellurian at 11:18 PM on August 15, 2007


I've heard there was some big fat corporate buyout of Graceland Inc., or whatever it's called: anyway, for whatever reason, apparently a while back everything changed on the Graceland tour, and it's become a lot less fun and homespun. I'm told that now, for example, you get crappy little headphones to wear instead of having a human guide. Now, a human guide doesn't necessarily equal good, of course, but when I went to Graceland several years ago the guides were great. They were middle aged, portly black women who spoke with a pronounced Memphis drawl and said things like: "This iyuz tha room wheyah Eh'vis usetuh watch sev'ral footbawl games at thuh same time." Also on the tour I went on, the guide got in a plug for some local furniture store: "Awll thuh fuhnicha iyun this room wuz puhchassed by Eh'vis at Smith's (?) fuhnicha sto, located right heyuh in Memphis at such-and-such a street." It was utterly charming.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:24 PM on August 15, 2007


"Mother fuck him and John Wayne"
posted by notjustfoxybrown at 11:24 PM on August 15, 2007


Elvis didn't invent the wonderful peanut butter, banana and bacon sandwich, but he did fly to Denver once just to get one at the restaurant that served them.

Rob Schneider is a big Elvis fan, and covered the little known plantation rock.
posted by BrotherCaine at 12:35 AM on August 16, 2007


I'm gonna fry me up one a those little slices of heaven right now.
posted by BrotherCaine at 12:36 AM on August 16, 2007


NewsFilter: Elvis fan dies from heat during anniversary celebration
posted by Poolio at 1:04 AM on August 16, 2007


It really puts perspective on things, though, doesn't it?
posted by MtDewd at 3:01 AM on August 16, 2007


Been working in some Christian schools lately, and was at a Catholic college today. There's staff devotion at the beginning of the day.

The Deputy Head stands up. "In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit ...."

"Amen."

"Dear Lord, on this the thirtieth anniversary of the death of Elvis ..."

Started the day pretty right.
posted by Wolof at 4:37 AM on August 16, 2007


It really puts perspective on things, though, doesn't it?

Too much fucking perspective...
posted by Kinbote at 4:37 AM on August 16, 2007


Y'know, as familiar and etched into my mind as Spinal Tap is, it's still funny as hell... what a great piece of comedy cinema that is. And "too much fucking perspective...", what a brilliant line.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:55 AM on August 16, 2007


my dad(RIP) was a huge elvis fan... because of that, I've already decided that my wedding song, when i get married, is going to be "Can't Help Falling in Love" .

i guess next step would be finding the groom.
posted by elleinad at 6:43 AM on August 16, 2007


Barbershop Raga
posted by MtDewd at 7:00 AM on August 16, 2007


Once upon a time James Lileks made this observation:
    While watching Rollie Pollie Ollie today for the 17 billionth time, I was reminded again of the Persistence of Elvis. There’s a great character in the show - the cool uncle Gizmo, who’s always introduced by a Stratocaster surf-music riff. He has a five-foot Elvis pompadour, speaks like Elvis, rides a motorcycle, and will live long because he is a robot, and hence will not suffer cardiac failure attempting to move a deep-fried core sample through his excretory system... Anyway. In a few years it’ll be half a century since the Elvis attributes entered the culture, but they will still signify Cool.
I always like the idea that the Young Elvistm is the once and always vision of American Cool. Sort of like how Bart Simpson, in spite of his Dennis-the-Menace-esque qualities still functions as the cool bad boy in the 21st century.

Also I like to point out that Elvis died a month and change after I born, proving there is room for only so much greatness in Tennessee, and he had to make way for me.
(not true at all)
posted by 1f2frfbf at 9:23 AM on August 16, 2007


Forget that overpriced tourist trap in Memphis, drive an hour and a half south and visit Graceland Too.
posted by Rangeboy at 9:26 AM on August 16, 2007


Pics from my most recent pilgrimage to Graceland. About six weeks ago.
posted by ColdChef at 9:54 AM on August 16, 2007


If you want to understand why Elvis became so huge, rent or check out Elvis '56, In The Beginning from your library. It has every TV appearance from that year. It's amazing to think he only appeared on television twice after that year. Shake, Rattle and Roll and Baby, Let's Play House on the Dorsey Brothers are definite must sees in my book.

And when you watch those performances, remember that no white person had ever sang R&B songs or danced so before the mass television audience. As for a white person singing black, one could make the same observation about the early Bing Crosby, or come to think of it, the whole history of blackface minstrelsy in America.
posted by y2karl at 10:42 AM on August 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


Rangeboy: I second Graceland Too. I've been a couple dozen times since '96, and the better he gets to know you the better the batshit insane stories become.

One night a group of smarmy fratboys showed up a few minutes after friends and I arrived. Pretty soon it's clear that we're not going to leave the place without a fight. As he guides the group to the mid point of the tour he reaches in his microwave, pulls out a .45 and shoves it in the face of the head date rapist, and goes into a meth crazed rant. For a minute it looks like we're all going to be buried under the electric chair out back but the fratboys retreat and circle the block for a couple of hours while we stayed to defend Paul and Graceland Too. It was like the siege of the Alamo, except with paisley painted concrete lions out front. And completely retarded.
posted by bunnytricks at 11:18 AM on August 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


bunnytricks: That's considerably more, uh, eventful than my only visit was. But yeah, you only need to go once to realize that this guy is completely fucking insane.
posted by Rangeboy at 11:32 AM on August 16, 2007


I was alive when Elvis died but not old enough to remember. However I love using his birthday as a typical day when preparing documentation.
posted by Mitheral at 4:41 PM on August 16, 2007


flapjax at midnite writes "Little Richard was better still."

And Chuck Berry is still the King of Rock and Roll.
posted by krinklyfig at 5:08 PM on August 16, 2007


Whoo-hoo, favorite #500!
posted by Eideteker at 5:56 PM on August 16, 2007


You really missed the party, Eideteker.
posted by UbuRoivas at 7:21 PM on August 16, 2007


Another from the Dorsey Brother's Stage Show--Baby, Let's Play House.
posted by y2karl at 5:51 AM on August 17, 2007


I've heard there was some big fat corporate buyout of Graceland Inc., or whatever it's called: anyway, for whatever reason, apparently a while back everything changed on the Graceland tour, and it's become a lot less fun and homespun. I'm told that now, for example, you get crappy little headphones to wear instead of having a human guide.

flapjax, the mansion itself and Elvis's personal belongings are still owned by Lisa Marie, so the tour operation changes aren't a result of a change of ownership. Any changes to the tour are simply that, even if they are lousy (and they do sound lousy).
posted by Tehanu at 7:15 PM on August 17, 2007


Elvis Ate America
posted by Burhanistan at 11:26 AM on August 19, 2007


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