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This Just In ...

Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.

Goodnight everyone, and have a homecoming weekend!

ELVIS, Nostalgia


“Rock and roll music, if you like it, if you feel it, you can’t help but move to it. That’s what happens to me. I can’t help it. I mean I have to move around.
I can’t stand still. I’ve tried it and  I can’t do it.”

Elvis Presley
 

 It's Friday night. Time to unwind with our regular Friday night feature on This Just In.

The weekend has finally arrived.

The sun has set.

The evening sky has erupted. 

Let's smooth our way into Saturday and Sunday.

Tonight, an anniversary party.

In 1961, Elvis Presley appeared at a concert at Ellis Auditorium in Memphis, Tennessee. It would be a long time before he’d perform again in his hometown.

One of Elvis’ best friends from high school classmate days right on to his death was George Klein. Klein was a Memphis disc jockey and TV host.



Elvis and George Klein at WMC Radio in 1956



Today he hosts a weekly Elvis program on Friday afternoons live from Graceland on Sirius. In 2011, Klein wrote a book.







In his book, Klein recalls a rather frank discussion he had with Elvis’ manager, Colonel Tom Parker in early 1974.

“You know Colonel, “I said, “Elvis really ought to book something in Memphis.”

“George,” he almost shouted, “you know the old show biz adage---you don’t play your hometown. If you don’t sell out, you look bad.”

“Colonel, I just emceed Three Dog Night and they drew 25,000. If they can do that, you know Elvis can out-draw 11,000 seats the Mid-South Coliseum.”

The Colonel chomped hard down on his cigar. “And will you buy every seat we don’t sell, George?”

“Colonel, I’m just giving you some input,” I yelled back. “I’m telling you what I’m hearing all over Memphis, and you can use it or not use it.”

Four shows were booked at the Mid-South Coliseum in March of 1974. They sold out in eight hours. A fifth show was added. It too was a sellout. This month marks the 40th anniversary of those shows and Elvis’ return to Memphis that produced a high quality live album recorded at the fifth and final concert.










http://www.windmill-records.co.uk/ekmps/shops/windmgkmill/images/elvis-presley-recorded-live-on-stage-in-memphis-apl1-0606--32386-p.jpg




For the Memphis engagement, Elvis looked great. He sounded great. And he really rocked.


 






March 20, 1974 - Elvis Presley during a  concert at Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis. Elvis ended a 15 city tour with three performances in his hometown on the 16, 17th and Wednesday night, the 20th,  before a crowd of 12,300. ( By Jim Shearin / The Commercial Appeal )

March 20, 1974 - Elvis Presley during a concert at Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis. Elvis ended a 15 city tour with performances in his hometown on the 16th, 17th and Wednesday night, the 20th, before a crowd of 12,300. (Photo by Jim Shearin / The Commercial Appeal
)
 

We’ll return to the concert in just a bit. In the early summer of 1964, Elvis and his inner circle of close followers, “The Memphis Mafia” as they were dubbed, were stunned to hear that Johnny Rivers had released a new single, “Memphis,” an old Chuck Berry tune. Rivers had been a frequent visitor of Elvis’ for the past three years, played football with the guys and was accepted as one of the gang. Rivers sat in on a jam session where the Chuck Berry song was played. Elvis even played Rivers a test recording of his own version of “Memphis.” The understanding was Rivers had to know that Elvis was planning to release “Memphis” as his next single.

The guys told Elvis he should just put his record out and out-do Rivers’ rendition, but Elvis would have none of that. He just shook his head and said he didn’t want to see Rivers anymore. In July of 1964, with little fanfare, RCA released “Such a Night.” It sold but 300,000 copies for Elvis.

Rivers has always denied the rift reported in Peter Guralnick’s book, “Careless Love: The Unmaking of Elvis Presley.” In 1965, “Memphis” was included as one of the tracks on the album “Elvis for Everyone.”



 











Back to 1974 and the Mid-South Coliseum. There’s no question Elvis is going through some serious health problems. He’s pumping himself full of prescription drugs and uppers, leading to stomach, intestine, and liver issues, even glaucoma.

Before the Memphis concerts, Elvis released a new gospel recording done originally by the Gatlin Brothers.



 






March 20, 1974 - Elvis Presley during a  concert at Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis. Elvis ended a 15 city tour with three performances in his hometown on the 16, 17th and Wednesday night, the 20th,  before a crowd of 12,300. ( By Jim Shearin / The Commercial Appeal )

March 20, 1974 - Elvis Presley during a concert at Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis. (Photo by Jim Shearin / The Commercial Appeal)

Elvis Presley's concert in Memphis in March 1974, when he returned to the city during a U.S. tour to perform in his hometown for the first time in 13 years, is now available in a new two-CD set.

Here’s another great track.





 





March 20, 1974 - Elvis Presley gestures, gyrates, grabs guitars and generally gratifies the audience as he ended his 15-city tour with a hometown performance recorded before 12,300 fans at Mid South Coliseum Wednesday night. ( By Jim Shearin / The Commercial Appeal )

March 20, 1974 - Elvis Presley during a concert at Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis. (Photo by Jim Shearin / The Commercial Appeal)

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

Please enjoy our close.

 

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