Well, as many of you know, today, Thursday, August 16th, marks the 35th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death. I find it difficult to believe that 35 years have gone by so quickly, but as they say, the calendar does not lie. I am happy to report that the fans who traveled to Memphis to honor The King received a very special surprise. (No, Elvis did not make a surprise appearance and file for Social Security!) However….. for the first time in history Priscilla Presley and Lisa Marie Presley appeared together at the annual gathering!
In case your wondering why my first mystery was THE PRESLEY PLOT (I have 4 more books in the works!) let me share some interesting details with you….. the annual Memphis tribute to Elvis Presley draws hundreds of thousands of fans and runs for the entire week! The tribute begins with a candlelight vigil at Graceland (which this year attracted 75,000 people!!) If you have ever wanted to visit Graceland, this is the time to go. Trust me, you will never forget the sight of so many people walking silently along, holding candles, weeping, and scraping wax from their fingers. It is a sight to behold! (As I said in Memphis, no other artist could ever hold a candle to Elvis!)
Oddly enough, when his “old flame” showed up the crowd was stunned…… I later discovered that her appearance was one of those last-minute decisions….but I’m sure everyone was thrilled to see the two ladies together for the first time. The coolest moment came when Lisa Marie (Elvis Presley’s daughter) told the assembled mass: “I’ve always avoided this because I felt it would be too emotional, but I really felt it was important to come down here tonight…… I love you very, very, very much.”
Lisa Marie was only 9 years old when her father died, and as she restated in Memphis, she actually thought that her famous father would be forgotten as the years marched on. OMG, was she wrong! Event organizers predicted no less than 500,000 visitors during the week of rememberance! As I have mentioned before, Elvis is selling more records today than when he was alive! (And believe me, that was a lot of records!) Graceland, from what I’ve seen, has become something of a national monument, and I recently read that it is the second most visited home in the United States! The first is the White House, but none of the occupants were ever as popular (or talented) as Elvis Presley. Granted, a few had similar parties, but none could match the fun and games that occurred at Graceland.
If you want to catch a glimpse of the total madness (in a fun sense) of Elvis Week, I suggest you log onto: http://www.elvis.com/elvisweekonline/
These folks are providing day to day coverage of the event, and you have to see it to believe it. (Imagine a city filled with Elvis impersonators!) They actually do a terrific job covering all of the hundreds of sub-events and special tributes that occur during the week, and if you enjoy the King’s music, this is the site for you. Of course, an even better source of information would be a copy of the best-selling mystery novel THE PRESLEY PLOT. I took the liberty of sending a signed copy of the book to both Priscilla and Lisa Marie, and I fully expect a “thank you call” from both of the ladies. (Hey, a boy can dream!) If I don’t hear from them, I will just assume that they have a lousy cell phone plan. (I doubt they’re short on funds, but you never know.)
Well, there you have it friends…… a sweet, but sad day for millions of fans around the world. If you’re my age (39 years old) or even close to it, take a moment to reflect on the music of this incredible man. In truth, there will never be another like him. Nobody will ever come close to the King. (Although the Beatles are certainly up there.) Of course, they were four distinct talents…. and Elvis was solo.
I wonder if he is lonesome tonight? I hope not. I doubt it.
Long live the King!
August 16, 1977: The King is dead. Long live the King.