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srj1967
01-17-2007, 07:28 AM
This may be a sensitive topic, but I need to know the answer to this.

Some of you may have heard that The Sweet Inspirations walked off stage in 1975 after Elvis supposedly made a racial slur against them. This is utter rubbish of course.

As Myrna Smith personally told me last October, if Elvis had made a racial slur, she would've walked off and never gone back. The real reason they walked off can be found in Kathy Westmoreland's book, and it's too detailed to go into here.

But my question is this: Elvis' supposed slur had to do with him asking if The Sweets had been "eating catfish", and I'd always wondered why this was offensive. Is this some kind of black stereotype? I've also heard the same story, but with "watermelon" used instead.

So can any of you Americans please explain to this Aussie what this could mean? And no offence meant to any black members of this forum. It's just that I've always wondered exactly what it means.

Thanks.

thehillbillycat
01-17-2007, 07:41 AM
This may be a sensitive topic, but I need to know the answer to this.

Some of you may have heard that The Sweet Inspirations walked off stage in 1975 after Elvis supposedly made a racial slur against them. This is utter rubbish of course.

As Myrna Smith personally told me last October, if Elvis had made a racial slur, she would've walked off and never gone back. The real reason they walked off can be found in Kathy Westmoreland's book, and it's too detailed to go into here.

But my question is this: Elvis' supposed slur had to do with him asking if The Sweets had been "eating catfish", and I'd always wondered why this was offensive. Is this some kind of black stereotype? I've also heard the same story, but with "watermelon" used instead.

So can any of you Americans please explain to this Aussie what this could mean? And no offence meant to any black members of this forum. It's just that I've always wondered exactly what it means.

Thanks.


I have sent you a PM on this subject.

PiersEIN
01-17-2007, 08:05 AM
Elvis was sure not having a good night that night. Tiredness & being on continuous tours don't help.. . I'm sure some of his bottled up anger against the routine of his life, his falling apart with Linda etc etc was coming to the surface.


If you want more about Elvis being NON racist you need to read this article on EIN >>
http://www.elvisinfonet.com/spotlight_elvis_not_racist.html

- and I'm glad the answer was pm'd.

Cheers
Piers

srj1967
01-17-2007, 08:15 AM
That's a great article, Piers.

Who is the woman Elvis is almost kissing in the last photo?

Elvis being racist is rubbish that's been around for years. You only have to look at the easy way in which he talks with the Sweet Inspirations in THAT'S THE WAY IT IS to see it's crap. You can't fake that sort of thing.

I wonder if Michael Richards and Mel Gibson are Elvis fans? :blink:

Raised on Rock
01-17-2007, 12:13 PM
Could somebody post what exactly happened that night when the Sweets walk off stage?

WHatever it was, I dont think there is any reason that lead us to the idea of Elvis being racist but totally the other way, I´m sure what happened that night was nothing but a bad joke that because of Elvis weird moods at the time, it went a little bit to far, thats all.

We have all at one time hurt somebodys feelling being uncared saying something that we dont believe in, but we said it just as a stupid joke and then shit, you just realice that it was so stupid to have said that, and you got to say youre sorry.

thehillbillycat
01-17-2007, 01:06 PM
Could somebody post what exactly happened that night when the Sweets walk off stage?

WHatever it was, I dont think there is any reason that lead us to the idea of Elvis being racist but totally the other way, I?m sure what happened that night was nothing but a bad joke that because of Elvis weird moods at the time, it went a little bit to far, thats all.

We have all at one time hurt somebodys feelling being uncared saying something that we dont believe in, but we said it just as a stupid joke and then shit, you just realice that it was so stupid to have said that, and you got to say youre sorry.

That is what it was. It was a joke that they took the wrong way and he did apology for it as well. I can't remember what he said but I know he was in one of the moods that he was in.

EP75
01-17-2007, 02:45 PM
Here's what happened that night in July of 1975.

EP was having a bad night all around. EP began the introductions as normal but when he got to Kathy Westmoreland, he referred to her as someone who gives affection to everyone at anytime. This embarrassed her and EP took it out on The Stamps (white group) and The Sweets (black group) and says to the both, Inspirations, Stamps, hold your head up before I kick your ***." This upset Estelle Brown and Sylvia Shemwell of the Sweets and they along with Kathy walked off the stage in a protest but nothing to do with racism but more sexism. He did do all the girls wrong that night. But he made it up to Myrna who was as we all know by now, very close to him personally and remained on stage in his defense. I don;t buy she stayed on stage just because it was "her job to do so". She did it for him and she knows it. He then presented her a diamond ring but she took this as a bribe and eventually accepted the ring. She gave it back to him after the show while they were on his private jet on their way to the next city. The next night EP thru the ring into the crowd then turned to Myrna as to show he was hurt that she gave it back. Myrna has said this broke her heart to see him hurt like that.

There was nothing racist about what EP said that night and was blown up out of proportions. I hope this clears the air about this.:)

poormansgold
01-17-2007, 02:56 PM
will I hope this End this Tread. you right EP75. why people keep this stuff going on, it's 30 years ago. please stop it. Tom

Albert
01-17-2007, 03:35 PM
I hope the previous topics gave answers to your question. I also never understood the things 'some people' try to find behind this story.

Elvis admired many balck artists, admired people like James Brown, Ali and Martin Luther King. He had black women as background singers that he admired and respected as equals. He also told in Houston (1970 or 1971?) that he wouldn't perform at all, if the Sweet Inspirations weren't allowed to join him on stage.... so that should make it pretty clear that Elvis wasn't a racist by any means.

I'll close this topic.