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Thread: CHARLIE HODGE Elvis Presley's little guy

  1. #1
    Loving elvis
    Join Date
    Jul 2007

    CHARLIE HODGE Elvis Presley's little guy

    When Elvis Presley was on stage in Las Vegas, he would introduce Charlie Hodge as "the little guy who sings harmony with me and gives me my water and my scarves". Hodge was one of the so-called Memphis Mafia, a gang of friends, wholly devoted to Presley, who carried out his every wish.

    Charlie Hodge was born in Decatur, Alabama, in 1934 and, as a child, he played the ukulele and developed comedy routines. He loved singing gospel music and when he was 20 he became the lead singer for the Foggy River Boys. Hodge was five foot three and, as they were taller than him, he would carry a crate on stage and stand on it to perform. This endeared him to audiences and the group became a regular feature on Red Foley's Ozark Jubilee, a television show and a touring attraction.

    In 1958, both Hodge and Presley were drafted at the same time and they met in basic training at Fort Hood. They travelled on the same troopship to Germany, and Hodge saw him socially during the coming months. On a furlough in Paris, Presley and his entourage invited many of the showgirls from the Lido back to his hotel suite. The manager of the Lido called Presley and asked, "Would you mind sending the girls back? We have a show to do in 10 minutes."

    On being demobbed in 1960, Presley asked Hodge to work for him. He could see that Hodge had skills in keeping him away from reporters, that he could make him laugh, that he could sing gospel with him and that he didn't mind being a dogs body. Hodge was involved with some of his records, singing harmony on the beautiful "I Will Be Home Again" (1960) and co-writing "You'll Be Gone" (1965). Hodge had minor roles in his films Clambake (1967), Speedway (1968) and Charro! (1969). His mission was to keep Presley amused while he made these dull but profitable films.

    He was a close confidant of Presley, always by his side and even witnessing his will. He lived in an apartment at the back of Graceland.

    When Hodge saw Jimmy Wakely in Las Vegas, he was impressed that the country star closed his show with a ballad. When Presley returned to live performing in 1969, he passed on this tip and Presley ended every concert with "Can't Help Falling in Love". During the song, Presley would hand out scarves to emotional fans and Hodge would pass him as many as 20 in three minutes. Presley occasionally allowed Hodge to sing lead on the gospel song "You Better Run", while he sang bass. Hodge can be seen in all of Presley's concert films.

    Seven years after Presley's death, Hodge published a memoir, Me'n Elvis (1984). He acted as an adviser for several films about Presley and took part in lecture tours. In later years, he often played the Memories Theatre in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. He continued to perform while he had treatment for lung cancer and consoled himself with the thought that he would soon see Presley again.

    Charles Franklin Hodge, singer and guitarist: born Decatur, Alabama 14 December 1934' died Knoxville, Tennessee 3 March 2006.


  2. #2
    Vegas King
    Charlie was a true friend and very fine musician

  3. #3
    PeacockLady Diane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Maine, USA
    Thanks for the nice article on Charlie Jen. He'll always be my favorite of the MM.


  4. #4
    TCB Mafia SweetCaroline's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Sacramento foothills
    Quote Originally Posted by Diane View Post
    Thanks for the nice article on Charlie Jen. He'll always be my favorite of the MM.

    Mine too. IMO Charlie was a CLASS act.

    I will never forget you Rosanne.
    R.I.P. 4-27-59~7-22-09

  5. #5
    Down In The Alley shelley.m.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    The Great White North.
    Charlie was probably the truest friends Elvis ever had.
    The One and Only King of Rock'n'Roll.

  6. #6
    TCB Mafia Princess franny's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Thank you, for the great read on Charlie, Jen. He seemed to be a real nice man.

    Has it been over two years already, since his passing....time flies!


  7. #7
    Graceland Mail Room U.S. Male's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Southeastern Portion of These Here United States
    I had the pleasure of meeting Charlie on several occasions, and he was always very friendly to speak with.
    "Don't tamper with the property of the U.S. Male"

  8. #8
    Cadillac King Unique Dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Charlie was a nice guy and always friendly and pleasant to speak with.
    Security is not the absence of danger but the presence of God no matter what the danger.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    In the Aloha show he introduced him as "general flunky" which is cut out in the album. Really funny I think, but not quite appropriate when it goes out to the world via satelite...

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