Very good interview. Thanks for posting it.
Elvis Presley - In His Own Words
October 28 1957 - Pan Pacific Auditorium, Los Angeles, California
Elvis Presleys recent appearance at the Pan Pacific Auditorium in Los Angeles has our Associate Editor, Dolores Diamond, scurrying
over there with pen and camera for this backstage interview and exclusive pictures of Elvis, on and off the stage.
Elvis Presley, calm and collected, despite nine thousand screaming girls awaiting him out front, strolled in backstage, propped himself on
the table, his legs dangling and swinging freely. Attired in a red jacket, a black shirt and pants, a yellow tie, and black shoes with a cool
silver belt studded with rhinestones, he made a rather colourful figure. And a frank one, as you will see!
Dolores Elvis, exactly how do you feel about all these interviews?
Elvis The press makes entertainers, and the deejays, too. If the press didn't write, no one would know what you're doing. Everyone needs
Dolores As the reputed King of Rock 'n Roll, how do you feel about the comments Frank Sinatra made railing Rock 'n Roll enthusiasts nothing
but a bunch of 'cretinous goons' and the music itself as 'the martial music of every side-burned delinquent on the face of the earth'
Elvis He has a right to his opinion, but I can't see him knocking it for no good reason. I wouldn't knock Frank Sinatra. I like him very much. If
I remember correctly, he was also part of a trend, just like Rock "n Roll. I think it's the greatest music ever natcherly 'cause it's the only
thing I can do! If I were a pop singer, I'd prefer pop
Dolores What pop singers do you dig most ?
Elvis I like Pat Boonc, the Four Aces, the Ames Brothers, Dean Martin, Tommy Sands, and Ricky Nelson real well. (Ricky, incidentally,
was in the audience opening night, left in the middle of one of Elvis' numbers.) I like classical music, too
Dolores Do you dislike anything?
Elvis Who am I to sit here and knock someone else? If someone has strived for something, then it's OK. I don't dig in and question it. I never
knock anyone who's successful
Dolores Is that your criterion? Anything which is successful is automatically good?
Elvis Yes, I guess so
Dolores Some critics have openly accuscd you of inciting juvenile delinquency. How do you feel about this?
Elvis I don't understand it. Delinquency to me means robbing, knife fighting, and things like that. I've done nothing to cause that and I'd never
set up a pattern like that for others to follow
Dolores Do you think a lot about your fans?
Elvis I sure do, I always try to conduct my personal life to set a good example for them. I think about this all the time
Dolores Elvis, is it true that you don't smoke or drink?
Dolores Being in the public eye constantly must be quite a strain, especially dating. What are some of the limitations?
Elvis Well, I can't roam around like I used to. Can't go to football games or other public places
Dolores What do you do on a date?
Elvis Well, usually we just ride around. I get mobbed if I go anyplace. Sometimes the girl comes up to my apartment and we have dinner there.
Sometimes we go to a drive-in for a hamburger, or we go to a real late movie
Dolores What do you do in Memphis?
Elvis Well, most of my friends are in Memphis. That's why I established a home there. We've been kicked out of the same places, you know,
it's easier to be yourself there
Dolores You've invited many girls to visit you in Memphis, Elvis. What happens when they get there?
Elvis (grinning) Oh, we go motorcycle riding and to the movies. Nothing much
Dolores Are you planning on taking any more gals to Memphis?
Elvis File your application at the door, honey
Dolores How many have gone so far?
Elvis Five (He named off Venctia Stevenson, Naialie Wood, and several others I'd never heard of.)
Dolores What about Yvonne Lime?
Elvis Yeah, I forgot Yvonne. That makes six
Dolores Who pays their fare?
Elvis I pay all the expenses
Dolores Do you still date any of these girls?
Elvis I still see Venetia once in a while. I own three horses, take her riding
Dolores (handing him comment in 'Modern Teen' listing Anita Wood as his "number one girlfriend") Would you care to comment on this caption?
Elvis (reading it very seriously) Yes, I would. There's no truth in it. What happened was Anita was seeing me off at the station. A reporter
approached, a photographer told me to kiss her and I did. The reporter said, "Number one?" I said, "Yeah, sure" and boarded the train.
I was half-way to California before I realized what he meant. By then, it was in the papers that she was my number one girlfriend.
Dolores Is there a current number one girlfriend?
Elvis I've felt close to falling in love a couple of times. In fact, I almost was engaged twice before I got into show business. But I don't care
enough for one girl to be identified with them. Honey, I prefer to date 'em all until I find the right one
Dolores Do you feel that any of these girls have dated you tor publicity or to further their own careers?
Elvis Yes, several (He gallantly refused to name them)
Dolores What prevented you from getting involved at the last minute with some of these girls?
Elvis It's funny, but if you don't care for the gal, it'll come out. What happened was I discovered that I didn't care as much as I thought I did.
So now I let things ride. In a way, it's lucky I didn't get tied up
Dolores Can I say, on the record, that you have no romantic interests as of this interview?
Elvis I am not in love now. But I can't guarantee about tomorrow
Dolores Any preferences in women?
Elvis I don't favor any one type. I like girls!
Dolores Getting back to your career, you've undoubtedly heard that some writers have printed that Presley is on the decline, that your popularity
is waning. Do you think it is?
Elvis Well, about the reports that I'm through, this is a new one. I haven't noticed any decline. Anyway, you can't stay on top forever. Even if
I stopped singing tomorrow, I'd have no regrets. I had a ball while I was there
Dolores Financially, you're pretty well off, aren't you, even if you retired tomorrow?
Elvis I don't know exactly how much I've made. It's over a million a year
Dolores Gross or net?
Elvis Gross, I believe
Dolores Don't you have some 20-year contract, too?
Elvis My RCA Victor recording contract calls for a moderate salary over a 20-year period. Then I have two music publishing companies, plus
the Elvis Presley Enterprises." (The latter sells everything from Presley photos and buttons to lipsticks, shirts, and other wearing apparel
Dolores How many personal appearances have you made?
Elvis Last year I did 87, this year only 20. (For two appearances in Los An- geles, about an hour total on the stage, Elvis cleared $65,000!)
Dolores How much did your films 'Loving You' and 'Love Me Tender' gross?
Elvis I wouldn't know. Hal Wallis didn't tell me
Dolores He doesn't have to tell you, Elvis. You can get the figures from Variety or the trade magazines. Don't you read them? What do you
Elvis I read 'Superman' and 'Captain Marvel'
Dolores What about news magazines or newspapers?
Elvis I don't have time to read
Dolores What sports do you go in for?
Elvis Well, I don't particularly like baseball. I like football and boxing. I played football myself once, and I enjoy watchng the 'Peewee
Leagues'. As for fighting, I watch them on TV". My favorites are Sugar Ray Robinson and Rocky Marciano. I know Rocky very well.
He was going to teach me how to fight, but I chickened out
Dolores Would you like a role in films as a fighter?
Elvis You bet, a singin' fighter. Actually, I'd like to do a straight dramatic show. I'm betting on an acting career
Dolores Some critics have said that Colonel Parker, your manager, and you have a Svengali-Trilby relationship. Is this true?
Dolores Elvis, do you obey Colonel Parker? Does he rule your private life?
Elvis Heck, no. Colonel Parker only advises me on business matters and that's all! I'm young, have to do what I want. I hardly ever see him
Dolores Elvis, you've had quite a few Gold Records marking sales of over a million. What is your favourite song to date?
Elvis Dolores, I wish you'd straighten out somethin' right here. Many magazines have printed that I have eight Gold Records, but I believe in
giving a man credit for what he's done, and I've had 19 Gold Records! My favorite is 'Don't Be Cruel'
Dolores What was the hardest song for you to sing?
Elvis 'Jailhouse Rock.' It's the hardest song to sing that I've ever recorded. My tongue practically falls out on this one. A quarter million of my
Xmas album have sold to date!
Dolores Say, why did you change 'Blue Moon' all around?
Elvis Honey, when I recorded 'Blue Moon', I didn't know the words to it. When I got to the bridge, I just started yelling
Dolores Elvis, what was the first song you ever sang?
Elvis Old Shep' was tlie first song I ever did in iny life; I won $5 in a contest singin' it
Dolores Now what about all the gyrations you fo through when you sing ?
Elvis I wasn't aware of what I was doin' until people told me. I Just sing like they do back home. When I was younger, I always liked
spiritual quartets and they sing like that
Dolores It is commonly stated that 'The Singin' Idol' which Tommy Sands did on TV and now is doing for films is a thinly veiled biography of
you. Is it really?
Elvis I didn t see it on TV. From what I hear, the only similarity between it and me is that we both were singers. My grandfather isn't dead
yet. I just heard from him last week. And that character's manager was nuthin' like the Colonel! (The audience started screaming and
applauding for an act which preceded Elvis. He Jumped to his feet, ran over to see who was on) (Laughing) I can t have any of that,
applauding for someone else!
Dolores How do you feel when the girls scream for you?
Elvis Well, I figure it doesn't last, so I might as well enjoy it while I can
Dolores Are you nervous at this moment?
Elvis I'm a little shaky. I go on stage and then I relax, after I start singin'
Dolores Do you ever forget your lyrics?
Elvis Sometimes, but no one knows it. They can t tell what I in singin'. anyway. I never rehearse; the band travels with me and knows all my
numbers. Of course, I have to rehearse for TV shows and for movies
Dolores What goes on ahead of you?
Elvis I have no idea. I haven't seen the other acts. I get out there and sing for about 50 minutes, do about 17 numbers, all of the favourites
Dolores Would you say you prefer this type of personal appearance, say to a nightclub appearance in Las Vegas?
Elvis Ouch! Two years ago, I laid the biggest egg of my life in Vegas. The older groups just don't go for Rock 'n Roll. My ego went through
the floor with that one! There were good crowds, but no response like in a teenage audience. I felt like I was pulling a booboo
Dolores Do you have lines in this act?
Elvis No, I ad lib strictly. When I come off that stage, I look like I've been through a meat grinder
Dolores Elvis, do you read music?
Elvis No. And I can't play the guitar, either
Dolores What do you do with it if you don't play it?
Elvis (laughing) I use it as a brace
Dolores Well, your name is listed on the credits of several hit tunes as the author. How do you write music if you don't read it?
Elvis It's all a big hoax, honey. I never wrote a song in my life. I get one-third of the credit for recording it. It makes me look smarter than I
am. I've never even had an idea for a song. Just once, maybe
Elvis I went to bed one night, had quite a dream, and woke up all shook up. I phoned a pal and told him about it. By morning, he had a new
song -'All Shook Up'
Dolores How do you leave a show without causing a riot?
Elvis Everything is pre-arranged. I'm just like a robot getting in and out. I just follow along, that's all. I leave before the audience knows I'm
out of the building. They tell me to be at a certain door by 10:10 and I am! No bows, no curtain calls. I finish the last number, and away
Dolores Do you study the day's rushes when you make a movie?''
Elvis I sure do. I always critiiize myself in films. When I attend a movie theatre, I'll get up and leave during the numbers I don't like. Then I
come back in after they're over
Dolores Do you have a teenage audience when you re singing in a movie?
Elvis In 'Loving You' I did, but in Jailhouse Rock' I had to sing without a live audience, and it was a lot harder
Dolores What did they finally do with your sideburns?
Elvis They covered them with make-up, I'm keeping them as long as I can, that is, until they draft me
Dolores Elvis, do you think you'll ever return to school and further your education?
Elvis No, I see know point in studying. I don't think I need it, do you? But there is one thing, I'd like to be a good actor. I'm always striving
to be natural in front of the camera. That takes studying, of a sort
It was time for the show, so we terminated the interview. Elvis Presley is quiet, courteous, and freer with his quips than expected. He's
shrewd, so don't under estimate him. He'll be around for a long, long time. Incidently, he is quite tall, much-better looking than his
photographs with a clear complexion and dark blue eyes. He changed into his gold lame jacket with sparkling lapels and went out to
mesmerise the audience, all 9,000 of them
From the site of: www.keithflynn.com
Very good interview. Thanks for posting it.
"talk about the good times"
Cool interview! I can hear him speak while reading it!
Poke a little sock salad...
I liked that one, thank you.
thanks for taking the time to post the interview.
You Remember That Donach Ya?
Later Elton ^j^
Your welcome and i'm glad that you liked this great candid interview!!!!!