Thanks for posting this Franny.
I thought this was interesting...
It's an interview with Steve Binder, who was the director of the Elvis 68' Comeback Special...he seems very nice... click on the link below...
I liked reading this part...
Q : You and Elvis went for a walk on Sunset Boulevard?
A : Not a walk necessarily. I was always kinda probing and, you know, we had a really good behind the scenes one on one relationship. And I said "What do you think would happen if you walked out on the street today?" And he said "What do you mean?" I said, "Well what do you think would happen?" And he looked at me curiously and he said "Well, I don't know what do you think would happen?" And I said "Nothing. This is 1968. You walk down on the street on Sunset Boulevard, and I almost promise you, guarantee you, nobody's gonna tear your clothes off. Nobody's gonna hound you for autographs or whatever, you know, they're gonna just accept you. These are different times, you know." And that was the end of the conversation, and it was a few days later, we rehearsed the show at our offices in the piano room before we ever went to NBC with the full orchestra and the staff and so forth. And every day Elvis would come to our office and we would rehearse the show on piano, and teach him the arrangements and so forth. And up until this time Elvis had never recorded in his life with anything bigger than a rhythm section. Drums, bass guitar, sometimes he'd even have a bass and that was it. And now we're asking him to, you know, appear before 50 musicians and sing. He was nervous about that. And then when I fired Billy Strange and brought in Billy Goldenberg, Elvis didn't even know who Billy Goldenberg was, to do all the arrangements and conduct the special. It truly changed his musical direction. After that he loved big bands and full orchestras and what have you.
Anyway, the story, I'm digressing. But the story on Sunset is a few days later while we were rehearsing, Elvis came to me and said "Let's go." I didn't even know what he was talking about and I said "Lets go where?" He said "Downstairs." So everybody grabbed their hats or coats or whatever and they said "Let's go" and Elvis said "No, no. Only Steve and I are going down there. You all, you can watch from the window," cause we were on like the third floor. And he said "But we're goin' down there, you know, to see what it's like on Sunset Boulevard." We went down at the peak of traffic, like 5:00 in the evening. And we got down in front of our building. And then, we stood out there for a few minutes, and we were chatting small talk. I don't even remember what we were talking about. But what I was observing, and what he was observing, was that nobody was paying any attention to us. And after awhile it got uncomfortable. And Elvis pretty soon was trying to draw attention to himself. He was kinda waving at cars driving by and some kids were coming from Tower Records and they bumped into us and didn't even lift their heads up to see they had bumped into Elvis and so forth. And, we stood out there for like 10, almost embarrassing minutes, trying to draw attention to hey this is really Elvis Presley.
And after it was all over I could tell a real change of attitude in him. He was loose, he was really fun, and he really trusted me. And then, the irony of the thing is I was convinced if anybody had a sign out on Sunset Boulevard saying, this is Elvis Presley not some Hollywood impersonator or character or whatever, he would've been mobbed and they would've torn his clothes off and so forth but he never knew that and I never mentioned it to him.
Thanks for posting this Franny.
"How do I get placed in situations like this? Ah hell, I guess it's all part of showbusiness "~ Elvis in his limo on his way to perform in Omaha, NE on June 19th 1977
You're welcome, elvispresleyfan1935...
I was just picturing in my mind Elvis walking down the street and people not realizing it was really Elvis...lol
A little too hard to believe, if you ask me.Originally Posted by franny
I love this interview (particularly when Binder compares Elvis to Hamlet and the reason he gives) -- but I doubt the veracity of Binder's remarks at a few points. Ah, well. He was there; not me. There is a truth and it exists.
I don't know if anyone has caught it or not but they've been playing a pretty long 4 part interview with Binder on Sirius this last week all about the Comeback special and how they had to fight every step of the way with the colonel. I particularly liked when he described 1st hand, how Parker went nuts when he and the writers pitched "IN I can Dream" To Elvis who listened to it over and over why The Colonel Screamed Over my dead body. Imagine that special with out that closer now. That closing number is IMO one of the best moments in TV history.