Elvis Presley ‘hated’ a certain kind of singer, says Priscilla Presley

Elvis Presley stars in trailer for Double Trouble in 1967

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The King of Rock and Roll, Elvis Presley, worked with countless artists throughout his career and learned about all kinds of different musical acts over the course of his life. His ex-wife, Priscilla Presley, once detailed how he loved a number of singers, but couldn’t stand a certain style of singing.

Writing in her memoir, Elvis and Me, Priscilla said: “He couldn’t abide singers who were, in his words, ‘all technique and no emotional feeling.'”

In this category, she added, Elvis “firmly placed Mel Tormé and Robert Goulet”.

These singers received a damning fate in Elvis’ home, Graceland, while he was watching TV with his gun.

She wrote: “They were both responsible for two television sets being blown away with a .357 Magnum.”

Elvis was a tough critic, but Priscilla revealed he knew when someone had star quality.

She wrote: “Elvis could spot talent instantly. In Las Vegas, we regularly took in lounge acts featuring various up-and-coming artists.

“If Elvis liked the show, he patronised the club, encouraging the entertainers to pursue their careers, infusing them with confidence and enthusiasm.”

She was keen to give further details about some of Elvis’ favourite acts, however.

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Priscilla wrote: “Some of his favourites were Ike and Tina Turner, Gary Puckett and the Union Gap, dancers Tybe and Bracia, and old-timers Fats Domino and the Ink Spots.

“All talented people deserving acknowledgement in their craft.”

The star’s wife also recalled how he loved the singing power of one British performer.

Priscilla explained how Elvis loved Tom Jones – particularly his song Green, Green Grass of Home.

The King was also partial to listening to Arthur Prysock, John Gary, opera singer Robert Merrill, Brook Benton, Roy Orbison, and Charles Boyer’s recording of Where Has Love Gone?

Another artist that piqued Elvis’ interest was David Bowie.

The singer was keen to have Ziggy Stardust write a song for him in 1975.

Bowie obliged, and wrote Golden Years for Elvis.

However, when the song reached the star’s ears, he wasn’t interested.

Two years later, Elvis died, leaving Bowie with no second chance to work with the legendary singer.


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