Elvis and cars the basics

WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND http://www.Elvis.com and their “Gates of Graceland” YouTube posts which is chocked full of rare facts, artifacts, etc. I have great respect for each of them. PLEASE do yourself a favor and subscribe to their channel and let others know about these wonderful endeavors.

Elvis Presley had a life-long love affair with motor cars. Beginning in the ’50s with Cadillac’s, including the Pink Cadillac that he eventually gave to his mother – probably the most famous car in the world – to a second hand Volkswagen and two BMW 507s in Germany. In the ’60s there were more Cadillac’s, Ford Lincoln’s and a Rolls Royce among many others. In the ’70s, again Elvis purchased Cadillac’s, a Mercedes-Benz 600, even a Ford T-Bird – but his most prized cars of the 1970s were his Stutz Blackhawk’s. Elvis was the first person to own a Stutz Blackhawk, and there can be no doubt his favorite car of the 1970s was his 1973 Stutz Blackhawk III.
Billy Smith: I remember when Elvis got his driver’s license. My daddy was working for Precision Tool. He was making fairly good money, and he had just bought a ’51 Chevrolet, with a sun visor and all. Elvis wanted to borrow it to take his driver’s test, and my daddy let him have it.
When he went to take his test, we all went. Elvis was sitting in the front with Daddy and Vernon. Very seldom did he ever say anything dirty in front of them. But a guy pulled out in front of daddy, and Elvis yelled, ‘Watch where you’re going, you son of a bitch!’ We were all shocked, you know. The car got real quiet. That year, Elvis won the Safe Driving Award at school.
Joe Esposito: Elvis had a lot of cars. The first thing that attracted him was the looks of the car. He didn’t care if it was a $5,000 car or a $50,000 car or what brand it was, although he was very partial to American-made cars. He really liked Cadillac’s and Lincolns, also some Chryslers. We bought a few foreign cars like the Rolls Royce because it was very prestigious and looked great, a Mercedes limousine and a Ferrari, but mostly his cars were American-made. He was very patriotic when it came to that.
If Elvis saw a car he liked in the window, he’d stop and buy it. That was basically it. If the dealership was closed and we knew the owner, we’d call and wake him up. We’d say, ‘Listen, Elvis wants to buy this car’. Naturally the guy would meet us there, because if he didn’t, Elvis would say, ‘Well, we’ll find someplace else’.
In early March, 1955 Elvis bought his first Pink Cadillac.
It was a pink and white 1954 Cadillac and provided transportation for Elvis and the Blue Moon Boys for about three months. The car went up in smoke when a brake lining caught fire, on the road between Hope and Texarkana, Ark. on June 5, 1955. ‘The first car I bought was the most beautiful car I’ve ever seen. It was second hand but I parked it outside my hotel the day I got it and stayed up all night just looking at it. The next day, it caught fire and burned up on the road…’ Elvis Presley

Take care and may God bless you always.

Advertisements

August 16, 2018…41 years later

This is (sadly) the 41st anniversary of the death of Elvis Aron (Aaron) Presley. I am among the ever decreasing persons who were alive during Elvis’ career. I can remember that day like it was yesterday and that is saying something as my medical diagnosis, along with my daily observations/frustrations, impair (to varying degrees) my memory.

August 16, 1977 was a bright sunshine day where I lived/was born/was raised and the same is true in Memphis Tennessee where Elvis had his primary home. The home he purchased with his mother and father being Gladys Love (Smith) Presley and Vernon Elvis Presley. The home that was removed from the city. A home that part of the acres adjoin a church. A home that the previous owners named Graceland. A home that was the confirmation of the promise Elvis made repeatedly during his childhood of “mamma one day I am going to buy you a nice house”. A home where Gladys had her chickens. A home that, with some exceptions, looks similar now as it was when Elvis bought it. A home that Elvis loved. It is also (sadly) the location where Elvis died.

My heart and prayers go out to; Billy Jo Smith, Lisa Marie Presley, the Presley family, Kathy Westmoreland, Sandie Kaye Stevens, Sandi Pichon, Jerry Schilling, and others who I extend this apology to for not naming them in this blog post.

I learned today that Aretha Franklin died today as well. Interestingly she was from Memphis and she died on the day as Elvis i.e. August 16th. People called Elvis “the king” or “the king of rock and roll”. People called Aretha “the queen of soul”. Worth noting is that there is audio of Elvis in concert in the 1970s whereby a woman holds up a sign saying “Elvis is King” and Elvis responded “there is but one king Jesus Christ”.

Future generations may have access to so much about the life, onstage and off, of Elvis Presley. I can attest to the fact that there is far too much incorrect information. Bias. Disrespect. Conjecture concerning Elvis. I have always believed in facts, firsthand sources, and context. I am not one of those that believed Elvis walked on water or that he was perfect or that he made all the right decisions. Elvis was a man blessed by God, as we all are, with talents. Elvis bravely pursued his talents and the rest as they say is…history. It is my hope that long past the day I pass that some of my insights, opinions, knowledge of Elvis is read and put into proper context. That they don’t feed into the lies and half truths. That they enjoy his music. His films. His TV appearances. His concert, and personal, recordings. There are some good life lessons to be garnered about Elvis as a man, a Christian, who had a heart and passion for those who were poor and disadvantaged. Elvis was born and raised in bitter poverty and he embraced people of all types and music of all types. Elvis knew firsthand the challenges of being raised for a period of time by a single parent as his father was completing his time in jail/prison (note: Vernon did everything humanly possible to take responsibility, compensate the injured party in full, To not ever get into legal trouble again. Vernon was ashamed and embarrassed about this and in no way shape or form did this one act dictate who Vernon Presley was as a man, a father, and a husband. And the ONLY reason I bring this subject up is that so many don’t know of Elvis’ life and all of the hardships).

Take care and may God bless you.

PHOTOS are; Elvis while in his US Army stint (1958 – 1960), Elvis with Priscilla at Graceland circa 1967, Elvis with Priscilla on vacation circa 1968, Elvis with the Clara Ward singers circa 1960s, Elvis in front of Graceland with his Rolls Royce circa 1960s, and some of Elvis’ cars at his home in Memphis Tennessee being Audubon Drive circa 1956.

WM Horse Army

WM Elvis wtih Priscilla his back n snowWM E Cilla (7)WM 1960s Elvis with Clara Ward sisters rare indeed 10WM CARS outside GRACELAND 1965 March 17WM AUDOBON DRIVE Elvis cars lined up

 

Thank you

THANK YOU graphic

 

I wanted to take the time to say THANK YOU to Elvis Presley fans worldwide, the friends/loved ones’ of Elvis who are still around, the family/friends of those who have (sadly) passed away but were an integral part of Elvis’ life story, Lisa Marie, Linda Thompson, Priscilla, Jack Soden, all of the hardworking staff at Graceland, and to those I have been blessed to know as a direct result of being an Elvis fan including but not limited to; BIlly Jo Smith and family, Alanna Nash, Sandie Kaye Stevens, Sandi Pichon, Kathy Westmoreland, etc. To anyone I failed to list please accept my apologies.

In less than a week will be the “anniversary” of the (sadly) passing of Elvis who passed away on August 16, 1977 at the age of 42. I still can’t believe that I have lived on this earth not only as long as Elvis did but T H I R T E E N years…older. My heart and prayers go out to so many who on August 16, 1977 lost their father. Their friend. Their relative. Their co-worker. Their son. Their nephew. I know that time does not heal all wounds but please know how thankful I am to you and yours and may God grant you good health and success on this “anniversary” and the other 364 days of each year.

We are the last generation that lived during Elvis’ wondrous career and (sadly) far too many of us pass away each year and I encourage Elvis Presley fans everywhere to seek out these individuals. To say thank you. To support their professional endeavors Elvis related or not.

Take care and may God bless you always.

Jeff Schrembs

August 16th (1977) we lost a great man

 

To be a great man doesn’t mean you can sing. It does mean you have fame. Fortune. Or you have powerful connections. I do N O T use the word “great” loosely nor should it be randomly bestowed to someone because they can hit a baseball. Throw a football. Score points in a basketball game. You get my point In this instance, with the 41st “anniversary” of Elvis Presley dying soon upon on 8/16/1977, I am talking about the man named Elvis Presley who knew; wealth, success, bitter poverty, love, devotion, to be thrown out of housing with his beloved mother and father, moving away from friends/relatives/neighbors in Tupelo Mississippi to the big city…Memphis (Tennessee), being made fun of, friendship, the beauty in this world from the lowly blossom to the regal of the heavens, the power of the church/God/Jesus, working hard, being a father, losing the life of his greatest love at the peak of his career being Gladys Love (Smith) Presley on August 14, 1958, the adverse whispers of those who looked down upon with disdain to those whose only “crime” was the lack of monetary means, the power of prayers, and how hard it was to see his mother cry yet try to be brave while her husband (Elvis’ father Vernon Elvis Presley) was in prison *** note – Vernon took responsibility – he served his time – he apologized – he made monetary amends to the victim – he was forever sorry – he asked forgiveness many times void of words but with a look that a man gives his wife when he knows she seems him as…lesser, and most of all never was involved in any dishonorable behavior to the law or anyone else AND one last footnote is that Gladys was successful in getting Vernon released from prison early as she was able to garner enough signatures along with the fact that Vernon was married with a minor son and both desperately needed him home with his family and any income he could generate. ***

Elvis, even from childhood, loved to give. Give of his time, his efforts, and his possessions. When he was the most successful entertained in the world, and in my opinion always will be, he visited hospitals. Met with the patients. Prayed with the family. Gave money without being asked and was genuinely humble and asked if they would please accept this gesture. Elvis also was active in major charitable endeavors such as the March of Dimes, St. Judes, etc. Though he never did “commercials”, other than one that has been lost to time and it was for a local donuts shop if I remember correctly, he proudly entertained the sick and their family and took photographs with the sick holding large poster board with the words “please give, or support the March of Dimes, or lets eradicate polio, etc.”. To the injured/sick and the public Elvis bravely smiled and praised the caregivers while giving the sick words of love. Of support. Of them being unique and worthy. But there are countless times that after leaving the hospital(s), or families homes, etc. Elvis would opt not to drive, as he had when arriving, as the tears flowed and he cried. He cried from the heart. He mourned. He asked GodJesus to help them. He was inconsolable. Many times this reaction/emotion would be repeated for days after. Weeks after. Months after. Years after. And to those who were closest to Elvis knew not to say anything as Elvis tried to wrap his mind around the questions of life such as; why Lord are these innocents maimed/sick/disabled, why have you blessed me with success, will anyone remember me when I’m gone, have I done anything to warrant the kingdom of God/Jesus, is this a dream and I’ll wake up and be dirt poor again, etc. Elvis felt. Let me repeat this. Elvis felt. He was attuned to the helpless. The needy. Those needing a shoulder to lean on. Those who were going through life changing events. Elvis felt. Elvis felt. He felt for those in his view, in his house, in his city, in other towns, in the United States, in the world, etc. Elvis felt for men, women, and children regardless of their color. Their social standing. Elvis loved his fellow man unconditionally. Elvis knew of his faults. His failures. His temper. His insecurities. Elvis felt and he was not a great man because of his fame and fortune for he was a great man for he did all he could for others. He performed, while being very ill, for 8 years straight so as not to let a fan/audience member down. He was rock and roll but his love of Gospel music was his anchor. Elvis was a great man for he bravely and honorably used the talents God/Jesus gave him. He worked hard to improve on his talents. On August 16, 1977 the world lost a great man. His name was Elvis Aron (Aaron) Presley the son of Gladys Love (Smith) Presley and Vernon Elvis Presley and he was forty-two years old.

 

Take care and may God bless you and yours,

 

Jeff Schrembs

The last generation attached to Elvis is disappearing (sadly) with each passing day {Part 1}

WM Elvis with Muhammad Ali BEST DETAILWM 1957 Elvis in middle two young student reporters school rareareWM 1950s Elvis on roller coaster in front arms uWM 1971 Elvis with sweets RARERERRERERERERERERERI sometimes have to catch myself to affirm, and remind, that the majority of the World was not alive at any time during Elvis’ lifetime. Yeah, I’m 55 years old and somedays I feel 5555555555 years old but that is a heck of a set of facts to grasp 24/7 for me and other Elvis fans.

Elvis was not a myth. He was not perfect. He was not a hologram. He wasn’t made up of just his successes. His records were not always popular. In fact, many times in the 1970’s he was made fun of in the press. His inaction’s on stage were ridiculed. His fans were accused of trying to relive their childhood. The younger generation  of the 1960’s and 1970’s, majoritarian speaking, made fun of Elvis. His weight. His music. And his heritage.

 

Ask ME Elvis (3/2018) edition

Hello.

Here were go.

Was Elvis a drinker?   Yes. He drank water, Pepsi, sweet tea, coke, mountain valley spring water, peach bourbon (rarely), and screwdriver (rarely).

Was Elvis mean?  Could be. Elvis had a bona fide temper courtesy of his beloved mother Gladys. If you look into Elvis’ eyes, especially during the early concerts – tv appearances = movies – etc., you can see he has the propensity of getting mean in a second. His nickname of “fire eyes” was justified. Also, back in 56 when Elvis was sucker punched while at a gas station, Elvis was sitting in driver’s seat, Elvis got out and fought the older taller man and gave the dude a black eye, bruised cheek, scuffed nose, and a memory not to mess with Elvis.

Was Elvis strange?  Aggh?  Whaa? I invoke my old man Elvis can and refrain, respectfully, from answering. Remember to brush your teeth kids.

to be continued.

The incomporable Elvis Presley (part 1)

Let us get my biases out front and center. I am an Elvis Presley fan. I have been for six decades. I have written about Elvis. I have collected Elvis and man if I had a fraction of what I have “lost”, pertaining to specific items involving Elvis – Colonel Parker – Gladys Presley – Vernon Presley – and others, it would blow your mind (I am thankful that I took the time to take photographs, to put hours upon hours to scans, to transfer to computer disks, I did extensive digital backups and I encourage others to do so for their important documents, photos, videos, etc.). I was a die-hard Elvis fan while in elementary school, middle school, and high school. I can assure you that during most of those years it was not “cool” with my peers as they were into hard rock, drugs, non stop partying, and even some music that I enjoyed. I’m not judging them but pointing out differences. Additionally, there were errie simalarities between me and Elvis and here are a few; we are approximately the same height, the same shoe size, the same blood type, both of us have a leg that is slightly shorter than the other, both of us had siblings that died at birth (sadly) and I miss my sister every day God bless her, we both sang in church, going back to Elvis’ time at Lansky’s in 1956 we have the exact same measurements (i.e. suits, pants, jackets, shirts, etc.) as I had at the same age, we both walk with a unique gait in part because of the leg length, our first child was a daughter, etc.  To add to the mix I got the nickname “Elvis”, I can’t recall where it originated as I didn’t walk around wearing Elvis shirts, and I have the yearbooks to prove it (i.e. friends, respected persons, etc. opted to use that surname). Also, I never sugar coated Elvis temper. HIs shortcomings. His anger. Hence, I didn’t think he was imperfect but I acknowledged his admirable qualities as I was “informed” on a level few, if any, have obtained (i.e. as I have literally put in years and years and years and years and years and blessed to have firsthand relationships pertaining to Elvis the man and the performer).

No one was with Elvis every second of his life and (sadly) many who were, at times, have passed away. But fortunately they, individually and collectively, gave interviews. They wrote books. They took photographs. They took videos. They left behind a lot to digest. Combined with Elvis’ three decades of professional works, his personal notes, the fact that he was the most photographed person of all time, etc. it does lend itself to garnering insights in, and truths about, so many aspects of his life.

No one was like Elvis. No one sang like Elvis. No one naturally moved like Elvis. To say he was unique is an understatement. But let’s go into some aspects about Elvis that aren’t generally known and in full disclosure, this will be a multi-part series/posts.

Some Elvis song gems:

Elvis put his soul into his music so I encourage you to seek out and listen to these songs in no specific order. All videos courtesy of YouTube.

Elvis and October 9, 1973

DIVORCE 4n1 photos October 9 1973 interesting yet sad candids   It has been well documented that (sadly) Elvis and Priscilla’s marriage began to deteriorate in 1971 and, with increasing torment for both, Elvis filed for divorce from Priscilla with it being finalized on October 9, 1973. These photographs capture Elvis and Priscilla walking out of court. Elvis appears to be heavy (i.e. gained weight). Priscilla appears to be fine. At times they held hands and, as one photograph confirms, Elvis reached over and kissed her. Priscilla would later state that “as we walked out of court I held Elvis’ hand. They were swollen and I was shocked at how bad he looked. I was worried. Elvis had always taken great pride in his appearance and I wasn’t prepared for how he looked. I knew the divorce, and seeing Lisa Marie, weighed heavily on him and we both made mistakes. He leaned over to me and sang part of the Dolly Parton song I will always love you”.

What many Elvis fans don’t know is that Elvis made a specific request of Priscilla in the divorce filings/proceedings which the presiding Judge upheld and that was Priscilla was not to use the Presley name. She was court ordered to legally change her last name. Elvis did not make this demand at the spur of the moment. He made it a center piece of his divorce. Many of those close to Elvis, including family members – coworkers – loved ones – friends – etc, have said that “Elvis was adamant on Priscilla losing the right to be called Presley. There was no doubt that Elvis loved her very much but there were other emotions involved. Elvis never thought his marriage would come to an end “. He had invested much in the relationship and as photographs and videos attest Elvis dotted on Priscilla. Elvis showed PDA. Elvis was always intimate and gentle behind closed doors with Priscilla. Openly he was caring, and loving and the photos and videos of the late 1960’s show that this was among the happiest times in Elvis’ life.

At the time of Elvis’ divorce I had been a fan for decades. Many magazines had storylines about the problems in their marriage for a few years. When the divorce was realized the story became more sensational with obvious leaks from firsthand accounts. The american love story between Elvis and Priscilla had come to an end (legally) approximately six and a half years of marriage.

We never contemplated that Elvis would pass away four years later. We had seen Elvis recently on TV on the Aloha from Hawaii concert and Elvis looked fine and sounded exceptional. noticeably Elvis included many love, divorce, children, etc. songs that meant a great deal to him. Since my own parents were divorced, and at the time I was the only one of my peers/classmates whose parents got divorced. It was almost unheard of and Elvis could have married just about any woman in the world as fans we worried and we hadn’t seen Elvis this sullen/sad since (sadly) his beloved mother passed away on August 14, 1958.

Those close to Elvis say between the divorce, the reality that Lisa Marie was not always nearby, his failing health (mentally, emotionally, physcially), his financial burdens, and no other major professional endeavors in the works (i.e. unlike the 1968 comeback TV special by Singer, his return to live performances in 1969 after a seven year absence, the pent up deamand by fans to see Elvis in concert across the United States/World, the 1973 Aloha from Hawaii tv special which was watched by an estimated audience of ONE BILLION people, etc.) it was a combination that adversely affected Elvis 24/7. Worth noting is that Elvis never knew how much he was loved. How much he was admired. How much his music meant to people. How many cared about him. Today it is a no brainer but Elvis had serious doubts about his legacy and the choices he had made in his life.

Elvis was wholly unique. I am sad that generations never had the chance to see Elvis alive, in concert, releasing great music, and/or seeing him in his prime. Looking, and smiling, like no one else..ever. He was remarkable.

Thank you for visiting and please check out http://www.ElvisCollector.info and let others know about us. Take care and may God bless you and yours.

Red West passed away July 18, 2017

  • I just don’t have the words but my prayers go out to the family and loved ones.
  • To be continued…

PRESS RELEASE:

  • Courtesy of Hollywood online
  • Red West, a boyhood friend and member of Elvis Presley’s “Memphis Mafia” who appeared in many of the singer’s movies as well as in Road HouseBlack Sheep Squadron and Goodbye Solo, has died. He was 81.

West died Tuesday at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis after suffering an aortic aneurysm, his wife, Pat, told The Commercial Appeal newspaper.

West appeared as a stuntman/actor on dozens of episodes of CBS’ futuristic Western series The Wild Wild West in the 1960s and a decade later had a regular role as Sgt. Andy Micklin on another Robert Conrad-starrer, NBC’s Black Sheep Squadron.

He portrayed Red Webster, the owner of an auto parts store who gets his revenge against Ben Gazzara’s character, in the Patrick Swayze classic Road House (1989) and was Sheriff Tanner in the Walking Tall movies released in 1973 and 1975.

As a leading man, West garnered acclaim when he played an old-timer who forges a friendship with a Senegalese cab driver (Souleymane Sy Savane) in director Ramin Bahrani’s North Carolina-set drama Goodbye Solo (2008).

A native of Memphis, West played football in junior college, served in the U.S. Marines and became a Golden Gloves boxer and karate instructor. He first connected with Presley when both were students at Humes High School, he recalled in a 2008 interview.

“Elvis was always different,” he said. “We had crew cuts and wore T-shirts and blue jeans; Elvis had the long ducktail, the long sideburns, and he wore the loud clothes and naturally was a target for all the bullies. One day luckily I walked into the boys’ bathroom at Humes High School and three guys were going to cut his hair just, you know, to make themselves look big or make them feel big or whatever, and I intervened and stopped it.”

After Presley began his recording career, West served as his driver and then worked as one of his bodyguards for years. Meanwhile, he appeared alongside Presley in 18 films, including Flaming Star (1960), Blue Hawaii (1961), Girls! Girls! Girls!(1962), It Happened at the World’s Fair (1963), Viva Las Vegas (1964) and Live a Little, Love a Little(1968).

West also wrote or co-wrote such Presley songs as “Separate Ways,” “If Every Day Was Like Christmas” and “If You Talk in Your Sleep” and worked with singers Ricky Nelson, Pat Boone and Johnny Rivers as well.

One year after he was fired by Presley’s father and two weeks before Elvis’ death on Aug. 16, 1977, the tell-all book Elvis: What Happened?, co-written by West, was published and became a controversial best-seller.

West, who studied with the acclaimed acting teacher Jeff Corey, also appeared in at least two movies filmed in his hometown — Francis Ford Coppola’s The Rainmaker (1997) and Ira Sachs’ Forty Shades of Blue (2005) — and on a 2011 episode of the TNT series Memphis Beat.

His film résumé also included Two for the Seesaw(1962), The Americanization of Emily (1964), The Legend of Grizzly Adams (1990), Natural Born Killers(1994), I Still Know What You Did Last Summer(1998), Cookie’s Fortune (1999) and Glory Road(2006), and on TV he was seen on BonanzaMannixGet SmartThe Six Million Dollar ManThe Fall Guy and Nashville.

Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Pat — who was one of Elvis’ secretaries — and sons John and Brent.

Joe Esposito, Elvis’ friend, died November 23, 2016

Image result for elvis with joe esposito 1967 It is with a heavy heart that I learned that Joe Esposito died on November 23, 2016 at the age of 78.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the family, loved ones, friends, etc.. May God grant them time to mourn. Time to heal (as best as is humanly possible). And always recall/remember the acts, passions, simple gestures, etc. of Joe Esposito.

Elvis Presley met Joe while in the US Army in 1958 and their friendship grew with Elvs ultimately offering Joe a job working with Elvis upon their discharge(s) in 1960. And during Elvis wedding in 1967 he was “co best man” with Marty Lacker who is a priceless asset to the Elvis Presley community worldwide along with being an exceptional man with an exceptional family.

Joe Esposito was one of the “Memphis Mafia” the nickname given to Elvis’ entourage during the 1960’s.

We will be adding (sadly) this information to our Elvis Presley website http://www.ElvisCollector.info along with so many other quality individuals who have (sadly) passed away over the years.

There are those living who Elvis loved, cared for, befriended, trusted, etc. They are including but not limited to; Marty Lacker, Billy Smith, Red West, Sonny West, Kathy Westmoreland, etc. I encourage everyone to seek these individuals out. To support them in all of their professional endeavors. To let them know how much you appreciate their firsthand accounts of being with Elvis onstage and off for decades. To promote healing within the Elvis Presley community so that we can cherish/focus on the facts, good and not so good, about Elvis the man and Elvis the performer.

Joe Esposito you will be missed. But, you will never be forgotten.

Take care and may God bless you.

 

Jeff Schrembs

http://www.ElvisCollector.info

http://www.ElvisCollectorWorldwide.freeforums.org