Saturday, August 20, 2011


Elvis performs for 1 Billion people live... and opens with a song from his past.

THE BACKGROUND - On January 14th. 1973 at 12:40am Elvis Presley walked out on stage at the Honolulu International Convention Center and performed before the largest audience in concert history. The 38 year old Entertainer turned in a masterful performance in front of the sold out fans in attendance and the rest of the world by way of satellite.

The "Aloha From Hawaii" concert is considered by many music historians as the pinnacle of Elvis Presley's brilliant career. Elvis obviously performed some of musics greatest moments on record. But he was even better, if that is possible - live. Elvis opens the show of his life with See See Rider, a blues classic from 1924 by Ma Rainey (with a young Louis Armstrong on cornet). Elvis would hear local Blues musicians play this gem as a young boy growing up in Tupelo Mississippi. With his career on the line Elvis goes back to the future.

MY TAKE - With all the great performances from the "Aloha From Special" why didn't I chose one of the more marquee songs like "American Trilogy", "Can't Help Falling In Love" or "Burning Love"? Mainly, I really love the fact that for Elvis' moment of truth: when he confidently steps on stage in front of 1 billion people, he opens with a blues song (taken up tempo) from his musical roots as a child.

Elvis performs See See Rider perfectly and for the rest on hour and a half concert Elvis is at the height of his artistic powers and delivers a show for the ages. Elvis effortlessly transitions from his original hits to his (at the time) modern day classics. But, it shall always be noted that when the stakes were never higher, Elvis reaches into his past and sentimentally opens with now immortal: See See Rider.

( Jody Cranston / Great Elvis Moment #2 ).
( Jody Cranston / Elvis Blog ).