President, Elvis Forever Fan Club of Greece
Interview by Nigel Patterson, March 2021
In EIN’s latest interview with an Elvis fan club president from around the world, we talk with Evangelos Proiou from Greece. Evangelos, and his wife, Anna, have been running the Elvis Forever Fan Club of Greece for more than four decades. Evangelos discusses a range of topics including Elvis’ most successful records and films in Greece, rare Greek releases, and promotion of Elvis in Greece.
EIN: Evangelos, how and when did you become an Elvis Fan?
Evangelos: I became an Elvis fan back in 1961 when I saw "Blue Hawaii" in the cinema.
EIN: You and your wife, Anna, have been operating the Greek Elvis fan club for a long time. Please tell us how it all started.
Evangelos: The ELVIS FOREVER FAN CLUB OF GREECE started 44 years ago in 1978 by husband and wife team Anna & Evangelos Proiou, who still runs it. Many of its members come from countries other than Greece, which explains why the F. C. newsletters were published in English from 1983 to 2019 (last issue), containing not just Greek Elvis news but equally up-to-date international news too.
EIN: What have been some of the highlights in running the fan club?
Evangelos: Highlight moments are Fan Club meetings which are held twice a year on the Anniversaries of Elvis birth and death and include live music , Elvis impersonators, Elvis films and all free of charge. The Club has been featured on Greek Radio and TV several times, there by bringing Elvis' name to the general public of Greece.
EIN: Your club is active on social media. Please tell us about your Facebook page.
Evangelos: Five years ago our Fan Club has joined with another Greek fan club on Facebook under the names ELVIS FAN CLUB OF GREECE and THE OFFICIAL FAN CLUB OF GREECE.
EIN: Many countries (eg. America, the UK, Australia) have more than one Elvis fan club. Is your club the only Elvis fan club in Greece?
Evangelos: Our Fan Club as far as I know is the only Greek fan club authorized by Graceland.
EIN: How popular has Elvis been in Greece?
Evangelos: Elvis was very popular in Greece the late 50's and early 60's and of course after Elvis passing up to 1980, then the public interest waned ..
EIN: What have been Elvis’ best-selling singles and albums in Greece?
Evangelos: Elvis had quite a few singles and LP Albums in # 1 position in the early sixties and RCA Greece has nominated Elvis with 4 Golden LP albums for selling over 50,000 copies for his LP's: "40 Greatest", "Elvis Golden Records Vol. 3", "Rockin' Days" and "The Sun Sessions".
EIN: How popular were Elvis’ films in Greece?
Evangelos: The most popular films of Elvis in Greece were Viva Las Vegas, Blue Hawaii and Fun in Acapulco.
EIN: Is interest in Elvis waning in Greece like it is in some countries?
Evangelos: Yes but it is natural for an artist that is gone for so long with no new releases. However his name still remains popular and well known to the young generation.
EIN: Apart from your fan club, is there much promotion of Elvis in Greece in the 21st century (eg. by Sony, Elvis tribute artists)?
Evangelos: A tribute maxi single was officially released in 1987 by a famous locally singer & Elvis fan Nick Georgas, titled "To Elvis with Love", consisting of 3 great tribute songs. This is the very first time Greece has released a tribute record , now an ultra rare item as it was a limited edition of 500 copies only.
EIN: There are many Elvis (and CD) collectors interested in Elvis releases from different countries. What have been some of the most interesting Elvis releases in Greece?
Evangelos: Greek 45's were never made with picture covers, except two singles from the film "G.I. Blues". The six (6) EPA's that were released here had the same covers with the U.S. ones with the exception of two ( Viva Las Vegas and Girl Happy) Also the Greek LP "NBC TV Special" has completely different cover from the original U.S. one
EIN: Is it possible for collectors to buy some of these releases?
Evangelos: You may find some Greek records and other Elvis Greek memorabilia on the Internet sites but not all as most of them are long deleted.
EIN: A particular area of interest to many collectors is promo records and CDs.
Evangelos: RCA Greece has released some colored vinyl 45's and promo CD's for Radio Stations like "In the Ghetto"
EIN: Did you ever see Elvis perform live, and if yes, please tell us about that experience.
Evangelos: No, we haven't the opportunity to see Elvis perform live but we have attend several concerts of his TCB Band in London and other European countries. Also we have visited Graceland twice (1984 & 2011), meeting with relatives, friends and associates.
EIN: Evangelos, is there anything else you would like to say to EIN readers?
Evangelos: Our warm regards and thoughts to EIN readers with one wish to keep strong, healthy and always keep Elvis name alive!
Visit the Official Elvis Presley Fan Club of Greece on Facebook
Comment on this Interview
Interview by Nigel Patterson.
-Copyright EIN March 2021
EIN Website content © Copyright the Elvis Information Network.
(Interview) Carlos Ares talks to EIN: With his latest book, elvis@argentina 1963-1969 just published, Argentine Elvis world legend, Carlos Ares, took time out to talk to EIN’s Nigel Patterson about the book and other things Elvis.
In a wide ranging and fascinating interview, Carlos discusses how he first became an Elvis fan, his famed Elvis collection, how he moved from managing rock bands in South America to becoming an Elvis dealer (Elvis Shop Argentina) full-time, Argentinian Elvis records and film posters, how the assassination of JFK affected popular music, the release of 'Elvis La Pelvis' and to make most of us jealous seeing Elvis live on stage, plus a lot more.
Read Nigel Patterson's interview with Carlos R Ares.
Jean-Marie Pouzenc Interview: Jean-Marie Pouzenc is one of Europe's most well-known identities in the Elvis fan world. He is the founder and long-time president of the celebrated Elvis My Happiness fan club and publishes one of the best Elvis magazines in the world.
Jean-Marie has also written a number of acclaimed Elvis books including his latest coffee table release, Elvis Technicolor in Black & White.
In this fascinating interview Jean-Marie Pouzenc, now 77 years old, discusses...
- How and when he became an Elvis fan
- What changes he has noticed in the Elvis world since 1956
- Elvis' popularity in France
- His new publication 'Elvis Technicolor in Black & White'
- Elvis in Paris
. . . . and much, much more
Go here - EIN's Nigel Patterson ask the questions