Bud Glass speaks to EIN about his new Paternity Suit book & DVD
Years of investigative research reveals surprising information
Bud Glass is well known for his outstanding series of "Elvis: Behind The Image" & "Elvis: Born To Rock" books and DVDs.
TOP SECRET - Elvis Presley Paternity Suit is his brand new project which focusses on Elvis' 1970 Paternity Suit.
Promising a 100-page, full-colour, hard-cover book containing a thrilling detective tale, EIN is intrigued as anybody. Bud Glass was kind enough to take time off from his Christmas festivities to answer a few of our questions.
EIN - Thanks for finding time for us over this festive season. Your new book and DVD TOP SECRET - Elvis Presley Paternity Suit has taken many of us by surprise. It does seem somewhat of a change of topic for you. What got you interested in this case?
BG: Yes, this is very different than anything I have ever produced. It literally took years of research and investigation to put it all together. A tight lid was kept on everything and no one except a few close friends had any idea I have been working on this for so long.The title for my past video and book series was not an accident. My passion has always been researching and revealing the pure essence of the true man BEHIND THE IMAGE. Not just the legend, but the man.
What got me interested in this case initially was Elvis' comments from the stage about the case at the closing performance in Las Vegas on September 2, 1974. Many years before fans first heard the soundboard recording on the Desert Storm import release that came out in the mid-90’s, I had the show on a tape that was recorded by a friend that was in the audience. It was obvious to me that this was something that affected Elvis enough to discuss it from the stage, and I was intrigued.
With close to 1000 concerts on tape in my collection, I always searched for rare songs, dialogue between songs, unusual shows, or anything out of the ordinary. I found several other concerts in which Elvis also made reference to the paternity suit. The comments were sometimes so subtle, the real meaning was most likely never really perceived by the audience. I obtained a copy of the book by Private Investigator, John O’Grady that Elvis had made reference to on stage in ’74. The paternity suit was covered briefly.
I asked friends of mine who knew and worked with Elvis, for their memories surrounding the case, and that time in Elvis’ life. Again I was surprised to see how they each had a different piece of the puzzle, but no full finished picture of ALL of the facts. Sonny West told me a great story many years ago about the blood test that he attended with Elvis, and how upset Elvis became over an incident that happened at that test. (This is all explained in detail in the book and dvd).
All this information was stirring in my head for years. Then about 6 years ago, while working on my first volume of the book, Elvis, Behind The Image, my friend Russ Howe was sharing some rare photos from his massive collection. He came across a large series of the actual hidden camera photos taken of Elvis, Patricia Parker and the baby at the laboratory in 1971 for the blood test. Only a few had ever been seen, and in poor quality and with wrong information about what they actually were.
EIN - TOP SECRET - Elvis Presley Paternity Suit is described as an exciting thriller. Please tell us about the book and what readers can expect.
Instead of including these great quality photos and a short explanation of just a few pages in Behind The Image, I decided then that with all of the information I already knew, this would be much better served in its own production. It was the only way to give this untold story the justice it deserves.
Although I was also working on several other productions at the time, I immediately started the ball in motion to seriously search out and investigate every lead and gather every morsel of information I could uncover to include in this production. That was in 2001.
Opposite: Bud Glass with the late JD Sumner
BG: THE TOP SECRET ELVIS PATERNITY SUIT UNCOVERED! is a hardback, full color book that also includes a 95 minute, full length feature documentary. Its an exciting new production that will exposed for the very first time the true accounts of one of the largest sex scandals in rock and roll history.
The question is; “Had his caviler lifestyle finally caught up with him? Or was Elvis the unsuspecting victim in an elaborate, well calculated extortion attempt?” This production explores in detail each twist and turn of the true documented events that took place over a period of several years, during the height of Elvis Presley’s concert years in the 1970’s.
An exciting thriller - and a true untold story with all the supporting evidence. It required years of investigative work developing this documentary and the result is a true life detective story based on documented facts.
EIN - Is the book going to contain a lot of new material & photos that fans will not have seen before?
BG: Serious fans only know of a mere mention of the lawsuit by Elvis on stage on one occasion. Most moderate fans have never heard anything of the case. The story involves SEX, LIES AND VIDEO TAPE, and contains hidden camera photos, private home movies, legal documents, court rulings, medical records, official F.B.I. files, polygraph and blood tests, media reports, first hand accounts from eye-witnesses, as well as recorded statements from Elvis himself.
This production has many surprises for fans. All photos and footage used in this production was included because of its historic relevance to the case and the story being told. As it unfolds, you will see some great footage and photos. Some familiar and some new and rare, but all exciting and essential to the story line.
EIN - Given that Patricia Parker's paternity suit was dismissed by the courts in 1971 what was it that made you decide to pursue it further?
BG: There are several reasons to pursue it further. First, the case was not dismissed in 1971 as you stated. The alleged incident that started everything took place in January of 1970. The initial lawsuit was filed in August of 1970, and from there the case took several twists and turns as it continued on for many years longer than most people realize. To assume the case ended in 1971 because of a blood test in 1971, demonstrates right within your very question how little people really know about all the true facts. But there is yet another reason to pursue it further;
As the case continued on over the years, so did Elvis’ career and personal life with many triumphs as well as heartaches.
As the story of the lingering legal battle unfolds, I feel it is also equally important to present the remarkable accomplishments and factual events in Elvis’ life and career as they simultaneously unfold. This gives you the unique inside perspective into the emotional elements Elvis must have been dealing with privately during that period, as he recorded in the studio or performed to millions of people as he toured the country in the 1970’s.
It is for this reason that I feel this story is a relevant portion of Elvis Presley history that is worthy of further investigation and documentation. So you see, this is so much more than just a detailed dissection of a legal battle. The finished work, by design will consciously bounce you back and fourth between Elvis Presley the defendant, the superstar and ultimately the man.
EIN - How long did your investigation take?
BG: Although many things in the documentary date back over 20 years in my collection, the actual serious investigation once I knew I was going to produce this documentary took about four and a half years of research, gathering data, legal documents, interviews, location photos, and much more. Then 18 months of solid production time, including taking all the martial from all the various sources and writing the script, recording the narration, producing the documentary and writing the book.
My fantastic publisher at Praytome Publishing, Greg Retkowski along with very talented Andre Mester and the rest of our team worked very hard during that 18 month period as well to deliver the finished product, which looks simply fantastic!
EIN - What were your primary sources supporting the idea that Elvis was Jason Presley/Parker's father?
BG: It is common knowledge that Elvis had many relationships with various women throughout his life and career. As much as serious fans hate to accept it, the probability of an accidental pregnancy is not beyond the realm of possibility.
Let me make it clear from the beginning that I never claimed Elvis was the father of Jason Peter Presley.
But in the course of a legitimate investigation of this nature, where the paternity of a child is in question, I only raise the question: “Had his caviler lifestyle finally caught up with him? Or was Elvis the unsuspecting victim in an elaborate, well calculated extortion attempt?” It is important to note that Elvis’ lifestyle, or fidelity to his wife is not the issue here. The question is, did Elvis have sex with Patricia Parker, and did this encounter result in a pregnancy and subsequent birth of the child, Jason Peter Presley. That is was the basis of the long legal battle.
EIN - What were your main findings?
BG: This is not a typical release, but an actual story with a plot, and several twists and turns. I can discuss many of areas of the production, but do not want to spoil it for those who have not seen it yet. I will tell you that this book examines the day of the alleged incident, the initial lawsuit, child support issues, press conferences, several lie detector tests, depositions, blood tests, additional tests conducted in Europe, additional charges filed, counter suits, subpoenas and F.B.I. reports.
It includes statements by Elvis, Patricia Parker, lawyers, private investigators, Doctors, Hilton Hotel officials and several first hand accounts from those who were there as the case unfolded. Nothing is left to speculation. Everything presented are the documented facts.
EIN - In 1970-71 there were apparently three specific areas found indicating Elvis couldn't have fathered Patricia Parker's baby. What were these specific areas?
BG: There were several different types of testing done on the blood samples of Elvis, Patricia Parker and the baby. in all the tests that were performed, any man having the same blood type as Elvis could scientifically and biologically be Jason’s father. No test had yet been devised to prove a particular man must be the father of a particular child.
In 1970, California law recognized certain standard and accepted blood grouping tests which could, in some instances, rule out paternity, but could not rule it in. The expert hired by the courts to conduct the tests was a pioneer and a world expert in hematology. He conducted other tests as well that were cutting edge technology in 1970, and the details of these tests as well as the results, and second opinions are covered in detail in the documentary.
EIN - Aside from these three areas was their any evidence in 1971 supporting Ms Parker's claim?
BG: She had photographic evidence that she was with Elvis on at least one occasion. And according to her, a son who was the result of their one-time encounter. She also had secured the services of a prominent lawyer who was very well known in Los Angeles and had experience with celebrity paternity cases, including a high profile case just the year before.
EIN - If indeed Elvis was the father why did Ms Parker drop her claim?
BG: You will be surprised when you learn of Miss Parker’s persistence, and how long this actually continued. It went on for YEARS.
EIN - Elvis wasn't particularly secretive about the case himself. He reacted very strongly to the Parker paternity case in November 1970 during a concert at the Forum in Los Angeles. What can you reveal about that particular incident?
BG: This is just one occasion when Elvis was vocal about his feelings regarding this case while on stage. Some mentions over the years are indirect, but anyone studying the case can easily see they are directly related to the case and how it affected him and his emotions. Elvis had just received some great news about his career that made headline news around the world. He was very proud of it and in the height of his glory, an incident relating to the case happened the very day of his performance that aggravated him. Elvis was afraid the good news would be overshadowed by the rumors in the press about the paternity suit.
The great thing about this documentary is you get to see the actual film footage on this very day, both before and after the disturbing incident that is discussed in detail. You also will hear the actual audio of Elvis’ statement to the fans during this show. This kind of relevant, rare video footage, photos and audio is present in many areas of the documentary, It is not just used for illustration purposes, but is in most cases the actual historic content that corresponds with the story at that moment.
EIN - In some ways one might feel that Elvis' over-reaction on stage might be his guilty concisncse speaking (as in the 'Desert Storm' concert). What do you think?
BG: I think that when you are finished with this book and video documentary, you will be surprised at how differently you look at this incident as well as others. After you hear the facts, your perspective will change and you will know exactly why he re-acted the way he did on stage that evening. It just goes to show how true Elvis’ words are in that dialogue before he sang “Walk a Mile In My Shoes” when he says: “You never stood in that man’s shoes, or saw things through his eyes…”
EIN How important was ex detective & friend of Elvis' John O'Grady in this project?
BG: John O’Grady is a key player in this case and consequently in this production. Speaking of O’Grady, one of the things I explore is something that has always been an interesting phenomenon in life to me. It is interesting to observe in life how something as a seemingly insignificant incident or circumstance can put you in a place or situation you would not be in otherwise, and consequently put you in the path of others who directly or indirectly change the course of your life.
When O’Grady first met Elvis, he was hired by Elvis’ attorney to investigate this paternity case, and then a death threat against Elvis in Vegas as well. His job was to prove Elvis’ innocence… but as this documentary reveals, he would unknowingly become the catalyst for something else of importance in Elvis’ life.
EIN - Does your book and DVD include photos of Patricia "Hound Dog" Parker? Is EIN right in thinking that the one photo of her & Elvis was part of her key evidence?
BG: I see you have also read O’Grady’s book! (O’Grady mentions that Elvis commented that he did not think Parker was very attractive). Many photos of Patricia Parker are included in this production. The famous Polaroid photo of Elvis and Parker together is naturally included in this documentary, and that was indeed a part of her key evidence. And because of this, you will learn in the documentary that certain precautions were taken after that in regards to fan photos, by request of Elvis’ attorney.
EIN - Around the 10th anniversary of Elvis' death the issue of illegitimate children was a popular one with both the media and the public. Bud, did you look into any of these stories or other paternity suits against Elvis?
BG: There was a specific reason for covering the Patricia Parker Paternity suit. What interested me about this was not the possibility of an heir to the throne, or to tarnish Elvis’ reputation or memory, but rather to dispel the myths and reveal for the first time ever, the intricate details of this little known, very long chapter in Elvis’ life and career. As a fan, you may know of his career, but do you know all the trials and tribulations he endured for several years during the course of that career? What he was dealing with privately as his career simultaneously took shape?
Although Elvis was not perfect, this documentary is not intended to harm his reputation, but to reveal his character in a manner that will cause you to respect him even more. If SUPERMAN were to take a solid steel bar and bend it into a pretzel, you would not be surprised. But if a mortal human were to bend the steel bar into a pretzel, you would definitely be impressed.
Once fans look past “Elvis the legend”, and realize he was a human being like the rest of us, then the more you examine his life, the more impressed you will be at his great accomplishments, his integrity and his true characterMy goal is to reveal Elvis the man behind the image, taking special care to look beneath the “S” on his chest, and to reveal his true HUMAN identity. After seeing this documentary, you will walk away with an even greater respect for the MAN
EIN - Given Elvis' apparent profligate ways in the 1950s and 1960s what is your view on other illegitimate children having been fathered by Elvis?
BG: As long as there are sexual encounters between men and women, there will obviously always be the possibility of an accidental pregnancy. It is just a real possibility. I will say that what I know of Elvis and his character, he would never refuse to accept responsibility for a child he knew to be his. On the contrary, I feel he would have embraced the child, as part of his own being, however complicated the situation.
Opposite: Bud Glass with Ed Enoch
EIN - Please tell us about the DVD accompanying the book. How do the two match
BG: The book is a 100 pages, full color, hard cover with the use of the outstanding, high quality paper stock. The prints are "National Geographic" quality standard. The pictures were cleaned and restored by a professional graphic historian for the best possible results. The book comes with a print varnishing. This method guarantees that (especially on pictures with dark areas) the fingerprints don't remain visible and the pages will always look new and unread.
The DVD is a full length documentary which could easily be a "stand-alone" product as any Bud Glass Production. With a running time of 95 minutes we are proud to give much more than a typical "Bonus" DVD offers. The book and the DVD interact perfectly with each other. The book gives you the possibility to do your own research and dig even deeper into the facts of the story, as you are able to closely examine many of the documents and original articles.
EIN - Is there anything else you would like to say about the Patricia Parker case?
BG: It is important to remember that not everything that happens in someone's life is necessarily a happy occasion, but if you will truly study the life of Elvis, you will see the only way to get a clear picture of the overall legend is to look at each piece of the puzzle as it is revealed. Some pieces are happy, some are filled with drama and stress, but they are all a part of who he was. Only by objectively examining ALL the pieces of his life, will we start to get the real picture of how great a person he was and his legend will continue to grow. Those who blindly choose only to look at the pieces of his life that they think are gushing with happiness, will sadly never see the true individual, and consequently do Elvis and his memory a grave misjustice.
EIN - What feedback have you received so far about the book and DVD?
BG: The response from those who have seen it has been very enthusiastic to say the least. The praise that has been coming in makes all the years of effort worthwile, really. There were a few people who saw the first advertisements and were concerned at first because they thought the production was going to be negative against Elvis. I will admit that the title and cover is designed to reveal the intrigue and mystery that surrounds this true life detective story, but it is in no way a negative release.
It is interesting to me that some fans want Elvis on that throne so bad, they will not allow him the luxury of being a human being. I anticipated this reaction from some, and created a special segment in the book and in the dvd that explains exactly why such a production is worthy of further investigation, explanation and documentation. The goal for me is to be entertaining, yet accurate, factual and always positive.
Bud, thank you for talking to us about what is a very interesting subject and a very interesting release
BG: It was my pleasure. Thank you very much for the opportunity to share my new book and dvd production. It was a labor of love creating it and I know your readers appreciate your continued efforts to inform them about each new Elvis release.
Top Secret Elvis Presley Paternity Suit UNCOVERED!
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