''Like A Prince From Another Planet"
'ELVIS At Madison Square Garden'
Forty Years Ago Today
- Spotlight by Colin Escott / Daniel Massey / EIN -
"I’m sure Elvis never sang better than he did at Madison Square Garden... he turned on the power, and powerful it was."—Glen D. Hardin
"Once in a great while, a special champion comes along... Friday night at Madison Square Garden, Elvis was like that."—New York Times Review, June, 1972
This EIN article was published in June 2012, six weeks before the announcement of the 40th Anniversary Sony Legacy M.S.G. set with the same name! – All The Details below - Now only $25 for the Deluxe Set!
Madison Square Garden— June 9th 1972. Some would consider it the biggest venue Elvis had performed in up to this date; not in terms of capacity, but in terms of his shaky background in the Big Apple.
The fact that he had not been well received in New York in his early years made this an even more momentous occasion, as he went out to show his fans and New York, what he had become. But there was still that worry eating away at him; what if he wasn’t welcomed like he was in the rest of America?
What if New York just didn’t care?
Naturally, these worries were unfounded and the concerts turned out to be extremely successful. Elvis became the first person to sell out four consecutive shows at MSG. This was an accolade other artists at the time could only dream of achieving. 80,000 tickets were sold and $730,000 made.
The New York Times produced no fewer than three features on Elvis and all were filled with praise for the man who had stunned the audience with his exceptional voice and his ability to put on a show. Chris Chase of The New York Times said of Elvis;
"He looked like a prince from another planet, narrow-eyed, with high Indian cheek bones and a smooth brown skin untouched by his 37 years.
When Elvis started to work with the mike, his right hand flailing air, his left leg moving as though it had a life of its own, time stopped, and everyone in the place was 17 again. It was a lesson in dominance; we had just seen the comic who couldn’t control anybody, not even himself, and that had got us nervous; now Elvis made it all right again.
Elvis used the stage, he worked to the people. The ones in front, in the best seats, the ones in back, and up in the peanut galleries. He turned, he moved, and when a girl threw a handkerchief on the stage, he wiped his forehead with it and threw it back, a gift of sweat from an earthy god.
Young girls moaned, and stood in their seats trying to dance, and one kid took a giant leap from a loge seat clear to the stage, only to be caught and taken away before she could come too close to her heart’s desire. You had to hope she hadn’t broken her leg in that vain but glorious effort.
A special champion comes along, a Joe Louis, a Jose Capablanca, a Joe DiMaggio, someone in whose hands the way a thing is done becomes more important than the thing itself. When DiMaggio hit a baseball, his grace made the act look easy and inevitable... Friday Night at Madison Square Garden, Elvis was like that. He stood there at the end, his arms stretched out, the great gold cloak giving him wings, a champion, the only one in his class."
In the sleeve notes to RCA's 1997 release 'Elvis: An Afternoon In The Garden' author Colin Escott reflected on this amazing Elvis concert event in his article "Elvis: Like a Prince From Another Planet."
It's hard to know why it took so long for Elvis to play New York. He had performed on sound stages there when he had guested on "The Ed Sullivan Show", "The Steve Allen Show" and "The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show". He had recorded there, and he had embarked for Germany from Brooklyn, but the most popular star of all time had never played a major stage show in his country´s most populous city.
That changed on June 9-11 1972, when Elvis played four shows at Madison Square Garden.
The Colonel's first idea had been to stage the New York debut at Radio City Music Hall, then he switched to the much larger Madison Square Garden. The media scrutiny was intense. The Col. decided to use the advance publicity to his advantage.
After he hadn't found any takers for an exclusive interview with Elvis for $120,000, he scheduled one of Elvis' exceedingly rare press conferences five hours before the first show at the Mercury Ballroom in the New York Hilton.
Elvis was in a buoyant mood, sidestepping questions about draft dodgers and current entertainers, attributing his staying power to Vitamin E, and bantering lightheartedly with the press corps.
There was one glorious soundbite, which must have made it all worthwhile from the Colonel's standpoint. "Elvis", came the question, "we're told that deep down you´re really very shy and humble".
"What do you mean shy?" replied Elvis, standing up and pulling back a powder blue cape jacket to reveal a splendiferously gaudy belt buckle, a gift from the Las Vegas Hilton for setting an attendance record. It was on every newscast that night. The Colonel knew you couldn't buy that kind of publicity.
Everything now hinged on the shows themselves. There were four shows spread over three days, one on Friday, June 9, two on Saturday, June 10, and another on Sunday, June 11. Tickets were $5.00, $7.50 and $10.00 and every seat was sold. There where no freebies. George Harrison, John Lennon and Bob Dylan had to pay like everyone else. RCA, deciding to make the most of the publicity surrounding the even, planned an in-person album to be issued just days afterward.
(Left;Elvis June 9th, the first concert at Madison Square Garden)
Elvis brought along his own emcee, Al Dvorin. Dvorin reminded the fans that Elvis merchandise was available after the show, and introduced the supporting act, Vegas comic Jackie Kahane. A Slow handclap ushered Kahane from the stage; his act didn't work in New York. Dvorin brought on the Sweet Inspirations before the break. The Anticipation was intense by the time everyone had settled back in their seats.
The lights dimmed and the Joe Guercio Orchestra broke into the ominous opening bars of Richard Strauss' "Also Sprach Zarathustra". A cordon of red-jacketed security men appeared, and suddenly Elvis appeared in a blue body suit with gold appliqué.
"He looked like a prince from another planet", said The New York Times reviewer.
The Horns slowly subsided, pairing down the instrumentation for "That's All Right". At double the original tempo, it was clear that this was going to be a high-energy show. "I'm sure Elvis never sang better than he did at the Madison Square Garden," said pianist Glen D. Hardin. "I suppose he thought the fans in the Big Apple might be more demanding, so he turned on the power, and powerful it was."
The shows recapped everything that the New York Fans had been missing in the 18 years that Elvis had been a professional entertainer.
He barely gave the fans let alone himself, a chance to catch their breath between songs.
The crowd danced in their seats as Elvis tore through his '50s classics, "All Shook Up," "Teddy Bear," "Love Me," "Blue Suede Shoes" and "Hound Dog," punctuating them with his recent hits, "An American Trilogy" and "Until Its Time For You To Go", and a selection of songs that moved him.
That afternoon he chose Three Dog Night's "Never Been To Spain", Kristofferson's "For The Good Times," Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Proud Mary," and Tony Joe White's "Polk Salad Annie."
Elvis roved the Stage, giving those seated at awkward angles a chance to see him.
Then, at the close of "Can´t Help Falling In Love", the red-jacketed guards reappeared, and he was gone, leaving Dvorin to tell the Crowd that Elvis had left the building. The Colonel was a firm believer in leaving the wanting more ...and Elvis did.
The press verdict was unanimous. "From Backwoods Phenom in 1956 To Polished Superstar," said Variety", "Presley Talents Richly Intact," said The New York Times, "Elvis Enjoying Reign As King In New York," added the Memphis Commercial Appeal, "Nostalgia was but a small part of the celebration," said Billboard. "Elvis' voice, always better than the critics admitted has become even richer and more resonant than before... Thousands of bursting lightbulbs created a psychedelic lightshow, and the stage seemed to shudder and jump in the tiny spaces between light and dark. That image only reinforced what one had suspected from the start. Elvis has transcended the exasperating constrictions of times and place."
As Elvis sang on Saturday, the RCA tape machines were rolling. "We recorded two of the shows", said Joan Deary. "The second was what we put out". The album, ELVIS AS RECORDED AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN, was released the week after the show. It reached No.11 on the LP Charts, and No.3 in the U.K, and was certified double-platinum.
SEE BELOW for our detailed look at both of Elvis' RCA recorded shows
Spotlight by Colin Escott with EIN contributor Daniel Massey.
-Copyright EIN June 9 2012 - DO NOT COPY.
EIN Website content © Copyright the Elvis Information Network.
Click here to comment on this review
2012 'Prince from Another Planet' Full Details & In-Depth Review
'Prince From Another Planet’ In-Depth Review: Of all the live concert recordings released by RCA during Elvis Presley’s lifetime, none carried the historic significance of his long-awaited New York City shows at Madison Square Garden and now the two RCA recorded concerts and newly found fan-filmed video footage been released in one deluxe package for the 40th Anniversary Edition.
"PRINCE? MAKE THAT KING!" - Go here as Arjan Deelen reviews the new Sony ‘Prince From Another Planet’ package.
It’s been a while since a new Elvis release generated as much publicity as ‘Prince From Another Planet’ - But is it as good as our high expectations?
|'Prince from Another Planet' Full Details: SONY have released the full details of the new 'Prince from Another Planet' Madison Square Garden. There are two versions being released, the DELUXE DVD version and also a budget version without the DVD for only $16.
Great news is that the DVD will feature ONE HOUR of hand-held footage filmed at the June 10th Afternoon Show as well as 20 minutes of the Press Conference.
Release date is now noted as NOVEMBER 12, 2012.
Elvis Presley: Prince from Another Planet, As Recorded Live At Madison Square Garden, New York City, June 10, 1972 - Deluxe 40th Anniversary Edition 2-Cd+Dvd Box Set Presents Historic Afternoon And Evening Concerts – Newly Remixed - In One Package For First Time
5,000-word liner notes essay by Lenny Kaye, historian and guitarist for Patti Smith
BONUS DVD:1. Afternoon show filmed June 10, 1972 (approx. 1 hour hand-held footage) 2. Afternoon press conference held June 9, 1972 (approx. 20 minutes).
The recently discovered footage is set to make its world premiere during Elvis Week in Memphis on Friday, August 17th, at 4:30 p.m. at a free event in the Elvis Week Pavilion.
Go HERE to Pre-Order>> Prince From Another Planet (Deluxe 2 CD/1 DVD Box Set) - $37.37
Pre-Order 'Prince From Another Planet Legacy' ONLY $16.33
|Of all the live concert recordings released by RCA during Elvis Presley’s lifetime, none carried the historic significance of his long-awaited New York City shows at Madison Square Garden in June 1972.
After being roundly excoriated by New York critics after his televised visits of 1956 (on Jackie Gleason’s Stage Show), and 1957 (Ed Sullivan & Steve Allen), Elvis and his manager Tom Parker did not schedule another New York performance for some 15 years. Even after Elvis triumphed on his black leather NBC-TV "comeback" special of December 1968, and returned to public concert touring fulltime in August 1969 (at the International Hotel in Las Vegas, they still waited three years to play New York.
Accompanying the two CDs is a bonus DVD that presents unseen footage of the Saturday afternon show, captured on hand-held camera by a fan, and now acquired by Legacy from that fan decades later for this package.
|Rarely is unseen footage of Elvis in concert discovered, so this footage lends historical importance to the package. The film is a revealing portrait of a physically commanding Elvis and his powerhouse TCB Band, background vocalists, and orchestra.
|'Suspicious Minds' Madison Square Garden NEW Fan Footage: Rolling Stone magazine have premiered a clip from the new 'Prince From Another Planet' and it looks fabulous.
Back in June 1972, Elvis Presley played four hotly anticipated shows at Madison Square Garden. RCA/Legacy is releasing Prince From Another Planet: 40th Anniversary Edition on November 13th, including two CDs and a DVD. In this clip from Prince, previously unseen fan-filmed footage of Elvis
|performing "Suspicious Minds" gives a different sheen to the massive gigs, documenting the experience as from a fan's direct perspective. Elvis shakes, rattles and rolls through his 1969 Mark James-penned hit, and of course, his sparkly blue outfit looks as good as ever.
CLICK HERE for the Madison Square Garden footage.
'Prince From Another Planet' Sound Samples: SONY Legacy have posted three sound samples from the newly remixed Afternoon concert which will be released in November. Fan reaction so far has been varied.
They seem to have cranked up the audience ambience more (not necessarily a good thing) and added more reverb on Elvis' vocal. James Burton's guitar sounds clearer as well as the bass. There is however not a huge variation in the mix - but then again 'Afternoon' was one of audio engineer Dennis Ferrante's best audio mixes efforts and pissed over the dull, rushed original Evening show release.
We will have to await for the CD release to truly compare - and the Evening MSG concert remix will be the one that really counts. Go here to check them out >>
PRINCE FROM ANOTHER PLANET: 40th ANNIVERSARY EDITION.
Of all the live concert recordings released by RCA during Elvis Presley’s lifetime, none carried the historic significance of his long-awaited New York City shows at Madison Square Garden in June 1972. Now, a pair of hour-long performances have finally been coupled in one package for the first time as PRINCE FROM ANOTHER PLANET: 40th ANNIVERSARY EDITION. This deluxe 2-CD+DVD box set will be available everywhere November 13th through RCA/Legacy, a division of SONY MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT.
PRINCE FROM ANOTHER PLANET takes its title from a New York Times headline that accompanied its rave review of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s four sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden (80,000 tickets sold), the weekend of Friday through Sunday, June 9-11, 1972. CD two reprises the Saturday night show in its entirety, some 20 songs (plus introductions) originally issued on LP on June 18, 1972, just eight days after the concert took place. CD one reprises the (slightly longer) Saturday afternoon show, some 23 songs (plus introductions), archived and issued for the first time 25 years later in 1997, on CD.
The Madison Square Garden recordings have been newly mixed for the first time by respected New York engineer Michael Brauer.
Adding to the historic weight of PRINCE FROM ANOTHER PLANET is an evocative 5,000-word essay written by Lenny Kaye, longtime guitarist for Patti Smith. Kaye actually covered the press conference and the concerts for his gig as music editor of Cavalier magazine in the ’70s. In addition to his roles as a musician and a producer of numerous reissues and compilations, Kaye has been annotating albums for more than four decades.
Accompanying the two CDs is a bonus DVD that presents unseen footage of the Saturday afternoon show, captured on hand-held camera by a fan, and now acquired by Legacy from that fan decades later for this package. Rarely is unseen footage of Elvis in concert discovered, so this footage lends historical importance to the package. The film is a revealing portrait of a physically commanding Elvis and his powerhouse TCB Band, background vocalists, and orchestra.
Along with the concert film on the DVD is another video document, the press conference that took place on Friday afternoon before the big weekend. Attended by Colonel Tom Parker and Elvis’ father, Vernon Presley, Elvis disarms and wins over the New York press corps with his good-natured demeanor.
For example, when asked “Which kind of song do you like doing the best?” Elvis answers, “I like to mix 'em up. In other words, I like to do a song like ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’ or ‘American Trilogy,’ or something. Then mix it up and do some rock and roll, some of the hard rock stuff. I'm not the least bit ashamed of ‘Hound Dog’ or ‘Heartbreak Hotel’…”
A closer look at the concert repertoire confirms his answer. The set lists for the afternoon and evening shows are an eclectic mix, something for everyone. After the bombastic “Also Sprach Zarathustra” theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey, both shows are bookended at the start by “That's All Right” (from 1956), Creedence’s “Proud Mary” (via Ike & Tina Turner), Hoyt Axton’s “Never Been To Spain” (via Three Dog Night), and Dusty Springfield’s “You Don't Have To Say You Love Me.” Both shows end with “Suspicious Minds,” Kristofferson’s “For The Good Times,” Mickey Newbury’s “American Trilogy,” Willie Nelson’s “Funny How Time Slips Away,” Don Gibson’s “I Can't Stop Loving You” (via Ray Charles), and of course, “Can't Help Falling In Love.”
The set lists are virtually identical, though four songs from the afternoon show were not performed at the evening show: Buffy Sainte-Marie’s “Until It’s Time For You To Go,” “Blue Suede Shoes,” Lowell Fulsom’s “Reconsider Baby,” and Don Ho’s “I’ll Remember You.” And one song from the evening show was not performed at the afternoon show: Man Of La Mancha’s “The Impossible Dream.”
With those exceptions, the central portion of each show is very nearly the same something-for-everyone program, starting with the Righteous Brothers’ “You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'” and Tony Joe White’s “Polk Salad Annie,” then straight back to 1956-57 for “Love Me,” “All Shook Up,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” the medley of “(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear” c/w “Don't Be Cruel,” “Love Me Tender,” and “Hound Dog.”
After being roundly excoriated by New York critics after his televised visits of 1956 (on Jackie Gleason’s Stage Show, in January, February and March), and 1957 (Ed Sullivan’s Toast Of the Town in January; and The Steve Allen Show in July), Elvis and his manager Tom Parker did not schedule another New York performance for some 15 years. Even after Elvis triumphed on his black leather NBC-TV “comeback” special of December 1968, and returned to public concert touring fulltime in August 1969 (at the International Hotel in Las Vegas, chronicled in 2010 on RCA/Legacy’s On Stage: Legacy Edition), they still waited three years to play New York.
When asked at the press conference why it took so long, Elvis answers with a straight face: “I think it was a matter of not getting the building, the proper building. We had to wait our turn in order to get the building. Couldn't get a good building in fifteen years. No, all kidding aside, we had to wait our turn to get in... into the Garden, you know. I just hope we put on a good show for everybody. Oh, I like it. I enjoy it.”
PRINCE FROM ANOTHER PLANET by ELVIS PRESLEY
ELVIS AS RECORDED LIVE AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN /40th ANNIVERSARY EDITION
(RCA/Legacy 88691 95388 2)
Disc 1: The afternoon show recorded June 10, 1972 (originally issued April 1997, as An Afternoon In the Garden, RCA 67457-2):
Selections: 1. Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra (Theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey) • 2. That's All Right • 3. Proud Mary • 4. Never Been To Spain • 5. You Don't Have To Say You Love Me • 6. Until It’s Time For You To Go • 7. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' • 8. Polk Salad Annie • 9. Love Me • 10. All Shook Up • 11. Heartbreak Hotel • 12. Medley: (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear/ Don't Be Cruel • 13. Love Me Tender • 14. Blue Suede Shoes • 15. Reconsider Baby • 16. Hound Dog • 17. I’ll Remember You • 18. Suspicious Minds • 19. Introductions by Elvis • 20. For The Good Times • 21. American Trilogy • 22. Funny How Time Slips Away • 23. I Can't Stop Loving You • 24. Can't Help Falling In Love • 25. End Theme (Orchestra).
Disc 2: The evening show recorded June 10, 1972 (originally issued June 18, 1972, as Elvis As Recorded At Madison Square Garden, RCA LSP 4776):
Selections: 1. Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra (Theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey) • 2. That's All Right • 3. Proud Mary • 4. Never Been To Spain • 5. You Don't Have To Say You Love Me • 6. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' • 7. Polk Salad Annie • 8. Love Me • 9. All Shook Up • 10. Heartbreak Hotel • 11. Medley: (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear/ Don't Be Cruel • 12. Love Me Tender • 13. The Impossible Dream (The Quest) • 14. Introductions by Elvis • 15. Hound Dog • 16. Suspicious Minds • 17. For The Good Times • 18. American Trilogy • 19. Funny How Time Slips Away • 20. I Can't Stop Loving You • 21. Can't Help Falling In Love • 22. End Theme (Orchestra).
Disc 3 (DVD): 1. Afternoon show filmed June 10, 1972 (approx. 1 hour) • 2. Afternoon press conference held June 9, 1972 (approx. 20 minutes).
TCB Band:Guitar: James Burton
Guitar: John Wilkinson
Guitar & Vocals: Charlie Hodge
Bass: Jerry Scheff
Drums: Ronnie Tutt
Piano: Glen D. Hardin
with: Vocals: J.D.Sumner & The Stamps
Vocals: The Sweet Inspirations
Vocals: Kathy Westmoreland
The Joe Malin Orchestra conducted by Joe Guercio
'Elvis As Recorded At Madison Square Garden' Vinyl 2 LP: Being released on November 13, 2012 to coincide with the DELUXE CD/DVD 'Prince From Another Planet' - the new double-vinyl LP repressing of Elvis "As Recorded At Madison Square Garden" will ONLY feature the June 10th EVENING performance by Elvis.
Some Elvis websites are still carrying the confusing information that the 2012 Vinyl release features both the June 10, 1972 evening and afternoon concerts over the 2 LPs. - Amazon has it for sale for $23.48 CLICK HERE >.Elvis: As Recorded at Madison Square Garden
Touted as his first live shows in New York since the '50s, this live set was taped at the evening performance and released a week later. Initially, the album was released as a single LP but is now properly released as a double LP vinyl.
VINYL Tracklist below:
1. Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra
2. That's All Right
3. Proud Mary
4. Never Been To Spain
5. You Don't Have To Say You Love Me
6. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'
1. Polk Salad Annie
2. Love Me
3. All Shook Up
4. Heartbreak Hotel
5. Medley; (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear\Don't Be Cruel
6. Love Me Tender
1. The Impossible Dream (The Quest)
2. Introductions by Elvis
3. Hound Dog
4. Suspicious Minds
5. For The Good Times
1. American Trilogy
2. Funny How Time Slips Away
3. I Can't Stop Loving You
4. Can't Help Falling In Love
5. End Theme (Orchestra)
Interview with Elvis Photographer Dagmar: When EIN contributor Arjan Deelen first heard about the Madison Square Garden 40th Anniversary project, he remembered that renowned rock photographer Dagmar had taken photos of Elvis at MSG and that many of them were still unpublished. He duly put her in touch with Ernst Jørgensen, that was back in October 2011.
Now that the 'Prince From Another Planet' project is nearing completion, he decided to catch up with her and have a chat with her about this project as well as her photography at other Elvis concerts.
Several of her exclusive photos have been optioned for the new SONY release.
Go here for this EIN exclusive Interview by Arjan Deelen along with some great and rare Elvis photos by Dagmar.
(Interviews, Source;Arjan Deelen/ElvisInfoNetwork)
|'Elvis At Madison Square Garden' An In-Depth Report:
Elvis' June 1972 concerts in Madison Square Garden were a key part of his stunning career. Only days after the first concert RCA rush-released the album 'Elvis: ‘At Madison Square Garden’.
Most serious Elvis fans will own both the original release as well as the 1997 release ‘An Afternoon In the Garden’.
While both shows are impressive, fans and reviewers often describe Elvis’ evening show performance to be as if he was running to catch a bus and suggest that the earlier Afternoon show may have been a better concert.
We all know that Elvis always preferred performing at his evening shows, so has this classic concert been misrepresented or was it just a badly mixed rush-release?.
With ‘An Afternoon In the Garden’ making the billboard charts
once again in 2011 EIN contributor Daniel Massey
has examined each show very closely to truly discover which is the best show.
Go here to read this fascinating EIN spotlight and have YOUR SAY over which is your favourite MSG concert.
(Spotlight/CD Review, Source;ElvisInformationNetwork)
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