While flipping around the talking box Saturday I caught Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi having a little too much conversation and way too much action while touring Graceland with President Bush. It’s not everyday you see a foreign leader breakin’ down some Elvis. I’m not sure I want to see it again.
As I watched video of the rock and or roll, I wondered what reaction Bush would provoke if, while on a state tour of Sweden, he began belting out “Take a Chance on Me” while doing the Carlton. (If it did happen, I’m sure he’d inadvertently warm up with some “Dancing Queen”, thus destroying YouTube.com’s servers.)
But face it – just about anyone can get their Elvis on and get away with it. The man’s legacy inspires more reverence than Marilyn Monroe’s thigh. So great is he that, not only is he remembered for doing black music so selfishly and using it to get himself wealthy, but his music owns major real estate in the Country Music Hall of Fame. I made my first trip there back in February and was somewhat surprised to see the Sequined One among the crooners. I couldn’t help but express my surprise in front of a camera, drawing more irate attention than the Dixie Chicks exhibit.
And as shocked as I was to see Elvis in the great Hall, I was not at all prepared for this:
I do have one sweet Elvis-related memory. Back in the days of Olivia Newton-John and Blondie, I made a habit of plundering the record collection of my then-teenaged aunt. She had dozens of 45s. My two favorites were Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall” and Elvis’ “Jailhouse Rock.” But no typical connaisseur was I. Oh no. While “Jailhouse Rock” was passable at normal speed, I insisted on cranking it up to 78 rpms. Now that was rockin’. If Elvis had ever met Red Bull, that’s how he’d have sounded.
I’ve only encountered one other song made sweeter by messing with its metronome. By coincidence, it was produced someone who has literally come within one degree of Elvis (At least we assume he did). I am speaking, of course, of the Gloved One, BP (Before Pedophilia). As grand a song as “Man in the Mirror” was, I appreciated more the instrumental version at 33 rpm. I would ask for you to give it a try but, *sigh*, technology isn’t what it used to be.
Too bad CDs are limited in velocity options. Who knows what …. other …. tres …. sures …. r …. out …. there if onlyyoucouldpseedthemup!