Elvis’ Passion For Practical Jokes Unraveled: From the PR campaign that started for Jerry Schilling’s new book on Elvis entitled ”Me And A Guy Named Elvis”.
Elvis Presley may be famous for his pelvic thrusts and never ending sideburns but a new book is all set to reveal that he had a passion for practical jokes too.
According to the New York Post, in Me and a Guy Named Elvis, which hits stores next month, author Jerry Schilling, a key member of Presley’s Memphis Mafia, recalls one night when John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin stopped by with a few friends to meet Elvis and found him decked out in pajamas.
Elvis ”stood, eyed John, and said, ‘Let’s swap pants,’ while simultaneously, in expert [Monty] Python fashion, letting his pajama bottoms drop beneath his robe.
John burst out laughing. Nobody accepted Elvis’ offer.” Elvis loved to tweak performers who did his act. One night in Las Vegas, he passed a lounge where a burly singer was ”overdoing the Elvis vibrato just a bit,” the author says.
‘Without breaking stride, Elvis . . . stormed into the lounge, walked right up onstage, hoisted his cane like he was going clobber the guy and said, ‘If you’re going to do it, do it right.’
He gave the crowd a great big wink, hopped off-stage, and zoomed right out of there. But the big singer didn’t see the wink – he’d been so startled that he’d fallen off the stage.”
One habit of Elvis’ that was not a joke was his insistence that his own music never be played inside Graceland. Schilling remembers one day when somebody put on All Shook Up during a party.
”Who’s the wise guy that put that goddamn music on? Get that crap off!” Presley roared. ”There was no doubt he was really angry,” Schilling writes. ”He was proud of his work, but it was just that – his work. He lived with his music outside of the house – he didn’t need to hear it while he was trying to relax in his own basement.”
The Book Description: An intimate memoir of a friendship with the greatest artist in rock and roll history, taking you from late-night parties at Graceland to the bright lights of Hollywood sets and glittering stages of Vegas
On a lazy Sunday in 1954, twelve-year-old Jerry Schilling wandered into a Memphis touch football game, only to discover that his team was quarterbacked by a nineteen-year-old Elvis Presley, the local teenager whose first record, ”That’s All Right,” had just debuted on Memphis radio. The two became fast friends, even as Elvis turned into the world’s biggest star. In 1964, Elvis invited Jerry to work for him as part of his ”Memphis Mafia,” and Jerry soon found himself living with Elvis full-time in a Bel Air mansion and, later, in his own room at Graceland. Over the next thirteen years Jerry would work for Elvis in various capacities—from bodyguard to photo double to co-executive producer on a karate film. But more than anything else he was Elvis’s close friend and confidant: Elvis trusted Jerry with protecting his life when he received death threats, he asked Jerry to drive him and Priscilla to the hospital the day Lisa Marie was born and to accompany him during the famous ”lost weekend” when he traveled to meet President Nixon at the White House.
Me and a Guy Named Elvis looks at Presley from a friend’s perspective, offering readers the man rather than the icon—including insights into the creative frustrations that lead to Elvis’s abuse of prescription medicine and his tragic death. Jerry offers never-before-told stories about life inside Elvis’s inner circle and an emotional recounting of the great times, hard times, and unique times he and Elvis shared. These vivid memories will be priceless to Elvis’s millions of fans, and the compelling story will fascinate an even wider audience.
About the Author: Jerry Schilling has spent forty years in the entertainment industry as an actor, a film editor, producer, and a manager for such acts as the Beach Boys, Jerry Lee Lewis and Billy Joel. His credits as a film and television producer include Elvis: Great Performances; the ten- hour series The History of Rock N’ Roll; A&E biographies of Brian Wilson and Sam Phillips. He also appeared in the recent CBS special Elvis by the Presleys. He lives in Los Angeles in a home purchased for him by Presley.