Elvis Presley Home

Elvis Presley : Charlotte, NC : February 20, 1977

Elvis Presley in Charlotte, NC.

February 20 1977 (8:30 pm). Charlotte NC.

Elvis Gets Past The Fooling, Proves Why He Still Reigns

by Faye Gaillard Charlotte Observer February 21, 1977

For the first half hour, Elvis Presley just fooled around - strutting around the stage, posing for the flashbulbs and kissing the women who made it past the police. The music seemed almost an afterthought as he ran through the oldies - Jailhouse Rock, Don't Be Cruel and the others. He busied himself throwing scarves to the faithful and proving that his pelvic wiggles are not a thing of the past.

But Elvis Presley didn't get where he is simply because of the way he moves. And every now and then there were flashes of the old power, the spark and the soul of his early days in Memphis. Back then, he would wander into Sun Records studios with Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and other rockabilly buddies and they would sing their hearts out for hours - belting out, among other things, all the old gospel songs on which they were raised.

Elvis Presley Video Elvis Presley : Charlotte, NC : February 20, 1977 (04:36)

Click to view the video

Elvis News Latest Audio (and video) updates : Video courtesy of Elvis Presley Video Elvis Presley Video Central.

ElvisPresleyShop.com : The Official Elvis Presley Shop : For Elvis Fans Only.

Elvis Presley departing the Lisa Marie and heading to his hotel shortly after midnight February 20, 1977.
Elvis Presley departing the Lisa Marie and heading to his hotel shortly after midnight February 20, 1977.

Nobody made music any better, and during the early going at the Charlotte Coliseum, there were scattered notes here and there that made you wonder if he finally was gonna do it. But always he would pull up short, rely on the grins, the charisma and the legend - until finally, a little before 10.45, he came to the gospel classic how Great Thou Art. And that was it. You could see why Elvis Presley is still going strong after 20 years, while dozens of others have fallen by the way. As he came to the part where he belts out the title, he sounded like Mario Lanza with soul - cutting loose a series of high notes that would tingle the spine of even the diehard sceptic.

Elvis Presley just after arriving on the Lisa Marie, heading to his hotel shortly after midnight February 20, 1977.
Elvis Presley just after arriving on the Lisa Marie, heading to his hotel shortly after midnight February 20, 1977.

From that point on, the music seemed to get hold. He backed away a little bit from edge of the stage and paid less attention to the cameras and the shrieks. He was good on Hound Dog, mellow on Early Morning Rain. But the crescendo came on a song called Hurt.

Joe Esposito, Sam Thompson and David Stanley with Elvis as he hits the stage in Charlotte, NC on February 20, 1977.
Joe Esposito, Sam Thompson and David Stanley with Elvis as he hits the stage February 20, 1977.

It's an old rock song that Elvis didn't record until a couple of years ago. The key ingredient is its range - an awesome collection of notes that would leave a normal set of vocal chords in shreds. Elvis ran through the song, bending over the mike as sweat dripped from his forehead. He finished what seemed his most potent style, but wasn't satisfied, and mumbled to the band: 'Let's do that last part again'. He did, and if there was anyone among the packed-house crowd who had thought Elvis was a fluke, they no doubt came away converted.

'There just isn't anyone like him', exulted Mary Burleson, a 35-year old fan who saw her first Elvis show in 1956. 'He can sing it all - rock, country, gospel, you name it. Elvis is the best'. He may well be, at least when he really cuts loose.

Elvis Presley on stage in Charlotte, NC on February 20, 1977.
Elvis Presley on stage in Charlotte, NC on February 20, 1977.

Elvis Presley on stage in Charlotte, NC on February 20, 1977.
Elvis Presley on stage in Charlotte, NC on February 20, 1977.

You have to wonder, though, how he takes it seriously after all these years - when he's besieged in town after town by 40ish women, rushing the stage with everything from fruit baskets to five-foot teddy bears. Just the rumour that his car is outside is enough to leave them five-deep at the Coliseum windows, scrawling Elvis graffiti in the dust on the glass. It was an hysterical evening from the beginning. The parking lot was filling steadily by 7 - despite the sold-out house and the 8.30 showtime. Elvis himself didn't come on until 10, and the tension was so thick by then even some fan who bore a faint resemblance to Presley was mobbed for autographs. The madness repeats itself tonight.

All photos from the book; 'The February 1977 Tour : An Audiovisual Documentary : Volume I'

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Charlotte, NC : February 21, 1977

Available on CD - 'Unchained Melody'.

Unchained Melody is a soundboard recording from an Elvis concert in Charlotte, North Carolina on February 20, 1977. Includes live versions of Moody Blue, Love Letters andWhere No One Stands Alone.

Track listing

Love Me ; Fairytale ; You Gave Me A Mountain ; Jailhouse Rock ; O Sole Mio / It's Now Or Never ; Little Sister ; Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel ; My Way ; Moody Blue - intro only ; How Great Thou Art ; Hurt ; Hound Dog ; Unchained Melody ; Can't Help Falling In Love

Bonus Tracks (Other Shows on the Tour) :

For unknown reasons, the engineer never recorded the beginning of the shows on this tour, and consequently the CD starts with Love Me rather than Elvis' usual opening material for this tour. Bonus songs from other concerts on the same tour are included.

Buy Unchained Melody CD

Buy

'The February 1977 Tour : An Audiovisual Documentary : Volume I' Hardcover Book

Buy

Review

Elvis Presley CD, Book and DVD Reviews  Review - Unchained Melody FTD CD

February 1977

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Orlando Florida : February 15, 1977
Elvis Presley Photos
Elvis Presley, Dick Grob and Ed Parker: February 16, 1977
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Charlotte, NC : February 20, 1977

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Charlotte, NC : February 21, 1977

March

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presleys last vactaion : Hawaii, March 1977

April

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Ann Arbor Michigon: April 25, 1977

May

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Louisville Kentucky : May 21st 1977
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley performs in Louisville Kentucky : May 22, 1977
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Philadelphia Spectrum, Saturday, May 28, 1977

June

Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Macon, GA : June 1, 1977
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley : Dade County Coliseum, Madison : June 24, 1977
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley: June 25, 1977 : 8.30pm Riverfront Coliseum, Cincinnati, Oh
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis Presley: June 26, 1977 : 8.30pm Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, In.

August

Elvis Presley Photos Photos : Elvis Presley August 16, 1977
Elvis Presley Photos Elvis returning to Graceland (Date Unknown)
Articles about Elvis Presley Kathy Westmoreland Remembers

CDs

 CD. Moody Blue
 CD. From Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis Tennessee
 CD. Elvis In Concert
 CD. Elvis : Spring Tours '77 (Stereo) : Elvis Presley FTD CD
 CD. Unchained Melody : 1977 : Elvis Presley FTD CD
 CD. Elvis : Amarillo '77 : Elvis Presley FTD CD

Books

 Book. The Elvis Files Vol. 8, 1976-1977
 Book. The Elvis Files Vol. 7, 1974-1975
 Book. Elvis Concerts : Elvis Presley Book from JAT Publishing

ElvisPresleyPhotos.com : Elvis Presley Photos : Elvis as you have never seen him before.

Elvis Presley Photos