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Viva Elvis in Vegas

July 23, 2015

From The Don: One of Elvis' guys in Memphis told me that the Boss had hated doing the movies, 'E' understood they were brainless and felt like he had acting ability.  But Col. Tom made the decisions and the movies had a purpose; Elvis was getting incredible offers for world-wide tours, but the Colonel always accompanied him, and couldn't leave the country because he was an illegal immigrant and would be exposed if he tried to get a passport. 

 

By doing formula performance films Elvis could be seen by millions world-wide and never leave Bel Air, and long-term contracts insured that Col. Tom's income stream of 50 percent of all The King's income would continue.  — TDR

 

Elvis Presley's movies, and the music from them, frequently left a whole lot to be desired, but sometimes, perhaps despite the people writing the stories and the music, he'd get lucky with something good. That was the case with the title song from his Viva Las Vegas movie.

 

Elvis and Vegas were made for each other...he seemed at home in the bright lights of Las Vegas, and for once, in the movie, he was matched with a leading lady in Ann Margaret who could match Elvis song for song and dance step for dance step.

 

 Elvis and Ann Margaet - Viva Las Vegas

 

The theme song, if it wasn't great rock & roll, was a whole lot better than some of the other movie music Elvis cut, and it did make the top forty, although it peaked out at a disappointing number 29. The song was good enough though to attract the attention of Texas group ZZ Top, who did a great remake of it three decades later.

 

ZZ Top - Viva Las Vegas 

 

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