Graceland: A Step Back in Time – or History

music musings, beaverdamusa.comFirst, I must apologize for the delay between blogs. I could blame it on the Russians, the time change, or the March snow-pocalypse we just had.  But then again, I could tell the truth and let you know I had writer’s block.  My web host has docked my pay accordingly.

(Photos at the end!)

A few weeks ago, my beautiful bride and I went to Memphis for a quick overnight getaway.  Since I live in Middle Tennessee, it takes a lot to get me to Memphis.  I will muse about the primary purpose in the next blog (that is called a tease), but I want to devote this installment to a by-product of our trip.

We took a step back in time and history before we left Memphis – we went to Graceland.  Yep – went to Elvis’s house.  Plopped down about $50 each and it was worth it.  The whole tour was very organized and easy to navigate.  At first, we took a shuttle bus across the street to the actual house itself and were given iPads with headphones to listen to John Stamos narrate your tour, along with pictures and additional photos and visual aids. After the house tour, you could tour a museum with his cars and even go on his two planes.  Below are the quick hits on the whole experience:

  • The house was not overwhelming in size.  It was probably big for its time, but compared to today’s McMansions, it was small.
  • It was like stepping back in time.  The furnishings were exactly as they were as the day he died in 1977 from the green percolator to the shag carpet.
  • The upstairs was considered private when he was alive, so the tour did not go upstairs out of respect.
  • The kitchen was small.  Really small.  
  • The grounds were beautiful with horses and a huge barn.  Elvis loved riding horses when he was home.
  • He built a large building in the backyard just to house a racquetball court.
  • The jungle room lived up to its reputation – maybe the missus and I could convert one of the kids’ room into a jungle room when they move out.
  • The largest plane included a dining room, bedroom, den, and galley.  Everything was covered in plastic.  Creepy.
  • The car museum was great.  It contained some of his original cars, including the Stutz Bearcat he drove the day he died.  It also contained a lot of “toys” like golf carts, tractors, and a snowmobile that had wheels instead of tracks so he could use it in the yard.
  • They had converted one of the buildings into a room with all sorts of memorabilia like receipts for building the pool, Lisa Marie’s (daughter) crib, Elvis and Priscilla’s wedding outfits, etc.  
  • The house and grounds were right in the middle of a neighborhood with houses right next to it.  Wonder if Elvis’s neighbors hollered across the fence “hey, want to snag a beer and grill?”
  • The graves were right there in the back yard.  The area around his parents and Elvis’s graves was very solemn – not a lot of talking.  
  • Throughout the tour, it was obvious that Elvis loved and revered his mother.

I was 13 years old when Elvis died.  I remember watching some of his specials on TV, but his mainstream popularity was waning and he was probably destined to a residency in Vegas and then maybe even Branson.  The number of people who remember Elvis is dwindling and it made me wonder how much longer the crowds will go to Graceland.  The mobs of girls who swooned and screamed when he shook his hips are dizzy for different reasons now.  

If you ever get a chance, I would recommend taking a step back in time and visit Graceland.  Who knows, you may like shag carpet.

As I mentioned, the next musing will be about the primary reason for the Memphis visit – “g” is your clue.

Musing about Memphis









About Zach Clayton

Zach Clayton started Music Musings in 2013, but isn’t a stranger to music. While he may be a mild mannered accountant by day, he always has tunes going and forces his staff at work to play music trivia when they enter his office. He is a self-proclaimed lover of all music genres with over 3,500 songs in his iPod. Zach’s first concert was Eddie Money in Vanderbilt’s Memorial Gym in 1979 and claims to have seen Van Halen (all three incarnations) over 25 times. There have only been one or two years since 1979 that Zach hasn’t been to a concert. He also has the uncanny knack of getting to know several folks in the music scene – both out front and behind the scenes. Zach is in the process of indoctrinating his two boys into the rock and roll way by exposing them to concerts and various music while holding them hostage in his truck screaming the mantra – “rap is crap!”

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