Young Bob Discovers The Gateway to Popular Music Part 2
"MOM LOOK, ELVIS IS COMING ON TV!!!"
October 3, 1977 and the time was 8:00 PM.
I was engaged in my nightly bathing ritual when upon hearing these words I was inspired to begin the quickest and potentially dangerous sprint in the history of sport and rock n' roll.
I recall springing from my bath water - reaching for a bath towel - heels high and hands strategically well placed. Well, no fear for embarrassment. It was a short distance down a carpeted hallway, around the
corner, through the door to the basement of our house to my bedroom. All the remaining members of my family were patiently waiting with eager anticipation for Elvis' appearance on the television set in our living room. So they
hardly noticed me.
Upon reaching my bedroom, in a flash, I instinctively lowered my portable black and white TV (yes, indeed folks, a 14" black and white television - while my family were enjoying Elvis in brilliant color upstairs) to
my bed, slapped the power button, turned the channel dial like a roulette wheel and Elvis was seen strolling along the corrider. Thankfully the electrical plug cord of my tape recorder was long enough for the distance to my
television. Thankfully too, the Nelson's were amateur electricians and my Dad had spliced the cable signal to my TV. Thankfully, the wildest snowstorm of 1977 which deposited snow in unlikely places such as Japan, did not appear
that evening to cause a power shortage or worse yet - a black out.
Now, pushing the red record button and play button to my tape player at the same time (the year was 1977 and this is how tape machines functioned folks). Fortunately, this 1976 Christmas present from Santa, which was
quickly forming a habit of chewing tape, behaved respectfully for me and my friend Elvis.
Presto! My very first Elvis cassette tape (albeit illegally; my belated apologies to all concerned) was in the making.
Later on, I would cut out Elvis pictures that featured the famous Mexican Sundial jumpsuit (again, featured in glorious black and white newsprint) and delicately glue them on to my prized Elvis concert tape.
I could have slipped and fallen down a flight of stairs, or electricuted myself making contact with wet hands on electrical appliances but there I was,naked, unharmed, standing proud, (read: respectfully for
Elvis, rock n' roll, and the free world), mometarily breathless, studying every frame as Elvis sampled from his Coca Cola cup. (Wow! Elvis is actually drinking a beverage! Elvis drinks Coca Cola! I was one of those innocent,
impressionable, 14 year old boys)
During this frantic activity I hear y father, in deadpan voice from the living room upstairs, "Mother, I believe that was the fastest bath our son has ever taken...." Dad was not a big Elvis fan.
The week following I learned that due to popular demand, the CBS TV Special was aired again the following Sunday. This time my father and younger brother elected to watch the Sunday night football game.
My mother and I watched Elvis again in my room. I enjoyed my very first Elvis concert feature (twice) in black and white.
And I thought it would be more appropriate if I was warm, dry, and dressed.
Thanks for reading my Elvis memories.
Next installment, another genuine full feature Elvis concert appears on television in 1978, only once, and never aired again..........