When Elvis Presley was drafted into the US Military in 1958 he thought it was the end of his career. But, in reality, it was just the beginning of the next step of his life. While on this trip to Friedberg, Germany, he met the woman that would become his wife: Priscilla Presley.
At just 14-years-old, Priscilla was introduced to Elvis at his temporary home by some family friends in 1959. There, she saw the 25-year-old rock star playing the piano and singing to a room full of friends. When he left the country just months later, they were an item who couldn’t wait to be together again.
A short while later, Priscilla received permission from her parents to move to the USA to be with Elvis at Graceland. And just a few years later, on May 1, 1967, the pair were married.
But, throughout all those years, she had never seen him perform live to a raucous crowd. That is, until the following year, in 1968.
In 1968 Elvis made a comeback to performing live and touring, and marked the occasion with a Comeback Special which aired on TV. And, instead of being trapped backstage, Priscilla was in the thick of it.
Priscilla revealed this was the first time she had ever seen him perform live and in the flesh, and she loved it.
She revealed: “I was in the audience and I looked at him and thought: ‘Oh my God, I had no idea!'” The star added how surprised she was to see the star work his magic in his natural habitat.
She laughed: “I thought: ‘He’s really good! He’s really sexy! Oh my God!'”
Priscilla later saw him perform a number of times when he claimed his residency slot in Las Vegas.
Priscilla said Elvis was stalking his audience, like “a panther, back and forth” on the stage each night.
She continued: “Magnificent. The audience were captivated by him. He was so confident, but vulnerable, because he never took his audience for granted, he always wanted to be accepted.”
The star’s comments mirrored the thoughts she had when she first met the King of Rock and Roll all those years ago. She wrote about staring at the star for the first time in her memoir, Elvis and Me.
Priscilla remembered attending Elvis’ house in Germany for the first time and seeing him conversing with friends. Eventually, she said: “Elvis got up and walked over to the piano and sat down. The room suddenly grew silent. Everyone’s eyes were riveted on him as he began to entertain us.”
Priscilla added: “He sang Rags to Riches and Are You Lonesome Tonight? and then with his friends singing harmony, End of the Rainbow. He also did a Jerry Lee Lewis impersonation, pounding the keys so hard that a glass of water he’d set on the piano began sliding off.
“When Elvis caught it without missing a beat of the song, everyone laughed and applauded – except me. I was nervous.”