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Home > Newspaper Articles > 1974 > June 29 1974. Kansas City MO.
CONCERT DATE: June 29 1974. Kansas City MO.
Elvis Fans Not Watching His Blue Suede Shoes
By Lynn Cheatum
The Kansas City Star
June 30, 1974
Imagine a hundred baby birds in a nest, all reaching for a worm dangling from the mouth of their mother.
It was something like that around the stage at Municipal Auditorium yesterday as Elvis the Pelvis bestowed scarves damp with his sweat.
His hairy chest showed in the cleavage of his sequined white suit. The tightness of the white trousers suggested he was only joshing he explained that his wiggling was an attempt to get comfortable in ill-fitting Fruit of the Loom.
Elvis Presley the man was perhaps more the attraction than Elvis Presley the singer.
The 10,500 members of each sellout crowd (2:30 pm matinee and 8:30 pm concert) were enthusiastic about his singing but for his famous body they were wild.
They screamed with each jerk of his hips or legs, each toss of his hair.
The lyrics of one "song" consisted of the word "Well," repeated over and over with music and body English.
Elvis's rendition of "Fever," replete with pelvic thrusts and the familiar pained expression brought the screams to a crescendo.
To one screaming, beaming young woman. Elvis gave his scarf after dabbling it at each armpit.
His singing career began with a boom nearly 20 years ago.
In mid-1956 he was quoted in The Star:
"I can't believe all this has happened to me - I just hope it lasts."
While the boom didn't last, his following has remained over the years and the teenagers and 20-agers of today have been charmed in nearly the same way it happened to youngsters of the late 1950s.
What brings them to his concerts in 1974.
"I've been a fan of his ever since I can remember," Jo Ann McClanahan, 24, Smithville, said after yesterday's matinee performance. "I saw all his movies over and over on T.V." She bought a color poster photograph for $2.50 as she walked out afterward.
Linda Alliet, 16, said she buys all of Presley's records. She grinned when she said she was born after her idol became a star.
Two others who had not been born when Elvis was charming the bobby soxers were Linda Philpot, 16, a Raytown South High School junior, and Denny Hays, 14, a Lee's Summit High School freshman.
Denny hesitated when asked why she liked Elvis. "Well, he's good looking," she finally blurted out.
Linda Philpot had a different reason.
"We lived in Memphis (Elvis's home town), and he held me once when I was a baby. Besides, my brother really likes him and everything," she said.
Mrs. Ferne Smith, Macon, Mo., sat in a balcony behind the stage and screamed for the attention of her idol. In her hand she clutched an envelope marked "Personal."
She was disappointed to learn a reporter had no way to hand the singer her note, and said she wanted to give it to the reporter anyway. The note said she had waited 20 years to see Elvis.
Flashbulbs at times made the semidarkness of the auditorium light enough for reading, particularly during the first few minutes of Elvis's performance.
Elvis came on stage half way through the 2 hour production. The first hour was filled with music and humor by others in Presley's entourage.
Police officers had an easy time keeping order the first half, but at times late in the second half they seemed happily squeezed from all sides by a throng of young women after a scarf and perhaps an accompanying kiss from Elvis.
Courtesy of Archie Bald