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Due to his appearance at Elvis Week David Brigg , Norbert Putnam plus Jerry Phillips recently talked to TimesDaily.com.
Keyboardist David Briggs, a Killen AL native, was originally a member of the first FAME Recording Studios rhythm section. "Elvis kind of blazed a trail and path so bright, nobody
has ever been able to extinguish the flame, he was just one of a kind. He was so generous with his praise".
Briggs spent a week at Graceland, for the Jungle Room sessions.
"We talked, watched TV and played games, I stayed a week and finally said I have to go back to Nashville."
Like Briggs, Putnam said Elvis was a laid-back artist and easy to work for. He said Presley always would make a grand entrance.
Putnam adds, "Elvis always had a big smile on his face. He would come in and hold his arms up and say, ‘Hey gang, you guys ready to do it again?’ "
Instead of getting right to work, Presley liked to tell the musicians stories. "Later on, I’m looking back and I wondered why we didn’t go right to work. The first time he wanted to make
sure we were totally relaxed. I don’t want to say he had an aura about him, but he almost had an aura about him. He was the most beautiful man I’d ever seen. His hair was perfectly
jet black. I remember being a little disappointed he wasn’t eight feet tall."
"His voice was soft like mine was, like he didn’t want to interrupt anyone over in the corner. He’d have us rolling in the floor. He was so good at this."
Felton Jarvis, the producer, eventually would come out of the control room and coax Presley into starting the session.
"Elvis says, ‘What’s the first song?’ He’s just so relaxed. I think it was to get us relaxed."
Before his days with RCA, Presley recorded his first tracks at Sam Phillips' Sun Recording Studios.
Jerry Phillips (Sam's son) explains how he and his brother, Knox, grew up differently than other people.
"I remember dad bringing home Elvis' record, he wanted us to hear it. It was what he was looking for all along. He was very excited about it."
Phillips said he has great memories of Presley, dating back to his childhood. He said Presley would visit the Phillips home, but it would be late at night.
"Elvis could never get out until after midnight, or he would absolutely get mobbed. If he stopped at a service station, within 10 minutes there would be a mob. "
He said Presley would drop by their home after midnight, and Phillips’ parents would let him and his brother get up and miss school the next day to spend time with Presley.
"Elvis was a very special person, a very humble individual. At the top of his game, he was the most handsome guy you’d ever seen in your life, the coolest guy you’d ever want to
He said Presley always would have more than one woman with him. Phillips said it was true Presley would address his parents as Mr. and Mrs. Phillips.
"He was one of the biggest influences in my life," Phillips said. "He would come sit around with a guitar in the living room and play music. He was the biggest star in the world, but he
was still very polite and humble. I have great memories of Elvis Presley."
|BRIGGS, PUTNAM & PHILLIPS TALK ELVIS
August 29, 2015 - TimesDaily.com / Elvis Express Radio