Asheville NC 1955
Post card of Asheville City Auditorium
Scotty, do you remember being at the City Auditorium in Asheville, NC
in 1955? Yes, I think it was in the Fall of that year. It was one of those really nice evenings...not
too cold nor too hot. I'd looked forward all day to going with my
friends to see the Louvin Brothers. I had no idea what a wonderful treat
awaited me. Elvis and your group must have arrived in Asheville early
that day as you were seen walking and having fun on Haywood Street
several hours before the show. Something Elvis could not do for very
I'd never heard of Elvis...I thought the name very strange. In
fact, I think we even laughed when we heard it for the first time there.
We were seated somewhere in the front few rows of the Asheville City
Auditorium (which is now renamed Thomas Wolfe Auditorium). Some girls
behind us were screaming for "Elvis" so that we could not
fully enjoy all the acts on before him.
Finally, he hit that stage wide open. He had on a rose, almost
red, suit...white buck shoes, and I believe his shirt was pink. I
wondered if that rose suit could be the one in the stories about the
Grand Ole Opry appearance, but I don't think the dates jive..or do they?
Anyway, they call that suit "red" and the one Elvis was
wearing that evening was almost red, but with a slight rose tone. He
swaggered over to the piano and stuck a big wad of gum on the side of
it. He turned to the audience and asked that we not let him forget his
gum. After making us laugh at his remarks, he proceeded to sing
"That's All Right Mama", "Shake Rattle and
Roll"...and those are the only ones I still remember.
The day before the Asheville show, Richmond, VA May 16,
Photo Courtesy Brian
Elvis came over to the corner of the stage after the show and
signed autographs and answered questions for the fans. Believe it
or not, very few people hung around for that. I could not stay as my
boyfriend became ill near the end of the show and went to the car. At
the end we all rushed out to check on him. I admit I stood there
debating whether to run up to the stage for a minute, but my concern got
the better of me and I left with the others. One of my friends who did
go up told me he had the most beautiful blue eyes she had ever
seen. She had a signed program or picture, but has since
I have three acquaintances who remember that show. I argued with
one of them about which year you were here. I thought it was 1954.
However, after learning more about when Elvis started appearing around
the country, I realized it was 1955.
Just a word about Bill Black...you don't hear too much about him,
but I think he was a wonderful entertainer. He rode that old bass all
over the stage and Elvis charmed us to pieces and sang and played...and
you played...and everybody was clapping and yelling. You were so
perfect together. It was such a wonderful show.
Scotty and Elvis at Fort Homer
Hesterly Armory, Tampa, FL July 31, 1955
about 6 weeks prior to the Asheville NC show
Photo© by William V. "Red" Robertson
Nobody can get that beautiful rhythm and blues sound out of a
guitar the way you can. I don't know if you invented it, but that sound
is magical. It awakens something inside me that connects me with
all my happy days in the 50's and 60's. I can be listening to
music on my radio not paying much attention and someone will play a song
with the similar type of sound and it always gets my attention as it
brings back to those 50's feelings. I loved those days!
Those were the days of Perry Como and Kate Smith, etc. Seldom did
anyone move as they sang and certainly not like Elvis.
thanks so much...God bless.
February 26, 2003
Advertisements appearing in the Asheville
Citizen for shows on May 17th and September 16th, 1955
Copyright© 1955, Asheville, NC Citizen-Times
Reprinted With Permission
The performance Lois refers to was on
September 16, 1955 (courtesy Elvis
Day By Day)