Home On Monday

By: Mary Ann Thornton
Source: Elvis Australia
February 17, 2007 - 5:51:00 PM
Elvis Articles


Home on Monday ... These words alone aren't exceptional in content. They could have been said innumerable times from hundreds of phones during the years that Elvis Presley performed in the Hilton's International Showroom.

In this particular instance the words are lifted from a 1977 song penned by Glenn Shorrock. And you don't necessarily have to be from Australia to know who that is.

Glenn is the original lead singer for the Australian mega group Little River Band.

'A picture tells a thousand words' and 'Every song tells a story' are both collaqoulisms we've heard now and again. Certainly, as with most lyrics put to music, the collaqoulism bears true and this song also tells a story. With back ground being important let me proceed.

LRB was returning home to Australia and rumor has it they were to arrive on a Monday.

Thus the title, 'Home on Monday'. Turns out it was a message to Australia that she hadn't been deserted by some of her wayfaring sons who had journeyed to a distant land to seek fame and fortune. And at last they were returning.

Las Vegas was one of the last stops on their agenda. That particular destination enroute to Oz meant only one thing to the writer of that song, to see the legendary Hilton Showroom where the king regularly held court to capacity audiences.

As fate would have it, but then again, let LRB's lead singer explain, 'I was hoping to catch a glimpse of the man from Memphis,' penned Shorrock. 'they told me he had gone, never leaving a trace'. The words speak straightforwardly of Elvis' death.

Elvis had left the building leaving both the fans and LRB behind.

By the time 1993 arrived, Glenn Shorrock along with other members of Little River Band had become friends of mine. During a casual early evening in America's Midwest the genuineness of this lyrical reflection was made very real to me.

Glenn had not been touring consistently with Little River Band since the mega-hit phase of the late 70's and early 80's. Others had taken the helm. But for a portion of the 90's Glenn had returned to lend a skilled hand to the tours.

As a road weary group plunged deep into conversation and even deeper into a pizza set before us, the words Glenn had been speaking to me suddenly became something that sounded like a movie script! And it was a script! One that went along with words coming from a nearby television set! The words were from the movie Loving You.

He visually took note of my head turning first to the television then to him in an odd mannerisms. In explanation, Glenn authoritatively pointed toward the screen declaring, 'That was his second movie you know!'

'Yes, I know', I heard myself saying in a small voice. The majority of my thinking capacity was taken up with the thought that no one was immune to the influence and that a long running dialogue had just been totally set aside by a movie. One I am certain he had seen scores of times before, after all, he was quoting the lines right perfectly.

I detected a sort of surprised edge in his voice as he questioned, 'You know?' This was a man to man moment and a woman knowing didn't seem fit into Glenn's mental scheme of things.

'Yes, I know. I've seen them too'.

Without further discussion, communication was lost while he recited the majority of the lines right along with Elvis. I probably could do that too I thought to myself, yet I wasn't sure if it was safe to chime in. There was some type of male bonding in action that no one dare intrude upon. I endeavored to re-start the conversation to no avail. The only thing that regained his attention was a discourse about Elvis.

'What do you like about him' I asked.

'He's like us. Like all of us. He worked hard and he did it!' Then pausing to give a respectful glance toward the screen, he added proudly, 'He was cool! Just look at him!'

'Did you ever get to see him live or to meet him?'

'No,' he said quietly, adding, 'almost'. There was a touch of a missed opportunity hiding somewhere in his voice.

Equally as quiet I replied, 'I did?' I had heard that tone of voice before and I wanted the opportunity to share with him. To simply talk about a brother he had missed. And end it with a story that would take the edge off that empty sound.

We talked about Elvis quite awhile and as the 1957's 'Loving You' was in it's final scenes Glenn made his last statement. 'Look at 'im! That's where I get me attitude!' he fondly recollected in his strong Aussie accent.

'What?'

'Me attitude. That's where I got me attitude,' he responded.

'You mean to tell me'

Interrupting the words I had to say and flashing a broad smile, he finished. 'That's where we all got our attitudes!'

In May of this year I was in Las Vegas again. And I always seem to find time to go back to the Las Vegas Hilton. I walked through the lobby retracing steps that I took at 5 a.m. one morning 22 1/2 years earlier. That had been the ending of one very long night when I had seen Elvis reach out to God and God in turn embrace him with the gentle love he needed in his life. Unquestionably, I had walked on holy ground.

Old habits die hard, and I slowly eased the doors of the showroom open wondering if as I did, Howard Weiner might be standing there still ready to carefully seat the guests. I found myself peeking around the corner. It was as if you listened closely enough you might hear a faint echo of the music that played at the end of each concert. But, the stage was empty, the room was dark with the only light being what was entering through the half opened entrance.

Locating the phones in the lobby, I stopped to return a favor. An old friend in Sydney, Australia had asked me to take a minute and call him from the Las Vegas Hilton I picked up the phone, dialed the international numbers and with my mind filled With memories and the peace knowing there was a happy ending to Elvis' life, I said, 'Bruce, this is Mary Ann. Guess where I'm calling from? The Las Vegas Hilton'. The showroom is empty. There was no Convair parked at McCarren Airport. All that remains in the Hilton on Paradise Rd. is a small lifeless bronze statue in the lobby with a dedication that means little to anyone except to an inquisitive tourist.

Glenn was right he had gone, never leaving a trace.

Home on Monday ... Words by Glenn Shorrock / music by Glenn Shorrock and Beeb Birtles

Can you guess where I'm calling from ?
The Las Vegas Hilton,
I know it's hard to hear,
it's just the echo on the line.

Yes, that's right I'm calling from
The Las Vegas Hilton,
I just wanna say that I'm feelin' fine.

I'll be home on a Monday,
somewhere around noon,
please don't be angry,
I'll be back with you real soon.

I was hoping to catch a glimpse,
of the man from Memphis,
they told me that he had gone,
never leaving a trace.

I just could never get involved
with those one-armed bandits,
sure am craving for the smile on your face.

I'll be home on a Monday,
somewhere around noon,
please don't angry,
I'll be back with you real soon, yeah.

You looked so lovely when I left I nearly didn't go,
twelve thousand miles is such a long way,
help me get to grips with Hollywood,
you're gettin' through to me,
Hollywood, you're in my movie.

I'll be home on a Monday,
somewhere around noon,
please don't be angry,
I'll be back with you real soon.

(repeat)

Can you guess where I'm calling from ?
Yes, that's right I'm calling from
The Las Vegas Hilton.


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