Neil Diamond talks about Elvis Presley
Interview with Neil Diamond
Andrew Denton : I know Elvis covered 'Sweet Caroline' on stage.
Did you ever get the chance to see it?
Neil Diamond : I never saw Elvis perform 'Sweet Caroline'. I did see him perform live in Vegas, I had never seen him before. You know, he was Elvis Presley and I was awed. He was an amazing, amazing live performer.
He was electric and he was wonderful and halfway through his show, he introduced me. I was in the audience and he introduced me and it's like worshipping a god and that god is saying, 'Oh, stand up. I like this person. World, why don't you meet him?' My God. So I stood up and the audience started to cheer and they started to say, 'Get up on stage. You know, sing together'. No, I couldn't possibly. It's - and he saw I was uncomfortable with it. He said, 'Well, he's on holiday now, so leave him alone. Let him enjoy the show'. And they did.
Andrew Denton : Does a part of you regret that you didn't take that opportunity to hop up and sing with Elvis?
Neil Diamond : You know I thought about it over the years, what would I do, what songs would we do, and it's not a good idea to come up and sing with another performer when it's their show and it's their band, I do know that. And I'm glad I didn't, because I don't think it would have been a good idea to touch that, you know, the hem of the god. He was amazing. He was warm and very generous to me, and I think it's best left at that.
Elvis recorded two Neil Diamond songs, 'Sweet Caroline' live in concert - the recording was included on the 1970 'On Stage' album - as well as 'And The Grass Won't Pay No Mind' at American Sound Studios in 1969, [For which Neil's scheduled sessions were cancelled to fit Elvis in] the song was included on 'Back In Memphis'.
Interview with Neil Diamond by Andrew Denton : August 16, 2004.
Tupelo's Own Elvis Presley DVD + 16 page booklet.
Never before have we seen an Elvis Presley concert from the 1950's with sound. Until Now! The DVD Contains recently discovered unreleased film of Elvis performing 6 songs, including Heartbreak Hotel and Don't Be Cruel, live in Tupelo Mississippi 1956. Included we see a live performance of the elusive Long Tall Sally seen here for the first time ever.
This is an excellent release no fan should be without it.
The 'parade' footage is good to see as it puts you in the right context with color and b&w footage. The interviews of Elvis' Parents are well worth hearing too. The afternoon show footage is wonderful and electrifying : Here is Elvis in his prime rocking and rolling in front of 11.000 people. Highly recommended.