Maestro visits Elvis memorialmain
From Leonard Slatkin’s online journal:
….What made this experience interesting was our realization that Elvis was a part of my childhood but not Cindy’s. She made all kinds of discoveries at Graceland, which for me were mostly memories. The big cultural breakthrough of her childhood was the Beatles. But the Fab Four, as well as almost every other pop and rock group, could not have existed without Presley. Listening to his music, which was piped into virtually every one of the exhibitions, we could not help but be impressed with his perfect sense of timing and the way he could convey the meaning of every song, whether a hip-shaking number, gospel tune or dusky ballad.
His prolific borrowing of material made us think about how much he owed to the Black culture in his native Tennessee. Was it appropriation or an unknowing attempt to find a new voice? Was Presley an anachronism, expanding genres in whatever way he could despite the social rules of the day? Were his managers and producers so keen to cash in that they never thought about who they might be offending?…
Read on here.