Elvis Presley ‘didn’t want’ The Beatles to go to America – ‘Shook the s*** out of him’

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Today Sir Tom Jones made an appearance on LADbible’s video series The Gap, where he chatted with singer Tom Grennan. During the conversation, Sir Tom spoke candidly about Elvis Presley’s opinion of The Beatles in the 1960s. Elvis famously held some disdain for the band after they conquered the UK and set their sights on the Americas.

Elvis’ hatred for The Beatles was demonstrated when he first met President Richard Nixon in 1970.

At the time, the King told the President: “The Beatles had been a real force for anti-American spirit.

“The Beatles came to this country, made their money, and then returned to England where they promoted an anti-American theme.”

Sir Tom confirmed Elvis’ opinion of the band in the chat with Grennan when he was asked: “Elvis and The Beatles… Did he want The Beatles to come to America?”


Sir Tom laughed: “Not really no! No, well you see because the band scene was very big…”

He went on: “But they did shake the s*** out of him! They did shake him up.

“And I asked him about it, and [Elvis] said: ‘Thank god for you.’”

The singer held his hands up: “This is what he said to me!”

Sir Tom continued: “He said: ‘Because the British groups… it’s all British groups all the time. You’re the only male singer, the one!’”

Although it sounds like, at the time, Elvis was not too happy with The Beatles’ arrival in his country, Sir Tom revealed he later changed his tune.

In 1970 the band split up, ruining Elvis’ secret plans for a supergroup.

Sir Tom explained: “He said: ’Is that right, The Beatles split up?’ I said yeah. In your eyes is that good or bad?”

Elvis Presley stars in Blue Hawaii trailer in 1961

Sir Tom continued: “He said: ‘Well the thing is, I thought we could use them as a backing band.

“‘You do some of your songs, I’ll do some of my songs and we’ll have The Beatles backing us up. Wouldn’t that be great?’”

Sir Tom replied: “I don’t think they’d go for it!”

Elvis’ desire to team up with the Fab Four is surprising considering how much he disliked John Lennon.

Author Chris Hutchins, who knew both John and Elvis, said in 2011: “John had annoyed Presley by making his anti-war feelings known the moment he stepped into the massive lounge and spotted the table lamps — model wagons engraved with the message: ‘All the way with LBJ.’

“Lennon hated President Lyndon B Johnson for raising the stakes in the Vietnam War.”

He added: “Presley allied himself with the FBI director Edgar Hoover and encouraged him to have Lennon thrown out of the US.”


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