As Elvis Presley became one of the richest and most famous celebrities in the world, he found himself in search of something more transcendent. King became fascinated with spirituality, having grown up with Christianity and gospel music in Mississippi and Tennessee. Over time, the star became increasingly existential and fascinated by the unusual, from otherworldly claims to death itself, even going so far as to visit a morgue on one occasion.
In the latest episode of Elvis Fans Matter, the King’s cousin and Memphis mob member Billy Smith said, “He liked the out-of-the-ordinary things that interested him. He liked it when he could talk about it. and someone else was interested in it.”
Elvis would invite Billy and his wife Jo to his forbidden room upstairs in Graceland, where they would all sit in a circle with his then lover – Linda Thompson or Ginger Alden.
The group spent hours upon hours sitting in the middle of the bed, talking about everything from UFOs to spiritual experiences, before ending their sessions with a special protective song while holding hands that read, “Christ love, Christ life.” , Christ peace. ”
During a Q&A in their new YouTube video, the Memphis Mafia couple explained how people would ask if Elvis was going to church.
Jo shared, “Well, he watched the services a lot on TV, but not that he was bragging or anything, but he was like, ‘I feel like if I go, then it will be distracting and I don’t want to make noise. »
For Elvis, it’s the same reason he didn’t attend the funeral of his Jailhouse Rock co-star Judy Tyler, who was tragically killed in a car crash aged 24 shortly after. the end of the filming of the 1957 film.
Billy explained: “Church or not, all eyes would have been on him.”
Elvis said, “I don’t want to take anything away from what [the preacher] try to pass.
Billy shared: “He had a plaque that someone gave him with the words on it that said, ‘Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil because I am the most devilish b***** son in the valley.”
It was a take-off from Psalm 23, The Lord is my Shepherd. Verse 4 actually reads in the King James Version: “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for you are with me, your rod and your staff comfort me .”
Elvis’ cousin added: “That’s how he was. Like we said, all the time he could find humor in everything.