Elvis Presley and His Unique Relationship with His Memphis Mafia
Elvis Presley, the iconic musician, spent the majority of his adult life surrounded by a close-knit group known as the Memphis Mafia. Comprising friends and employees, this group accompanied Elvis on tours, resided with him at Graceland, and even vacationed alongside him. While their dedication to the musician was unwavering, the members of the Memphis Mafia often found themselves grappling with the complexities of their relationship with Elvis. One of his closest friends, Jerry Schilling, recollected an incident where he had to leave a trip prematurely due to Elvis’s demanding behavior.
Elvis Presley’s Nonsensical Demands
Following a series of physically demanding concerts, Elvis embarked on a trip to Colorado with a group of 18 individuals for a skiing expedition. Despite the group’s exhaustion and frustration, Elvis unexpectedly expressed his desire to prolong the trip beyond the initial rental period. This led Jerry Schilling to scramble to find new accommodations at short notice. However, even after settling in, Elvis called Schilling at an unreasonable hour, insisting on switching houses without providing a valid explanation.
As Schilling recounts, “He said he was coming over, so I moved into the small bedroom to give him the master bedroom. When he showed up with Billy and Red, he was just totally wired. He said, ‘I thought I told you I wanted to move back into the house.’ I said, ‘Jesus, I’ve been working to find a place for three days straight. I need to get some sleep.’ He said, ‘You do?’ I was really getting mad now, but he was like someone I didn’t know.”
Realization Sets In
Elvis’s unreasonable demands eventually led to a breaking point. Where Schilling, frustrated with the situation, decided it was time to leave. His departure seemed to shake Elvis who acknowledged that he had gone too far. However, despite this realization, the tension remained, and Schilling made the choice to leave the following day.
Challenges of Friendship
Elvis’s penchant for demanding behavior often conflicted with the close bond shared with Jerry Schilling and the rest of the Memphis Mafia. This only added to the complexities of friendships that were already significantly shaped by the musician’s larger-than-life persona.