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Elvis. Hotel Sahara Tahoe. Lake Tahoe. Stateline, Nevada, at the High Sierra Theater
Elvis. Hotel Sahara Tahoe. Lake Tahoe. Stateline, Nevada, at the High Sierra Theater


Elvis performed a series of concerts at the Hotel Sahara Tahoe. Stateline, Nevada, at the High Sierra Theatre.

The first was in July – August 1971, and later in 1973, 1974 and 1976.

The first was a great release for Elvis, since there he was isolated from the media, from routine…in an idyllic place. But this began to change and become a burden for him.

The history of Lake Tahoe and where the Hotel was located is fascinating.

Washoe Indians gathered at Lake Tahoe for centuries believing it to be a special place for spirituality.

Lake Tahoe has inspired mysterious legends about its beauty and its inhabitants, as the Washoe Indians populated its shores and also told fantastic stories about the existence of a monster in the lake.

And between legends and fantasy, there Elvis fulfilled five concert commitments between 1971 and 1976 at Del Webb’s Sahara Tahoe Hotel, Starline, Nevada.

The complex had a very strict no-photograph rule, so there is very little visual material from those shows.

Lake Tahoe concerts have always been an enigma.

All existing information is based on vague reports or word of mouth, and the Lake Tahoe memorabilia remains the world’s rarest and most sought after Elvis memorabilia. It is inexplicable, but very little information exists about Lake Tahoe.

Sue McCasland was among the few fans allowed to take pictures, and she published the book “World’s Best Kept Secret: Elvis Live At Del Webb’s Sahara Tahoe.” That is where the little existing material has come to light.

Book “World’s Best Kept Secret: Elvis Live At Del Webb’s Sahara Tahoe.”

To this day, Tahoe remains a mystery. Why such a little-known venue where sold-out concerts were held had been forgotten, in contrast to the overwhelming amount of information that exists on their Las Vegas performances?… This will always remain a mystery…

His performances at Lake Tahoe have always been highly controversial, as Elvis Presley normally did not feel comfortable in this outdoor setting, saying that he was “fed up with so much lake, so many little trees, and so much singing birds“.

When she sang here, her voice used to get affected by the weather, it’s like she was in a well when she sang. It was hard for him to breathe. But really in this year 74 things were somewhat different. Still, two performances were canceled as Elvis lamented that he had “the flu.” His friend Lamar Fike called this disease “Las Vegas Throat.” For him it was simply that Elvis did not want to continue singing and used the excuse of illness, although it is a fact that these changes in humidity and temperature did affect his vocal cords, and a lot.

Elvis. Hotel Sahara Tahoe. Lake Tahoe. Stateline, Nevada, at the High Sierra Theater
Elvis. Hotel Sahara Tahoe. Lake Tahoe. Stateline, Nevada, at the High Sierra Theater

On May 16, 1974, after a short five-concert tour of California, Elvis Presley began performances for his third season in Lake Tahoe.

In May of 1974, Elvis, thankfully, was having a good time. He was in very good shape, physically and vocally, in a very good state of mind, and gave some magnificent shows in Lake Tahoe, with a good repertoire. He seemed very close to the public and enjoying his show. Unlike the shows he put on in 1973, which were absolutely unlucky. 1973 was a disastrous year for Elvis.

On Friday, May 24, at the Midnight Show, Elvis gave one of these excellent concerts. These days he was happy to be there, and he was in a very good mood, since they had celebrated his girlfriend Linda Thompson’s birthday party the night before.

During the concert, Elvis accepted a personal request to interpret the song “Spanish Eyes“, something that he did not usually do. And here would come the star moment of the concert, the interpretation of the key song of the night: ”Spanish Eyes” .

We have a request for someone’s birthday. I would like to dedicate this song to Linda for her birthday. She wants to hear ”Blue Spanish Eyes,’Elvis said.

Obviously he was dedicating the song to his girlfriend Linda Thompson for her birthday.

A superb interpretation, full of charm, sweetness and feeling, with a beautiful duet with Sherrill Nielsen.

The musicians were impeccable, with a wonderful instrumental performance by the Al Tronti Orchestra.

But the most beautiful of all was the imposing Latin trumpet solo. At minute 2:40 of the video, we can hear something, which when I heard it for the first time, made me shudder: An absolutely heavenly trumpet solo.

Elvis Presley recorded this song in the studio on December 16, 1973, and it was published for the first time on the album “Good Times“.

But Elvis, in this version, added an entire verse to the song, a verse he hadn’t recorded in his 1973 studio version. Which adds another magical moment to the song.

For me, one of the best Elvis shows in Lake Tahoe. Everything was in its place: Elvis in an excellent state of mind, giving us an unrepeatable jewel with that “Spanish Eyes” and those heavenly-sounding trumpets.

Here you have the link:


[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XBI5F18J48]

Information provided by ELVIS. El Chico De Tupelo

Rosa Garcia Mora



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