Daily Podcast: Channel Your Inner Elvis

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
daily podcast channel your inner elvis

By 1968, Elvis' career was over. The King had squandered his cultural capital on an endless series of hokey flicks with soundtracks so forgettable I've forgotten them. Although the movies all made money and spawned the word "inelvitable" (the appearance of the Jordanaires whenever Elvis started to sing), they turned him into an roller rink singer. But in '68, Elvis' got his shit together (i.e. used sleeping pills to lose weight) and taped a Christmas TV show for NBC. In what came to be known as "The '68 Comeback Special," Elvis sang a finale written for him the night before the recording. The King grabbed a crappy microphone, reached deep inside his soul and belted-out "If I Can Dream" as if his life depended on it. Which, in some ways, it did. Elvis proved that F. Scott Fitzgerald was wrong: there is a second act in American lives. I like to think that one of the buff books (or American automakers) will stare oblivion in the face and channel their inner Elvis. They'll return to the spirit of the "good old days." But then I can't watch my favorite band, Little Feat, perform anymore. Sometimes it's best to move over for someone else. So if anyone wants to publish a TTAC magazine, let me know.

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4 of 5 comments
  • TriShield TriShield on Jul 03, 2008

    I too would like to think there's a second great act in all the American automakers after bankruptcy, but probably not.

  • KeithBates KeithBates on Jul 03, 2008

    A take off on Lowell Georges lyrics... Don't Bogart that Oil my friend Pass it over to me... SteveL

  • Blowfish Blowfish on Jul 03, 2008

    Some say the late great King of Rock n Roll borrowed tricks from hip gyro Tommy Jones, the guy who attracted more hotel room keys, panties tossed to the stage than Honey to Bees. From then on Elvis got a rebirth. Wish I had bought his Moody Blue Album, made of clear blue vinyl. I got the black one later on. And could have seen him in Pontiac Mich circa 74 while I lived in Wnnipeg. 4 more years later the King had met his untimely demise.

  • Paul Niedermeyer Paul Niedermeyer on Jul 03, 2008

    Robert, I must get you to keep thinking that a modern turbocharged/supercharged four can't be happy in something like the Mustang. It will not "have to rev like mad all the time to move it". Look at the specs for the similar Cobalt SS engine: 260hp @5300rpm; 260lbs torque @2500-5250rpm. Compare that to the Mustang GT engine: 300hp @5750rpm; 320lbs@4500rpm. The turbo four has its maximum torque available at 2500rpm! and it's all available right up to 5250rpm. The Mustang's torque peak is actually quite high at 4500rpm. And note that the four's max hp is made at 500rpm less than the V8. It's a myth about turbo engines being peaky; quite the opposite. Of course many remember the turbos of yore, which had major lag. That's almost completely gone, essentially totally so with sequential turbos. The Mustang GT weighs 450lbs more than the Cobalt SS. If an SVO could lose several hundred lbs (500 is optimistic), you'd be down in to about 3200lbs. With 300hp/300ft/lbs of torque, you would have a more flexible, torquey feeling vehicle than the V8 GT. For real. Do you think the VW GT has a problem being motivated by its 200hp turbo four? It weigh not much less (3150 lbs) than a turbo four 'Stang would.