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dead at 80

By JOE EDWARDS, Associated Press Writer Tue Jul 3, 6:34 PM ET NASHVILLE, Tenn.

 - Boots Randolph, whose spirited saxophone playing on "Yakety Sax" endeared him to fans for years on Benny Hill's TV show, died Tuesday. He was 80.

Randolph suffered a cerebral hemorrhage June 25 and had been hospitalized in a coma. He was taken off a respirator at Skyline Medical Center earlier Tuesday, said Betty Hofer, a publicist and spokeswoman for the family.

Randolph played regularly in Nashville nightclubs for 30 years, becoming a tourist draw for the city much like Wayne Newton in Las Vegas and Pete Fountain in New Orleans.

He recorded more than 40 albums and spent 15 years touring with the Festival of Music, teaming with fellow instrumentalists Chet Atkins and Floyd Cramer.

As a session musician, he played on Elvis Presley's "Return to Sender," Roy Orbison's "Oh, Pretty Woman," Brenda Lee's "Rockin' Round the Christmas Tree" and "I'm Sorry," REO Speedwagon's "Little Queenie," Al Hirt's "Java" and other songs including ones by Buddy Holly and Johnny Cash.

In 1963 he had his biggest solo hit, "Yakety Sax," which he co-wrote with guitarist James Rich.

"`Yakety Sax' will be my trademark," Randolph said in a 1990 interview with The Associated Press. "I'll hang my hat on it. It's kept me alive. Every sax player in the world has tried to play it. Some are good, some are awful."

"Yakety Sax" was the name of one of his gold albums and became the theme song for "The Benny Hill Show."

"It rejuvenated the song," Randolph said in 1990. "So many people know it from the show."

He also was part of the Million Dollar Band on the TV show "Hee Haw."

"He not only played just the notes, he caressed them," said longtime "Hee Haw" co-host Roy Clark. "You could hear the words to his instrumentals.

“Randolph was born Homer Louis Randolph in Paducah, Ky., and grew up in the rural community of Cadiz, Ky., where he learned to play music with his family's band.

He said he didn't know where or why he got the nickname "Boots," although his Web site at the time of his death suggested it was to avoid confusion because he and his father shared the same first name.

Randolph began playing the ukulele and then the trombone, but switched to the tenor sax when his father unexpectedly brought one home.

He graduated from high school in Evansville, Ind., then joined the Army and became a member of the Army Band.

After his discharge, he played primarily jazz at nightclubs for $60 a week. He finally landed a recording contract with RCA in Nashville in 1958 and was hired as a musician for recording sessions.

Randolph had his own nightclub in Nashville's Printer's Alley for 17 years, closing it in 1994 because of declining business and to spend more time with his family.

He played regularly at other nightclubs before and after that. He had lived in Nashville since 1961.

Randolph charted 13 albums on the pop charts from 1963 to 1972. His other single hits included "Hey, Mr. Sax Man" in 1964 and "Temptation" in 1967.

"Every time I pick the horn up, it's more intriguing to me," he said. "It satisfies my desire to do whatever I do.

"I think I probably get better because I work so much. You get to a point where you can be lackadaisical or nonchalant. But I'm not like that. I worry if I play a tune bad or my horn is not working right."

Survivors include his wife, a son, a daughter and four grandchildren.


"Priscilla Presley Announced as Elvis Insiders Conference Guest
On August 14, Priscilla Presley will appear during Day 2 of the Elvis Week 2007
Official Elvis Insiders Conference. Her on-stage interview segment will mark
Priscilla's first-ever participation in the conference. Also just announced for
Elvis Week 2007 is an exciting new event, Elvis Music & Movies at Graceland.
This first-time event will take place on the front lawn of Graceland Mansion on
August 13 and 14, and will feature a live outdoor concert of Elvis music
followed by the screening of an Elvis movie."


Check out the new Official Elvis.com channel now on YouTube!







CRUISE WITH ‘THE KING’ (and his ‘Queen’)!

Friday, April 20, 2007 – Monday, April 23, 2007

 Exciting Cruise Update!


(Elvis’s lead female singer throughout the ‘70’s)

2007 will mark the 30th anniversary of the passing of Elvis Presley. 
Pittsburgh’s Premiere Elvis entertainer Don Obusek and his wife/manager Hilda wanted to do
something special to honor the life of the world’s greatest entertainer – Elvis Presley

 To commemorate this event, Don and Hilda have teamed up with MAC Travel
to put together a fabulous 4-day, 3-night cruise to the Bahamas,
aboard Carnival’s Cruise Ship ‘Fascination’. 
We will leave Friday, April 20th, 2007 and return Monday, April 23, 2007.

While onboard, Don and Hilda will do a ‘meet and greet’ and Don will perform his outstanding
Tribute to the Magic of Elvis’.   Kathy will share her special memories of her time with Elvis. 
She will also be happy to autograph any merchandise that you purchase onboard the ship! 
Kathy will be accompanied by her assistant, June Moore (Elvis Columnist for Suite 101)

Cruise rates start at $384.00 per person, inside stateroom.  This cost covers the cruise, all meals,
taxes and port charges (airfare, transfers, tips and land excursions are an additional charge). 

 To book your cruise, please call
Sheri at MAC Travel 412-875-0055 (Toll Free at 1-800-243-0550). 
Cabins have different bedding arrangements – twin, twin separated, double, etc.
Specify your preference. You can book your airfare with her, or you may book it on your own.
The ship departs from Miami, but you can also fly into Ft. Lauderdale
(which is about a 35 - 40 minute drive from Miami). 

Book now as space is limited!

This particular ‘Cruise with The King (and his ‘Queen’ - and Kathy and June!)
is an exclusive event and can only be booked by MAC Travel!

You will probably need a valid passport.  We’ll let you know as soon as possible.

For further news on the cruise and our other upcoming events,
please periodically visit our website: 

      www.magicofelvis.com     www.kathywestmoreland.us     www.elvisrockson.com

Please tell your family and friends, and Elvis fans everywhere, about
Pittsburgh’s first ‘Cruise with The King’!   Start saving your money now for
the event of the year! This would be a fabulous Christmas, birthday or
anniversary gift for your sweetie
(or for yourself)!

Please join Don and Hilda as they perform their exciting tribute to Elvis, onboard Carnival’s Fascination’.   Share Kathy’s memories and make some new ones.
After the long winter, won’t you deserve a vacation ‘Fit for a King’?
  For an unforgettable vacation, come
experience a special tribute to the


Thank you, thank you very much!


Check out the great photos of Elvis' granddaughter on
Lea Frydman's webiste at
Riley Keough  


Help get The Jordanaires, into the Rock&Roll Hall of Fame. These guys helped
Elvis get his start.Elvis, often said,he would have been nothing without them

Jordaniares Petition


The Following is the Answer Joe has for one of the most outrageous lies ever spread
about Elvis. The Elvis committed suicide lie spread and concocted by David Stanley.

This very nasty lie has more than upset those closest to Elvis. We ask that you help
us kill this lie by helping us spread the following audio file or link to every
Elvis fan and website around the world since this lie and the upcoming David Stanley
Film "The Headhunter" could seriously damage the Elvis legacy and his memory for
future generations of fans.

This is your chance as an Elvis fan to take care of business in a very big way.

Thank you!




Clips of Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi visit to Graceland can be viewed at www.elvis.com


For those who have ever been involved with the Images of the King or Images of Elvis competition would know who Edward Octave "Doc" Franklin is.

You can read about Doc and sign the Commercial Appeal guestbook at http://www.legacy.com/CommercialAppeal/Obituaries.asp?Page=LifeStory&PersonId=18351049


Joe Esposito responds about Jonathan Rhys Meyers Comment



Museum buys Elvis' favorite park ride

Owners of a small museum wanted a piece of Elvis Presley's favorite

amusement park ride but ended up instead with the whole thing — a
roller coaster called the Zippin Pippin.

The Pippin was bought by the city's park commission in 1947. Most of
the superstructure for its 2,800 feet of track was replaced over the
years but it's still billed as one of the oldest wooden roller
coasters in the country.

The ride was a top attraction at Libertyland, a 30-year-old
amusement park Presley often rented for private parties.

Libertyland is closing and its rides and concession stands were sold
at auction Wednesday.

Robert Reynolds and Stephen Shutts, partners in a traveling museum
called the Honky Tonk Hall of Fame & Rock-N-Roll Roadshow, showed up
planning to bid on one of the roller coaster cars.

Instead, they bought the whole Pippin for $2,500. It went cheap
because the sale agreement gives the buyer a month to take it down
and haul it away.

Reynolds said he had not yet decided what they will do with the

"There's 30 days to figure it out. ... The car is all we needed," he


It saddens me to have to let you know that Marian Cocke's husband, Bob passed away at home earlier today.

I spoke with Marian earlier this evening, and she has asked me to let you know that the visitation will be tomorrow, Tuesday, May 23rd at Memorial Park Funeral Home, on Poplar in Memphis, TN from 5 - 8 pm.

The funeral service will take place at Lindenwood Christian Church (Union & Parkway), Memphis, TN on Wednesday, May 24th at 2:00 pm. 
If you wish, your sympathy cards may be sent to:
Marian Cocke
784 Pecan Gardens Circle East
Memphis Tn 38122
Our thoughts, and prayers go out to Marian, at this time, and during the days ahead.

Kathleen DeNike
Collingwood Rocks With Elvis Fan Club
Collingwood, Ontario, Canada


Check out the






Graceland has now been designated as a historic Landmark

Read the rest of the story at


The History Channel is featuring the 10 days that changed America, Elvis will be shown on April 11.

TLC Channel is showcasing Memphis in their Trading Spaces show. Elvis themed room were done. Next show will be April 14 at 4pm.

The house on Audubon Drive in Memphis is being auctioned on e bay. This is the first house Elvis purchased. Bidding starts April 14 and will close on May 14 2006.

Also featured on e bay is a jet engine from the Lisa Marie. If you have an extra $175,000 lying around it can be yours.

Charlie Hodge

Charlie Hodge, age 71, of Sevierville, Tenn., died Friday, March 3, 2006, at Fort Sanders Regional in Knoxville, Tenn. He was born and raised in Decatur.

Charlie’s love of music and comedy led him to a long career of singing with quartets, one of the first included Bill Gaither and Charlie’s own quartet, The Foggy River Boys.
Charlie entered the Army with Elvis Presley and they became good friends. He worked for Elvis and lived in Graceland for 17 years. After Elvis’ death, Charlie continued to perform in shows dedicated to Elvis’ memory. For the past 15 years, Charlie performed at Memories Theatre in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., and also traveled the world sharing Elvis stories speaking and performing.

He was preceded in death by his parents, George and Mattie P. Hodge.
Survivors include his loving wife, Jennifer Hodge; one sister, Margie Poteet of Somerville; one nephew, Lyle Poteet of Somerville; one great-niece, Caitlin Poteet; one cousin, Sedema Poole and several other cousins.

The family will receive friends tonight from 5 to 8 at Atchley Funeral Home in Sevierville, Tenn.

Funeral service will be Tuesday, March 7, 2006, at 2 p.m. at Roselawn Funeral Home in Decatur.
Burial will follow in New Friendship Baptist Church Cemetery.
The family will receive friends Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you make donations to your favorite charity in Charlie’s memory.

Published in the Decatur Daily on 3/5/2006.

To view, and sign Charlie's Guest Book, please visit:

Charlies Guest Book





Behind every great man is a "GREAT man"

My precious friend Charlie Hodge passed today. A couple of days ago he called me, left a message on my answering machine. "Bye,Bye,"...then his wife Jennifer, "That was Charlie. Call us back at this number ". I became hysterical, frantically called the number of the hospital and room they had left on the machine. (I had been told days ago not to call, Jennifer asked all to hold their calls as she was swamped, and to wait until she sent word. I couldn't sleep, and called anyway, left a message to tell Charlie I loved him, not to worry about calling me back, That I was "seeing" him every moment....just wait to call when things calmed down.

He called from his hospital room in Knoxville, Tennessee.
I returned the call immediately, and spoke with Jennifer first, who immediately handed the phone to him. He sounded terrific. He assured me that he would "beat this", that he just got exhausted from the treatments. He then went on to tell me all of the wonderful things he thought about me! How typical of Charlie. He saw and brought out the best in everyone who was fortunate enough to share his friendship. It was Charlie who was THE ONLY PERSON WHO LIVED WITH ELVIS DAY-IN-DAY-OUT, MOMENT BY MOMENT. HE WAS THE ONLY PERSON IN THE ENTIRE GROUP OF PEOPLE AROUND ELVIS WHO UNDERSTOOD ELVIS. How ugly it is to me that their misunderstanding of Elvis, their capitalization-motivated stories told to each other, repeated over and over, revised, then repeated again....have become the so-called 'history' of the most beloved person on planet earth.

HE TAUGHT ELVIS TO BE HIMSELF, LET HIS ANGER OUT AS ANY GREAT ARTIST WOULD, AND DIRECT IT TO A PERFORMANCE. ANGER WAS ENERGY...AND IT MADE A BETTER PERFORMANCE. (I had the good fortune of having been born to a most temperamental singer...my father...so Elvis was completely
"Normal" to me. I told him when I first met him how much he reminded me of my father. (Freudian, I suppose) IT WAS CHARLIE WHO EXERCISED ELVIS' VOICE 'ROUND THE CLOCK...PLAYING THE PIANO AS ELVIS SANG. He was Elvis' Teacher. Elvis Trusted him more than any person in his circle of associates, who though friends, were of a different "ilk"...just NOT artists, nor had they any understanding or experience with that type of personality. Plus, they had much more limited conversational exchanges with Elvis...CHARLIE WAS AN EXTENSION OF ELVIS...and without Charlie, Elvis would not have achieved the greatness he did. The talent was there...Charlie Brought it out of him, not only with Understanding, but by adding his great talents to Elvis'. His vocal, instrumental, and vast knowledge of every aspect of "show business", and knowledge of multiple genres/feels and styles of music.

IT WAS CHARLIE WHO (having had his own group and TV/radio show in the fifties ---the Foggy River Boys) UNDERSTOOD THE ARTIST IN ELVIS, WHO TAUGHT ELVIS HOW TO PACE A SHOW. When he recorded duets with Elvis, one could not tell the voices apart. He matched Elvis so perfectly. He taught Elvis just what song would work where in order to raise the excitement of an audience, then to control the audience by doing a number that would calm things down. CHARLIE WAS THE ONLY PERSON WHO KNEW,...YES...REALLY KNEW ELVIS, UNDERSTOOD HIM, ALLOWED HIM TO "BE" HIMSELF; "Go into a rage if you want...use me as your kicking board, just let the artistic emotions in you out, Elvis!" I can still hear him. HE WAS THE ONLY PERSON WHO LAUGHED, RATHER THAN GETTING THEIR FEELINGS HURT WHEN ELVIS LET HIS EMOTIONS SHOW. EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THE OTHERS THOUGHT ELVIS WAS INSANE,...BUT THEY HAD NO UNDERSTANDING OF ARTISTS, NOR OF THEIR TEMPERAMENT. ..THEIR NEED TO SCREAM, LAUGH, CRY...NOT TO FEAR EMOTION.

Charlie taught me to "remember not to think , just BE...Let your desires be your inspirations, and 'IT BE-COMES YOU'. If there had been no Charlie, who never, never let Elvis down...not once, there would not have been the Elvis who touched all of our lives. Elvis probably would have been heard, but certainly not developed his gifts to such extraordinary heights had Charlie not been his best friend. Charlie and I recalled a time when someone called him offstage for a minute, and Elvis said, "Charlie, when I glanced back there and you weren't there,...I panicked. I don't EVER want to do a show without you right with me EVER AGAIN." I am laughing now. If there is a "dimension" up or out there where people meet when they leave this physical body, I'll bet Elvis is finally happy at this moment. Perhaps someday they'll share this day's conversations with me? I am so envious to think they perhaps have the answers to all of the questions we pondered, attempted to puzzle out, only to realize that as Charlie said, "It's time to stop now...rest our minds...", and then he'd quote a Scripture,..."All knowledge is vain". Elvis and I and Charlie knew the answers must be there, or we wouldn't have the questions. We almost drove ourselves into total exhaustion while "thinking", then refreshed ourselves by just practicing quieting our minds, and just going blank, just "feeling".

He (Charlie) said, "Kathy, don't worry about me! Worry just saps your energy. Let's "see in our mind's eye...you and I performing together all over the world, and it shall be so". Jennifer positive in her attitude, said, "Don't worry about Charlie! He's doing so much better. We'll be going home." We made a deal near the end of our conversation. I can't see how that's possible now, but somehow....I know we ARE together.

When I got the message this afternoon that he passed away, I went into a rage, cried, fell on my knees, assumed the "meditation position" he and Elvis and I practiced, then REAL-"EYES-ED"...Charlie did not want me to cry for long. He wants me to BE STILL...AND KNOW...

When he became tired and weaker after talking, laughing, and we said our last "bye-bye"...I just told him, "REST...We'll talk soon, and keep visualizing ourselves together....and it WILL BE-COME US."

I love you, CHARLES,
Minnie Mouse

For Jennifer, Mrs. Charles Hodge,

Please know that I am thinking now of you, keeping you in the light, as you journey through this difficult time. I look so forward to seeing you face to face, in person. You are loved by me, because Charlie loved  you and you loved him so.

Love Kat






For Charlie Hodge Memorial Plaque"

"Petition For Charlie Hodge Memorial Plaque"

Here is how to do it at the below url.

Please upload your favorite photo of Charlie Hodge to contribute to
this petition at the bottom of the page once you surf over to it and
then click on SIGN PETITION at the bottom you will see a button with
Click *Here* to draw your signature now.   Once you have used your
mouse to draw your signature.  Fill in your personal information and
submit it.

A great way to keep the memory of Charlie Hodge alive and in the hearts
of all his fans and the Elvis fans throughout the world.


Update on Lisa Marie

My good friend Lea Frydman has the whole scoop on that with lots of photos at

Lisa Marries