"Elvis Has Left the Building"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Thu Sep 11 23:57:51 UTC 2003

At 1:50 PM -0500 9/11/03, Bill White wrote:
>On Thu Sep 11 2003 at 08:03, Fred Shapiro <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU> said:
>>  ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>  Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>  Poster:       Fred Shapiro <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU>
>>  Subject:      "Elvis Has Left the Building"
>>  Is anyone able to shed any light on the earliest evidence for and
>>  coiner of the expression "Elvis has left the building"?
>The following sounds plausible:
>    Hayride Legend Dies: longtime Louisiana Hayride producer & emcee
>    Horace Logan passed away in Victoria, Texas on Sunday (Oct. 13) at
>    age 86; many future legends got their start on the Hayride (which
>    aired nationally from radio station KWKH-AM in Shreveport) during
>    Logan's tenure (1948-57), including Elvis Presley, Hank Williams,
>    Webb Pierce, Johnny Horton, Johnny Cash, Kitty Wells and Jim
>    Reeves; Hogan is credited with coining the catch phrase, "Elvis has
>    left the building", uttered while trying to quiet a frenzied
>    Hayride crowd after a Presley performance in '56; for more info,
>    see Logan's 1998 book, "Elvis, Hank, and Me: Making Musical History
>    on the Louisiana Hayride".
>Wasn't the phrase also used at the end of his last televised concert
>in the mid-to-late 1970s?  I always assumed that after its initial
>use, it became a tradition at his concerts (you could probably contact
>a biographer about that).

You mean it didn't originate when Elvis Grbac, a somewhat
fair-to-middlin' quarterback for the S. F. 49ers and Kansas City
Chiefs, was pulled from a game in the early 1990s?


>Bill White                                               Office: 5N-X30
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