At long last, an Elvis concert recorded in my hometown of Richmond, Virginia, will become an official album. In September, Sony’s Follow That Dream collectors label will release 48 Hours To Memphis, a CD that captures Elvis’ March 18, 1974, concert at the Richmond Coliseum.
In the 1970s, Elvis performed live on four dates at the Richmond Coliseum. The March 18 concert was only six days after his March 12 appearance there. The tour swung back through Richmond due to a rapid sell out of the earlier show. An audience sign in 1972’s Elvis On Tour modified the state tourism slogan to say, “Virginia Is For Elvis Lovers.” This clearly was still the case two years later.
I’m also glad that they gave this CD a creative title, rather than just slapping a song name on it. As any native should be able to tell you, Richmond is about 13 hours from Memphis by car – and much shorter, obviously, by plane. The 48 Hours To Memphis title reflects that Elvis closed out the tour two days later with a concert in Memphis on March 20. An edited version of the Memphis show became the July 1974 album Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis.
To the point of sounding like a broken record, I’ve noted several times here that I missed out on seeing Elvis perform live due to being only two years old when he passed away. Like all Richmond shows, I have intentionally avoided the bootleg version of this concert for years in hopes of someday enjoying an official release. I have been waiting to hear an Elvis concert in Richmond for nearly my entire life. 48 Hours To Memphis will be a very special way to think of what might have been. Thank you, FTD.