By Wesley Harris
Estelle Brown remembers Elvis Presley as a nice person who had a special gift. She should know. She sang backup behind Elvis during his comeback years of 1969-1977.
Brown will speak at the Claiborne Parish Library Saturday about her work with Elvis and other musical superstars.
As part of “The Sweet Inspirations” formed in the late sixties, Brown sang on Van Morrison’s track “Brown Eyed Girl” and with Dusty Springfield on “Son of a Preacher Man” before working with Elvis.
After her time with Elvis, Brown toured and recorded with The Sweet Inspirations as an Elvis tribute band and sang on various TV shows and special events.
Elvis starred in many movies and recorded scores of soundtracks but got his start in small venues like the Louisiana Hayride at Shreveport’s Municipal Auditorium. He played other North Louisiana spots like Minden’s drive-in theater and Monroe’s Neville High auditorium before he hit the big time.
After a slump in his career, Presley staged a big comeback in 1969 and Estelle Brown was along for the ride.
Elvis worked with Aretha Franklin during the comeback years. Jerry Wexler, Franklin’s producer, helped release The Sweet Inspirations album that went Gold with Atlantic Records. Brown and The Sweet Inspirations sang on R-E-S-P-E-C-T with Franklin.
Brown is the only surviving original singer who worked directly with Elvis. She has been interviewed by various TV show hosts, film makers, and DJs. This event is a rare opportunity to hear directly from Brown about her time with Elvis.
Meet Brown and listen to her share her experiences with Elvis and other stars at the Claiborne Parish Library on Saturday, November 18 at 2 p.m. The library is located at 909 Edgewood Drive in Homer. The event is free of charge and refreshments will be provided.