My very first concert was Elvis Presley FIFTY years ago. Just like in 1970, November 13th in 2020 is on a Friday. I was a sophomore at Westmoor High-School in Daly City CA. I have these two folks to thank, my parents Otis A. Crapse and Susan Rose (Crimmen) Crapse. My Dad took the day off of work to get tickets and drove my Mom and I to and from the concert on that night. Their support for my music is the greatest gift I’ve ever had. Them taking me to see my boyhood Idol was the greatest of the Greatest gifts. I am forever thankful and grateful to them. Of course, they both knew I’d never speak to them again if they didn’t but, I digress.
The Cow Palace as it appeared then in 1970 and as it looks now in 2020. The Cow Palace (originally the California State Livestock Pavilion) is an indoor arena located in Daly City, California, situated on the city’s northern border with neighboring San Francisco. Because the border passes through the property, a portion of the upper parking lot is actually in San Francisco. Thus property taxes for the parking lot go to the county of San Francisco but the arena itself is in San Mateo county and taxes for it go to that county. Thus, the arena really IS in Daly City and not San Francisco. It was built in 1941and has hosted countless concerts and events.
Some information, like this map, was taken from the book “Elvis On Tour 1970 Vol. 2” by: Kleran Davis. For those of you not living in the San Francisco Bay Area, this might give you a little more insight. The photos of Presley in concert that night are by Maria Columbus.
Yes, the Cow Palace IS in Daly City, CA.
I was happily surprised to find my hometown of Broadmoor Village is mentioned on the map under the phrase “Daly City”. Broadmoor Village is usually overlooked as it is an unincorporated area. Yet it is the ONLY unincorporated area in the whole state of California that has it’s own police force.
You can find out more about Broadmoor Village, CA. in my book published buy the good folks at Arcadia publishing. YES, this is a shameless “Plug”.
It was announced in 1969 that Elvis would be performing LIVE again which took place in Las Vegas. However after a couple of successful engagements this was expanded to full blown tours. Above, an article written by D.J. Tom Campbell of K.Y.A. Radio 1260 A.M. This published in the San Francisco Examiner.
The above and below were published in the Sunday edition of the San Francisco Examiner. The “Pink” section, as it was called, was dedicated to arts and entertainment.
Now according to the book “Elvis On Tour 1970 Vol. 2”by: Kleran Davis, “This remains one of the most poorly documented of Elvis’ concerts with nothing available to the concert enthusiast except a few photographs. No audience recording or video footage has seen the light of day and even the San Francisco newspaper gave little coverage to the concert as their reporters had attended the Oakland show only a few days before”. Thanx to my wife, Sharon, this was a birthday gift.
Now here is my ticket stub from the night. Again I am forever grateful to Otis A. & Susan R. my parents for going through ALL of this for me.
Okay, Presley plays at the Oakland Coliseum-Arena on Nov. 10th 1970 which is why not much coverage of the Cow Palace show is available to this day. Above is the review as it appeared in the San Francisco Examiner. Below I scanned all of the columns of the article so you could read them:
Now the article states that Elvis was given two (2) days to cross the bay. In fact Nov. 11th, he played Portland (Oregon) Coliseum. Then on Nov. 12th, he went further north to Seattle (Washington State) Coliseum. Then back down south to MY side of the bay.
Then at 8:30 P.M. Friday Nov. 13th, 1970, the Cow Palace show started. There are many Presley fans who keep track of ALL of his jumpsuits from that era. There are many websites dedicated to it as well. So, for the record, he wore his “Red Ladder” jump suit with the original belt.
Now here’s the set list with some of my memories that I can dredge up from fifty years ago.
Also Sprach Zarathustra (Intro)
That’s All Right
I Got A Woman / Amen
You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me
This was Presley’s current single on the charts. Nationally it was
listed as a “Double Sided Hit” with the “B” side. THAT song
was called “Patch It Up”. It was written by Country singer Eddie
Rabbit and Rory Michael Bourke and it totally ROCKED! I was
a little disappointed he didn’t do “Patch It Up” as I am a HUGE
fan of Presley’s Rock ‘n Roll music specifically.
You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’
Polk Salad Annie
Johnny B. Goode
How Great Thou Art
The Wonder Of You
Elvis had the band lower the key from “E Major” (The original
key on the hit record down to “D Major”. I remember thinking it
made the song sound more like a Muddy Waters song than an
Elvis Presley song. I thought it was cool.
Blue Suede Shoes
I’ll never forget Elvis standing with his legs apart and shouting
“You Ain’t”. The girls went NUTZ! “You ain’t nothing” and
wiggled his leg with girls going insane. “You ain’t nothing but”
he continued to the screaming and then just stood there teasing
the audience. He stood motionless for almost a minute, then
stood up straight and looked at the audience and announce
“Now Y’All don’t know what I’m gonna do”. Then launched
into the song. It was a HUGE lesson in crowd manipulation for
me as a future “Front Man” for a Rock ‘n Roll band.
Bridge Over Troubled Water
Funny How Time Slips Away
Can’t Help Falling In Love With You
Saturday morning Nov. 14th, 1970. This is Presley leaving the Burlingame Hilton, on the San Francisco Peninsula next to the airport. He’s leaving for Los Angeles to play the Forum that night. He did two shows. Now looking at the set list for the evening show, I can say that I am a little envious that I was not at that show as it included songs from the 1950’s like “I Was The One”, “Love Me Tender” “One Night” (my FAVORITE), “Love Me” and “Trying To Get To You”. All from the 1950’s (my FAVORITE era of his music). Still, the fifteen year old kid inside of me still, has NO complaints really.
Thank You Elvis Presley for the musical inspiration. Thank You Ms. Sharon Caren-Crimmen for the book to help stir my grey matter. Thanks FOREVER to my parents for arranging me to go to my FIRST concert to see Elvis Presley. I also want to thank all of MY fans who have supported my music through all of these years. You all ROCK!
I’ll plant you now and dig you later,