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George Harrison and The Beatles met Elvis Presley in 1965 after their managers, Brian Epstein and Colonel Tom Parker, arranged a meeting at The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s home. Later, George couldn’t remember if The Beatles jammed with Elvis or not, but The King’s stylist claims they did.

The Beatles after John Lennon passed his drivers test in 1965.
The Beatles | Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

George Harrison couldn’t remember if The Beatles jammed with Elvis Presley

In a 1987 interview with Creem Magazine, George talked about the time The Beatles visited Elvis Presley at his Bel Air home in 1965.

“He was really nice and he was charming, and it was a big thrill for us, meeting him–­especially because … well, we looked forward to it…” George said.

“We used to smoke these herbal cigarettes in those days, and we had a couple of those and we had the gig­gles, going into hysterics, and then we totally forgot where we were going or what we were doing. And suddenly, we pulled up at this big gate and we said, ‘What is it? Where are we? What’s go­ing on?’ And then somebody said, ‘It’s Elvis!’ ‘We’ve come to see Elvis!’

“Somebody opened the door and we all fell out of this limo, just like the Rutles, all gig­gling, and we ran in the house and there was Elvis sitting there playing this bass.”

Creem’s J. Kordosh said it must have been a rumor that The Beatles and Elvis jammed together during that initial meeting. George agreed.

“I can’t tell you,” George said on whether The Beatles jammed with Elvis. “I’ve had a lot of brain fades since that period; I dunno, maybe Paul or Ringo would re­member. But it was a good night, and cer­tainly a great thrill and an honor to meet

The King’s stylist claims The Beatles jammed with Elvis

According to Joshua M. Greene’s Here Comes The Sun: The Spiritual And Musical Journey Of George Harrison, Elvis’ Memphis Mafia, Parker, Elvis’ wife, Priscilla, and his stylist, Larry Geller, were at his meeting with The Beatles.

Geller claims The Beatles jammed with Elvis. John gave his best Peter Sellers’ Inspector Clouseau impression when he entered the room. “Ah, zere you are,” John said. “Sit down,” Elvis said. “We’ll talk.” George and the rest of The Beatles sat cross-legged and drooling in front of Elvis like little Kindergarteners.

“They just looked up at him, and I’m telling you their jaws dropped,” said Geller. “This went on for a while, no one saying a word. The silence was palpable. All of a sudden, Elvis got up and said, ‘Well, if you guys don’t want talk to me, I’m going to bed.’ That broke the ice. They started talking and didn’t stop.”

John then asked Elvis if he could play one of his guitars. Elvis handed him one. Then, Paul and Elvis picked up a guitar. They jammed for the next half hour. Geller said they played “Johnny B. Goode,” “Memphis,” and others.


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Geller found George Harrison outside during The Beatles’ meeting with The King

After The Beatles jammed with Elvis, Greene wrote that the “banter flowed.” Drinks came quickly, Ringo Starr played pool with Elvis’ crew, and Epstein and Parker talked about being managers. John and Paul continued to jam with Elvis.

However, eventually, Geller noticed that George was missing and found him outside. The pair found something in common, an interest in spirituality.

Greene wrote, “Geller told George that he had been studying the teachings of kriya-yoga master Paramahansa Yogananda since 1960 and often discussed them with Elvis. ‘That really surprised George,’ Geller said. ‘He wasn’t expecting that from Elvis. You need to remember the times.

“‘When the Beatles came on the scene in 1964, it was the middle of a cultural explosion, not a spiritual one. Nobody was talking about yoga. Elvis was getting into it, but he didn’t talk about it publicly because whenever I’d take him to Yogananda’s Self-Realization Fellowship center, his guys would laugh and make remarks…

“Everybody else was in the house with Elvis and when the conversation first started, they were telling him, ‘Oh, Elvis, we’re here because of you. You started the whole thing, man. If it wasn’t for you, we wouldn’t even be in music.’

“George stayed in the room for maybe twenty minutes—then he left. Why did he leave? It seemed to me he was distancing himself from the fame and the adulation. This was in 1965, just as his career was spiking, and I remember thinking, ‘Interesting. This guy’s an ascetic.'”

Meeting Elvis was an eye-opening experience for The Beatles in different ways.