ELVIS, KATHY AND J.D. "DON'T LAUGH" MEMORY
The video clips and photos of Elvis laughing reminded me of this story.
Keep in mind that along with lack of 8 hours sleep, the worst thing for a singer to do is to laugh. It just takes the edge off the voice, and could take days to recover. Singers all learn how to laugh without harming their voices. Well, as you know, Elvis' sense of humor was outrageously funny, along with most of the group's. Elvis, J.D. and I happened to beging laughing hysterically one evening, and Elvis and I began to make fun of J.D.'s "Singer's Laugh" (even though if HE laughed his voice would just get lower... therefore, better!). I'll try to make this sound like J.D.
"A HA HA Ho... A Ha Ha Ho". Elvis and began teasing him, saying "If you're gonna laugh, laugh!" We all began laughing in our 'Singer's Laugh'. J.D. then said to us, "That's the stupidest laugh I ever heard from either one of you. If YOU'RE both gonna laugh, then laugh, G.damn it!" (expletive here... sorry, but J.D. could get away with cursing... it was just funny). This went on for a while, then at show time... disaster struck. NOT ONE OF US COULD SING HIGH NOTES, AND/OR WHAT WE SHOULD HAVE. WE HAD RUINED OUR VOICES. After that show, it got worse and worse and worse. We laughed until we had no voices to laugh out loud with. This went on for a few days, until... WE THREE WERE ORDERED NOT TO SEE/BE AROUND EACH OTHER UNTIL WE STRAIGHTENED UP. The fear was we couldn't perform, of course... and they were right. We couldn't.
Well, OF COURSE! THIS MADE IT WORSE! We couldn't sing onstage for laughing. It was horrid. Ever feel like that in church or somewhere you knew you shouldn't laugh?
I have a 'PHOTO IMAGE IN MY MIND' OF ELVIS COMING OUT OF HIS DRESSING ROOM, J.D. OUT OF HIS, ME OUT OF MINE... ALL MEETING IN THE HALL. ALL FACES TRYING NOT TO START AGAIN AFTER SEVERAL DAYS. MEN GRABBED ELVIS BY HIS ARMS ON BOTH SIDES, AND MINE, AND J.D.'s AND ESCORTED US "AWAY FROM EACH OTHER"... To our entrances on stage. You can imagine what happened on stage that night. I couldn't look at ANYONE. Elvis was pinching his cuticles to keep from laughing, I just tried to keep my eyes closed and think of something tragic. None of this worked, of course.
We made it BEING KEPT AWAY FROM ONE ANOTHER for a few days, then... well, somehow we managed to laugh in our "Singer's Laugh Voices". I guess because WE WERE FORCED TO.