Listen to this one-of-a-kind conversation with the inimitable Johnny Lang, who served with Elvis Presley in the US Army and who, at age 87, seems to still be channeling Elvis’s extraordinary energy.

Johnny’s new book, My Army Days with Elvis: Friendship, Football & Follies, tells of hijinks and warm friendship with The King of Rock n’ Roll as the Cold War heated up in Europe. Johnny can tell you what Elvis Presley was really like, in private, and we’ll discuss the impact of Elvis’s induction and service on his career and popular music.

Elvis Presley got his draft notice before Christmas 1957. He’d hoped to dodge it or, perhaps, serve in Special Services entertaining troops around the world. But, in the end, he served as a regular GI, sworn in on March 24, 1958 with training at Fort Hood, Texas.

Elvis was a jeep and truck driver for two different armor battalions, Company A, 2d Medium Tank Battalion, 37th Armor, at Fort Hood and then the 1st Medium Tank Battalion, 32d Armor in Germany.

For 18 months, Elvis was largely out of the spotlight he craved. He worried his popularly might sink, music tastes might changes, and he might be forgotten back home. But, he also made a good soldier by all accounts, and he returned home a changed man. Some changes were good, some not so good.

But Johnny, not Elvis, is the star of this show. Contact the VBC for a signed copy of Johnny’s book.

Thank you to our sponsor, Tobacco Free Adagio Health