Skip to comments.Singing Japan PM tours Graceland [Elvis-themed visit with Tony Snow in Elvis-like sunglasses.]
Posted on 06/30/2006 1:16:45 PM PDT by familyop
Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi has visited the home of his musical hero, Elvis Presley, as a guest of US President George W Bush.
The Japanese PM showed off his Elvis impression
Mr Koizumi burst into song with a few bars of "Love Me Tender" in the Jungle Room of Graceland on a private tour led by the singer's ex-wife.
The tour is being widely seen as Mr Bush's thank-you to a loyal ally who is due to step down in September.
The visit follows talks that focused on N Korea and beef imports on Thursday.
To the strains of Presley's greatest hits, the two leaders were served fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches - a favourite of Elvis - as Air Force One flew them to Memphis.
Koizumi: Elvis' biggest fan Bush's reward to ally
In-flight entertainment on the presidential plane included DVDs of the singer's films.
White House press secretary Tony Snow donned gold-rimmed plastic sunglasses for occasion.
Mr Bush and First Lady Laura Bush were greeted at Graceland by Presley's daughter Lisa Marie and her mother Priscilla, after passing the King's famous pink Cadillac which was parked specially in the driveway.
Then, amid the Hawaiian-style furniture and a waterfall feature in the room where Elvis used to relax, Mr Koizumi serenaded the US president and his wife.
"Love me tender," he sang, and then, draping his arm around Lisa Marie, moved on to "Hold me close, hold me tight" - the opening lines of "I want you, I need you, I love you".
'Much in common'
At a state dinner on Thursday to mark what has been dubbed the "sayonara summit" (sayonara means goodbye in Japanese), Mr Koizumi had quoted the same song in a toast to continued US-Japanese relations.
In his toast, Mr Bush hailed Mr Koizumi's similarities with the rock and roll icon.
The sound track during the flight was Presley's greatest hits
"Like you, he had great hair," he said to laughter from the guests. "Like you, he was known to sing in public. And like you, he won admirers in countries far from home."
Mr Koizumi's lifelong devotion to Elvis is well known. He has sung Elvis songs to world leaders and done duets with celebrities including Tom Cruise.
The light-hearted end to Mr Koizumi's visit follows a day of talks on more serious issues in Washington on Thursday.
The White House spokesman donned Elvis-style sunglasses
Both leaders warned North Korea on claims it is planning to test-fire a long-range missile thought to have Alaska within its range.
Mr Bush thanked Mr Koizumi for Japan's support in Iraq and Afghanistan and hailed the country's decision to restore beef imports from the US after fears over a cow with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE).
Mr Koizumi said there had been no other world leader with whom he had shared the same "heart-to-heart" friendship and trust.
Heart-warming story. Enjoyed reading about the PM's and the Prez Graceland visit.
Awwwww! I'm glad the PM had a good time :)
LOL This is about the 5th post I've read on it and each time I enjoy it more and more. It never ceases to make me laugh!
Ruv me render, ruv me twue....never ret me roe.
I toured Graceland when I was about 9 or 10, all I really remember is all the velvet and the swimming pool shaped like a guitar.
Aw, you beat me to it! "Ruv me tender.." LOL!
I'm that you liked it!
It's girls' stuff, IMO. ;-) But it is about foreign relations, and a short break from my usual grumpy seriousness seemed like a good idea.
Hehehe great story.
That was hysterical! And the Judge asked Kelly if his, Kelly's, dad was watching. LOL. And Kelly disappeared for a couple of minutes while he did his not-so-quick change back into Greg Kelly. That was a hoot!
I'm hugh in Japan.
LOL! I missed the last part. When Greg referred to the Judge by the ice cream name I was literally laughing out loud!!!
That one is going to be set aside for end of the year reviews of Fox & FRiends.
It was great. The camera tried to follow him while he started to change and Kelly waved the camerman off. Then the three hosts had the dead air time to fill while Kelly did his thing. The guys were razzing him pretty good. Then when Kelly came back as himself he plead ignorance about the guy in the Elvis suit. They ought to give Kelly's Elvis impersonation its own calendar page on whatever month Elvis's birthday is. Jeepers, that was funny! :)
Is that Judge Neapolitan????
What did he say he like to put on this Neapolitan???