'I'd never break a virgin - there's enough prostitutes around,' he was fond of telling the Memphis Mafia in later years. It was a rule he stuck to, at least in his early days. 'One of the questions I'm always asked is, "Did you sleep with Elvis?",' says June Juanico, the woman Elvis nearly married in 1956. 'I tell 'em no.' Juanico talks of the couple making love in 'their own special way' of Elvis saying he wanted the first time to be special and of their agreement to wait until they were married.
'There were a lot of virgins about in those days.' June was Elvis' first serious love affair but the touching sentimentality of their 2year relationship would perhaps be less poignant had Elvis not gone on to become the rock n roll icon. 'Elvis was a very sensitive person, very tender, but on the outside he was very macho,' she says. An outspoken and feisty teenager, June recalls a time when she stood up to Elvis in front of his hangers-on, who were beginning to accompany him everywhere. He grabbed her arm, took her into the bathroom and declared: 'Look, you are so right, I am really sorry.' He kept her for five minutes, then swaggered out, his image intact.
June worked hard to keep Elvis grounded, but as his fame and his touring increased, the relationship fizzled out, with phone calls becoming less and less frequent. 'Two weeks went by, then another week. Surely he would call for my birthday, I thought. But he didn't.' Elvis was now in the big time and serial-dating, but the main woman in his life was still his mother.
Gladys Presley had kept a close watch on her son's morality, greeting June with kindness and eagerness as she waited for a daughter-in-law. But in 1958, she died. It was a bad year for Elvis to lose stability; he had just been enlisted. It was while he was doing military service in Germany that he met the 14-year-old Priscilla Beaulieu. This was also where he discovered prostitutes and picked up the intense fear of sexually transmitted diseases which led to claims that he had a morbid fear of sexual penetration.
When he brought Priscilla back to the States to live at Graceland, ostensibly under the chaperoning protection of his father Vernon and his new wife Dee, Elvis also brought back a taste for womanizing. From now on, the restraints were off. The partying that had, in 1957, drawn thinly-veiled accusations of homosexuality - a tabloid ran an article with the headline 'Presley's Powder-Puff Pals', showing a picture of Elvis and Liberace with the caption 'Two prominent bachelors' - was now progressing into fully-blown orgies.
His fast-track to Hollywood only fed his appetite for sex. This was a time when beauty pageants supplied the starlet factory. Julie Parrish was 25 when she first met Elvis on the set of Paradise Hawaiian Style , a film notable for one of the most cringing moments in any Presley movie. 'He had to sing to a dog,' says Parrish. 'The song was called, "It's a Dog's Life". It was so embarrassing for him and we just couldn't stop laughing.' Parrish a naive but driven young woman who had arrived in Hollywood via a magazine competition. An Elvis fan she fought to get the role. 'I was really scared, so nervous when I met him. The first scene we did together was an embrace and he was very quiet at first. He was not an educated man and he was quite guarded when he met people. But looking into his eyes just took your breath away. There was an energy there that almost knocked you to the ground. Was it sexual? You're damned right it was. 'But, oh my God, what a kisser. You know, I tell people I'm going to die happy because I got to kiss Elvis Presley. He had the softest lips I've ever kissed. Oh, he was the most beautiful man.'
Like many of Elvis' Women she is coy about their off-screen relationship. 'Well, he was with Priscilla at the time,' she says. 'We were naive about sex and we were naive about drugs. We were all taking pills - if you were tired you'd take a pill, if you wanted to go to sleep you'd take a pill. One time on set I had a real pain in my side and Elvis scooped me up, carried me into his trailer and shut the door. Outside the crew was waiting and wondering, but Elvis was oblivious to the innuendo. He placed his hand over my side and tried to do some healing on me.'
These movies were often lifted by the on-screen chemistry between Elvis and his co-stars, which was usually mirrored in real-life affairs. Natalie Wood, Connie Stevens, Ann-Margret, Juliet Prowse, Debra Paget, Anne Helm were all on his arm at one point, while Priscilla was waiting at home. Not that their relationship was entirely chaste in pre-wedding days. Elvis spent hundreds of dollars on Polaroid film, snapping Priscilla and her girlfriends cavorting around Graceland in their training bras. Elvis also adored to fondle and suck women's toes, and those in his entourage who were given the job of choosing companions for him would often be asked to check the girls' feet. Small and delicate was the Presley ideal and at least two girlfriends reported having been given the nickname 'Bitty' by Elvis in honour of their 'itty-bitty' feet.
Cybill Shepherd was Miss Teenage Memphis when she met Elvis in 1972. And Shepherd's much-quoted claims that she taught him the joys of oral sex is viewed with scepticism by other lovers of the King. 'I laughed when I read that..' recalls, one Elvis lover, who wants to remain anonymous. 'I can just hear Elvis saying, "Oh, yeah, honey, I've never done anything like that before. You want to show me that one more time?". Nice lady but I don't know that Elvis had much left to learn by that time it was a shuttle one came in the door as another was flown to Vegas
Six months after Priscilla left, Elvis dated Linda Thompson. A beautiful university student, she was a virgin when they met, but what started with marathon love-making sessions in Vegas hotel rooms disintegrated into a sexless and gloomy existence. Of all the women who lived with Elvis, few have been as frank as Thompson. 'There were times when he was very, very, difficult. There was a lot of heartache and a lot of self-destructive behaviour, which was very difficult for me. Watching someone I loved so much destroy himself.' Thompson saved Elvis from death on several occasions and would often lie on the bed with her hand near his mouth to feel his breath as he slept. It took a lot for Linda to leave Elvis. She loved him very much, but the man she'd fallen in love with was gone. By the time she left in 1976, a year before his death, the beautiful country boy was unrecognizable.
Some doubt he ever had sex again, and his final live-in girlfriend, who became his third and last fiancée, is too polite to say. Ginger Alden, another beauty queen, was barely in her twenties when she discovered the lifeless body of Elvis Presley facedown in a Graceland bathroom. Like Thompson before her, she gave up everything to become a 24-hour nurse, hand-holder, even lullaby-singer, to a reclusive, drug-dependent and deeply insecure man. She was also a witness to his last will and testament. He left her nothing.
Anita had a lot in common with Elvis. Like Elvis had moved to Memphis as a teenager from a rural area of Tennessee where she was born. The first meeting of Elvis and Annie (as he sometimes liked to call her) was set up by a mutual friend as a blind date. Elvis and Anita spent a lot of time together in Memphis before his career took off. They would usually spend their dates at the movies, the skating rink or a place they both loved, Libertyland. While dating Elvis, Anita also got to know Mrs. Presley very well. The two got on famously, probably because of their similar background. Anita would recall that Mrs. Presley half expected her and Elvis to marry because they were so close and that she just couldn’t wait to see their little children walking up the driveway. As the film career kicked in they didn’t see too much of each other and that’s where the movie magazine started to report Elvis affairs with his leading ladies. As 1958 came so did the army and Germany. Anita and Elvis exchanged Love letters at the time but it was here where their they parted and a new name suddenly entered the headlines Priscilla Beaulieu.
When Elvis returned from Germany little was mentioned of Priscilla so it was presumed that she was just another name for his little black book. One thing which Elvis did say about Priscilla was the when he first saw her he nearly fell off his chair because she looked so much like, Love Me Tender co-star, Debra Paget. If you look back you can immediately see the resemblance.
When Elvis arrived in Hollywood the first actress he dated was Natalie Wood of "Rebel Without A Cause" fame. They met when Elvis was asked by Nick Adams who he met while making Love Me Tender to make up a foursome. Elvis and Natalie began to date. Being seen at cinemas, hamburger joints as well as riding on Elvis' Harley Davidson. Natalie later recalled that once when they returned to Elvis home at Audubon Drive after a ride they couldn’t get up the driveway because of the crowd of fans. After Elvis promised to sign autographs for them if they let him up to the house. Finally when they did get into the house Natalie though that Elvis would shirk his word. However, Elvis returned to the fans as promised. Telling Natalie that his word meant for something and if it wasn’t for them he wouldn’t be there in the first place. Natalie was blown away by Elvis consideration, so unlike other Hollywood movie stars. Soon after there were rumours that Elvis and Natalie would be hearing the sounds of wedding bells. However, Natalie quelled the press with, "Elvis was the only real boy I have ever met… But we are both career mindful and at this time we both are committed our film contracts." Some speculate that the Colonel Tom Parker intervened, and in hindsight this may have been another factor. As a fan was quoted as saying at the time, "Elvis is just one big hunk of forbidden fruit!"
In the 60's Elvis raced through a constant stream of female co-stars. There was Nancy Sinatra, then 19, who presented him with a gift from her father to commemorate their "Timex TV Special" Elvis first TV appearance since he left the army. Nancy and Elvis known each other before and as was the custom columnists presumed any friendship that went beyond three dates meant the couple were engaged. All indications by the press were soon quashed by Nancy, who spooked them by announcing her engagement to singer, Tommy Sands. The pattern was familiar with all Hollywood's co-star figuring briefly in his life.
Juliet Prowse was regarded as Frank Sinatra’s girl landed a "don’t call again" message to Elvis while hinting that Frankie was getting sore at their friendship on the set of GI Blues. A magazine compiled comments from several of Elvis' leading ladies. Here is what they had to say: "He's a very well mannered and sensitive person" Ursula Andress. "He is a gentleman and he knows a lady when he sees one," Ann Mobley. "Best of all, in spite his success he was unassuming," said Connie Stevens "As to Elvis entourage I get along with every one of them. Any girl who wants to date Elvis knows she has to get along with the boys. The trouble is girls resent this... They want to get Elvis all to themselves."
Of all the leading ladies Ann-Margret stood out from the rest. An obvious choice for the perfect leading lady according to Elvis fans. They had a lot in common, Ann-Margret like to ride motorbikes and they often go riding on their Harley Davidson. They were relaxed in each other company and a certain charisma between them. Even after Viva Las Vegas they kept in touch. Sheila Ryan June Juanico Julie Parrish