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It doesn't take a lot of digging to realize that Shreveport has an extremely rich musical history. The list is actually too long to list all the people that are either from Shreveport, or have spent a major part of their careers here, and have impacted their genres of music.

Legendary artists like James Burton, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Hank Williams, Jr, & Kix Brooks, are just a few of the more recent notables. But there are so many more.  Jordan Davis is topping the country charts to this day. And John-Henry Crawford has already been recognized as a world-class cellist, performing around the world on a rare 200-year old European cello smuggled out of Austria by his grandfather, Dr. Robert Popper, who evaded Kristallnacht in 1938. He also performs on a fine French bow by the revolutionary bowmaker Tourte “L’Ainé” from 1790.

Elvis Presley Hayride Years

Most people from Shreveport are at least a little familiar with the fact that a 19-year-old Elvis Presley got his start on the Louisiana Hayride back in October, 1954.  Working as a truck driver during the day, the future "King of Rock & Roll" appeared every Saturday night on the legendary KWKH broadcast from the middle of 1954 through 1955.


After his term in the Army, Elvis returned to the stage with his massively successful "Come Back Special"  that aired on NBC, December 3rd, 1968.   From 1969 to 1977, Elvis performed 636 shows at the International Hotel in Las Vegas in month-long periods of two shows per night. And on stage with him singing backup were the popular vocal group, The Sweet Inspirations.

loveElvisAP. LisaMP Youtube

loveElvisAP. LisaMP Youtube

According to Wikipedia, The Sweet Inspirations were founded in 1960 by Dionne Warwick and her sister Dee Dee Warwick.  The group was joined by Cissy Houston in 1963, yes, Houston, as in the mother of Whitney Houston.

But what you might not know is that one of those Sweet Inspirations singers lives right here in Shreveport.  Estelle Brown joined the Sweet Inspirations in 1965, and has performed not only on stage with Elvis, but you can hear her on Van Morrison's song Brown Eyed Girl, as well as recordings by Jimmy Hendrix, Wilson Pickett, George Benson, and the incomparable Aretha Franklin.



KTBS's Rick Rowe interviewed Estelle a few years ago in one of his popular features, and she was just as charming as ever.  Describing Elvis, she said:

“We had to keep an eye on him, because you never knew what he was going to do. 'Estelle, ya’ll have to watch me.. you know..  


My wife and I were at the recent "Elvis is in the Building" program by the Shreveport Symphony, when they unexpectedly brought out Estelle Brown before the second half of the show, where she shared a few memories of her time with Elvis with the appreciative crowd.  Stay tuned... KEEL News has reached out to Brown and hopes to have her share more of her stories with you soon.

See a Behind the Scenes Tour of Shreveport's Municipal Auditorium

Gallery Credit: Mike Martindale

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