Positively Las Vegas


Elvis Presley's former PR company talks about The King

Elvis would have been 86 today
Posted at 7:38 AM, Jan 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 11:58:19-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Happy birthday is in order today for "The King of Rock and Roll."

Elvis Presley would have been 86 today if it hadn't been for his untimely death at the age of 42.

This morning, 13 Action News Achor Tricia Kean has more on the king's days in Las Vegas from the Geary Company, the PR company whose first client was Elvis.

Elvis Presley first came on the scene in Las Vegas at the New Frontier Hotel at just 21 years old.

He had many years of great success here, but by the end of the 1960s, Elvis's career was on a downward spiral.

His big Las Vegas comback was set for The International Hotel.

His manager Colonel Parker knew that his star client needed the right promotion and advertising to lure fans.

So, a chance conversation with Jim McKusick's father Dick Geary and Elvis's manager proved convincing.

"They hit it off so much that the colonel said sell that billboard company and you can handle Elvis' advertising. He'll be your first client -- open up an ad agency. And that's how it started right there," says Jim McKusick.

Soon, Elvis was performing to sold out shows, and fans wanted more.

Elvis' successful marketing campaign and comeback caught the attention of many other stars who wanted the same Las Vegas success!

But, even with all the great talent that's headlined showrooms in Las Vegas over the decades, Jim says that even as a kid, he knew there was something really special about the King.