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Result Poll Madison Square Garden Best Concert

January 07, 2010 | Other

Elvis fails to make final Top 10 Poll in Madison Square Garden ‘best concert’ vote: It appears the time of Elvis fans rising to the occasion to support Elvis in online polls is passing. Several years ago more than 1 million votes for Elvis were cast in the Person of the Century poll run by TIME magazine. Elvis came from nowhere to blitz the field. Sadly, one of the King’s greatest moments, his four sold out shows at New York’s legendary Madison Square Garden (MSG), have failed to make the final Top 10 vote to determine the #1 show at the Garden, despite many of the major Elvis websites urging fans to vote. Michael Jackson supporters appear to have taken over the mantle of the most zealous fans with a very well organised and strong campaign giving Jackson the top two spots by a wide margin over Led Zeppelin.

With acts such as the Village People, Duran Duran and Peter Gabriel polling above Elvis in the MSG vote, and his slipping performance in a number of other online polls, Elvis’ appearance at or near the top of polls no longer seems a certainty. Even Barbra Streisand received a greater vote than Elvis. While most polls are unimportant this was not the case with the MSG vote which was a one-off event by an iconic entertainment and sporting venue.

The Top 20 MSG shows were:

1. Michael Jackson 1988 29.1%
2. Michael Jackson 2001 28.6%
3. Led Zeppelin 1973, 12.3%
4. Whitney Houston 1987, 11.9%
5. Janet Jackson 1990, 4.5%
6. Barbra Streisand 1994, 2.1%
7. Phil Collins 1985, 1.82%
8. Duran Duran 1984, 1.81%
9. Peter Gabriel 1986, 1.80%
10 Village People 1979, 1.79%
11. Elvis Presley 1972 1.10%
12. Luther Vandross 1991 0.81%
13. Mariah Carey 1995, 0.78%
14. Celine Dion 1998, 0.70%
15. Rolling Stones 1975, 0.13%
16. Shakira 2006, 0.06%
17. Christina Aguilera 2007, 0.059%
18. Dixie Chicks 2003, 0.058%
19. Jay-Z 2009, 0.058%
20.Concert for Bangladesh, 0.058%

Source:Elvis Information Network
Deano1 wrote on January 07, 2010
It is a little sad that Elvis' concerts at MSG would not be in the top 10, but I am not going to lose sleep over a poll that has no basis in fact anymore than I celebrated Elvis' victories in other meaningless polls. Other than Led Zeppelin, all the shows ahead of Elvis took place a dozen or more years after Elvis' event and many of Elvis' fans are people like my parents who don't even own a computer. I would also be interested in knowing how many people who voted ever saw one of these shows or listened to it on a record. How do you compare or judge a show that you never saw or heard???
dufl wrote on January 07, 2010
I think the conclusion and commens are completely wrong. Shortly after the polls started people used software programs for continious voting and I'm sure some fan groups used that a lot which explan some of the weird results. In one of the polls Elvis was actually in front until the software spamning votes started. So the results from this poll can only be used to measure software skills among fan groups. And I dont think Elvis fans will be strongest here :)
luciano77 wrote on January 07, 2010
You know folks I don't care that Elvis didn't hit the top 10. We all know that his concert were one of the best preformance at the MSQG. Like a Prince from an other Planet. Caman' it can't be that village People did a better concert then our Man of even Barbara Streisand. Tonite at home I will listen to the LP and yes it is one of the best concert of the MSQG. Not matter what. TCB
old shep wrote on January 07, 2010
For an old guy with just a basic knowledge of computers etc I go with Dufl on this ... but do these polls matter. The fact is I enjoyed the Madison concerts as did thousands of fans. Duran Duran, Janet Jackson, The Village People? Who gives a ....
KTemple wrote on January 07, 2010
any poll that put Janet Jackson, Peter Gabriel, the Village People and the rest of them for that matter above Elvis is rediculous, really who cares anyway, what difference does it make, even if Elvis came in 1st, who cares??
Swen wrote on January 07, 2010
How many people voted? - or should I say how few??
Jamie wrote on January 07, 2010
Hello, Elvis was in artistic decline after 1970 and I don't care what people thought of any of his shows after then, including his MSG performances in 1972. I think we can safely assume that his performances in the 1950s and at Burbank in 1968 were better than the Village People at MSG.
dgirl wrote on January 07, 2010
Sign of the times. Unfort the article is right. The majority of the fan base is aging and could care less about voting for Elvis in a silly poll when they have health and other important issues to worry about. I'm afraid we'll see this more & more of this as time goes by. Do I care? No, but some folks take these polls as meaningful and thats sad. I saw 3 Elvis shows at MSG. They were good but I was more awed at being at the event than the actual show itself which I thought was robotic and Vegasy. The best show I ever saw at MSG was Springsteen and he's not even on the list.
EinVegas wrote on January 07, 2010
None of these other concerts have a huge banner hanging outside the garden like Elvis does. His picture is all over the place at MSG.
mature_elvis_fan75 wrote on January 07, 2010
To be honest i dont think Elvis brought his A game to the garden,he did 50 second versions of his classics,he changed very little,it was just another show to him it seems,Elvis had charisma for sure but he many times gave short shows,and didnt sing all the lyrics to his songs,so im not surpirsed by the results!
GoodRocknTonite wrote on January 07, 2010
I say who cares about these polls. I met a fellow once who worked at MSG for 25 years and he told me that when Elvis came there it was like nothing he'd ever seen before or since. His words were, It was a happening. I have been an Elvis fan since 1966. I saw him in concert many times. 1972 in Oakland, 1973 & 1976 in Vegas, 1974 & 1976 in Lake Tahoe, 1976 in San Francisco. One thing has always puzzled me about Elvis during this period. Why he would spend so much time doing these big bombastic arrangements of other people's songs, and toss his own away like garbage. In all these years I have never heard this discussed in interviews with band members or discussions with fans. No one seems to have any answers to this question. Elvis had the best catalog of songs to choose from, and very rarely if ever dug into it when performing. Looking back now I loved every Elvis show I saw, but I would have much preferred to hear If I Can Dream, or It Hurts Me instead of cover versions of Olivia Newton John songs.
shoesuedeblues wrote on January 07, 2010
I take your point goodrockin' Elvis did seem to treat those old classics with disdain which I could never understand when he had so many gems which fans would have loved to see him perform. But what's gone is gone and we should be grateful that so many concerts WERE captured on tape including the MSG set. Do I care about this poll? No way, who ever remembers this sort of stuff anyway!
schemies wrote on January 07, 2010
If you can vote more than one time, a poll does not make sense, so what is the fuzz about it ? This poll does not say anything, or do you really believe that those Elvis fans, which have seen Elvis at MSG, are the great voters on internet ? So it is clear right from the start: the newer the concert, the more votes, IF it was good in the eyes of the fans. Forget about it.
Dixieland Rock wrote on January 07, 2010
Even if Elvis had been voted Number 1 in this poll, this poll would still be meaningless to me. I could care less about polls. Of the performers listed here, the only Madison Square concerts I own copies of is the Elvis shows. Even those I rarely listen to because it's hard for me to listen to another rushed version of "All Shook Up" or "Hound Dog". I prefer the original studio performances sang at the correct tempo & without the added back up singers that to me, ruin the songs. To me the added stage back up singers are overkill on most of the songs. Add to that rushing through the songs, it's hard to listen to it. Another day, another poll. Yawn.
John4126 wrote on January 07, 2010
I haven't seen a concert at MSG so did not bother voting. If people just voted for the fav artist then it's a pointless poll and the organisers probably realise this but wont actually come out and say it.
Smile:-) wrote on January 07, 2010
What strikes me is that there are only 4 rock acts in this list. Namely Zeppelin, Elvis, Stones and the Bangladesh concert.....
Swen wrote on January 07, 2010
Don´t take this so seriously as long as you don´t know the number of votes. In one of the "rounds" of the poll Rolling Stones had about 45%! I tried to vote for Elvis about 20 times, he moved from about 3% to 19% in that round!!!!!!!
japio wrote on January 08, 2010
How can you compaire the shows .Elvis is a complete entertainer.Others are pop or rock. And even easy listening music.So you can't compiare
Chop983 wrote on January 08, 2010
That Village People gig rocked!!
JerryNodak wrote on January 09, 2010
livingstonsn wrote on January 09, 2010
While Elvis' MSG concerts could certainly be classified as a "major event", they could hardly be considered among "the best ever" at MSG. Our man was not at or anywhere near the top of his game at these shows, which were indistinguishable from any other spring '72 concert. Let's not let blind fandom get in the way of an objective opinion.
Swen wrote on January 09, 2010
You weren´t even born then, I presume!
livingstonsn wrote on January 09, 2010
I can tell you that I wasn't old enough to go to concerts in June of '72. But, having heard the MSG albums numerous times, it is MY OPINION that, musically, those shows were relatively unsatisfying. While I am a huge Elvis fan, I am not going to delude myself into thinking that his MSG shows were better than Led Zeppelin's, The Grateful Dead's, or the Concert for Bangladesh.
1 BILLION SOLD wrote on January 10, 2010
dufl is COMPLETELY CORRECT as to what happened w the polling. Once I found this out, (a few weeks ago), I didnt bother w any more votes. It would only be a true poll if each person can only vote once anyway. And by the way, every reviewer from these MSG shows that Elvis did LOVED them!! They couldnt have been better!! And anytime you hear or read comments from ANYONE that attended them, they too aggreed that these shows by El were just FANTASTIC!!!
Swen wrote on January 10, 2010
I have absolutely nothing against you, but I simply don´t understand you, doc! You´re one funny Elvis fan. Why on Heaven´s earth should Zeppelin, Dead and "Bangla Desh" be better concerts for an Elvis fan? I saw Dead here in Denmark, and I wouldn´t even dream of comparing them to the King of Rock´n Roll. I would 10.000 times rather have seen the King perform here.
livingstonsn wrote on January 10, 2010
My being an Elvis fan doesn't prohibit me from appreciating other artists. In this case, I'm not saying that Elvis gave a horrible show. It wasn't bad. But one has to have to intellectual honesty to appreciate that others who performed at MSG over the years simply put on a better performance. Now, if Elvis had played the Garden in 1970 or even '71, then a strong case may be made that his was in fact one of the best shows ever played there. After all, Elvis was at the top of the world in 1970 and one would be hard-pressed to find a more dynamic performer in the world at that time. Unfortunately, by 1972 Elvis had begun to grow bored with the touring routine and it shows in the majority of the spring '72 shows, including MSG. As for positive reviews from the period, there were also positive reviews from many '76 shows at the time. Time has shown that, 9 times out of 10, those positive '76 reviews were unwarranted. Now, I'm not saying that Elvis in '72 compares in any way with Elvis in '76. I'm only saying that many contemporaneous reviews were very much affected by "the event" and not necessarily the quality of the actual performance. So, in short, I am not going to trivialize some of the fantastic MSG performances over the past few decades by saying that an average-at-best 1972 Elvis show should be the best ever for the venue. Just not the case.
benny scott wrote on January 10, 2010
To me this poll is completely useless, irrelevant and unnecessary. Elvis will always be what he was and still is ! Always El.
Deano1 wrote on January 10, 2010
I understand that you can be an Elvis fan and a fan of someone else (I love Dean Martin, The Four Seasons and The Platters) and I can even understand if you like someone else's concert better than his, but Elvis was not bored with touring in 1972 and most of his shows from '72 were outstanding. Now if you like "The Grateful Dead" and "Led Zeppelin" better than Elvis that is fine, I honestly wouldn't have raised my window shade, if they performed in my back yard. If you want to rate their shows over Elvis that is your perogative (but to really vote fairly you would have needed to seen the shows you are judging). The spring tour of '72, in which footage for the movie "Elvis On Tour" was filmed, was just his 4th tour (He had toured twice for a week at a time in 1970 and had a two week tour in 1971 before this one) and Elvis was totally in control and on or near the top of his game. Elvis started his 5th tour in New York City in early June and he was even better than he had been in the early Spring. The MSG LP was a very good album, but I am sure it only captures a small amount of the energy and excitement of the actual concert. The "Afternoon In The Garden" LP that was released years later is an even better album and I can't imagine how good that concert would have been to witness live. The people that reviewed the concerts were actually there so we have to give the reviews some creedence. Yes the '76 shows for the most part received good reviews (most of which were deserved), but if you read them you will see where they say that Elvis really only put all he had into a song a few times each evening, he was overweight and other little negatives (the positives still out weighed the negatives by a large margin). They give you an honest appraisal (there are some exceptions) of the evening(s). His '72 reviews are nothing short of glowing and the ones for MSG are almost written as an evangelist witnessing an appearance from God. Elvis did not really show signs of tiring from touring until the Sept/Oct '74 tour and after an outstanding "bounceback" year of touring in '75, he showed even more signs of tiring of the tours in '76. Up until then the tours always brought out the best in Elvis. Even when he would give an uneven Vegas engagement such as the one following the "Aloha" special in '73, he rebounded with back to back great tours in April and June. So to make the comment that he was tired of touring in '72 is not true at all. I don't understand the need on this website to put down one aspect of Elvis' career to promote another. Elvis was tremendous in the 50's, but that doesn't mean the Elvis in "It Happened At The World's Fair" or any other movie wasn't talented and that he wasn't still entertaining. His comeback special in '68 was a truly landmark performance, but Elvis was still charismatic and amazing singing "My Way" in June of 1977. He had peaks, I have said before after a lot of people fawned all over the recent FTD release of "Good Times" that this LP wasn't in the realm of "That's The Way It Is" and "Elvis Country", but that doesn't mean I don't like the "Good Times" LP. Heck the song of the day today is "Animal Instinct" and while I find this song to be one of his worst, I still can get a certain amount of enjoyment from listening to it. Worrying about whether Elvis was better In Las Vegas in 69 and 70 or on tour in November of '71 or at MSG in '72 is kind of like comparing diamonds, they are all gems.
livingstonsn wrote on January 10, 2010
I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. Elvis in '72 has just never grabbed me like Elvis in '70 or even Elvis in spring '75. Just very ordinary imho...
Andreas77 wrote on January 11, 2010
I don't think the results have anything to do with the average Elvis fan aging or that Elvis 72 was bored. He was clearly not. The shows were great, although I must say I never understood why he didn't give longer shows, eg. 90 minutes. (His first Madison show was reportedly 45 min long). The polls are a result of fatigue amongst Elvis fan - there have just been too many polls over too many years. I've more or less given up myself. As for this poll being essential, wasn't there a program not too long ago which debated the "50 greatest moments in the Garden"? If I remember correctly, "Elvis sells out The Garden", was eventually no 1. That was arguably bigger, it was on television on got a lot of attention in the press.
Jerry 79 wrote on January 11, 2010
MJ is on top now - like Elvis in 77. Make this poll again in 2 years - the result will be diffrent. I don't care about it Rec live in MSG is one of my favourite LP's and that's It!