What Was Elvis Presley’s Last Song Before He Died?

Elvis Presley recorded more than 600 songs throughout his career. When he died on Aug. 16, 1977, his death was mourned around the world. Just before Presley died, he’d released a single. It had been performing well, but after the King’s death, its popularity soared. That song was “Way Down.”

Elvis Presley performing on stage. He's singing into a stand microphone and holding a black guitar.
Elvis Presley | Steve Morley/Redferns

Elvis Presley’s final performance

Presley’s last concert took place on June 26, 1977 at the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis. There was a crowd of 18,000 people present.

According to Smooth Radio, the only unusual thing about the performance was that Presley brought several people from his life on stage with him and introduced them to the audience.

The site goes on to write that some fans say the King somehow knew it would be his final performance, while others think he brought his friends and family on stage that night in anticipation of the upcoming tell-all biography titled Elvis: What Happened? by his former bodyguards, Sonny and Red West. Whatever his reason was at the time, the Market Square Arena performance was marked a special one thanks to all of Presley’s personal guests.

Elvis Presley’s last song

One day before the concert in Indianapolis, Presley had a new song come out, “Way Down,” which debuted on the Billboard’s Country Singles Chart.

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The song peaked at No. 31 on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart on Aug. 6, 1977, and fell to No. 53 the week of Aug. 27. But four days after Presley died, “Way Down” became No. 1 on the Billboard Country Singles Chart. It also topped the United Kingdom’s singles chart, which was the only other Presley record to do so besides “The Wonder of You,” which came out in 1970.

Everyone wanted to listen to the King

After Presley died, record stores couldn’t keep the King’s music on their shelves. He sold out everywhere. According to Country Daily, “RCA kept its Indianapolis plant open 24 hours a day, pressing only material by The King to meet the demand.”

Additionally, producer Felton Jarvis got to work enhancing recordings of Presley’s final concert tour to release as a two-record set called “Elvis In Concert.”

The month following Presley’s death, the King was in the top spot on Billboard’s country album chart for 15 weeks in a row. “Moody Blue” was at the top of the charts for the first 10 weeks with the live L.P. following behind.

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Presley is still wildly popular today. He’s a household name. Millions of people still buy and listen to his music, and thousands visit Graceland every year.

“He’s probably the most important star of all time,” journalist and author Alanna Nash told Forbes of Presley in 2019. “And I’m not the first person to say that. You can’t argue with the fact that he not only changed, but directed the course of both popular music and popular culture of the ‘50s.”