Elvis Presley’s Girlfriend Didn’t Like Something He Did With Fans When He Sang ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’

One of Elvis Presley‘s most famous songs is the ballad “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” During his concerts, the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll often interacted with female fans while performing “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” One of Elvis’ girlfriends explained why she didn’t like these interactions.

Elvis Presley performing a song in front of fans
Elvis Presley | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Elvis Presley famously interacted with fans while performing ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’

Linda Thompson was Elvis’ girlfriend for a few years in the 1970s. Thompson discussed Elvis at length in her 2016 book A Little Thing Called Life: On Loving Elvis Presley, Bruce Jenner, and Songs in Between. “People sure went crazy around him, or more accurately, he brought out the crazy in people,” he said. “Or, even more accurately, he brought out the crazy in women.”

Thompson described Elvis’ interactions with female fans while singing “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” “As he was famous for doing, he always bent down from the stage and kissed some of the ladies in the front rows and gave them scarves during his closing number, ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love with You,'” she wrote. “Well, of course they wanted a real kiss from Elvis Presley, and so they kissed him on the lips.”

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How Linda Thompson reacted to Elvis Presley kissing his fans

Thompson explained her dislike of these kisses had nothing to do with jealousy. “I understood this was part of his special relationship with his fans, but I had my limits,” she wrote. “Being a bit of a germaphobe, when I went back to his dressing room after his show, I always made him brush his teeth, gargle, and sanitize his lips before I’d give him a kiss.” Thompson acknowledged there were drawbacks to Elvis’ career, but they didn’t outweigh the perks. Elvis felt the same.

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How audiences in the United States and the United Kingdom reacted to ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’

“Can’t Help Falling in Love” became a huge hit. The song peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100, remaining on the chart for 14 weeks. “Can’t Help Falling in Love” first appeared on the soundtrack of the movie Blue Hawaii. The Blue Hawaii soundtrack hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 for 20 weeks.

In the United Kingdom, “Can’t Help Falling in Love” became an even bigger hit. According to The Official Charts Company, the song was a No. 1 hit for four weeks. It was on the chart for 20 weeks in total. 

The Blue Hawaii soundtrack was popular as well. It reached No. 1 for 18 weeks, staying on the chart for 71 weeks in total. Subsequently, numerous artists covered “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” including Britney Spears, UB40, and Twenty One Pilots. While Thompson wasn’t a fan of Elvis performances of “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” the song was a massive hit.

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