On This Day: Elvis Presley Performs His Final Concert in 1977

On June 26, 1977, famed singer Elvis Presley performed his very last live concert before his death on August 16, just a few months later. The final concert was just like any other Elvis Presley concert. The King arrived on the stage at Market Square Arena in Indianapolis, Indiana. Neither Presley nor his fans knew that the set would mark the end of an important era in rock and roll history.

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There was a hefty crowd in attendance; almost 18,000 people, to be exact. Fans who attended noted that there was a massive amount of energy and excitement in the air. Presley delivered a passionate performance despite his health issues and fatigue at the time. He boasted the same charisma and electric stage presence that made him a star in the first place over 20 years since he first began his career.

That being said, The King was late; an hour and a half late. However, the warm-up acts that came ahead of him featured a stellar brass band, singers, and a stand-up comedian to keep the crowd from getting antsy. 

The setlist was similarly stellar. Presley performed hits like “Jailhouse Rock”, “Hound Dog”, “Love Me Tender, and “Can’t Help Falling In Love”.

It was an incredible night for fans of Presley, and it was also unfortunately the last performance he would ever give before passing away several months later.

The Death of Elvis Presley

On August 16, not even two months after giving his final concert, Elvis Presley died from a heart attack. He was planning to fly to Portland, Maine to start the next leg of his tour. But that afternoon, his fiance found him unresponsive in the bathroom of his Graceland mansion in Memphis, Tennessee. When he arrived at the hospital, he was pronounced dead at the age of 42. 

For many, Presley’s death marked the end of the era of early rock and roll. And many musicians and fans today have noted Presley’s influence on early rock music.

Photo by Michael Ochs Archives

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