The first-of-its-kind holiday special was filmed on the Presley family's iconic Memphis estate and aired live on NBC on Wednesday
Honoring the King of Rock ‘N’ Roll’s music and his love of the holiday season, a handful of A-list pop and country music stars performed at the Memphis estate during the first-of-its-kind special on NBC.
Related: Elvis Presley Throwback Photos
Riley Keough, the daughter of Elvis and Priscilla Presley’s only child Lisa Marie, was among the executive producers and appeared throughout the event. The actress joined talent like Alanis Morissette, John Legend, Kacey Musgraves, Kane Brown, Lainey Wilson, Lana Del Rey, Post Malone and The War and Treaty, who all offered live performances honoring the music legend inside of and on the grounds of the storied home.
See all of the performances from the festive special, which is now streaming in its entirety on Peacock, below.
Morrissette, 49, who was a longtime friend of the late Lisa Marie, honored the singer by performing “Last Christmas” outside of the Presley family jet that’s named after her. Her pop-rock rendition managed to highlight the recognizable inflections in her voice and was spirited as it was moving.
The “You Oughta Know” singer’s appearance on Christmas at Graceland isn’t the first time she’s paid tribute to Presley’s daughter, who died in January. Earlier this year, she also honored her by singing her 2021 song “Rest” at the January memorial service.
Legend, 44, also celebrated the “most wonderful time of the year” with a holiday classic. Instead of singing one of the “Suspicious Minds” artist’s holiday tracks, the R&B hitmaker opted for another famed rock act’s Christmas original. At a piano and supported by a choir and string section, the Grammy winner played John Legend’s “Happy Christmas (War Is Over).” A radiant rendition of the 1971 song, Legend sounded full of passion and the addition of gospel voices made it especially affecting.
Musgraves, 35, sang The King’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love” on the soundtrack for Baz Luhrmann’s 2022 biopic Elvis, and in a full circle moment, she performed it at Graceland, as well.
The country music star was a vision in white, wearing a glistening gown and snowflake-like earrings, and styled her hair in a bouffant, as if in a nod to Priscilla. During her emotional performance, the Grammy winner sang next to a grand piano on the front steps of the estate while photographs of the Presley family were projected behind her. With her sweet twang lulling the tender lyrics, she gave a beautiful rendition. It was also a lovely send-off to the special, as she sang the finale and drove off in a convertible through Graceland’s gates before the credits rolled.
In a festive turn that also honored the rock legend, Kane Brown, 30, sang one of his most beloved Christmas songs, “Blue Christmas.” A charming, lackadaisical performance, the country hitmaker strolled around the barn and grounds while singing before he joined a full band that was positioned outside.
Grinning throughout, it appeared as though the “Bury Me in Georgia” singer was having a blast ushering in the holiday season. Footage and audio of the late rock star performing the seasonal staple at his memorable 1968 comeback special was eventually projected behind him, bringing a bit of Presley's own holiday magic into the TV event.
Wilson, 31, also rang in the yuletide. The country star gave her own flair to “Santa Claus Is Back in Town,” a song that appeared on the Grammy winner’s first holiday album, Elvis’ Christmas Album, along with “Blue Christmas.” Wilson rocked around the Christmas tree as she emphasized the soulful, bluesy elements of the song, jamming out with a full band on Graceland’s front steps.
Rather than performing one of the “Jailhouse Rock” singer’s originals, Del Rey, 38, performed The Righteous Brothers’ 1955 classic “Unchained Melodies,” which Presley later sang in 1977 at a Rapid City, South Dakota concert and in a TV special.
The “A&W” artist described her reasoning for picking the song as she introduced it. She said, “I know that that was one of Elvis’ favorite covers by The Righteous Brothers and I particularly like his performance at Rapid City, so we’re going to channel that.”
Dressed in a ‘60s-inspired dress with her makeup done in her signature cat eye eyeliner, the alternative star — who has expressed her love for the Presley family throughout her career, including in song lyrics — looked resonant of Priscilla. Singing in a soulful register and hitting the high notes, she offered a deeply romantic rendition of the song — like something out of Presley’s own era.
Wearing a leopard-print suit and singing on the edge of a pool lit by twinkling lights, Post Malone, 28, channeled the music icon’s rock star prowess in his appearance on Christmas at Graceland. With just an acoustic guitar, the rocker/rapper crooned a sultry version of the 1963 song "(You're the) Devil in Disguise," giving it his own twist with his signature tremble.
“I love you so f---ing much, and I love you so much, Elvis. Have a great night and a merry Christmas,” he said at the end of the song before strumming his guitar once more and jumping straight into the pool.
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The War and Treaty brought the energy of Elvis’ 1968 comeback special to Christmas at Graceland. The husband and wife duo sang from a stage replicating the bright red set Presley famously sang on in what was supposed to be a traditional holiday show and ended up being an eclectic rock set that relaunched his career.
Performers Michael Trotter and Tanya Blount sang the “If I Can Dream,” which the “Burning Love” artist debuted on the special. Their powerhouse vocals impressed, highlighting the gospel-inspired elements of the song, and their chemistry was on full display, as well.
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