In today’s episode, I interview special guest Kent Sanders, who helped write The Faith of Elvis with Elvis’s stepbrother Billy Stanley. Find out more about the behind-the-scenes life of the King of Rock n’ Roll!
Billy Stanley, Elvis Presley’s stepbrother, shares the untold story of the iconic singer’s Christian faith–its deep influence on his music, films, relationships, commitment to his family and fans, and his love for the Gospel.
When seven-year-old Billy Stanley and his two younger brothers moved to Graceland in 1960, Elvis eagerly welcomed them, embracing his new roles as big brother, spiritual mentor, protector, and playmate. On their first night together, Elvis introduced his brothers to bedtime prayers as he thanked God for his new siblings. Soon after, he began to read the Bible with them, and he continued both practices for the next seventeen years.
During Billy and his brothers’ teenage years, Elvis shared his experiences of filming movies (including stories about the leading ladies who acted beside him), offered dating advice, and even doled out gentle discipline after two of the brothers once used a blue light to pull over cars in hopes of picking up women. Billy was particularly drawn to the times he bonded with his big brother through car racing, the wind on their faces as they sped through God’s creation in Elvis’ Ferrari, Pantera, or pink Cadillac.
Billy joined Elvis on tour for several years, helping as part of his road crew, bringing Elvis’s Bible along, and witnessing his growing number of adoring fans. Elvis loved his fans in return, which is why he was drawn to Gospel music–it allowed him to share God’s abundant love.
In The Faith of Elvis, Billy gives his first-hand accounts of Elvis’s life and abiding belief in Jesus and heaven, which has been kept from public view until now. Though the King of Rock and Roll struggled with addiction and with his notorious playboy image, Billy reveals that the true Elvis was deeply committed to ensuring his family and his fans knew the true King, Jesus Christ.
Adds Stanley: “Everyone is familiar with Elvis on-stage, but this book will give you an opportunity to get to know the man I grew up with off-stage, a man dedicated to sharing the love of Jesus with each of us. This is a story of faith, hope, and love. It is a story only a brother can tell.”
Kent Sanders is the founder of Inkwell Ghostwriting, which helps leaders grow their business through books and other content. He is also the author and co-author of numerous books, including 18 Words to Live By: A Father’s Wisdom on What Matters Most and co-author of The Faith of Elvis: A Story Only a Brother Can Tell with Billy Stanley, Elvis Presley’s stepbrother. In addition to writing books for himself and his clients, Kent loves to help other writers. He is the host of the Daily Writer podcast, which helps writers cultivate the habits for creative success, and the founder of the Daily Writer membership community. He lives just outside of St. Louis and enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife and teenage son.