Petula Clark: 'Elvis had his eye on both me and Karen Carpenter'

Petula Clark
Petula Clark Credit: Getty

Ahead of her Radio 2 Carpenters special, Petula Clark tells John Preston about childhood fame, growing up, and meeting Presley

Sitting unrecognised in the bar of a Chelsea hotel, Petula Clark stares straight ahead as she answers my questions, carefully avoiding any eye contact. At first I’m inclined to put this down to stand-offishness. Given that Clark has sold more than 68 million records and has clocked up almost three quarters of a century in showbusiness, it would hardly be surprising if she was prone to a few diva-ish excesses. It’s only slowly that I realise that I’m hopelessly wrong. She’s not standoffish at all. She’s just terribly shy.

But this, it turns out, is far from being the only...

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