Elvis Presley, also known as Elvis Aaron Presley (aka Elvis Aron Presley, born February 15, 1935, Tupelo, MS, U.S. – died August 16, 1977, Graceland, Memphis, TN), American music icon widely considered the “†King of Rock and Roll.” Born into a musical family in Tupelo, MS, Elvis has made his mark as both a singer-actor and producer. Presley’s childhood was rife with musical influences; his father, Vernon Elvis Presley had a hand in starting the legendary Blue Moon Records and his mother, Priscilla Marie Presley, sang at local radio station WZRC during his early years. His brother, Priscilla Marie Presley’s husband, Larry King, was an influential recording artist and producer, and his cousin, Lisa Marie, sang and wrote with Elvis, too.
Performing National Acts
As a young man, Elvis performed with such national acts as Bob Dylan, Jerry Lee Lewis, Muddy Waters, The Everly Brothers and Junior Parker. He was one of America’s biggest pop stars before he began his recording career. As early as 1947, Presley recorded some songs with his first band, the King Creole Band, later named The Kingsley Brothers. This group, along with Elvis’s stint with Blue Moon, would form the core of his career. From this point on, Elvis went on to record with such legendary artists as Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Chess, B.B King, B.B. King and many others. While many of his recordings are still staples of Elvis albums. Several of his early recordings are now considered “black metal” classics.
One of the most important influences on Presley’s music was his cousin, Priscilla Marie Presley. She played the piano and sang in the local gospel and blues clubs and also became one of the most popular female backing vocalists during this time. Elvis grew up listening to her songs and would often ask her how she achieved the sounds that she did. On the other hand, Priscilla was often irritated by Elvis’s lack of ability to play the piano. In addition to her music, Elvis loved playing the harmonica and keyboards were often used on his early recordings.
Elvis’s musical beginnings did not stop when he was first introduced to the blues. He continued to perform in local clubs and on stage for many years. Many of his earliest recordings featured him singing jazz standards, such as “Hound Dog,” “Hound Dog Blues” Mystery Train”. This helped to solidify his popularity among a wide variety of audiences and also helped him establish a name for himself. In fact, “Hound Dog Blues,” one of the most famous tracks of the earliest Elvis Presley albums, remains a constant hit with fans.
In addition to his musical talents, Elvis was also well known for his dramatic flair. He gained worldwide recognition for his wild stage performances. Especially when he appeared on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1948 and “The King of Jazz” in 1954. In his first appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show. Elvis displayed his vocal talent and his ability to bring humour to the proceedings; this was soon followed by “Hound Dog “Love Me Tender.”
King Of Jazz
The King of Jazz also included some of his favourite singers on stage, such as Muddy Waters, B.B. King and John Lee Hooker. Both of these singers enjoyed huge popularity in their day and were instrumental in Elvis’s success. Elvis’s popularity extended beyond his music, as he also had numerous television and movie appearances throughout the 1950s.
Elvis’s career also took a turn for the worse as early recordings revealed him to be a heavy drinker and drug user. He was kicked out of the Blue Moon Boys in 1952 and was arrested for speeding, marijuana possession, and cocaine abuse. Those charges caused him to lose control of his public image and make bad public decisions. Including having sex with a 13-year-old girl and marrying 18-year-old Priscilla Presley.
Despite his recent legal troubles, Elvis is still very much alive today. His popularity is testament to his legendary status and will continue to influence generations of musicians. As an entertainer, singer, musician, and performer, he remains a part of the fabric of popular music. And has been credited with many innovations in both music and culture.