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Elvis Presley Memorial Page

January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977

“Some people tap their feet, some people snap their fingers, and some people sway back and forth. I just sorta do ‘em all together, I guess.” 
-Elvis in 1956, talking about his way of moving on stage

 

About "The King"

Elvis Aaron Presley was an American singer and actor. Regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century, he is often referred to as "the King of Rock and Roll", or simply, "The King".

 

Born in Tupelo, Mississippi, Presley and his family moved to Memphis, Tennessee, when he was 13 years old. His career began there in 1954, when he started to work with Sam Phillips, the owner of Sun Records. Accompanied by guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, Presley was an early popularizer of rockabilly, an uptempo, backbeat-driven fusion of country and rhythm and blues. RCA Victor acquired his contract in a deal arranged by Colonel Tom Parker, who was to manage the singer for more than two decades. Presley's first RCA single, "Heartbreak Hotel", released in January 1956, was a number-one hit in the US. He became the leading figure of rock and roll after a series of network television appearances and chart-topping records. His energized interpretations of songs and sexually provocative performance style, combined with a singularly potent mix of influences across color lines that coincided with the dawn of the Civil Rights Movement, made him enormously popular—and controversial.

 

In November 1956, he made his film debut in Love Me Tender. In 1958, he was drafted into military service: He resumed his recording career two years later, producing some of his most commercially successful work before devoting much of the 1960s to making Hollywood movies and their accompanying soundtrack albums, most of which were critically derided. In 1968, following a seven-year break from live performances, he returned to the stage in the acclaimed televised comeback special Elvis, which led to an extended Las Vegas concert residency and a string of highly profitable tours. In 1973, Presley was featured in the first globally broadcast concert via satellite, Aloha from Hawaii. Several years of prescription drug abuse severely damaged his health, and he died in 1977 at the age of 42.

 

Presley is one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century. Commercially successful in many genres, including pop, blues and gospel, he is the best-selling solo artist in the history of recorded entertainment, with estimated album sales of around 600 million units worldwide. He was nominated for 14 competitive Grammys and won three, also receiving the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at age 36, and has been inducted into multiple halls of fame.

Number One Albums

Year Album Type Chart positions
US US Country UK
1956 Elvis Presley studio/comp. 1 n.a. 1
Elvis studio 1 n.a. 3
1957 Loving You sound./studio 1 n.a. 1
Elvis' Christmas Album studio 1 n.a. 2
1960 Elvis Is Back! studio 2 n.a. 1
G.I. Blues soundtrack 1 n.a. 1
1961 Something for Everybody studio 1 n.a. 2
Blue Hawaii soundtrack 1 n.a. 1
1962 Pot Luck studio 4 n.a. 1
1964 Roustabout soundtrack 1 12
1969 From Elvis in Memphis studio 13 2 1
1973 Aloha from Hawaii Via Satellite live 1 1 11
1974 Elvis: A Legendary Performer Volume 1 compilation 43 1 20
1975 Promised Land studio 47 1 21
1976 From Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis, Tennessee studio 41 1 29
1977 Elvis' 40 Greatest compilation 1
Moody Blue studio/live 3 1 3
Elvis in Concert live 5 1 13
2002 ELV1S: 30 No. 1 Hits compilation 1 1 1
2007 Elvis the King compilation 1

Film & TV

Elvis Presley’s first acting role was in the 1956's Love Me Tender. Presley went go on to appear in a total of 33 feature films (31 scripted roles, plus two concert performance documentaries).

Despite a strong, promising start with Jailhouse Rock and King Creole coming after Love Me Tender, Presley's films, following his return from a military obligation, were made cheaply and quickly to keep costs low and profits high. Although critically panned throughout the 1960s, Presley's films were mostly well received by his fans. Hal B. Wallis, who produced nine of Presley's films, described them as, "the only sure thing in Hollywood."

The singer would star alongside a number of well-established actors, including Walter Matthau, Carolyn Jones, Angela Lansbury, Barbara Stanwyck, Jack Albertson, Gig Young, and Mary Tyler Moore. There were others who would later become famous, like an eleven-year-old Kurt Russell, making his screen debut in It Happened at the World's Fair (1963).

Presley left Hollywood after playing a doctor in the drama Change of Habit and returned to performing live in 1969. Following the success of his sold-out tours and Las Vegas shows, he allowed cameras to film him in concert and backstage in the early 1970s. One of these films, Elvis on Tour, won the 1973 Golden Globe award for best documentary.

Fun Facts

1. Elvis had a twin.

2. Elvis bought Graceland when he was 22. 

3. Elvis’ controversial manager, Colonel Tom Parker, was a former carnival barker.

4. Elvis served in the Army after he was already famous.

5. Elvis never performed outside of North America.

6. Elvis was burned in effigy after an appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”

7. Elvis bought Franklin Roosevelt’s presidential yacht.

For more information on these fun Elvis facts, check out History.com’s article.

 

“Til we meet again, may God bless you. Adios.” 
-Said in 1977 at the end of a concert during his last tour

 

Want some more Elvis? Check out our Pinterest board, "The King." 

Source: "Elvis Presley." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 13 Aug. 2014. Web. 13 Aug. 2014.