Sunday, April 8, 2012

ELVIS PRESLEY : BIOGRAPHY

       Born in Tupelo, Mississippi, January 8, 1935 - Died in Memphis, Tennessee, august 16, 1977) was a rock singer and pop music icon of the 20th century. He inspired many other artists in and out the rock and roll scene.

      Considered by many as the "King of Rock and Roll", Elvis Presley also starred numerous movies, some of them tributes to his songs. Even after death, Elvis Presley keeps selling his music, which in the present has surpassed the figure of 1000 million records sold.   
     
       Presley, Son to Vernon and Gladys Presley, was born a twin. Eventually his brother, Jesse Aaron Presley, died at birth. Elvis Presley had a hard and difficult childhood in Tupelo (Mississippi), until, after many vicissitudes, his parents decided to move to Memphis, where they gradually gained a certain economic stability. His father bought him his very first guitar at the age of 10. Young Elvis Presley was influenced musically in a big way by his mother .His passion for music includes blues, gospel, the Doo wop , country music , pop, and even some Mexican mariachi music and opera. His favorite singer was the tenor Mario Lanza, but Elvis Presley also enjoyed Dean Martin, as well as Arthur Crudup, and all the other rural blues musicians. He also explored the Indian (native american) music, as Elvis Presley had Cherokee ancestry on the maternal side.

Early recordings
          Elvis Presley was 19 (in 1954) he went into Sun Records studios and recorded a disc with two songs, My Happiness and That's When Your Heartache Begin, as a birthday present for his mother . Later the company owner, Sam Phillips hired Elvis Presley to record an album that eventually became great success in Memphis. Many believe that Elvis Presley was the creator of "rockabilly", a fusion of country and blues, but others agree that the person responsible of its popularity was Carl Perkins, author of the hit Blue Suede Shoes. With the release of this first hit in this genre, That's All Right Mama, written by Arthur Crudup, Elvis Presley created one of the most classic and recognizable images and sound in rock and roll. Having conquered the city of Memphis, as well as some regional markets in the southern United States, Elvis Presley was noticed by Colonel Tom Parker who managed to get Elvis a contract with RCA records, in exchange for $ 35,000, and a Cadillac.

 Path to Stardom        
        With his first Single for RCA, Heartbreak Hotel, Elvis Presley got his first number one, the starting point to 18 top hits he will have through his future career. His impressive way of dancing, with exaggerated pelvic movements, was not very well received among older American conservatives, but had an impact in the young American crowd. In some television programs, like the Ed Sullivan Show, Elvis Presley was only focused from the waist up. Before entering the military service, he broke all sales records, reaching the amazing figure of 11 number one single hits and four number ones in the LP charts. Elvis Presley also starred in four movies, all of them big blockbuster hits.

Military Service 
        Between 1958 and 1960 Elvis Presley did military service in Bad Nauheim (Germany). There he met the woman who would later become his first wife, Ann Priscilla Beaulieu (Priscilla Presley). After Elvis Presley was done with military service his return to the musical stage was spectacular; He appeared as a guest star on the Frank Sinatra TV show. They performed in a duet Love me Tender / Witchcraft. Elvis Presley was paid 125,000 U.S. dollars for his performance, which lasted about ten minutes.
  
 Hollywood Years
      In the 60s Elvis Presley appeared in many films of medium to low quality, making three films per year on average, and up to a total of 31. His favorite actors, whom he admired and tried to emulate, were James Dean and Marlon Brando. On August 27, 1965, during the Beatles visit to his house, (California), Elvis Presley said to John Lennon about his next film: "I will be a country guy who meets girls and sings songs. The last time that we moved away from this formula, we lost a lot of money. " Elvis Presley sincerely admired The Beatles, but then they change their image in the late sixties, and Elvis accused them of inducing young people to take drugs. 1964 marked the beginning in the decline of Elvis Presley hegemony in the rock and roll business and popularity among music listeners.

Back to the stage    
        On May 1, 1967, Elvis Presley married Priscilla Ann-Beaulieau (known as Priscilla Presley), with whom he had his first and only daughter, Lisa Marie Presley, a year later. In 1968, he returned to the top of the American hit parades after the airing of his 1968 Comeback TV Special. That same year Elvis reaffirmed his return to live concerts, with his presentations at the International Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.

        On December 21, 1970, Elvis Presley visited President Richard Nixon in the White House where, after an exchange of gifts, they talked on the influence of drugs on the American youth.

The End
        By 1976-1977 Elvis image was far from that of the vigorous and full of energy boy that conquered the world. He was overweight and started to have problems memorizing the lyrics of the songs. Elvis Presley gave his last concert in June 26, 1977, in the Idiana's Market Square Arena, Indianapolis. In the early hours of August 16, 1977, Elvis Presley returned to his Graceland mansion after a dental appointment. After working over the details of his upcoming tour and resting with his family and friends, he went to his room around 7am. Around noon, Elvis Presley was found unconscious in the bathroom and was urgently transferred to the Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, where shortly afterwards was pronounced dead.

     

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