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Elvis Presley

Even though Elvis was born into poverty, he always had a dream of overcoming the situation and doing Elvis Presleysomething great with his life. In 1956, he said: “I always felt that someday, somehow, something would happen to change everything for me, and I’d daydream about how it would be”. That reflects why the song “The Impossible Dream” was a song that he could relate to and the song that he requested Sherrill to sing for him. So when Elvis entered the music scene, he didn’t slowly move into this world…he burst onto the U.S. music scene in 1954 with “That’s All Right Mama”, his very first release. This song was recorded at Sun Studios in Memphis, TN. The record was played an unprecedented 14 times in a row by a local radio DJ, and this marked the beginning of an astonishing career during which he rose to become the most famous rock and roll star in the world. He may Elvishave started out as a Hillbilly Cat but he transformed into a supreme figure in American life; one whose presence, no matter how banal or predictable, brooks no real comparisons. The cultural range of his music has expanded to the point where it includes not only the hits of the day, but also patriotic recitals, pure country, gospel and real dirty blues. Elvis has emerged as a great artist, a great rocker, a great heart throb, a great hero, and above all, a great American.

Some people ask me what is history? … does it provide a legacy? My reply is, Elvis left us a historical legacy that can be compared to none other. He rose from ashes to riches, he even questioned his existence: "why he was chosen to be Elvis Presley". He would often say "that no one knows how lonely I get and how empty I really feel". But, if he could reflect on the historical legacy he gave us since his death in 1977, the history books would reflect the following:

  • Between 1977 and 1981, six posthumously released singles by Presley were top ten country hits.
  • In 1982, Graceland was opened to the public attracting over half a million visitors a year. ElvisGraceland is the second most visited home in the United States, after the White House. In 2006, Graceland was declared a National Historic Landmark.
  • Elvis was inducted into four music halls of fame: the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996; the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1998; the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2001; and the Rockabilly Hall of Fame in 2007. In 1984, he received the W. D. Handy Award from the Blues Foundation and the Academy of Country Music's first Golden Hat Award. In 1987, he received the American Music Awards - Award of Merit.
  • In 1988, Germany issued a postage stamp depicting Elvis.
  • On January 8, 1993, the U.S. issued a postage stamp depicting Elvis.
  • A Junkie XL remix of Elvis' "A Little Less Conversation" was used in a Nike advertising campaign during the 2002 FIFA World Cup. It topped the charts in over 20 countries and was included in a compilation of Presley's number one hits, ELVIS, which was also an international success.
  • In 2003, a remix of "Rubberneckin", a 1969 recording of Elvis', topped the U.S. sales chart, as did a 50th anniversary re-release of "That's All Right Mama" the following year. It reached number three on Great Britain's pop chart.
  • In 2005, three more reissued singles, "Jailhouse Rock", "One Night"/"I Got
    Stung", and "It's Now or Never", went to number one in the United Kingdom.
  • As of 2011, there were an estimated 15,000 licensed Elvis products. Elvis was again the second-highest earning deceased celebrity.

Elvis StarYes, I would have to agree that Elvis left us a great historical legacy. Elvis is one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th Century. In a career spanning nearly a quarter century, Presley left behind more than 700 songs, 31 feature films and a track record as a concert performer and Las Vegas showroom draw that in many ways remains unequaled. More than three decades after his death at age 42, he still holds the records as the artist with the most Chart hits (165), the most Top 40 hits (104), the most weeks at the No. 1 position, and the most gold and platinum record awards. Over the decades, many have challenged his crown, but Elvis remains the King of Rock 'n' Roll.

There have been contenders, there have been pretenders, but there is only one King of Rock and Roll…Elvis Presley


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