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Elvis Presley King of Rock and Roll - Essay Example

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Elvis Presley King of Rock and Roll

He graduated from Humes High School, in Tennessee where his parents migrated, in 1953. The young Elvis displayed a natural gift for singing and took up guitar at eleven that was given by his father as a birthday gift. Pop, country music, gospel music, and the black R&B of the time influenced him in molding his musical genius. He began his singing experimentation in the summer of 1953, when he decided to record songs, mainly out of curiosity to hear his own sound on record. The two songs 'My Happiness' and 'That's When Your Heartaches Begin' recorded at Memphis Recording Service Studio caught attention of Sun Records founder Sam Phillips and assistant Marion Keisker recognize his "nascent talent." (Chuck). In 1954 Phillips asked Elvis to team up with two local musicians to try out a speeded-up version of blues singer Arthur 'Big Boy' Crudup's song 'That is All Right,' which was released as Elvis' first single. In 1955 his recording career was sold to RCV Records, one of the worlds biggest record companies, on the advice of Colonel Tom Parker (Andreas van Kuijk). The RCA had the necessary influence to "expose Elvis on nationally networked television" and by 1956 he was an international sensation. (Lennon and Dylan). His popular number one hits are: Heart Break Hotel (1956), Love me Tender (1956), (Let me be your) Teddy Bear-Loving You (1957), Jailhouse Rock(1957), Stuck on You-Welcome Home (1960), Are You lonesome Tonight & All shook up (1968 come back specials), Can't help falling in love (1961), In the Ghetto (1970), The Wonder of You (1970), and Burning Love (1973).
He had a short stint with U.S army and also experimented with movies. In the 1960s he starred in 33 successful films, made history with television appearances, and gave live concert performances during the short span of his career. In 1968, he returned to television special music and performed across the U.S, to 'Rock' his audience with his multitalented performances. More than one billion records of Presley were sold globally and his American sales earned him gold and platinum awards for 150 different albums and single. To his credit there were 14 Grammy nominations (3 wins) and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award received at the age 32. Elvis Presley, with his talent, sensuality, charisma, humor and humility endeared millions, and "is regarded as one of the most important figures of twentieth century popular culture." (Discover Elvis). Addiction to restless performances and intake of large amount of prescription drugs inevitably affected his health and muffled the voice of an influential artist in the history of popular music at the young age of 42, at his Memphis home, Graceland, on August 16, 1977.
Presley began his career as one of the first performers of rockabilly, an uptempo fusion of country, rhythm, and blues with a strong back beat made him popular, at the same time controversial. His uninhabited stage and television performances, experimenting with mixing of existing songs, and recording songs in the rock and roll genre brought him wide success, encompassing other genres of gospel, blues, ballads, and pop of his time. Throughout ...Show more

Summary

Elvis Presley was one of the greatest icons of the 20th Century who popularized Rock 'n' Roll. The American singer, musician and actor, is known as "The King of Rock 'n' Roll," who had an intense effect on world culture. (Elvis Presley). With a sound and style that uniquely combined his diverse musical influences, and blurred and challenged the social and racial barriers of the time, he ushered in a whole new era of American music and popular culture of Rock 'n' Roll…
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