Elvis Presley Poster


Jump to: Overview (5)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Family (4)  | Trade Mark (10)  | Trivia (240)  | Personal Quotes (38)  | Salary (23)

Overview (5)

Born in Tupelo, Mississippi, USA
Died in Memphis, Tennessee, USA  (cardiac arrhythmia)
Birth NameElvis Aaron Presley
Nicknames Elvis the Pelvis
The King
The King of Rock 'n' Roll
Height 5' 11¾" (1.82 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on January 8, 1935 in East Tupelo, Mississippi, to Gladys Presley (née Gladys Love Smith) and Vernon Presley (Vernon Elvis Presley). He had a twin brother who was stillborn. In 1948, Elvis and his parents moved to Memphis, Tennessee where he attended Humes High School. In 1953, he attended the senior prom with the current girl he was courting, Regis Wilson. After graduating from high school in Memphis, Elvis took odd jobs working as a movie theater usher and a truck driver for Crown Electric Company. He began singing locally as "The Hillbilly Cat", then signed with a local recording company, and then with RCA in 1955.

Elvis did much to establish early rock and roll music. He began his career as a performer of rockabilly, an up-tempo fusion of country music and rhythm and blues, with a strong backbeat. His novel versions of existing songs, mixing 'black' and 'white' sounds, made him popular - and controversial - as did his uninhibited stage and television performances. He recorded songs in the rock and roll genre, with tracks like "Jailhouse Rock" and "Hound Dog" later embodying the style. Presley had a versatile voice and had unusually wide success encompassing other genres, including gospel, blues, ballads and pop music. Teenage girls became hysterical over his blatantly sexual gyrations, particularly the one that got him nicknamed "Elvis the Pelvis" (television cameras were not permitted to film below his waist).

In 1956, following his six television appearances on The Dorsey Brothers' "Stage Show", Elvis was cast in his first acting role, in a supporting part in Love Me Tender (1956), the first of 33 movies he starred in.

In 1958, Elvis was drafted into the military, and relocated to Bad Nauheim, Germany. There he met 14-year old army damsel Priscilla Ann Wagner (Priscilla Presley), whom he would eventually marry after an eight-year courtship, and by whom he had his only child, Lisa Marie Presley. Elvis' military service and the "British Invasion" of the 1960s reduced his concerts, though not his movie/recording income.

Through the 1960s, Elvis settled in Hollywood, where he starred in the majority of his thirty-three movies, mainly musicals, acting alongside some of the most well known actors in Hollywood. Critics panned most of his films, but they did very well at the box office, earning upwards of $150 million total. His last fiction film, Change of Habit (1969), deals with several social issues; romance within the clergy, an autistic child, almost unheard of in 1969, rape, and mob violence. It has recently received critical acclaim.

Elvis made a comeback in the 1970s with live concert appearances starting in early 1970 in Las Vegas with over 57 sold-out shows. He toured throughout the United States, appearing on-stage in over 500 live appearances, many of them sold out shows. His marriage ended in divorce, and the stress of constantly traveling as well as his increasing weight gain and dependence upon stimulants and depressants took their toll.

Elvis Presley died at age 42 on August 16, 1977 at his mansion in Graceland, near Memphis, shocking his fans worldwide. At the time of his death, he had sold more than 600 million singles and albums. Since his death, Graceland has become a shrine for millions of followers worldwide. Elvis impersonators and purported sightings have become stock subjects for humorists. To date, Elvis Presley is the only performer to have been inducted into three separate music 'Halls of Fame'. Throughout his career, he set records for concert attendance, television ratings and recordings sales, and remains one of the best-selling and most influential artists in the history of popular music.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Ed Stephan and Chris Holland

Family (4)

Spouse Priscilla Presley (1 May 1967 - 9 October 1973)  (divorced)  (1 child)
Children Lisa Marie Presley
Parents Gladys Presley
Vernon Presley
Relatives Harper Lockwood (grandchild)
Finley Lockwood (grandchild)
Minnie Mae Presley (grandparent)
Riley Keough (grandchild)
Benjamin Keough (grandchild)

Trade Mark (10)

The famous left-sided grin
His movements, with his pelvis, that gave him the nickname, "Elvis, the pelvis", which he strongly disliked
Longer and slightly deeper sideburns
White sequined jumpsuits with rhinestones
Onstage karate moves
Peanut butter and banana sandwiches (with bacon)
Two trademark phrases were "Thank ya!" and "Thank ya' very much!"
Deep husky voice with southern accent
Black hair often greased back
Known to friends and fans for his extremely kind-hearted and generous personality

Trivia (240)

The home address of Vernon Presley and Gladys Presley, as they became parents, on 1/8/1935 was 306 Old Saltillo Rd., East Tupelo, MS (there was no ZIP code, as they weren't created until the (1960s). His twin brother, Jesse Garon Presley, died at birth. Elvis was successfully delivered, approximately 35 minutes later.
Earned a black belt in karate in 1960.
Won three Grammy Awards, all for his gospel music.
His hair color was blonde until his early teens. As he got older his hair became darker. By the time he had his hair cut for the army at age 22 its natural color was dark chestnut (according to Charlie Hodge, who served with him in the army).
Was originally considered for the Kris Kristofferson role in A Star Is Born (1976), but turned it down because his manager, Tom Parker, refused him permission to act in a movie where he wouldn't have top billing. Also, he didn't like the fact that the producer, Jon Peters, was completely unknown.
Owned a pet chimpanzee called "Scatter".
Has more multi-platinum album sales than any other performer, with 12 albums selling over two million copies.
Father of Lisa Marie Presley (b. 2/1/68).
Interred at Graceland Estate, Memphis, TN.
Is a direct descendant of Abraham Lincoln's great-great grandfather, Isaiah Harrison.
Had 18 "Billboard" #1 songs, the first being "Heartbreak Hotel" in March of 1956. His 18th and final #1, "Suspicious Minds", was released in September 1969.
When The Beatles came to America in 1965 there was only one person they wanted to meet: Elvis. On 8/27/65 they got their wish and, according to John Lennon, spent an enjoyable evening at the Presley home in Bel Air, CA, talking, singing and laughing with each other.
He bought Graceland mansion on 3/19/57 from Mrs. Ruth Brown Moore for $102,500. The mansion, built of tan Tennessee limestone, consists of 23 rooms and 13.7 surrounding acres. The Music Gates were installed in April of 1957. The name "Graceland" came with the mansion, from the days when it was originally used as a church.
His TV debut was on the regionally telecast Louisiana Hayride (1955), 3/5/55 in Shreveport, LA.
In September 1955, "Country Song Roundup" magazine was the first to feature an article on him, calling him a "folk music fireball".
In April of 1955 he auditioned for a spot on Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts (1948) and was turned down.
His body was placed in a family crypt in Memphis on 8/18/77; 11 days later, however, an attempt was made to steal his body but the plan failed and three men were charged with trespassing and released on bond. Because of this incident, Vernon Presley, received approval from the Memphis Adjustment Board to allow the re-interment of the bodies of Elvis and his mother, Gladys Presley, to the Meditation Garden behind Graceland, which took place, on 10/2/77.
The book he was reading at the time of his death was "The Scientific Search for the Face of Jesus" by Frank O. Adams, (Psychical Aid Foundation, USA, 1972).
From the time they met until his death, he always sent a roomful of flowers to Ann-Margret whenever she opened a show in Las Vegas.
Was one of the performers featured on a set of stamps of rock and blues legends issued by the U.S. Postal Service in June 1993.
His mother, Gladys Presley, gave him his first guitar in 1947, when he was 12 years old, as a birthday present.
Was a 1953 graduate of Humes High School, in Memphis, TN.
Was one of the first people in the US to own a "Betamax" system VCR.
Honorary Member of Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity.
After seeing him in concert, Liberace suggested adding flashy costumes to his act. Elvis took the advice, and became famous for his gold lame jackets and jeweled white jumpsuits. He later reserved a seat for Liberace at a majority of his concerts, as his way of saying thanks.
One of only a handful of artists inducted into both The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and The Country Music Hall of Fame. Others include Johnny Cash and Hank Williams.
Died with about $5 million in his bank account.
Disliked confrontation. On multiple occasions, he wanted to fire his manager, Tom Parker, by telling his friends, "Tell Parker, he's fired." His friends would go tell him, then Parker would reply, "Tell Elvis to tell me personally". Elvis never did.
"Heartbreak Hotel", which spent 17 weeks at #1 on "Billboard'"s country chart (and ten weeks on its Hot 100) was the #1 country song of 1956.
Inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1998.
His 1977 country hit, "Way Down," was the #1 song on "Billboard" magazine's country singles chart the week of Elvis' death. Nine other of his songs would go to #1 on the magazine's country charts between 1956-81: "I Forgot to Remember to Forget," "Heartbreak Hotel," "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You," and the two-sided #1 hit "Hound Dog/Don't Be Cruel" (all 1956); "All Shook Up," "(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear" and "Jailhouse Rock" (all 1957); "Moody Blue" (1977); and "Guitar Man" (1981, a remixed version released more than three years after his death). Most of his 1950s #1 country hits were also #1 on Billboard s Hot 100 as well.
In Sam Lovullo's book "Life in the Kornfield", which recalled his years as producer of 1969's country music TV series Hee Haw (1969), he remarked that Elvis was a big fan of the show and had always wanted to perform on it. However, according to Lovullo, Elvis remarked they'd have to tape his spots in the middle of the night, knowing that if manager Tom Parker had found out, he'd never clear his appearance. Several months after Elvis' death, his father, Vernon Presley, appeared on "Hee Haw" and spoke about how the world would always love Elvis and remember his music.
Hysteria over "Elvis sightings" after his death were lampooned in the Mojo Nixon song "Elvis Is Everywhere" and "Elvis Is Dead" by Living Colour.
His personal entourage were known as the "Memphis Mafia", and were given matching rings by Elvis. The diamond and gold rings sported a thunderbolt and the letters "TCB" (reportedly standing for "Take Care of Business"). Elvis was buried wearing one of the rings.
Pictured on a 29¢ US commemorative postage stamp issued on 1/8/93, 58 years after his birthdate. This was the inaugural issue in the "Legends of American Music" series.
In 2002 a re-mixed version of one his more obscure recordings, "A Little Less Conversation", became a dance club hit, and topped the charts in the UK.
The least he ever weighed, as an adult, was 170 pounds in 1960, following his discharge from the US Army. The mot was at the time of his death, which was 260. He gained 90 pounds in his final 17 years of life.
Was known to be generous to a fault with family, friends and even total strangers. Anyone who admired any possession of his, from one of his many Cadillacs to any bit of bric-a-brac in his home, often found themselves the new owners of that item.
Inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame (sponsored by the Gospel Music Association) in 2001.
Made the first ever musical video of all time: Jailhouse Rock (1957).
When Ed Sullivan finally allowed him to appear on The Ed Sullivan Show (1948), he was filmed from the waist upwards only once, on his third and final appearance on 1/6/57.
His 1960 single "It's Now Or Never" is one of the best-selling singles of all time--if not the all-time best-selling single--with sales estimated to have been between 25-30 million copies.
Is responsible for the best-selling single of the 1950s ("Hound Dog/Don't Be Cruel", 1956) and of the 1960s ("It's Now Or Never", 1960).
His 29¢ commemorative postage stamp issued in 1993 sold more copies than any other postage stamp in US Postal Service history.
A remix of his song "A Little Less Conversation" was featured on the soundtrack of Ocean's Eleven (2001) and became a "Billboard" #1 hit single--over 20 years after his death.
The Beatles were admirers of his work and, although John Lennon said they enjoyed his company very much, Elvis himself, ironically, thought that they were a bad influence on America's youth.
Through his mother, he was twice a great-great-great-grandson of a woman named Morning White Dove. Morning Dove White is believed by some to have been a Cherokee Native American, although it is not clear if documentary evidence exists that she was a Native American. Elvis' character in G.I. Blues (1960) has a Cherokee background.
He was allegedly offered roles in The Rainmaker (1956), The Defiant Ones (1958), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958), West Side Story (1961), Sweet Bird of Youth (1962), The Fastest Guitar Alive (1967), Midnight Cowboy (1969), True Grit (1969), Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971), The Godfather (1972), A Star Is Born (1976), Grease (1978), and Being There (1979).
Said that his favorite of all his films was King Creole (1958). He also said the film that he disliked the most was Clambake (1967).
During his third and final appearance on Ed Sullivan's The Ed Sullivan Show (1948) weekly program, on 1/6/57 he angered Sullivan by singing the gospel song "Peace In The Valley" after Sullivan asked him not to.
Was a distant cousin of former US President Jimmy Carter (1977-81). When Elvis died on 8/16/77, Carter said the next day, "Elvis Presley's death deprived our country of a part of itself. He was unique and irreplaceable".
Was temporarily a Shelby County (TN) deputy sheriff.
Hal B. Wallis, producer of eight of his films, wanted to make a western with him and John Wayne, but it never came about.
In 1973 he met with Led Zeppelin members Robert Plant and John Paul Jones in Los Angeles. An idol to the members of Led Zeppelin, Elvis wanted to meet "who was outselling him" at concerts (Zeppelin was in the midst of a record-breaking tour that year). A meeting was arranged with Plant and Jones. Plant was so awestruck at meeting his idol in person that he could barely speak to him. Jones, nearly as awestruck as Plant, made small talk with the "King," and mentioned what a beautiful watch Elvis wore. Elvis, always the generous one, instantly traded his $5,000 gold and diamond watch for Jones' $10 Mickey Mouse watch. This broke the ice with all of them, and they became fast friends. Throughout the early 1970s members of Led Zeppelin even attended a few of Elvis' concerts, and were granted the privilege of sitting in the front row by the King himself.
Named his four personal favorite films as: Rebel Without a Cause (1955), A Streetcar Named Desire (1951), Dirty Harry (1971) and Bullitt (1968).
He was drafted into the US Army in 1958, stationed in West Germany and discharged in 1960, achieving the rank of sergeant. His being in the army was a public relations headache, according to army documents released by the Pentagon on 6/9/2005. "Elvis Presley will not be released in a manner different from any other inductee serving overseas," the Army's adjutant general wrote to citizens who complained following reports that the rock icon would get an early "good behavior" discharge. When he entered the army at Memphis, TN , on 3/24/1958, there was a public outcry from his fans, and protests flowed to Washington, including a hand-written plea released by the National Archives and Records Administration. "Dear Mamie," one correspondent wrote to then First Lady Mamie Eisenhower. "Will you please, please be so sweet and kind as to ask Ike [President Dwight D. Eisenhower] to please bring Elvis Presley back to us from the Army? We need him in our entertainment world to make us all laugh." A 1959 Army memo set out the Presley problem: "When Private First Class Presley was first inducted, there was considerable adverse public reaction . . . alleging that he would receive preferential treatment in the Army. This impression has been largely replaced by a public impression of a good soldier serving his military obligation . . . Many teenagers who look up to and emulate Private First Class Presley will . . . follow his example in the performance of their military service".
On 12/21/70 he paid a visit to President Richard Nixon at the White House in Washington, D.C. The meeting was initiated by Presley, who wrote Nixon a six-page letter requesting a visit with the President and suggesting that he be made a "Federal Agent-at-Large" in the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs.
More people watched Elvis: Aloha from Hawaii (1973) (live via satellite TV broadcast)--the first of its kind--than watched astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin as they landed and then walked on the moon on 7/20/69. Interestingly, the US audience didn't view this concert event live. It was seen by much of the world on 1/14/73. The US audience had to wait almost three months, as it was telecast for the first time in the US on 4/14/73. Several songs recorded by him in a studio while he was in Hawaii were added. The concert was preceded, on NBC, by a Ann-Margret special.
He only performed two concerts outside of the US. Both of them were in Canada. Therefore, all of his concerts were in North America.
Recorded 33 takes of "Hound Dog".
Temporarily passed out from exhaustion, after recording "If I Can Dream".
After production of his 1968 NBC television special he told producer Steve Binder he would never make another movie or song he didn't believe in.
Once sent $1,000,000 to Buford Pusser, the crime-fighting Tennessee sheriff who was the subject of Walking Tall (1973).
Once gave a robe to Muhammad Ali. On the back of the robe was stitched, "The Peoples Champion", which was Presley's nickname for Ali.
His favorite actors were Marlon Brando and James Dean. In a 1956 interview he said that he considered Dean an acting genius.
His two favorite books were "The Holy Bible" and "The Impersonal Life".
His favorite class in high school was wood shop.
His mansion, Graceland, is the second most-visited place in United States of America. The first is the White House.
Elia Kazan had expressed interest several times in casting Elvis in his films, Elvis' manager Tom Parker refused to allow it.
Last film he saw in a theater was The Spy Who Loved Me (1977).
He tried to get a print of Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) to show his daughter, Lisa Marie Presley on Monday, August 15th, 1977, his last full day of life.
He is referenced in the work of other music artists. He is mentioned in the songs "That Don't Impress Me Much" by Shania Twain, "Without Me" by Eminem (as well as spoofed in the music video) and "Three Minute Boy" by Marillion. Arguably the most memorable song mentioning Elvis is "Walking in Memphis" by Marc Cohn, namechecking the man himself, Graceland and the Jungle Room within Graceland.
He was on the school boxing team while attending Humes High School in Memphis, TN.
Loved football and often had three TVs set up at Graceland to watch all of the games in progress at the same time.
He used to play touch football at Whitehaven High School during the '60s and early '70s with kids around the neighborhood.
Helped to support an All-Negro Day at the Memphis Zoo in 1956.
In 1975 he purchased a poor black East Memphis woman an electric wheelchair and picked her up and personally sat her in it. The woman's teenage daughter told Elvis she liked his car. He gave it to her and even gave her boyfriend a job.
He was a fervent admirer of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King and had hoped to meet him in 1966, but the meeting never occurred. Many observers believed that was because his manager, Tom Parker, didn't want to alienate Elvis' fans in the South, many of whom saw King as an "outside agitator" because of his civil-rights work among Southern blacks. Both men died in Memphis, Tennessee.
Was a huge fan of the television shows The Jeffersons (1975), Good Times (1974), Happy Days (1974) and Flip (1970).
Once an opera singer attended one of his 1950s concerts and met him backstage. The singer told Elvis that he sang like a hillbilly and needed singing lessons. Elvis replied, "Thanks for the advice, but how many of the thousands of people out there tonight came to hear you sing?".
One set of genealogical research states that his surname was Anglicized from the German "Pressler," and that his ancestor was Valentine Preslar, who was born, c. 1669, in Germany, and immigrated to North America in 1710 with his wife Anna Christian Framse. Valentine first settled in New York but later moved to the South. Jaime Pressly is also descended from him. Elvis also had English, Scottish, and more distant French, Dutch, Danish, and--possible but unverified--Native American ancestry (through his descent from Morning Dove White, who was Elvis' maternal great-great-great-grandmother twice over).
Shown on a 5.50-kr postage stamp issued by Sweden in 2004.
He was the #1 touring act in the US for 1977; the year he died. This, despite the fact that he was well below par and only toured until July, is quite an achievement.
Held the world indoor attendance record for a concert. At the Pontiac Silverdome in Detroit on 12/31/75, 62,500 fans attended. The show also set a record for the biggest box-office take for a single show: $850,000.
Held a single day's attendance record for his March 1974 shows at the Houston Astrodome--89,000 fans for two shows.
According to a show on the A&E Biography channel, he once attended a concert for singer Connie Francis and had to leave for emotional reasons once he heard her sing the old Italian song "Mama", as his mother, Gladys Presley had recently died.
Lived with Linda Thompson for 4½ years, from July 1972 to December 1976. She was a former Miss Tennessee, actress and songwriter. Other than Priscilla Presley, she was the most significant romantic relationship he ever had. She cites him as the love of her life.
When he was an infant a tornado struck his hometown of Tupelo, MS. He and his family survived unhurt, but 233 people in the city were killed and hundreds were injured.
Suffered from chronic insomnia.
His tombstone gives his name as "Elvis Aaron Presley", whereas he was in fact named "Elvis Aron Presley". Although this fueled conspiracy theories that he had faked his death, it is generally believed he changed his middle name so it would be the same as Biblical person, Aaron, (brother of Moses).
Had glaucoma in the 1970s.
At the time of his death in 1977, he was the second best-selling recording artist of all time, second only to longtime crooner Bing Crosby.
He was a born-again Christian who loved to sing gospel music.
None of his 33 films,--31 features and two musical documentaries--were ever nominated for an Academy Award. Of his 31 feature films only one, Wild in the Country (1961), lost money.
He had two facelifts and rhinoplasty during the mid-1970s. On one of these visits to a hospital to have the procedure done, he was accompanied by Linda Thompson.
He worked with legendary guitar player Hank Garland from 1957-61.
Was director Robert Wise's original choice to play Tony in West Side Story (1961).
He was portrayed by Jason Alan Smith in Crazy (2008).
Nephew of Vester Presley.
Most of the films he starred in were not critically acclaimed, although he received good reviews for Flaming Star (1960) and King Creole (1958).
In the month following his final concert, at Indianapolis, IN, on 6/26/77, he was reported to have gained an extra 50 pounds.
Is portrayed by Val Kilmer in True Romance (1993). Like Presley, Kilmer is also said to have possible Cherokee heritage.
Of his many numerous impersonators, his personal favorite was Andy Kaufman.
Prior to being signed by RCA in November 1955, he was known as "The Hillbilly Cat" in his hometown of Memphis, TN.
Is portrayed by Michael St. Gerard in [link=tt0097457 and by Val Kilmer in True Romance (1993). Like Presley, Kilmer is also said to have possible Cherokee heritage.
His song "Heartbreak Hotel" is based on a note left by a man who committed suicide in a Florida hotel suite. When Elvis first performed the song on Stage Show (1954) in 1956, he sang the words "They're so lonely they pray to die". This was changed in later performances from "pray to die" to "they could die" so as not to offend the religious establishment with a reference for a prayer for death.
In 2004 topped the "Forbes" Magazine list of deceased highest earners for the fourth consecutive year, with earnings of $45 million.
In 1977 alone his personal physician, Dr. George Nichopoulos (usually referred to as "Dr. Nick"), had prescribed at least 10,000 hits of amphetamines, barbiturates, narcotics, tranquilizers, sleeping pills, laxatives and hormones for him. His medical license was later revoked for prescribing such huge amounts of drugs.
Barbra Streisand originally wanted him to play the role of John Norman Howard in A Star Is Born (1976), but the studio couldn't meet Tom Parker's demands ($1 million plus equal billing with Streisand).
Dreamed of playing Don Vito Corleone in The Godfather (1972), but when he asked to audition for the part he was turned down.
One of his biggest hit songs, "Are You Lonesome Tonight?", was written in 1926 by Lou Handman and Roy Turk and first recorded by Lou's sister Edith Handman with Lou at the piano. Vaughn Deleath and The Colonial Club Orchestra released a version of the song in 1927 that became a hit. 'The Carter Family' recorded a bluegrass version with additional verses in 1936. The first charted version was by Blue Barron in 1950 (#16 US Pop), which introduced the spoken portion, modeled after Jacques' "All The World's A Stage" speech in William Shakespeare's "As You Like It". Al Jolson recorded that version several weeks later. Additionaly, it was singer Jaye P. Morgan's 1959 (#65 US Pop) version of the song, as well as Blue Barron's earlier 1950 version, that Elvis heard while in Germany that influenced him to record the song shortly after his discharge from the army. Elvis' 1960 version of "Are You Lonesome Tonight" is closest to the 1950 Blue Barron recording.
He was an avid collector of guns and badges.
In 1981, Kirsty MacColl had a number 14 single in the UK with the song "There's a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He's Elvis". He also inspired the song "Elvis Ate America" on the album "Original Soundtracks 1" by Passengers, which was a U2 and Brian Eno side project in 1995.
He met with Robert Mitchum to discuss the possibility of starring together in Thunder Road (1958), but unfortunately Tom Parker's demands for Presley's salary could not be met.
He was portrayed by Peter Dobson in Forrest Gump (1994).
Along with Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins, Elvis was a member of the celebrated "Million Dollar Quartet", so named because they were money-makers for Sam Phillips' Sun Records label.
Newspaper reports indicated that Sammy Davis Jr., Farrah Fawcett, Burt Reynolds and John Wayne were supposed to attend Presley's funeral, but they did not turn up. Ann-Margret, James Brown and George Hamilton were the only celebrities in attendance.
He was seriously considered for the role of the Texas Ranger in True Grit (1969) starring John Wayne. Unfortunately, Tom Parker's demand that Presley receive top billing could not be met, so the part went to Glen Campbell instead.
He was offered a role in the animation film, Gay Purr-ee (1962), but disliked the roles of off-screen voice acting.
His autopsy detected 14 different drugs in his bloodstream, ten in significant quantity.
His home Graceland in Memphis is the second most popular private tourist attraction in the United States after the White House, and is estimated to bring in $150 million to the city itself each year.
Named the highest earning deceased celebrity for the sixth consecutive year in 2006 by Forbes.com.
He was considered for Ricky Nelson's role in Rio Bravo (1959) starring John Wayne and Dean Martin. However, by the time filming began in May 1958 Presley was stationed with the US army in Germany.
He is credited as a co-writer of "(I'll) You'll Be Gone" (1965). This was the B side of the hit from his film Girl Happy (1965), "Do The Clam". It is found in his five-CD box set of '60s recordings. Elvis composed the lyrics and brought the song to a recording session.
In 1973 he was the biggest taxpayer in the US.
It was estimated that he earned earned $4.5 billion in his lifetime.
With a lot of entertainers making a living mimicking Elvis, Jimmy Buffett wrote a song called "Elvis Imitators" making mention of a few of Elvis' films, song titles, and mannerisms.
Has sold 1.8 billion records worldwide, more than any other artist or music group.
He was discovered by Sun Records owner Sam Phillips.
On Thursday, November 11th, 2004, he was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame for his outstanding contribution to British music and integral part of British music culture.
His parents Vernon Presley and Gladys Presley were unemployed during the Great Depression of the 1930s and lived on welfare and then on Social Security after it was created during the administration of US President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
In 1970 he wrote to J. Edgar Hoover requesting to join the FBI at the height of its campaign against political protests in the United States.
Met President Lyndon B. Johnson at the White House in 1965.
The very last song he sang in public was "Can't Help Falling In Love", at The Market Square Arena in Indianapolis, Indiana, on Sunday, June 26, 1977.
He did an early '60s concert in Hawaii, and donated the proceeds to help build the USS Arizona memorial.
Turned down the leading role in The Fastest Guitar Alive (1967), which went to his friend Roy Orbison.
In 2007 the National Rifle Association (NRA) released an Elvis Presley Tribute Revolver, officially authorized by his estate.
After his concert in Hawaii in 1961, Presley concentrated on making movies and did not perform before a live audience again for seven years until his 1968 TV special and subsequent return to Las Vegas in 1969.
He was ranked #2 on VH1's 100 Sexiest Artists and #8 on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of Rock & Roll. He was voted best singer of all time by Q Magazine. He was voted the 3rd Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Artist of all time by Rolling Stone magazine.
As a young man, Elvis idolized a gospel group called The Statesmen. According to Elvis' backup singer and lifelong friend Joe Moscheo, Elvis' leg-twitching dance moves were inspired by The Statesmen's bass singer, "Big Chief" Wetherington, who was famous for his leg twitching.
Between 1957-69 he performed only two concerts and made just two television appearances.
In 1962 he ceased almost completely to record non-soundtrack songs until his 1969 album "From Elvis in Memphis".
In July of 2005, Presley was named one of the top 100 "Greatest Americans," following a vote organized by Discovery Channel. In the vote, Presley ranked ahead of all entertainers and in 8th place behind Presidents Ronald Reagan, Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush, plus Martin Luther King and Benjamin Franklin.
His records have spent a total of 79 weeks at the #1 position on the US charts.
His records have spent 2,574 weeks in both the UK singles and album charts, were and still are way ahead of his closest competitors Cliff Richard (1,982), Queen (1,755), The Beatles (1,749) and Madonna (1,660).
He was planning his first ever European tour in 1978.
In Alexandria, Louisiana, early in 1977 a local journalist complained that the singer was on stage for less than an hour and "was impossible to understand." In Baton Rouge, Presley didn't go on stage at all. He was unable to get out of his hotel bed and the rest of the tour was canceled.
Investor CKX paid $100 million for an 85% interest in Presley's income in February 2005.
Robbie Williams dedicated his song "Advertising Space" to him.
He is credited as a co-writer of "(I'll) You'll Be Gone" (1965). This was the B side of the hit from his film Girl Happy (1965), "Do The Clam". It is found in his five-CD box set of '60s recordings. Elvis composed the lyrics and brought the song to a recording session. He is also listed in the writer's credits to "Heartbreak Hotel".
His favorite actors were James Dean, John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Steve McQueen and Marlon Brando. Brando personally strongly disliked Presley.
He was mentioned in Walter Kirn's novel, "Thumbsucker".
Was a fan of Peter Sellers and Tony Curtis.
On seeing Elvis in rehearsal for Stage Show (1954) Jackie Gleason--the show's producer--described Elvis as "Marlon Brando with a guitar".
Was the first entertainer to introduce karate in an American motion picture (Flaming Star (1960)).
While he never joined any political party, his political views were somewhat mixed. During the early 1960s he was an outspoken admirer of liberal President John F. Kennedy. He later confessed to "weeping openly" at the news of Kennedy's death. Later in life, however, he made a more conservative move on the political spectrum. He began singing the praises of President Richard Nixon, and his right-wing streak culminated in a visit to the White House in December 1970. During the visit, Presley was photographed giving the President a handgun, which was (for security reasons) presented but not given. Presley spoke of his admiration for Nixon, revealed his disgust at the hippie counterculture, spoke disparagingly of The Beatles (he said that having earned their money in America, they had then left for England to promote "anti-American" feelings), fervently expressed his patriotism, offered to infiltrate and go undercover in left-wing hippie groups, asked to be appointed a federal narcotics agent, and even hugged the president twice. Nixon, for his part, was not sure if Presley was serious or not, but granted his request and made him an honorary federal agent. Nixon said he was equally parts bewildered and amused by the encounter, thanked Presley for his support, and the picture of the duo has become one of the most famous photos taken in the White House. On Presley's death in 1977, the former president asked Americans to lower their flags all over the country as a mark of respect.
Elvis was a good friend of Johnny Cash, going back to their Sun Records' days recordings, after being discovered by Sam Phillips.
Voted the third greatest singer of the rock era in a Rolling Stone magazine poll in 2008.
Elvis' original combo (Elvis, Scotty Moore and Bill Black) were nicknamed and known as "The Blue Moon Boys featuring that Hillbilly Cat" after their popular rendition of Bill Monroe's "Blue Moon Of Kentucky". Moore acted as Elvis' first manager. Black in the late '40s was a member of Gene Krupa's band and later had a successful recording career with Bill Black's Combo.
The last song he sang was "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain", at home, and playing the piano, to family and friends, Monday evening, August 15th, 1977.
According to Elvis and his manager Tom Parker, Elvis' return to TV in 1968 was in part due to NBC (Universal Pictures) agreeing to finance the remaining movies he was scheduled to make.
In 1953 while working as an usher in a local Memphis movie theater he sang, by request, "That's Amore" on stage.
He unsuccessfully auditioned for CBS' Talent Scouts (1948) nine months before his successful debut on Stage Show (1954). The trip to New York City for the audition was not a complete loss for Elvis. That same day he went uptown to see Bo Diddley, who was appearing at The Apollo.
In 1955 he appeared in a rock documentary, The Pied Piper of Cleveland: A Day in the Life of a Famous Disc Jockey (1955), about Cleveland DJ Bill Randle, filmed in various locations in the Cleveland, Ohio, area (mainly Brooklyn High School). The film headlined many top acts of the day including Bill Haley and the Comets, Pat Boone, The Four Lads and others. This film has yet to be released. It is still reportedly the property of Polygram International and in the Universal vault.
He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6777 Hollywood Boulevard for Recording in Hollywood, California.
His funeral procession on August 18, 1977, consisted of 49 cars led by 11 white Cadillacs--Cadillac was his favorite car.
His live performance of "My Way" done early in his 1977 tour and featured on his October 1977 TV special was a million-selling single following his death.
Many Elvis fans and historians agree that his 1969 recording sessions at American International Studios in Memphis were among his greatest work--it contained songs in a variety of musical genres, from pop to country/western to R&B to standards, in addition to new material.
During his 21-year association with RCA Records (1956-77), the only year he failed to have a single in the Billboard Top Pop 20 was 1967.
He is not related to Reg Presley (b: Reginald Maurice Ball), the lead singer of the popular British rock band The Troggs, which had 2 million sellers of their own, "Wild Thing" (1966) and "Love Is All Around" (1968).
Owned a collection of Andy Kaufman tapes.
During the 1970s he had 28 singles reach the top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Posthumously, he had a #1 single on the Hot 100 in 2002 with the remix of "A Little Less Conversation".
Both his father Vernon Presley and grandmother Minnie Mae outlived him. Vernon died in 1979 at age 63 and Minnie Mae died in 1980 at age 90.
Elvis' Aunt Delta (Vernon's sister) continued to live on the Graceland estate until her death on July 29, 1993, eleven years after Priscilla opened it to the public as a tourist attraction.
Bought former US President Franklin D. Roosevelt's yacht "Potomac" for $55,000 in January 1964.
According to Tommy Steele, Presley did visit London once in 1958. However, this has not been substantiated.
He asked his father Vernon Presley to pick TV evangelist Rex Humbard to officiate at his funeral.
His death on August 16, 1977, was 29 years after baseball athlete and first home-run king, Babe Ruth's death, August 16, 1948 and 21 years after actor, Bela Lugosi, August 16, 1956.
Reports of the last words spoken by Elvis vary. He ended his last press conference with the words: "I hope I haven't bored you." Other reports say his last words were: "Okay, I won't" (The last words spoken to Ginger Alden, his girlfriend at the time of his death, who told him on the way to the bathroom not to "fall asleep in there.").
Elvis owned one of the world's first mobile phones. He had to have one after seeing Sean Connery use a car phone in the James Bond movie From Russia with Love (1963). Elvis's phone was contained in a suitcase-size carrying case with his name in black letters on a gold label on the front. He would use it to talk from his limousine.
His last film, Change of Habit (1969), had him as a doctor in an urban clinic, reflecting his attempt to be "relevant" to the social activism of the youth of the '60s. Additionally, this film dealt with what was then considered to be medical treatment of an "autistic" child, a topic almost unheard of in 1969.
After not having a Top 20 hit single since 1966, Elvis' Nov. 68 "comeback" TV Special spawned the now standard "If I Can Dream", (#13 US Pop). This was followed in 1969 by "Memories" (#35 US Pop), which was also performed on the Special, "In The Ghetto" (#3 US Pop), "Suspicious Minds" (#1 US Pop), and "Don't Cry Daddy" (#6 US Pop).
On his first appearance on Stage Show (1954) on Jan. 28, 1956, he sang a medley of "Shake Rattle and Roll" / "Flip Flop and Fly" and later performed "I Got A Woman". That breakthrough performance of "I Got A Woman", to a startled 1956 audience, had not been seen for years, but as of 2010 it is available on YouTube.
He and Andy Griffith debuted together, but at different times, on Steve Allen's weekly program The Steve Allen Plymouth Show (1956), on July 1, 1956. It was Steve Allen's second show and Elvis' appearance skyrocketed it in popularity.
While Elvis appeared on NBC's The Steve Allen Plymouth Show (1956), on Sunday, July 1, 1956. his manager Colonel Tom Parker was contacted by Ed Sullivan about Elvis appearing on Sullivan's weekly CBS variety show, The Ed Sullivan Show (1948), on CBS. Elvis was signed for a then staggering $50,000 for three appearances. This was quite an accomplishment--or lack of foresight--as Sullivan and Allen were broadcast in the same Sunday-evening time slot and had an ongoing "ratings war" against each other. Even more amazing was that Elvis' prestigious record label, RCA Victor, was a subsidiary of the corporation that owned NBC. The NBC logo at that time was the famous RCA Color (TV) Peacock. Elvis already had sold at least five million records for RCA. Allen would later state that his reason for "giving away" Elvis was that he ran strictly a comedy show. Ironically. the following summer Allen hosted Jerry Lee Lewis twice. After this, Sullivan was not as interested in biding for Lewis as he was for Elvis. Lewis did not appear on Sullivan's show until 1969.
An earlier take of Elvis' 1956 hit "I Want You, I Need You,I Love You" is titled "I Need You, I Want You, I Love You". This earlier version of the song appeared on some copies of his debut album titled "Elvis" and was later issued in a 1977 compilation package..
The media coverage of his death overshadowed that of the 86-year-old comedian and film star Groucho Marx, which occurred three days later.
In the mid-'70s he was approached to help finance a karate movie called "New Gladiators" in which he would narrate and make a cameo appearance at the climax. The film was never completed in his lifetime.
Stage: "All Shook Up", a show based on his work, debuted on Broadway in 2004.
During the days following Elvis' death, Philadelphia Phillies' pitcher Tug McGraw (father of Tim McGraw), with guitar in hand, played a medley of Elvis' songs on the team bus.
In the 1981 documentary This Is Elvis (1981), in previously unseen footage, Elvis sang "Always On My Mind", a #16 hit from 1972 written for him by Mark James. Just months later, in 1981, Willie Nelson covered the song and it became a Grammy winner and one of Nelson's all-time signature hits. As the song was not written specifically for the film, it could not qualify for an Academy Award nomination. The Academy Award-winning song for 1981 was "The Theme from "Arthur".
Reportedly, in 1969 he received a death threat, just prior to his opening in Las Vegas. Though he had FBI agents providing security for him, for added protection he carried a Derringer pistol on stage, in his shoe.
During rehearsal for his June 5, 1956, appearance on The Milton Berle Show (1948), Berle reportedly said to Elvis. "Let's see what you can do without the guitar". What resulted was a captivating extended televised performance by Elvis of the not yet recorded "Hound Dog"; enjoyable to his fans, though shocking to others including the news media, it was a song that he had been performing, up to that point, with guitar in hand. By the time of his second appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show (1948), later in 1956, Elvis sang without his guitar, with The Jordanaires as his back-up vocal group and his back-up combo. For the most part this format would be followed for all of Elvis' stage performances for the remainder of his career. In 1969, when he returned to Las Vegas, a full orchestra was added.
It was after his appearance on The Milton Berle Show: Episode #8.13 (1956) that Presley inadvertently earned the nickname "Elvis the Pelvis". While performing his classic "Hound Dog", Presley switched tempo in the middle of the song and began gyrating his hips suggestively. The performance caused such a furor that Berle received a reported 30,000 letters decrying his decision to allow such "lewd behavior" on national television. During the show Presley was backed by Scotty Moore (guitar), Bill Black (bass) and D.J. Fontana (drums).
Prior to marrying Priscilla Presley, Elvis proposed marriage to legendary cult actress Tura Satana, who turned him down. It is believed that Priscilla copied her hairstyle after that.
One set of genealogical research states that Elvis' surname leads back to Irish ancestors, who hailed from the village of Hacketstown in County Carlow. William Presley was forced to leave Ireland for America after a local dispute over land. He later moved to Carolina, where he had a son called Dunnan, and then moved on to Tennessee. Dunnan's granddaughter Rosella was born in 1863 and, though she never married, she had several children including one called Jessie. He named his son Vernon Elvis, and Vernon Presley later named his son Elvis Aaron Presley, the man who went on to become The King.
Curiously, cut from the 2009 issue of his critically acclaimed film King Creole (1958) was his performance of "Hard Headed Woman" a #1 hit for Elvis at the time of the film's release. A rare occurrence, possibly, the only time in film history that an essential musical number has been cut from a film, over a half-century after the film's release. Added in its place in 2009 is the then previously unseen stripper's sequence with the song "Banana". In 1958 the "Banana" scene, complete with female stripper, with its obvious phallic reference, would have been "too much" for the censors and mainstream America.
Of Terry Stafford's 1964 cover of Elvis' recording of "Suspicion", a back-up group was added to sing the word "suspicion". This addition proved successful for Stafford, though many listeners still think they are listening to Elvis. Stafford's version of the song received considerable airplay and rose to #3 on the US pop charts.
Many rock singers mimicked Elvis' singing style, early in their careers, before adopting their own style for which they are most remembered. The most successful, in that area, was Conway Twitty with his (1958-61) hit recordings of "It's Only Make Believe", "The Story Of My Love" and "Lonely Blue Boy", originally recorded by Elvis as "Danny" for King Creole (1958) but later cut from the film. Twitty later crossed over to the country field. Charlie Rich's initial hit, "Lonely Weekend" (1960), followed the same pattern, long before he was known as country music's "Silver Fox". One of Johnny Rivers' first recordings, "You're The One" (1958), and a 1956 recording of "That'll Be The Day" by Buddy Holly--not the 1957 million selling version that is most played--sounded like Elvis behind the mike. There were also "one-hit wonders" like Ral Donner, the narrative voice of Elvis in This Is Elvis (1981), who had a million seller with "You Don't Know What You Got Until You Lose It" (1961). Of course, there's Terry Stafford's successful 1964 cover of Elvis' recording of "Suspicion".
During the rehearsal for his 1968 TV Special Elvis: The Comeback Special (1968), he reportedly gave an impromptu performance of "MacArthur Park,, a big hit of the day for Richard Harris. Unfortunately, that performance was not recorded.
"I'll Be Home For Christmas", was the original closing number for Elvis' special, Elvis: The Comeback Special (1968). On previous occasions he headlined Christmas specials that were aired on radio stations throughout the Southern US. Producer Steve Binder and Elvis decided that a song that reflected the turbulence of the 1960s, and at the same time gave a plea for hope and understanding, would be more appropriate than a Christmas ballad to end the show. Earl Brown, the show's Musical Director, was asked by Binder to go home and write such a song. He did just that and composed, on short notice, "If I Can Dream", with its reference to Martin Luther King's 1963 "I Have A Dream" speech, given in Washington, DC. Brown's newly composed song contained the lyrics, "If I can dream of a better land, where all my brothers walk hand in hand". With minimal rehearsing and no demo to work with, Elvis' spontaneous live performance of the new closing song was released as his next million-selling single, peaking at #13 on the US pop charts. The success of "If I Can Dream" led the way for Elvis to record other songs with social issues, such as "In the Ghetto", "Clean Up Your Own Backyard" and "Don't Cry Daddy".
His 1st big performance was at the Oventon Park Shell in Memphis in 1954.
He was discharged from the army on March 24, 1960. Eight days later, on April 1, he began filming G.I. Blues (1960).
His 1972 live album recorded at Madison Square Garden featured many celebrities in the audience, including George Harrison, Art Garfunkel, David Bowie, all the members of Ten Years After and Led Zeppelin, Paul Simon, Bob Dylan and Paul Stanley. It was reported that John Lennon was secretly in the audience, but Lennon insisted in a 1975 interview that he had never seen Elvis live. Bruce Springsteen was in the audience, having signed with Columbia Records about a month prior. The album was also the inspiration for a young Eddie Murphy, who would play it loud and lip-sync to it in front of the mirror. Murphy has gone on to say that it was Elvis who inspired him to become an entertainer.
Although Bob Dylan enormously admired him, Elvis was disparaging of Dylan, especially in terms of his singing voice. Once he was said to privately quip, "My mouth's so dry, feels like Bob Dylan slept in it". Later, however, he recorded a cover of Dylan's song, "Tomorrow is a Long Time". Elvis reportedly disliked much of the 1960s popular music, including The Beatles, because he associated it with the "drug culture", although he did freely cover songs by many such bands.
In early March of 1960, Elvis was on his way back to America from military duty in Germany. The plane Elvis was boarding on made a brief stop in the town of Prestwick, Scotland, where he was greeted and embraced by hundreds of British fans. This would be his first and only visit in the United Kingdom.
Was one of the many dozen of celebrities like John Agar, John Russell and Sabu who visited renowned animal trainer and Hollywood animal behaviorist Ralph Helfer's Africa U.S.A. Exotic Animal Ranch in Soledad Canyon, California on weekends to play with the animals and pitch in with the chores. Elvis' favorite animal was a chimp named Coffee, who once belonged to Mae West.
Pictured on a USA 'forever' commemorative postage stamp in the Music Icons series, issued 12 August 2015. Price on day of issue was 49¢.
Childhood friend of Wink Martindale.
Had a twin brother, Jesse Caron, who died in infancy.
His all-time favorite horror movie was Black Christmas (1974). He made it a tradition to watch the film every Christmas and to this day his family honors his memory by watching the film every Christmas.
Received his first ever screen kiss from co-star Jana Lund in Loving You (1957).
Former son-in-law of Ann Beaulieu and stepson-in-law of Paul Beaulieu.
Former brother-in-law of Michelle Beaulieu.
He was widely known to be a very private man.
"The All American Boy" is a 1958 'talking blues' song written by Bobby Bare, but credited by Fraternity Records to Bill Parsons, with songwriting credit to Bill Parsons and Orville Lunsford. The song reached #2 on the Billboard charts and was inspired by the success and then conscription of Elvis Presley.
Double first cousin of Patsy Presley Geranen.
Though Elvis is famed for the "I don't sound like nobody". He did have idols, and one of these, was dubbed 'the greatest entertainer of them all' it seems a fitting tribute to think that the King was in awe of Al Jolson.
When he wanted to emulate Ricky Nelson's hairstyle, his hairdresser Carrie White talked him out of it: "Elvis please, let's don't mess with success." He gifted her with a derringer.
On Larry King's visit to Graceland, Priscilla Presley told him that her first Christmas present to Elvis was a cigarette holder.
When Clark Gable died, Elvis was given his dressing room at MGM studios.
Turned down advances from Ursula Andress because her shoulders were too wide.
[16 November 2018] One of seven recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, awarded by President Donald Trump. Other recipients were Miriam Adelson, Orrin Hatch, Alan Page, Babe Ruth (posthumous), Antonin Scalia (posthumous), and Roger Staubach.
He has appeared in one film that has been selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant: Jailhouse Rock (1957).
In an interview in 1999 Little Richard said if he had been white the world would never have heard of Presley.
He was a huge fan of the comic book superhero Captain Marvel Jr. and even based his iconic haircut on the character. In addition, some of his stage outfits and his TCB logo also show influence from the character.
His mother Gladys Presley was born in 1912, but claimed to have been born in 1918. She was four years older than Elvis' father Vernon Presley and shaved six years off her birthdate because it was considered stigmatic for a woman to marry a younger man.
Was introduced to future wife Priscilla Presley on September 13, 1959 by Currie Grant. In 1996, Currie told biographer Suzanne Finstad that he had sex with Priscilla on at least two occasions before he brought her to meet Elvis. Priscilla strenuously denied it, sued Currie for defamation and won.
Towards the later years of his life, he became a big fan of the comedy troupe Monty Python and would often recite their sketches to his friends and family. His favourite sketch was "Nudge Nudge" and would subsequently start calling people "squire". According to Jerry Schilling, he watched Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) almost 50 times and his former bodyguard recalled him dismissing shows that didn't go well with the line: "It's only a flesh wound".
He loved his mother dearly and her death in 1958 had a lifelong impact on him. He recorded at least two songs in her memory, "Don't Cry Daddy" and "Mama Liked the Roses," and reportedly refused to watch Loving You (1957) because she appears as an audience member.
When asked about his opinion on the Vietnam War by a reporter, he is said to have replied, "Ma'am, I'm just an entertainer". When the reporter then asked if more entertainers should follow his lead and not speak out about Vietnam, he simply answered "No".
Jackie Gleason was a producer for Stage Show (1954), where Elvis made his debut on national TV in 1956. Allegedly, Gleason said of Presley afterward: "He can't last, I'll tell you flatly, he can't last".
In 1954 he was auditioning for a musician called Eddie Bond. Bond said to him, "Stick to driving a truck, because you'll never make it as a singer." Elvis recorded his first hit a few months later.
Was a seventh-degree black belt in Shotokan Karate and held black belts in Kenpo and Taekwondo.
On 10/28/56 he got his polio vaccination on TV.
Born at 4:35 a.m.
Despite selling over a billion records, Presley never toured outside of North America.

Personal Quotes (38)

[asked who he sounded like] I don't sound like nobody.
[asked what kind of music he sings] I sing all kinds.
I don't like being called Elvis The Pelvis. That's gotta be one of the most childish expressions I've ever heard coming from an adult.
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.
[his acceptance speech from the 1970 Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Nation Awards] When I was a child, ladies and gentlemen, I was a dreamer. I read comic books, and I was the hero of the comic book. I saw movies, and I was the hero in the movie. So every dream I ever dreamed has come true a hundred times . . . I learned very early in life that "Without a song, the day would never end; without a song, a man ain't got a friend; without a song, the road would never bend - without a song". So I keep singing a song. Goodnight. Thank you.
There's been a big change in the music field in the last 10 or 12 years. I think everything has improved--the sounds have improved, the musicians have improved, the engineers have definitely improved. I like a lot of the new groups, y'know, The Beatles and The Byrds and the . . . whoever, but I really like a lot of the new music, but a lot of it is basically, our music is basically, rock 'n roll music is basically gospel or rhythm and blues. People have been adding to it, adding instruments to it, experimenting with it.
I just fell into it, really. My daddy and I were laughing about it the other day. He looked at me and said, "What happened, El? The last thing I remember is I was working in a can factory and you were driving a truck". We all feel the same way about it. Still, it just caught us up.
[on performing] It's like a surge of electricity going through you. It's almost like making love, but it's even stronger than that . . . sometimes I think my heart is going to explode.
My daddy had seen a lot of people who played guitars and stuff and didn't work, so he said, "You should make up your mind either about being an electrician or playing a guitar, and I never saw a guitar player that was worth a damn".
The image is one thing and the human being is another, it's very hard to live up to an image.
A live concert to me is exciting because of all the electricity that is generated in the crowd and on stage. It's my favorite part of the business - live concerts.
I've never gotten over what they call stage fright. I go through it every show. I'm pretty concerned, I'm pretty much thinking about the show. I never get completely comfortable with it, and I don't let the people around me get comfortable with it, in that I remind them that it's a new crowd out there, it's a new audience, and they haven't seen us before. So it's got to be like the first time we go on.
[at a 1972 press conference in Madison Square Garden] Man, I was tame compared to what they do now, are you kidding? All that I ever did was just jiggle.
I want to entertain people. That's my whole life. To my last breath.
The police filmed a show one time in Florida because of the PGA, YMCA, or somebody. They thought that I was . . . something. They said, "Man, he's got to be crazy". So they, the police, came out and filmed the show. I couldn't move. I had to stand still. The only thing I could move was my little finger like that. "You ain't nothing but a hound dog crying all the time", y'know, for the whole show.
Take care of the fans and they will sure as hell take care of you.
I don't know anything about music. In my line you don't have to.
I wiggle my shoulders, I shake my legs, I walk up and down the stage, I hop around on one foot. But I never bump and grind. Why, that's vulgar. I'd never do anything vulgar before an audience. My mother would never allow it.
Roy Orbison is the greatest singer in the world.
[in 1956] The colored folks been singing it and playing it just like I'm doin' now, man, for more years than I know. They played it like that in their shanties and in their juke joints and nobody paid it no mind 'til I goosed it up. I got it from them. Down in Tupelo, Mississippi, I used to hear old Arthur Crudup bang his box the way I do now and I said if I ever got to a place I could feel all old Arthur felt, I'd be a music man like nobody ever saw.
I get tired of playing a guy who gets into a fight, then starts singing to the guy he's just beat up.
I am not the King. Jesus Christ is the King. I'm just an entertainer.
Since I was two years old, all I knew was gospel music. That music became such a part of my life it was as natural as dancing. A way to escape from my problems, an my way of release.
[on Blue Hawaii (1961)] In the movie we did a song called the "Hawaiian Wedding Song". And it was so real that it took me ten years before I realized I wasn't married to the chick.
Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain't goin' away.
I sure lost my musical direction in Hollywood. My songs were the same conveyor belt mass production, just like most of my movies were.
Just because you look good, don't mean you feel good.
I knew by heart all the dialogue of James Dean's films; I could watch Rebel Without a Cause (1955) a hundred times over.
Only thing worse than watching a bad movie is being in one.
Rhythm is something you either have or don't have, but when you have it, you have it all over.
Ambition is a dream with a V8 engine.
I can never forget the longing to be someone. I guess if you are poor you always think bigger and want more than those who have everything.
[asked by a reporter in 1972 about his opinion of war protesters] Honey, I'd just as soon keep my own personal views about that to myself. I'm just an entertainer, and I'd rather not say.
The image is one thing and the human being is another. I try very hard to live up to an image, I'll put it that way.
It's your baby, you rock it.
I'll never feel comfortable taking a strong drink, and I'll never feel easy smoking a cigarette. I just don't think those things are right for me.
[from a letter delivered to President Nixon's office on December 21, 1970] Sir, I can and will be of any I service that I can to help the country out. I have no concern or motive other than helping the country out, so I wish not to be given a title or an appointed position. I can and will do more good if I were made a Federal Agent at Large, and I will help best by doing it my way through my communications with people of all ages. First and foremost I am an entertainer, but all I need is the Federal Credentials..I have done an in depth study of Drug Abuse and Brainwashing Techniques and I am right in the middle of the whole thing..
[on which candidate he supported during the 1956 Presidential election] I'm strictly for Adlai Stevenson. I don't dig the intellectual bit but I'm telling you man, he knows the most.

Salary (23)

Love Me Tender (1956) $100,000
Loving You (1957) $150,000
Jailhouse Rock (1957) $250,000
King Creole (1958) $250,000 +50% of profits
Frank Sinatra's Welcome Home Party for Elvis Presley (1960) $125,000
G.I. Blues (1960) $175,000 + % of gross
Blue Hawaii (1961) $175,000
Follow That Dream (1962) $1,000,000
Kid Galahad (1962) $1,000,000
It Happened at the World's Fair (1963) $400,000 + $75,000 for expenses, $25,000 musical expenses and 50% of the profits after the first $500,000 recouped
It Happened at the World's Fair (1963) $500,000 + 50% of profits
Fun in Acapulco (1963) $500,000 + 50% of profits
Viva Las Vegas (1964) $500,000 + 50% of profits
Girl Happy (1965) $500,000 + 50% of profits
Tickle Me (1965) $600,000 plus $150,000 in expenses and 50% of the profits
Harum Scarum (1965) $1,000,000
Paradise, Hawaiian Style (1966) $225,000 + 50% of profits
Speedway (1968) $850,000 + 50% of the profits
Live a Little, Love a Little (1968) $850,000 + 50% of the profits
Charro! (1969) $850,000 + 50% of profits
The Trouble with Girls (1969) $850,000 + 50% of the profits
Elvis: That's the Way It Is (1970) $500,000 + 60% of profits
Elvis: Aloha from Hawaii (1973) $450,000

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