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Elvis Presley

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Initial post: Aug 4, 2012, 11:00:56 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 16, 2014, 4:51:33 PM PDT
Hinch says:
Elvis had a long string of #1 and top 40 hits, especially in the 1950s and early 60s. He was one of the most popular singers, and is considered one of the greatest entertainers, in history.

With RIAA certified sales of 203.3 milion records worldwide, Elvis is the all time top selling solo artist. RCA claims he has sold over one billion, but the same claims are made concerning The Beatles.

In the U.S. Elvis had seventeen #1s from 1956 to 1961. Although he continued to have top 10s and top 40 hits, his only other U.S. Billboard Hot 100 #1 was in 1969.

On the Country charts he had eight #1s in the 50s and two #1s in 1977. Since his death he's had two #1s. One was a remix.

In the U.K. Elvis had 18 #1s. Since his death he's had 4 #1s. One was a remix. The other three were reissues of previous hits.

As many #1s and top 40s as Elvis had, he also had many flops. He released over 80 singles in his lifetime and quite a few didnt reach the top 40. He also had a few that didnt reach the top 100 and some didn't chart.

After he returned from the Army, his ride at the top of the charts came to an end, and he never returned to his original rock and roll sound.

In the 50s and 60s Elvis made a string of movies....some were pretty good and showed some talent as an actor, but quite a few were not so great.

He made a "comeback" special for television in 1968 and went on to become a top performing artist in Las Vegas and also toured the U.S., but he was never able to reach and sustain the top of the charts as he did in his early career. He was also never allowed to perform outside the U.S.A.

Sadly Elvis passed away in 1977 at the age of 42.

There are other artists I like more but I've always liked Elvis a lot. I prefer his 50s RCA recordings over his later recordings. The first rock and roll records I owned were several Elvis singles in the 50s when I was 5 or 6 years old. I followed his career until his death and own quite a few of his albums, and was fortunate to see him in concert in 1973 here in Nashville

Is Elvis your favorite or are there others you like more? Do you like Elvis at all? How much influence do you think Elvis had on music?

Someone recently said everyone likes Elvis' music, and that it can't be said about anyone else.

I believe no artist or music is liked by everyone.

What say you?

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 2:05:36 AM PDT
Mike B. says:
Re: Do you like Elvis?

Sure, he was great. Fantastic voice, good showmanship. I love his recordings for Sun Records, and his earliest hit-making years with RCA. Also of note were his 1969 Memphis sessions at American Sound Studio ("In The Ghetto", "Suspicious Minds"). Even his final album "Moody Blue" was a good one.

I'd say he had plenty of influence on music. Along with Chuck Berry, he brought real rock to the masses. Taking into account his constant promotion of black artists and utilization of black back-up singers - he was an agent of change and a beacon for acceptance during a tumultuous time.

While I may prefer to listen to artists of my own era (the 70's), and like Johnny Cash the best from his group of contemporaries, I feel no need to build them up at Elvis' expense. A few mis-steps aside, he will always be a giant in the field of music - and deservedly so.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 5:23:11 AM PDT
D. Mok says:
Some will claim that Elvis Presley was not "real rock" because he brought elements of the crooner style to the music. But personally, I'd rather have an artist who enriches and advances the music rather than being stuck in Chuck Berry/Little Richard I-IV-V cliches all the time. The Beatles got tired of all that rockabilly after a few years as well, and it wasn't until they did that their music started becoming truly original and influential.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 6:24:07 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 5, 2012, 6:28:16 AM PDT
DK Pete says:
The last two posts, open mindedly, give Elvis his proper due even though not both posters are obvious huge Elvis fans (at least that's the impression I get).

This is what being an intelligent music fan is all about in my opinion; not necessarily being an anormous fan of the given artist but clearly recognizing his /her/their significance.

My "collection" of Elvis material is very limited-all I have is the box set of the complete fifties masters as well as a a couple of DVD's and the book, Elvis: An Illustrated Record by the same authors who put out the similar book on The Beatles.

Besides his unbelievable vocal abilities throughout his entire career (his faulting towards the very end notwithstanduing), I am continually astounded at the natural, unembellished charisma this man had. This was something he, as a performning human being that gave himself to the world, did not have to work at or contrive-it was a gift he was born with. Be it Beatles, Jagger or anyone else-musical contributions aside-noone had the magnetic, gigantic and COMMANDING presence Elvis had.

That indefineable, magical quality-combined with his pure singing talent-gives him the distinction of being the very first TRUE Rock and Roll STAR in every way concievable.

Regardless of which other musical genres he delved into over his lifetime, I honestly feel that in every way (and music being only one of them), he is all-deserving of the phrase (cliched, though it may be), "King of Rock and Roll". It doesn't matter what one thinks of him as a person or as a recording artist or if you even cared for him at all; "it" all speaks for itself.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 6:44:23 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 5, 2012, 6:44:32 AM PDT
D. Mok says:
The only performer I can think of who had matured quite this young (20 for Presley) was Michael Jackson. Jackson at age eight already had complete command of any stage he was on. The Beatles' stage presence was quite pedestrian throughout their career. When John Lennon and Chuck Berry shared the same stage, Lennon looked like an utter amateur in comparison; Berry destroyed Lennon in terms of stagecraft.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 7:17:20 AM PDT
Elvis Presley was a HUGE influence on just about everyone that came along during the first half of the 60's and some beyond. In all the rockumentries you hear The Beatles, The Stones and everyone give Elvis his due. Elvis may not have invented rock and roll but he sure took it to another level. He was a good singer and dynamic performer. I enjoy much of his music. However, there are others from that first rock and roll era I like better. For example Buddy Holly. He played better guitar (Elvis did not even bother much with it) And he was a fabulous songwriter! Buddy did not have Elvis's looks. That's just one example. Sadly Elvis had a misguided career and the as John Lennon said, Elvis died when he went in the army. I think Elvis later stuff was very patchy but many artists are like this. Overall I like him and I get his contribution to music and his accolades is well deserved. But he would not be one of my very favorites.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 7:21:48 AM PDT
D. Mok says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 7:50:27 AM PDT
DK Pete says:
D. Mok, as a huge Beatles fan ,overall, I have no choice but to agree with you in terms of each Beatle apart from the other three-even with someone's as magnetic/dominating a presence as Lennon's.

The Beatles were THE unique group in popular music (I use the term "popular" incorporating all commercial styles). That said, "GROUP" is the operative word. They were a visual and musical COMBINATION like no other. There is no other musical group in our generation or beyond, where the integration of FOUR (or five, as the case may be) SPECIFIC individuals resulted in such an unprecedented world phenomena.

However, when you took either one of them and placed them apart from the others, the "magic" seemed to dispell; they were, truly, part of one four headed monster. Elvis generated as much presence by himself-if not MORE-than that (affectionately percieved) four headed monster.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 8:10:41 AM PDT
D. Mok says:
Paul McCartney was the exception. He was much better than John Lennon both as a singer and as a stage presence.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 9:13:51 AM PDT
This sounds like a good thread, what is the name of the other one.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 9:42:26 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 24, 2016, 4:10:46 PM PST
Hinch says:

I like Johnny Cash also and have a large collection of his music. Although I like Elvis a lot, I listen to Cash more often but it wasnt my intentions to build anyone up at Elvis' expense.

I dont see many Elvis threads and just wanted to see how many are interested.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 10:10:41 AM PDT
Mike B. says:

I didn't think that was your intention. That's why I said "I feel no need" instead of "there's no need".
I apologize if my post seemed to imply otherwise.

We're on the same page regarding Cash. This promises to be an interesting thread. Good luck!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 10:21:11 AM PDT
Hinch says:

No problem and no need to apologize!

Thanks! I hope it turns out to be a good thread and discussion.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 12:37:35 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 5, 2012, 1:09:20 PM PDT
Hinch, thanks for starting this new thread on Elvis Presley. Even though I have listened to and enjoyed his music most of my life, I have never really took the time to learn about his place in the history of Rock n' Roll. I appreciate all the work that you and everyone else are contributing to help define the man's career. I will take a seat, and continue to expand my knowledge of Elvis by reading these interesting posts. BTW, have you seen this movie? Bubba Ho-Tep (Limited Collector's Edition) Bruce Campbell plays Elvis Presley in one of the most engagingly funny movies I have ever seen! I can just imagine that any Elvis fan would like it so much, that they would want their own copy. I have my own copy, and have seen it several times. It's a real hoot, man. The King still lives!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 12:49:31 PM PDT
E. Dill says:
@D. Mok:

<<When John Lennon and Chuck Berry shared the same stage, Lennon looked like an utter amateur in comparison; Berry destroyed Lennon in terms of stagecraft. >>

If only he (Berry) could have learned how to tune his guitar.

Berry seemed to get weird as time passed him by. His post 50's phase involved booking gigs, going to the town with the promise they'd provide him a band that knew his music, do no rehersals, often try to shake down the proprietor for more money, do his gig and leave.

Ok, I wasn't there but I've heard those stories lots of times. Maybe the mere fact that his biggest seller was "My Ding a Ling" was enough to skew his sense of art.

Personally, if anyone wanted my vote for the artist who best personified My sense of "real rock n roll" it would be Little Richard and all of those I-IV-V cliches you were talking about. Oh yeah, and Jerry Lee.


Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 1:20:17 PM PDT
D. Mok says:
> If only he (Berry) could have learned how to tune his guitar.

Chuck Berry was still 10 times better than John Lennon, who couldn't even sing an easy low part well, and tried to take attention away from Berry by being too close to the microphone so that his part drowned out Berry's. And John Lennon forced Yoko "Harpy" Ono into the band, where she proceeded to do her usual idiotic screaming, which ruined the performance. I'm not even a Chuck Berry fan, but John Lennon and Yoko Ono were complete dead weight on that song.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 3:21:16 PM PDT
Hinch says:

Thannks! Glad you like the thread and thanks for the link. I've never heard of taht movie but I'll have to check it out.

I liked the movie Elvis with Kurt Russell playing Elvis and also 3000 Miles to Graceland about a group of Elvis impersonators who rob casinos. I read Kurt wore the same outfit as he did in the Elvis movie.

When I first heard of Kurt playing Elvis, I didn't think he would make a good Elvis, but while watching the movie I kept forgetting he wasnt Elvis.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 3:36:10 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 5, 2012, 3:47:45 PM PDT
Hinch says:
I was just watching that performance a few days ago and thought it was pretty good, just seeing them perform together. I don't think John was intentionally trying to grab the attention. He only moved in at Chuck's signal. Maybe he was nervous. I know he was in awe performing with one of his heroes.

I'm not sure John "forced" Yoko into the band, but he allowed it. At least she kept her screaming to a minimum for that appearance. lol!

Johnny B Goode


Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 3:42:01 PM PDT
Mary Bowen says:
I have a book with Elvis in it only and I am trying to fine how where I can sell it
without use any of the websites to sell it on if you know any please email
the name of a person or persons along with their phone number and their
where about. Thank you very much. Joe.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 4:16:02 PM PDT
Am I the only one who likes Yoko's Plastic Ono Band album? Sure, it's pretty darn weird but it's pretty far ahead of its time. I'd say it would be more well regarded if it had come out in the late 70s or early 80s during all of that post-punk and no wave stuff that was going on. Give it another shot, folks!

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 4:28:51 PM PDT
D. Mok says:
> Am I the only one who likes Yoko's Plastic Ono Band album?

No, but the more I listen to John Lennon, the more I hate him. That album is monstrously overrated. "Mother" could have been played by a guitarist, bassist and drummer who have been playing for two weeks. Boring music played by boring people.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 4:40:25 PM PDT
That's madness, I say, madness! I don't believe technical skill is the same thing as good song writing. Yngwie Malmsteen is a perfect example of that. Yeah, the dude's a brilliant guitar player but you can't pay me enough to listen to any of his music. On the other end of the spectrum is The Ramones. They more or less just played downstroke only power chords for 20 years and I pretty much listen to something by them at minimum once a week.

John's Plastic Ono Band isn't about his technical skill, it's a primal scream therapy for him. The lines at the end of "God" sum up the point of the album brilliantly.

"The dream is over. What can I say? The dream is over. Yesterday. I was the dream weaver but now I'm reborn. I was the walrus but now I'm just John. And so, dear friends, you just have to carry on. The dream is over."

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 4:56:52 PM PDT
Also, sorry for derailing the thread, not my intention, heh. I appreciate some of Elvis' songs but the only thing I own by him is the #1 singles collection. I don't listen to it often but there are times when it just fits. He's not my favorite but he's definitely got some good songs out there. When the bassline kicks in on "Heartbreak Hotel" is probably my favorite part of his stuff.

Posted on Aug 5, 2012, 4:57:02 PM PDT
Blue Jay Way says:
Great thread. It is curious that I dedicated my whole day listening to Elvis Presley's music while doing my chores. And was about to end my day seeing (once again) Elvis '68 Comback Special when I suddendy saw this thread. EP had a significant impact in my life. Moreso than The Beatles. I really envy you Hinch for having the chance to see him live in concert. But if I could travel back in time I would choose to see him live in the 1950's. Those concertts were raw and wild.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2012, 5:00:17 PM PDT
Hinch says:
One of THE greatest albums ever, imo. I always name it at least #2 or #3 on my list of favorites.
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