Remembering Elvis Presley
Elvis Week began last Wednesday, August 11th in Memphis, TN but today is the day that we remember the king of rock-n-roll. It was 44 years ago, August 16th, 1977, that afternoon around 1:30 p.m. Elvis Presley dies of a reported "coronary arrhythmia" at Graceland at the age of 42.
The man with the humblest of beginnings to rock and roll immortality all began in 1956. On January 27th, he released his first single "Heartbreak Hotel", the first of 17 number 1 hits. I actually thought he had more #1's than that.
By the time that all was said and done, he held the record for most Top 40 hits (107), most Top10 hits (38), and the most weeks at number 1 (80). We were lucky enough to have Elvis perform two shows in Binghamton, just three months before his passing.
Elvis Presley, The Movie Star
Elvis was much more than just a singer, he was a performer too. In July, Elvis was the TCM "Star of the Month." Every Thursday night, they would show several Presley films and by the time the month was done, they showed 22 of his 31 movies.
Elvis enjoyed his early stuff but wasn't a big fan of his later material. For example in "Stay Away, Joe," he sang to a bull. He was also known for his hip-swiveling performances, especially on the Ed Sullivan show.
However, it was his appearance on the Milton Berle show that started it all. He was on Milton's show in 1956 and he asked Elvis to perform without his guitar. He reportedly said, "Let'em see you, son." The king obliged and his gyrating caused the young women to lose their minds and he was nicknamed "Elvis the Pelvis."
Elvis Presley Bombs in Las Vegas
Obviously, he had a HUGE career but his live shows got off to a slow start. One of his first gigs was in Las Vegas and he BOMBED. "Heartbreak Hotel" was a hit but the crowd in Las Vegas was older and not your screaming teeny boppers.
In fact, one reviewer said that his performance was like a "jug of corn liquor at a champagne party." OUCH! As the saying goes, it's not how you start, it's how you end. His star definitely burned too fast and we lost him too soon. There is probably a lesson to learn from that but that can be another story for another day.
As we remember the King, let's scroll through the pictures below to see inside Elvis Presley's Beverly Hills Mansion,