A PHOTOGRAPH THAT I OBTAINED FROM ERNEST C. WITHERS , AFRICAN AMERICAN PHOTOGRAPHER, MEASURING 8X10 INCHES. THE PHOTOGRAPH IS OF A MEMPHIS RED SOX NEGRO LEAGUE PLAYER AND IS A RARE IMAGE BY HIM. Printed later by Ernest C.(Memphis, TN, 1922-Memphis, TN, 2007). ERNEST WITHERS: A Second Look.
In: Art New England 32, no. Selected Civil Rights Photographs of ERNEST C.
Foreword by poet Margaret Walker; text by Michele Furst, et al. Important work by a photographer also known for his photographs of the Memphis Blues scene during the same period.
Unlike many photojournalists who covered the Civil Rights Movement, Ernest Withers was an active participant in the cause and his work often went unpaid and without credit. Widely published in Time, Life, and Newsweek magazines, Withers's photographs record the more quiet, personal moments within the larger, historic events. Traveled to: Diggs Gallery, Winston-Salem State University, through Dec.10, 1994, and other venues; exhibition of same title at Harriet Tubman House, Macon, GA, 2000. Signs of Social Change: Photographs by ERNEST C. A selection of works from Withers's archive of Civil Rights movement photographs. Museum of Art, University of Mississippi.
Memphis Brooks Museum of Art. One Day is Not Enough: Memphis Desegregation Through the Lens of ERNEST WITHERS. Pictures Tell the Story: ERNEST C.Jack Hurley and Daniel J. The first major monograph on the Memphis photographer who, more than any other, documented the Southern chapter of the Civil Rights Movement as well as the lively music scene in Memphis and the Negro League. Gail Floether Steinhilber Art Gallery, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. I Was There: Photographs by Civil Rights Photographer ERNEST C. Pictures Tell the Story: Photographs by ERNEST C. WITHERS Documenting the Civil Rights Movement. Complete Photo Story of Till Murder Case. Self-published booklet by Ernest C. Negro League Baseball: Photographs by ERNEST C. 4to 26 x 25 cm.
Wolff, Daniel and ERNEST C. WITHERS: The Memphis Blues Again.
New York: Viking Studio, 2001. Same title as the 2005 exhibition of the High Museum's recently acquired collection of over 75 of Withers' photographs from the 1950s-1970s depicting the rise of the Memphis and Tennessee music scene, covering many different musical genres blues, jazz, R&B, gospel, early rock and roll, soul and funk.
4to 12.3 x 10.9 in. GENERAL BOOKS AND GROUP EXHIBITIONS. Group exhibition of nearly 170 historic photographs. Curated by Julian Cox, Curator of Photography at the High Museum of Art.Includes work by Doris Derby, Leroy Henderson, and Ernest ithers, dozens of well-known white activist photographers, photojournalists, and also important photos taken by amateurs and press corps photographers which are not often displayed in a museum context. Traveled to: kirball Cultural Center, -March 7, 2010 where The Skirball added a new section to the exhibition that documents the struggle for civil rights in Los Angeles; among the local events portrayed are the picketing of the Kress Store in Pasadena (1960) and the Watts Riots (1965). This expanded exhibition also included a documentary film, specially produced for the Skirball's presentation of Road to Freedom, that illuminates the unified efforts of the Jewish and African American communities to achieve justice for all during the Civil Rights movement; also exhibited Bronx Museum of the Arts, March 28-August 11, 2010. Seeing Through Race: A Reinterpretation of Civil Rights Photography. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011. Only two images are by a black photographer - Ernest C. A study of how white journalists and their audiences selected, framed, and responded to images of the Civil Rights era, with selective comparisons to coverage of the same events by the black media. Constructing Masculinity Discussion in Contemporary Culture, No. Adrian Piper, Marlon Riggs, Ernest C. Extensive discussion of race stereotypes of black males in popular culture, the media and the arts. Group exhibition of work by three photographers. Our Lives Begin to End the Day We Become Silent About Things That Matter - Dr.
Included: Ernest Withers, Tanya Murphy Dodd, Frank Stewart, Leroy Henderson and Robert Sengstacke. Sight of Sound: Photographs by Ryan Mastro, Ron Pownall, Charlie Sawyer, Frank Stewart, and Ernest C. Group exhibition of music-related photographs. Witness: Art and Civil Rights in the Sixties. Texts by Kellie Jones, Connie H.
Choi, Teresa A Carbone, Cynthia A. Includes: Chalres Alston, Benny Andrews, Emma Amos, Romare Bearden, Frank Bowling, Elizabeth Catlett, Barbara Chase-Riboud, LeRoy P. Clarke, Roy DeCarava, Jeff Donaldson, Emory Douglas, Melvin Edwards, Sam Gilliam, David Hammons, Ben Hazard, Barkeley Hendricks, Jae Jarrell, Daniel Larue Johnson, Barbara Jones-Hogu, Jacob Lawrence, Norman Lewis, Tom Lloyd, Ademola Olugebefola, John Outterbridge, Joe Overstreet, Gordon Parks, Ben Patterson, Noah Purifoy, Faith Ringgold, John T. Riddle, Betye Saar, Raymond Saunders, Robert A. Bob Thompson, Charles White, Jack Whitten, William T.
Dozens of others mentioned in passing. Traveled to: Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, August 30-December 14, 2014. 4to 11.2 x 9.7 in. MoCADA Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art. September 25, 2008-January 18, 2009.
Included: Hank Willis Thomas, Russell Frederick, Rah Crawford, Radcliffe Bailey, Charly Palmer, LeRoy Henderson, Fahamu Pecou, Jefferson Pinder, Jamel Shabazz, Lorenzo Steele, Jr. Juan Sanchez and Ernest C Withers. Exhibiting Blackness: African Americans and the American Art Museum. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2011.The narrative begins in 1927 with the Chicago "Negro in Art Week" exhibition, and in the 1930s with the Museum of Modern Art's exhibition of "William Edmondson" (1937) and "Contemporary Negro Art" (1939) at the Baltimore Museum of Art; the focus, however, is on exhibitions held from the 1960s to present with chapters on "Harlem on My Mind" (1969), "Two Centuries of Black American Art" (1976); "Black Male" (1994-95); and "The Quilts of Gee's Bend" (2202). Numerous artists, but most mentioned only in passing: Cedric Adams, Charles Alston, Emma Amos, Benny Andrews, Edward M. Bannister, Richmond Barthé, Romare Bearden, numerous Bendolphs (Annie, Jacob, Mary Ann, Mary Lee, Louisiana) and Loretta Bennett, Ed Bereal, Donald Bernard, Nayland Blake, Gloria Bohanon, Leslie Bolling, St. Clair Bourne, Cloyd Boykin, Kay Brown, Selma Burke, Bernie Casey, Roland Charles, Barbara Chase-Riboud, Claude Clark, Linda Day Clark, Robert Colescott, Dan Concholar, Emilio Cruz, Ernest Crichlow (footnote only), Alonzo Davis, Selma Day (footnote only), Roy DeCarava, Aaron Douglas, Emory Douglas, Robert M. Duncanson, William Edmondson, Elton Fax (footnote only), Cecil L. Fergerson, Roland Freeman, Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Reginald Gammon (footnote only), K. Ganaway, Sam Gilliam, David Hammons, William A. Harper, Palmer Hayden, Vertis C. Herring, Richard Hunt, Rudy Irwin, May Howard Jackson, Suzanne Jackson, Joshua Johnson, William H.
Johnson, Lois Mailou Jones, Gwendolyn Knight, Wifredo Lam, Artis Lane, Jacob Lawrence, Edmonia Lewis, Norman Lewis, Samella Lewis, Alvin Loving (footnote only), William Majors (footnote only), Richard Mayhew, Reginald McGhee, Archibald J. Richard Mayhew, Willie Middlebrook, Ron Moody, Lottie and Lucy Mooney, Flora Moore, Scipio Moorhead, Norma Morgan, Archibald J. Sara Murrell (footnote only), Otto Neals (footnote only), Odili Donald Odita, Noni Olubisi, Ademola Olugebefola, John Outterbridge, Gordon Parks, six Pettways Annie E.Letisha, James Phillips, Howardena Pindell, Horace Pippin, Carl Pope, James A. Porter, Nancy Elizabeth Prophet, Noah Purifoy, Martin Puryear, Okoe Pyatt (footnote only), Robert Reid (footnote only), John Rhoden, John Riddle, Faith Ringgold (footnote only), Betye Saar, Raymond Saunders (footnote only), Augusta Savage, William E. Scott, Georgette Seabrook, James Sepyo (footnote only), Taiwo Shabazz (footnote only), Gary Simmons, Lorna Simpson, Merton Simpson (footnote only), Albert Alexander Smith, Arenzo Smith, Frank Stewart, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Alma Thomas, Danny Tisdale, Melvin Van Peebles, James Vanderzee, Annie Walker, Kara Walker, Augustus Washington, Timothy Washington, Carrie Mae Weems, James Lesesne Wells, Charles White, Pat Ward Williams, William T. Williams, Deborah Willis, Fred Wilson, Ernest C.
Withers, Beulah Ecton Woodard, Hale Woodruff, Lloyd Yearwood, Annie Mae and Nettie Pettway Young. 8vo 9 x 6 in. Center for Documentary Studies, Duke University, 1999. This issue contains an article on the photographs of Ernest C.Withers and photojournalism on Tupelo, Mississippi. GATES, HENRY LOUIS and EVELYN BROOKS HIGGINBOTHAM, eds. Originally published in 8 volumes, the set has grown to 12 vollumes with the addition of 1000 new entries. Also available as online database of biographies, accessible only to paid subscribers well-endowed institutions and research libraries.
As per update of February 2, 2009, the following artists were included in the 8-volume set, plus addenda. A very poor showing for such an important reference work.
Hopefully there are many more artists in the new entries: Jesse Aaron, Julien Abele (architect), John H. Ron Adams, Salimah Ali, James Latimer Allen, Charles H.Alston, Amalia Amaki, Emma Amos, Benny Andrews, William E. Artis, Herman "Kofi" Bailey, Walter T. Bailey (architect), James Presley Ball, Edward M. Bannister, Anthony Barboza, Ernie Barnes, Richmond Barthé, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Cornelius Marion Battey, Romare Bearden, Phoebe Beasley, Arthur Bedou, Mary A.
Bell, Cuesta Ray Benberry, John Biggers, Camille Billops, Howard Bingham, Alpha Blackburn, Robert H. Blackburn, Walter Scott Blackburn, Melvin R. Bolden, David Bustill Bowser, Wallace Branch, Barbara Brandon, Grafton Tyler Brown, Richard Lonsdale Brown, Barbara Bullock, Selma Hortense Burke, Calvin Burnett, Margaret Taylor Goss Burroughs, John Bush, Elmer Simms Campbell, Elizabeth Catlett, David C. Raven Chanticleer, Ed Clark, Allen Eugene Cole, Robert H.
Colescott, Eldzier Cortor, Ernest T. Crichlow, Michael Cummings, Dave the Potter [David Drake], Griffith J. Davis, Thomas Day, Beauford Delaney, Joseph Delaney, Thornton Dial, Sr.Joseph Eldridge Dodd, Jeff Donaldson, Aaron Douglas, Sam Doyle, David Clyde Driskell, Robert S. Duncanson, Ed Dwight (listed as military, not as artist); Mel Edwards, Minnie Jones Evans, William McNight Farrow, Elton Fax, Daniel Freeman, Meta Warrick Fuller, Reginald Gammon, King Daniel Ganaway, the Goodridge Brothers, Rex Goreleigh, Tyree Guyton, James Hampton, Della Brown Taylor (Hardman), Edwin Augustus Harleston, Charles "Teenie" Harris, Lyle Ashton Harris, Bessie Harvey, Isaac Scott Hathaway, Palmer Hayden, Nestor Hernandez, George Joseph Herriman, Varnette Honeywood, Walter Hood, Richard L. Hunster, Richard Hunt, Clementine Hunter, Bill Hutson, Joshua Johnson, Sargent Claude Johnson, William H.
Johnson, Lois Mailou Jones, Ann Keesee, Gwendolyn Knight, Jacob Lawrence, Hughie Lee-Smith, Edmonia Lewis, Samella Lewis, Glenn Ligon, Jules Lion, Edward Love, Estella Conwill Majozo, Ellen Littlejohn, Kerry James Marshall, Lynn Marshall-Linnemeier, Richard Mayhew, Carolyn Mazloomi, Aaron Vincent McGruder, Robert H. McNeill, Scipio Moorhead, Archibald H. Imagination (Gregory Warmack), Lorraine O'Grady, Jackie Ormes, Joe Overstreet, Carl Owens, Gordon Parks, Sr. Edgar Patience, Howardena Pindell, Adrian Margaret Smith Piper, Rose Piper, Horace Pippin, William Sidney Pittman, Stephanie Pogue, Prentiss Herman Polk (as Prentice), James Amos Porter, Harriet Powers, Elizabeth Prophet, Martin Puryear, Patrick Henry Reason, Michael Richards, Arthur Rose, Alison Saar, Betye Saar, Raymond Saunders, Augusta Savage, Joyce J.
Scott, Addison Scurlock, George Scurlock, Willie Brown Seals, Charles Sebree, Joe Selby, Lorna Simpson, Norma Merrick Sklarek, Clarissa Sligh, Albert Alexander Smith, Damballah Smith, Marvin and Morgan Smith, Maurice B. Sorrell, Simon Sparrow, Rozzell Sykes, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Alma Thomas, J.
Thomas, Robert Louis (Bob) Thompson, Mildred Jean Thompson, Dox Thrash, William Tolliver, Bill Traylor, Leo F. Twiggs, James Augustus Joseph Vanderzee, Kara Walker, William Onikwa Wallace, Laura Wheeler Waring, Augustus Washington, James W.
Carrie Mae Weems, James Lesesne Wells, Charles White, John H. White, Jack Whitten, Carla Williams, Daniel S. Williams, Paul Revere Williams (architect), Deborah Willis, Ed Wilson, Ellis Wilson, Fred Wilson, John Woodrow Wilson, Ernest C. Withers, Beulah Ecton Woodard, Hale Aspacio Woodruff.
GOLDBERG, VICKI and ROBERT SILBERMAN, eds. American Photography: A Century of Images.
San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1999. 50 color and 110 b&w illus.
Includes: Bernie Boston, Albert Chong, Chester Higgins, Jr. Gordon Parks, Eli Reed, Lorna Simpson, James Vanderzee, Carrie Mae Weems, Ernest C. HALL, STUART and MARK SEALY, eds.Different: Historical Context Contemporary Photographers and Black Identity. London and New York: Phaidon, 2001. (most full-page), index of artists. Major text by Stuart Hall.
Work by black artists from the U. Britain, Caribbean, and Africa, exploring images of their identity. Includes: Ajamu, Faisal Abdu'allah, Vincent Allen, David A. Bailey, Oladélé Bamgboyé, Dawoud Bey, Zarina Bhimji, Vanley Burke, Mama Casset, Albert V.
Chong, Clement Cooper, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Samuel Fosso, Armet Francis, Remy Gastambide, Bob Gosani, Joy Gregory, George Hallett, Lyle Ashton Harris, Seydou Keita, Roshini Kempadoo, Peter Max Khondola, Alf Kumalo, Anthony Lam, Eric Lesdema, Dave Lewis, Peter Magubane, Ricky Maynard, Eustaguio Neves, Horace Ove, Gordon Parks, Eileen Perrier, Ingrid Pollard, Richard Samuel Roberts, Franklyn Rodgers, Faizal Sheikh, Yinka Shonibare, Malick Sidibé, Lorna Simpson, Clarissa Sligh, Robert Taylor, Iké Udé, James VanDerZee, Maxine Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, Deborah Willis, Ernest Withers. KING: The Photobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr..
Includes photographs by Frank Dandrige, Benedict J. Fernandez, Robert Sengstacke, Ernest Withers, as well as dozens of white photographers. 4to 12 x 9 in.
Kalamazoo Institute of the Arts. Embracing Diverse Voices: African-American Art in the Collection. Group exhibition of over sixty works of art. Artists included: Al Harris, Murphy Darden, James M. Watkins, Maria Scott and James Palmore along with nationally known artists Robert S.Duncanson, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, Jacob Lawrence, Lorna Simpson, Hughie Lee-Smith, Charles White, photographs by James Van Der Zee and Ernest C. Traveled to: Thorne-Sagendorph Art Gallery, Keene State College, Keene, NH, September 19-November 16, 2014. Energy and Inspiration: African-American Art from the Permanent Collection. Included: Ron Adams, Romare Bearden, Robert G. Carter, Reginald Gammon, Sam Gilliam, Earlie Hudnall Jr.
Richard Hunt, Jacob Lawrence, Richard Mayhew, Kara Walker, Ernest C. By Steven Kasher; foreword by Myrlie Evers-Williams.
Black photographers of the movement included Gordon Parks and Frank Dandridge working for Life; Robert Sengstacke of the Chicago Defender; Joffre Clark, Fred de Van, Bob Fletcher, Rufus Hinton, Julius Lester, Francis Mitchell, and Clifford Vaughs of SNCC; and freelancers Ernest Withers, Beuford Smith, and Robert Houston. The owners of Jet and Ebony, employed a large staff of black photographers including Moneta Sleet, Jr. 4to 9 x 9 in. Streetwise: Masters of 60s Photography.The Power of Art: Generational Wealth. Included: Benny Andrews, Richmond Barthé, John T.
Biggers, Elizabeth Catlett, Robert S. Duncanson, LaToya Hobbs, Clementine Hunter, Dean Mitchell, Charles Ethan Porter, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Ernest C. Pyramid / Hearne Fine Art.Note: Exhibition title was slightly different: Two Decades of Excellence. Foreword by Halima Taha; texts by Archie Hearne, III, Garbo Watson Hearne; afterword by Dianne Smith. Includes new work by 57 artists: Gabriel Ajayi. Leroy Allen, Benny Andrews, Phoebe Beasley, Alix Beaujour, John Biggers, Bisa Butler, Elizabeth Catlett, Chukes, William Clarke, Kevin Cole, Adger Cowans, Charles Criner, Earnest Davidson, Rex Deloney, Ed Dwight, Marion Epting, Lawrence Finney, Frank Frazier, Paul Goodnight, Jonathan Green, Larry Hampton, Chester Higgins, Jr. Kennith Humphrey, George Hunt, Ariston Jacks, Laura James, Leroy Johnson, Brenda Joysmith, Artis Lane, Anthony D.
Lee, Samella Lewis, Sylvester McKissick, Dean Mitchell, Tonia Mitchell, Euneda Otis, Charly Palmer, Johnice Parker, Morris Richardson, II, Mario Robinson, W. Earl Robinson, Alvin Roy, AJ Smith, Albert Smith, Dianne Smith, Phyllis Stephens, TAFA, Twins (Jerry & Terry Lynn), Evita Tezeno, William Tolliver, Ed Wade, Dale Washington, Basil Watson, Kiersten Williams, Susan Williams, Marjorie Williams-Smith, Ernest C. Traveled to: Chattanooga African American Museum.
Review: Michael Crumb, "African American Art History: Collaborating With You, " The Chattanooga Pulse, September 16, 2009. 4to 29 x 30 cm. 11.75 x 11.25 in.
August 23, 2008-January 5, 2009. Curated from the Brooks Museum of Art Memphis World Collection. By Marina Pacini; texts by Russell Wigginton (on the history of the Memphis World newspaper) and by Deborah Willis emphasis on black press photographers generally, most of whom were not included in the exhibition: Allan Edward Cole, Gordon Parks, and Teenie Harris. Includes: 12 photos by Ernest C.
Withers, 11 by the Hooks Brothers, several by R. Jaffe, Henry Ford, Reese Studios, Mark Stansbury, Tisby. The selection includes photographs of groups and numerous photographs of individuals with brier biographies and other information on each by fifteen contributors. 19 of the photographs also exhibited at: Clough Hanson Gallery, Rhodes College, September 5-October 4, 2008.
The Soul of a City: Memphis Collects African American Art. Group exhibition of 130 works.
Included: Romare Bearden, Radcliffe Bailey, Chakaia Booker, Elizabeth Catlett, Sonya Clark, Thornton Dial, William Edmondson, Minnie Evans, Sam Gilliam, Clementine Hunter, Jacob Lawrence, Norman Lewis, Glenn Ligon, Whitfield Lovell, Wangechi Mutu, Demetrius Oliver, Elijah Pierce, Tim Rollins & K. Lorna Simpson, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Alma Thomas, Bill Traylor, James Vanderzee, Kara Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, Kehinde Wiley, Ernest C. Withers, Purvis Young, and Memphis artists George Hunt, Brenda Joysmith, TWINS (Jerry & Terry Lynn), Jared Small, Danny Broadway, Anthony Lee, Michael Rodgers, Dewitt Jordan, Kiersten Williams, Hattie Childress, Luther Hampton, Edwin Jeffrey, and Hawkins Bolden. Committed to the Image: Contemporary Black Photographers. Brooklyn: Museum of Art in association with London: Merrell, 2001.
Excellent quality b&w and color illus. Texts by Clyde Taylor and Deba P. Published to accompany an exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art. Includes 94 contemporary African American photographers who live and work in the United State, each represented by several images. Artists included: Salimah Ali, Jules Allen, Anthony Barboza, Ronald Barboza, Hugh Bell, Donald L.
Bernard, Kwame Brathwaite, Nathaniel Burkins, Keith Calhoun, Don Camp, Ron Campbell, Howard T. Cash, Albert Chong, Barron Claiborne, Carl Clark, Linda Day Clark, Wayne Clarke, Jim Collier, Kerry Stuart Coppin, Adger W. Cowans, Renée Cox, Gerald Cyrus, Martin Dixon, Sulaiman Ellison, Mfon (Mmekutmfon) Essien, Delphine A.
Fennar, Collette Fournier, Omar Francis, Roland L. Gaskin, Bill Gaskins, Tony Gleaton, Faith Goodin, Lonnie Graham, Todd Gray, Bob Greene, C. Griffin, Inge Hardison, Joe Harris, Art Harrison, Leroy W.Jackson, Leslie Jean-Bart, Jason Miccolo Johnson, Omar Kharem, Gary Jackson Kirksey, Andrea Davis Kronlund, Fern Logan, Lauri Lyons, Stephen Marc, Charles Martin, Steve J. Martin, Chandra McCormick, Willie Middlebrook, Cheryl Miller, Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe, Ozier Muhammad, Marilyn Nance, Oggi Ogburn, Gordon Parks, Toni Parks, John Pinderhughes, Carl Pope, Jr. Herbert Randall, Eli Reed, Vernon Reid, Orville Robertson, Herb Robinson, Richard Howard Rose, Jeffery A. Salter, Juma Santos, Jeffrey Henson Scales, Keisha Scarville, Accra Shepp, Coreen Simpson, Beuford Smith, Jamyl Oboong Smith, Chuck Stewart, Frank Stewart, Gerald Straw, Bruce W. Talamon, Ron Tarver, Shawn W.
Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, Edward West, Cynthia Wiggins, Budd Williams, Ernest C. Withers, Suné Woods, Mel Wright, Gene Young. Ogden Museum of Southern Art, University of New Orleans. Group photography exhibition including over 50 photographers.Included: Gordon Parks and Ernest C. Traveled to: Krannert Art Museum, September 5-November 2, 2003, and other venues. African Americans in the Visual Arts. New York: Facts on File, 2003. 50 b&w photos of some artists, brief 2-page bibliog.
Part of the A to Z of African Americans series. Lists over 170 visual artists (including 18 photographers) and 22 filmmakers with brief biographies and token bibliog. An erratic selection, far less complete than the St.
James Guide to Black Artists, and inexplicably leaving out over 250 artists of obvious historic importance for ex. Harleston, Grafton Tyler Brown, Charles Ethan Porter, Wadsworth Jarrell, John Outterbridge, Noah Purifoy, William Majors, Camille Billops, Whitfield Lovell, Al Loving, Ed Clark, John T. Scott, Maren Hassinger, Lorraine O'Grady, Winnie Owens-Hart, Adrienne Hoard, Oliver Jackson, Frederick Eversley, Glenn Ligon, Sam Middleton, Ed Hamilton, Pat Ward Williams, etc. And omitting a generation of well-established contemporary artists who emerged during the late 70s-90s. Note: a newly revised edition of 2012 (ten pages longer) has not rendered it a worthy reference work on this topic.8vo (25 com), laminated papered boards. Black Art and Culture in the 20th Century. New York: Thames and Hudson, 1997. (including 31 in color), biog. Black Art: A Cultural History. London: Thames & Hudson, 2002. Including 39 in color, biog. Revised and slightly enlarged from 1997 edition. Cutting a Figure: Fashioning Black Portraiture.
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008. (43 in color), notes, bibliog. Substantial chapter devoted to Barkley L.
Hendricks; discussion of the self-portrait photographs of Lyle Ashton Harris and Renée Cox; extensive discussion of African American fashion model Donyale Luna, and brief mention of nearly 70 other African and African American artists. 8vo 25 x 23 cm. Menschel Photography Gallery, Syracuse University.
Includes: Gordon Parks and Ernest Withers. Howard University Gallery of Art. Mixing Metaphors: The Aesthetic, the Social and the Political in African American Art. Curated by Deborah Willis - a selection from the Bank of America collection.94 photographs, paintings, prints, drawings, sculpture and mixed media executed by 37 artists ranging from range from photographers Ernest C. Withers, Robert Sengstacke, Jamel Shabazz, Lorna Simpson, Chuck Stewart, Gordon Parks, Dawoud Bey, Carrie Mae Weems, and James VanDerZee to Henry Clay Anderson, Benny Andrews, Romare Bearden, John Biggers, Willie Birch, Beverly Buchanan, Walter Cade, Kevin E. Cole, Robert Colescott, Allan Rohan Crite, Allan Edmunds, Lawrence Finney, Sam Gilliam, Earlie Hudnall, Margo Humphrey, Jacob Lawrence. Willie Little, Juan Logan, Whitfield Lovell, Julie Mehretu, Martin Puryear, Faith Ringgold, Mario A. Robinson, Raymond Saunders, Leo Twiggs, James W. Traveled to: The Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum, Atlanta, GA, March 19-July 31, 2011. Visualizing Political Struggle: Civil Rights Era Photography.
In: Holloway, David and John Beck, eds. American Visual Cultures:166-173, 4 b&w illus. A survey of how Civil Rights era photography aroused public opinion and informed social consciousness, that at least mentions in passing a small roster of black photographers: Roy DeCarava, Jonathan Eubanks, Benedict Fernandez, Bob Fletcher, Jack T.
Hickman, Bert Miles, Gordon Parks, Richard Saunders, Moneta Sleet, Jr. Beuford Smith, Elaine Tomlin, Cecil Williams, and Ernest Withers. 8vo 9.7 x 6.7 in.The most comprehensive list of Black photographers to date, with brief biographical entries on many artists and a few bibliographical entries on approximately half of the hundreds of names. Artists discussed include: Salimah Ali, Omobowale Ayorinde, J. Edward Bailey, III, Anthony Barboza, Donnamarie Barnes, Vanessa Barnes Hillian, Fay D. Bellamy, Lisa Bellamy, Dawoud Bey, Hart Leroy Bibbs, Bonnie Brisset, Barbara Brown, Lisa Brown, Millie Burns, Muriel Agatha Fortune Bush, Cynthia D. Cole, Juanita Cole, Cary Beth Cryor, Tere L. Cuesta, Fikisha Cumbo, Phyllis Cunningham, Pat Davis, Carmen DeJesus, Lydia Ann Douglas, Barbara Dumetz, Joan Eda, Sharon Farmer, Phoebe Farris, Valeria "Mikki" Ferrill, Collette V. Freeman, Rennie George, Bernadette F. Gibson, Anthony Gleaton, Dorothy Gloster, Lydia Hale-Hammond, Gail Adelle Hansberry, Inge Hardison, Teenie Harris, Madeleine Hill, Zebonia Hood, Vera Jackson, Louise Jefferson, Michelle M. Jeffries, Brent Jones, Brian V. Jones, Julia Jones, Kenneth G. Jones, Leah Jaynes Karp, Irene C.
Kellogg, Lucius King, Romulo Lachatanere, Allie Sharon Larkin, George Larkins, Archy La Salle, Abe C. Lavalais, Joyce Lee, Sa'Longo J. Lewis, Harvey James Lewis, Matthew Lewis, Roy Lewis, Fern Logan, Edie Lynch, Peter Magubane, Jimmie Mannas, Louise Martin, Mickey Mathis, Carroll T.
Maynard, Rhashidah Elaine McNeill, Marlene Montoute, Michelle Morgan, Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe, Marilyn Nance, Yvonne Payne, Patricia Phipps, Ellen Queen, Phillda Ragland, Arkili-Casundria Ramsess, Odetta Rogers, Veronica Saddler, Lloyd Saunders, Cheryl Shackelton, Victoria Simmons, Coreen Simpson, Lorna Simpson, Clarissa T. Sligh, Ming Smith, Toni Smith, Charlynn Spencer Pyne, Jo Moore Stewart, Celeste P. Stokes, Elisabeth Sunday, Elaine Tomlin, Sandra Turner-Bond, Jacqueline La Vetta Van Sertima, Dixie Vereen, William Onikwa Wallace, Sharon Watson-Mauro, Carrie Mae Weems, Dolores West, Judith C. White, Elizabeth "Tex" Williams, Lucy Williams, Pat Ward Williams, Deborah Willis, Carol R. Wilson, Jonni Mae Wingard, Ernest Withers, and many, many others.Not all listed in this description, but all individual photographers are cross-listed. Large stout 4to, pictorial boards, no d. Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present. Includes: Ifétayo Abdus-Salam, James Lattimer Allen, Kwaku Alston, Henry Clay Anderson, Thomas Askew, Anthony Barboza, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Josephine Baker, Cornelius Battey, James Brown, Renée Cox, Mansita Diawara, Lola Flash, Daniel Freeman, Joy Gregory, Charles (Teenie) Harris, Lyle Ashton Harris, Alex Harsley, Terrence Jennings, Marian Jones, Seydou Keita, Lauren Kelley, Harlee Little, Robert H. McNeill, white photojournalist Wayne F. Mosley, Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe, David "Oggi" Ogburn, J. Okhai Ojeikere, Gordon Parks, Prentiss H. Polk, Sheila Pree Bright, Eli Reed, Richard S. Roberts, Jeffrey Scales, Addison Scurlock, Robert Sengstacke, Jamel Shabazz, Malick Sidibé, Coreen Simpson, Lorna Simpson, Bayeté Ross Smith, Hank Willis Thomas, Mickalene Thomas, Lewis Watts, Carrie Mae Weems, Wendel A.
White, Carla Williams, Ernest C. Withers, Lauren Woods, et al. Published in conjunction with exhibition of the same title at Gulf & Western, New York, NY; Tisch School of the Arts, New York University, New York, August 27-October 18, 2009; Art Gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, January 16-May 9, 2010; Taubman Museum, Roanoke, VA, June 11-August 22, 2010; Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown, MA, September 11-November 21, 2010; Newark Museum, Newark, NJ, February 2-May 8, 2011; USC Fisher Museum of Art, Los Angeles, September 7-December 3, 2011; Everhart Museum, Scranton, PA, February 2-April 1, 2012; Figge Museum of Art, Davenport, IA, September 8-November 3, 2012; The College of Wooster Art Museum, Wooster, OH, January 15-March 3, 2013; Spelman College, Atlanta, GA, September 5-December 7, 2013; Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, April 26-July 27, 2014, and many other venues. 4to 12.4 x 9.3 in. Reflections in Black: A History of Black Photographers 1840 to the Present.
81 color plates, 487 b&w illus. Published to accompany the three-part traveling exhibition organized by the Smithsonian Institution. Important gathering of photographs of Black subjects by African American photographers from mid-nineteenth century through the present (roughly half from 1980s and 90s) by the pre-eminent historian of this subject. Photographers include: O'Neal Abel, Salima Ali, James Lattimer Allen, Winifred Hall Allen, Amalia Amaki, Linda L.Ashton, Thomas Askew, John B. Bailey, James Presley Ball, Sr. Thomas Ball, Anthony Barboza, Cornelius M. Battey, Anthony Beale, Arthur P.
Bedou, Donald Bernard, Dawoud Bey, Howard Bingham, Caroll Parrott Blue, Terry Boddie, Rick Bolton, St. Calhoun, Dennis Callwood, Don Camp, Roland Charles, Albert Chong, Carl Clark, Linda Day Clark, Allen Edward Cole, Florestine Perrault Collins, Herbert Collins, Adger Cowans, Renée Cox, Cary Beth Cryor, Steven Cummings, Gerald G. Daniel Dawson, Roy DeCarava, Doris Derby, Stephanie Dinkins, Lou Draper, George Durr, Nekisha Durrett, Edward (Eddie) Eleha, Darrel Ellis, Jonathan Eubanks, Delphine A.
Fawundu, Alfred Fayemi, Jeffrey Fearing, Joe Flowers, Collette Fournier, Jack T. Franklin, Elnora Frazier, Daniel Freeman, Roland L. Freeman, King Daniel Ganaway, Bill Gaskins, Glenalvin Goodridge, Wallace Goodridge, William Goodridge, Bob Gore, Lonnie Graham, Todd Gray, Camille Gustus, Robert Haggins, Austin Hansen, Edwin Harleston, Elise Forrest Harleston, Charles "Teenie" Harris, Doug Harris, Joe Harris, Lyle Ashton Harris, Thomas Allen Harris, Lucius Henderson, Craig Herndon, Leroy Henderson, Calvin Hicks, Chester Higgins, Jr. Milton Hinton, Raymond Holman, Earlie Hudnall, Jr. Curtis Humphrey, Reginald Jackson, Chris Johnson, Brent Jones, Kenneth George Jones, Lou Jones, Benny Joseph, Kamoinge Workshop, Perry A.
Kelly, Roshini Kempadoo, Winston Kennedy, Keba Konte, Andree Lambertson, Bill Lathan, Carl E. Lindo, Harlee Little, Fern Logan, Stephen Marc, Lynn Marshall-Linnemeier, Charles Martin, Louise Ozell Martin, Chandra McCormick, Robert H. McNeill, Bertrand Miles, Cheryl Miller, Robert (Bob) Moore, John W. Mosley, Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe, Ming Smith Murray (as Ming Smith), Mansa Mussa, Marilyn Nance, Sunny Nash, Constance Newman, David Ogburn, G.Dwoyid Olmstead, Kambui Olujimi, Villard Paddio, Gordon Parks, D. Pearson, Moira Pernambuco, Bonnie Phillips, John Pinderhughes, P. Polk, Paul Poole, Carl R. Pope, Marion James Porter, Sheila Pree, Eli Reed, Richard Roberts, Wilhelmina Williams Roberts, Orville Robertson, Herb Robinson, Eugene Roquemore, Susan J. Ross, Ken Royster, Jeffery St.
Mary, Richard Saunders, Jeffrey Scales, Addison L. Sengstacke, Harry Shepherd, Accra Shepp, Carl Sidle, Coreen Simpson, Lorna Simpson, Moneta Sleet, Clarissa Sligh, Beuford Smith, Marvin Smith, Morgan Smith, Frank Stallings, Charles (Chuck) Stewart, Gerald Straw, Ron Tarver, Hank Willis Thomas, Elaine Tomlin, June DeLairre Truesdale, Sheila Turner, Richard Aloysius Twine, James Vanderzee, Vincent Alan W. Walker, Augustus Washington, Lewis Watts, Carrie Mae Weems, Ellie Lee Weems, Jean Weisinger, Edward West, Wendel A. White, Cynthia Wiggins, Carlton Wilkinson, Carla Williams, Charles Williams, Milton Williams, Pat Ward Williams, William Earle Williams, Ernest C. Ernest Withers, a highly accomplished photographer, was born on August 7, 1922, in Memphis, Tennessee to parents Arthur Withers, a mailman and Pearl Withers, a school teacher, both from Marshall County, Mississippi.
Withers collection, which spans over 60 years of the 20th century, provides a vivid account of the segregated South. It includes team shots of the Memphis Red Sox, a team from the historic Negro Baseball League, major moments from the Civil Rights movement, and the Beale Street music scene.His work has appeared in major publications including Time, Newsweek, and the New York Times. It has also been collected in four books: Let Us March On (1992), Pictures Tell the Story (2000), The Memphis Blues Again (2001), and Negro League Baseball (2005). Ernest Withers interest in photography began in the eighth grade. After graduating from high school in 1941, he joined the Army at 17, where he attended the Army School of Photography. During his time in the Army, Withers ran a freelance business photographing white soldiers in Saipan, a U. During this period Withers also worked for about three years as one of the first nine African-American police officers hired in Memphis. During the late 1940s, Withers furnished publicity shots for the Memphis Red Sox. Without realizing it, Withers, with his images, documented the last years of the Negro League.
The league would soon fold after Jackie Robinson desegregated professional baseball in 1947. During the 1950s and 1960s, Withers photographed many of the most important figures and events in the Civil Rights movement. He traveled throughout the South with Dr. James Meredith, Medgar Evers, and other leaders of the Civil Rights movement.His now iconic images include Dr. Riding the first desegregated bus in Montgomery in 1956, the photos of Dr. King on the balcony of the Lorraine Hotel just before and just after he was shot in 1968, and the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike which led to the assassination of Dr. The Withers photographs also captured the history of Beale Street which by the 1940s was an epicenter for American music. On Saturday nights he photographed musicians and their audiences. His work documented the emergence of Rock and Roll, and Rhythm and Blues, in the 1950s as they grew from traditional blues and gospel music. One of his best known images here was of Elvis Presley and B. Ernest Withers passed away in Memphis on October 15, 2007 at the age of 85 from complications due to a stroke. He was survived by his wife, Dorothy, three sons, Joshua, Andrew Jerome, and Perry, all in Memphis, and a daughter, Rosalind, in West Palm Beach, Florida. Three years after his passing, a New York Times article revealed that Withers was briefly a paid FBI informant. He secretly provided the FBI photographs, biographical information, and scheduling details for Dr. King and other notable leaders of the civil rights movement between 1968 and 1970.
Elvis Aaron Presley[a] (January 8, 1935 August 16, 1977), also known mononymously as Elvis, was an American singer, musician, and actor. Regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century, he is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King". Presley was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, and relocated to Memphis, Tennessee, with his family when he was 13 years old. His music career began there in 1954, recording at Sun Records with producer Sam Phillips, who wanted to bring the sound of African-American music to a wider audience. Presley, on rhythm acoustic guitar, and accompanied by lead guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, was a pioneer of rockabilly, an uptempo, backbeat-driven fusion of country music and rhythm and blues.
Fontana joined to complete the lineup of Presley's classic quartet and RCA Victor acquired his contract in a deal arranged by Colonel Tom Parker, who would manage him for more than two decades. Presley's first RCA single, "Heartbreak Hotel", was released in January 1956 and became a number-one hit in the United States.
With a series of successful network television appearances and chart-topping records, he became the leading figure of the newly popular sound of rock and roll. His energized interpretations of songs and sexually provocative performance style, combined with a singularly potent mix of influences across color lines during a transformative era in race relations, made him enormously popularand controversial.
In November 1956, Presley made his film debut in Love Me Tender. Drafted into military service in 1958, Presley relaunched his recording career two years later with some of his most commercially successful work.He held few concerts however, and guided by Parker, proceeded to devote much of the 1960s to making Hollywood films and soundtrack albums, most of them critically derided. Years of prescription drug abuse severely compromised his health, and he died suddenly in 1977 at his Graceland estate at the age of 42. He was commercially successful in many genres, including pop, country, blues, and gospel. He won three competitive Grammys,  received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at age 36, and has been inducted into multiple music halls of fame. 19561958: Commercial breakout and controversy. 19581960: Military service and mother's death. 19731977: Health deterioration and death. Questions over cause of death. Colonel Parker and the Aberbachs. Present-day photograph of a whitewashed house, about 15 feet wide. Four bannistered steps in the foreground lead up to a roofed porch that holds a swing wide enough for two. The front of the house has a door and a single-paned window. The visible side of the house, about 30 feet long, has double-paned windows. Presley's birthplace in Tupelo, Mississippi. Elvis Presley was born on January 8, 1935, in Tupelo, Mississippi, to Gladys Love Presley (née Smith; April 25, 1912 August 14, 1958) in the two-room shotgun house built by his father, Vernon Elvis Presley (April 10, 1916 June 26, 1979), in preparation for the birth.  Jesse Garon Presley, his identical twin brother, was delivered 35 minutes before him, stillborn. Presley became close to both parents and formed an especially close bond with his mother. The family attended an Assembly of God church, where he found his initial musical inspiration.
On his mother's side Presley's ancestry was Scots-Irish, with some French Norman.  Gladys and the rest of the family apparently believed that her great-great-grandmother, Morning Dove White, was Cherokee Indian; this was confirmed by Elvis' granddaughter Riley Keough in 2017.  The biography by Elaine Dundy supports the belief,  although one genealogy researcher has contested it on multiple grounds.[b] Vernon's forebears were of German or Scottish origin.  Gladys was regarded by relatives and friends as the dominant member of the small family. Vernon moved from one odd job to the next, evincing little ambition.  The family often relied on help from neighbors and government food assistance. In 1938, they lost their home after Vernon was found guilty of altering a check written by his landowner and sometime employer.
He was jailed for eight months, while Gladys and Elvis moved in with relatives. In September 1941, Presley entered first grade at East Tupelo Consolidated, where his teachers regarded him as "average".  He was encouraged to enter a singing contest after impressing his schoolteacher with a rendition of Red Foley's country song "Old Shep" during morning prayers.
The contest, held at the MississippiAlabama Fair and Dairy Show on October 3, 1945, was his first public performance. The ten-year-old Presley was dressed as a cowboy; he stood on a chair to reach the microphone and sang "Old Shep".  A few months later, Presley received his first guitar for his birthday; he had hoped for something elseby different accounts, either a bicycle or a rifle.  Over the following year, he received basic guitar lessons from two of his uncles and the new pastor at the family's church.
Presley recalled, I took the guitar, and I watched people, and I learned to play a little bit. But I would never sing in public. I was very shy about it.
In September 1946, Presley entered a new school, Milam, for sixth grade; he was regarded as a loner. The following year, he began bringing his guitar to school on a daily basis. He played and sang during lunchtime, and was often teased as a "trashy" kid who played hillbilly music. By then, the family was living in a largely Black neighborhood.
 Presley was a devotee of Mississippi Slim's show on the Tupelo radio station WELO. He was described as "crazy about music" by Slim's younger brother, who was one of Presley's classmates and often took him into the station. Slim supplemented Presley's guitar tuition by demonstrating chord techniques.  When his protégé was twelve years old, Slim scheduled him for two on-air performances.
Presley was overcome by stage fright the first time, but succeeded in performing the following week. In November 1948, the family moved to Memphis, Tennessee. After residing for nearly a year in rooming houses, they were granted a two-bedroom apartment in the public housing complex known as the Lauderdale Courts. Humes High School, Presley received only a C in music in eighth grade.
When his music teacher told him that he had no aptitude for singing, he brought in his guitar the next day and sang a recent hit, "Keep Them Cold Icy Fingers Off Me", in an effort to prove otherwise. A classmate later recalled that the teacher "agreed that Elvis was right when he said that she didn't appreciate his kind of singing".  He was usually too shy to perform openly, and was occasionally bullied by classmates who viewed him as a "mama's boy".  In 1950, he began practicing guitar regularly under the tutelage of Lee Denson, a neighbor two and a half years his senior. They and three other boysincluding two future rockabilly pioneers, brothers Dorsey and Johnny Burnetteformed a loose musical collective that played frequently around the Courts.
 That September, he began working as an usher at Loew's State Theater.  Other jobs followed: Precision Tool, Loew's again, and MARL Metal Products. During his junior year, Presley began to stand out more among his classmates, largely because of his appearance: he grew his sideburns and styled his hair with rose oil and Vaseline. In his free time, he would head down to Beale Street, the heart of Memphis' thriving blues scene, and gaze longingly at the wild, flashy clothes in the windows of Lansky Brothers. By his senior year, he was wearing those clothes. Overcoming his reticence about performing outside the Lauderdale Courts, he competed in Humes' Annual "Minstrel" show in April 1953. Singing and playing guitar, he opened with "Till I Waltz Again with You", a recent hit for Teresa Brewer. Presley recalled that the performance did much for his reputation: I wasn't popular in school... I failed musiconly thing I ever failed.
And then they entered me in this talent show... When I came onstage I heard people kind of rumbling and whispering and so forth,'cause nobody knew I even sang. It was amazing how popular I became after that.Presley, who received no formal music training and could not read music, studied and played by ear. He also frequented record stores that provided jukeboxes and listening booths to customers. He knew all of Hank Snow's songs,  and he loved records by other country singers such as Roy Acuff, Ernest Tubb, Ted Daffan, Jimmie Rodgers, Jimmie Davis, and Bob Wills.  The Southern gospel singer Jake Hess, one of his favorite performers, was a significant influence on his ballad-singing style.
 He was a regular audience member at the monthly All-Night Singings downtown, where many of the white gospel groups that performed reflected the influence of African-American spiritual music.  He adored the music of black gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe.  Like some of his peers, he may have attended blues venuesof necessity, in the segregated South, only on nights designated for exclusively white audiences.  Many of his future recordings were inspired by local African-American musicians such as Arthur Crudup and Rufus Thomas. King recalled that he had known Presley before he was popular, when they both used to frequent Beale Street.
 By the time he graduated from high school in June 1953, Presley had already singled out music as his future. Sam Phillips and Sun Records. See also: List of songs recorded by Elvis Presley on the Sun label. Presley in a Sun Records promotional photograph, 1954. In August 1953, Presley checked into the offices of Sun Records.
He aimed to pay for a few minutes of studio time to record a two-sided acetate disc: "My Happiness" and "That's When Your Heartaches Begin". He later claimed that he intended the record as a gift for his mother, or that he was merely interested in what he "sounded like", although there was a much cheaper, amateur record-making service at a nearby general store.Biographer Peter Guralnick argued that he chose Sun in the hope of being discovered. Asked by receptionist Marion Keisker what kind of singer he was, Presley responded, I sing all kinds. " When she pressed him on who he sounded like, he repeatedly answered, "I don't sound like nobody. " After he recorded, Sun boss Sam Phillips asked Keisker to note down the young man's name, which she did along with her own commentary: "Good ballad singer. In January 1954, Presley cut a second acetate at Sun Records"I'll Never Stand in Your Way" and "It Wouldn't Be the Same Without You"but again nothing came of it.  Not long after, he failed an audition for a local vocal quartet, the Songfellows.
He explained to his father, They told me I couldn't sing.  Songfellow Jim Hamill later claimed that he was turned down because he did not demonstrate an ear for harmony at the time.  In April, Presley began working for the Crown Electric company as a truck driver.
 His friend Ronnie Smith, after playing a few local gigs with him, suggested he contact Eddie Bond, leader of Smith's professional band, which had an opening for a vocalist. Bond rejected him after a tryout, advising Presley to stick to truck driving "because you're never going to make it as a singer".Phillips, meanwhile, was always on the lookout for someone who could bring to a broader audience the sound of the black musicians on whom Sun focused. As Keisker reported, Over and over I remember Sam saying,'If I could find a white man who had the Negro sound and the Negro feel, I could make a billion dollars. " In June, he acquired a demo recording by Jimmy Sweeney of a ballad, "Without You, that he thought might suit the teenage singer. Presley came by the studio, but was unable to do it justice. Despite this, Phillips asked Presley to sing as many numbers as he knew. He was sufficiently affected by what he heard to invite two local musicians, guitarist Winfield "Scotty" Moore and upright bass player Bill Black, to work something up with Presley for a recording session. Presley transformed not only the sound but the emotion of the song, turning what had been written as a lament for a lost love into a satisfied declaration of independence. The session, held the evening of July 5, proved entirely unfruitful until late in the night. As they were about to abort and go home, Presley took his guitar and launched into a 1946 blues number, Arthur Crudup's "That's All Right". Moore recalled, All of a sudden, Elvis just started singing this song, jumping around and acting the fool, and then Bill picked up his bass, and he started acting the fool, too, and I started playing with them.
Sam, I think, had the door to the control booth open... He stuck his head out and said,'What are you doing? And we said,'We don't know.
'Well, back up,' he said,'try to find a place to start, and do it again. Phillips quickly began taping; this was the sound he had been looking for.  Three days later, popular Memphis DJ Dewey Phillips played "That's All Right" on his Red, Hot, and Blue show.  Listeners began phoning in, eager to find out who the singer really was.
The interest was such that Phillips played the record repeatedly during the remaining two hours of his show. Interviewing Presley on air, Phillips asked him what high school he attended in order to clarify his color for the many callers who had assumed that he was black.  During the next few days, the trio recorded a bluegrass number, Bill Monroe's "Blue Moon of Kentucky", again in a distinctive style and employing a jury rigged echo effect that Sam Phillips dubbed "slapback". A single was pressed with "That's All Right" on the A side and "Blue Moon of Kentucky" on the reverse. Early live performances and RCA Victor contract.
The trio played publicly for the first time on July 17 at the Bon Air clubPresley still sporting his child-size guitar.  At the end of the month, they appeared at the Overton Park Shell, with Slim Whitman headlining.A combination of his strong response to rhythm and nervousness at playing before a large crowd led Presley to shake his legs as he performed: his wide-cut pants emphasized his movements, causing young women in the audience to start screaming.  Moore recalled, "During the instrumental parts, he would back off from the mike and be playing and shaking, and the crowd would just go wild".  Black, a natural showman, whooped and rode his bass, hitting double licks that Presley would later remember as "really a wild sound, like a jungle drum or something".  Soon after, Moore and Black left their old band, the Starlite Wranglers, to play with Presley regularly, and DJ/promoter Bob Neal became the trio's manager. According to Moore, His movement was a natural thing, but he was also very conscious of what got a reaction. He'd do something one time and then he would expand on it real quick. " Presley made what would be his only appearance on Nashville's Grand Ole Opry stage on October 2; after a polite audience response, Opry manager Jim Denny told Phillips that his singer was "not bad but did not suit the program. Louisiana Hayride, radio commercial, and first television performances. In November 1954, Presley performed on Louisiana Hayridethe Opry's chief, and more adventurous, rival. The Shreveport-based show was broadcast to 198 radio stations in 28 states. Presley had another attack of nerves during the first set, which drew a muted reaction. A more composed and energetic second set inspired an enthusiastic response. Fontana brought a new element, complementing Presley's movements with accented beats that he had mastered playing in strip clubs.  Soon after the show, the Hayride engaged Presley for a year's worth of Saturday-night appearances. Many fledgling performers, like Minnie Pearl, Johnny Horton, and Johnny Cash, sang the praises of Louisiana Hayride sponsor, The Southern Maid Donut Flour Company (Texas), including Elvis Presley, who famously developed a lifelong love of doughnuts. Elvis made his first television appearance on the KSLA-TV television broadcast of Louisiana Hayride. Soon after, he failed an audition for Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts on the CBS television network.
By early 1955, Presley's regular Hayride appearances, constant touring, and well-received record releases had made him a regional star, from Tennessee to West Texas. In January, Neal signed a formal management contract with Presley and brought him to the attention of Colonel Tom Parker, whom he considered the best promoter in the music business.
Parkerwho claimed to be from West Virginia (he was actually Dutch)had acquired an honorary colonel's commission from country singer turned Louisiana governor Jimmie Davis. Having successfully managed top country star Eddy Arnold, Parker was working with the new number-one country singer, Hank Snow. Parker booked Presley on Snow's February tour.  When the tour reached Odessa, Texas, a 19-year-old Roy Orbison saw Presley for the first time: His energy was incredible, his instinct was just amazing. I just didn't know what to make of it.
There was just no reference point in the culture to compare it. " By August, Sun had released ten sides credited to "Elvis Presley, Scotty and Bill; on the latest recordings, the trio were joined by a drummer. Some of the songs, like "That's All Right", were in what one Memphis journalist described as the "R&B idiom of negro field jazz"; others, like "Blue Moon of Kentucky", were "more in the country field", "but there was a curious blending of the two different musics in both".  This blend of styles made it difficult for Presley's music to find radio airplay. According to Neal, many country-music disc jockeys would not play it because he sounded too much like a black artist and none of the rhythm-and-blues stations would touch him because he sounded too much like a hillbilly. The blend came to be known as rockabilly. At the time, Presley was variously billed as "The King of Western Bop", "The Hillbilly Cat", and "The Memphis Flash". Presley renewed Neal's management contract in August 1955, simultaneously appointing Parker as his special adviser.  The group maintained an extensive touring schedule throughout the second half of the year.  Neal recalled, It was almost frightening, the reaction that came to Elvis from the teenaged boys.
So many of them, through some sort of jealousy, would practically hate him. There were occasions in some towns in Texas when we'd have to be sure to have a police guard because somebody'd always try to take a crack at him. They'd get a gang and try to waylay him or something.
 The trio became a quartet when Hayride drummer Fontana joined as a full member. In mid-October, they played a few shows in support of Bill Haley, whose "Rock Around the Clock" track had been a number-one hit the previous year.Haley observed that Presley had a natural feel for rhythm, and advised him to sing fewer ballads. At the Country Disc Jockey Convention in early November, Presley was voted the year's most promising male artist.  Several record companies had by now shown interest in signing him. [c] Presley, at 20, was still a minor, so his father signed the contract.  Parker arranged with the owners of Hill & Range Publishing, Jean and Julian Aberbach, to create two entities, Elvis Presley Music and Gladys Music, to handle all the new material recorded by Presley. [d] By December, RCA had begun to heavily promote its new singer, and before month's end had reissued many of his Sun recordings.
First national TV appearances and debut album. Album cover with photograph of Presley singinghead thrown back, eyes closed, mouth wide openand about to strike a chord on his acoustic guitar.
Another musician is behind him to the right, his instrument obscured. The word "Elvis" in bold pink letters descends from the upper left corner; below, the word "Presley" in bold green letters runs horizontally.The "iconic cover" of Presley's 1956 debut album,  an image crucial in codifying the guitar as the defining instrument of rock and roll. On January 10, 1956, Presley made his first recordings for RCA in Nashville.  Extending Presley's by-now customary backup of Moore, Black, Fontana, and Hayride pianist Floyd Cramerwho had been performing at live club dates with PresleyRCA enlisted guitarist Chet Atkins and three background singers, including Gordon Stoker of the popular Jordanaires quartet, to fill out the sound.  The session produced the moody, unusual "Heartbreak Hotel", released as a single on January 27.  Parker finally brought Presley to national television, booking him on CBS's Stage Show for six appearances over two months.
The program, produced in New York, was hosted on alternate weeks by big band leaders and brothers Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey. After his first appearance, on January 28, Presley stayed in town to record at RCA's New York studio. The sessions yielded eight songs, including a cover of Carl Perkins' rockabilly anthem "Blue Suede Shoes". In February, Presley's "I Forgot to Remember to Forget", a Sun recording initially released the previous August, reached the top of the Billboard country chart.  Neal's contract was terminated, and, on March 2, Parker became Presley's manager.RCA released Presley's self-titled debut album on March 23. Joined by five previously unreleased Sun recordings, its seven recently recorded tracks were of a broad variety.
There were two country songs and a bouncy pop tune. The others would centrally define the evolving sound of rock and roll: "Blue Suede Shoes""an improvement over Perkins' in almost every way", according to critic Robert Hilburnand three R&B numbers that had been part of Presley's stage repertoire for some time, covers of Little Richard, Ray Charles, and The Drifters. As described by Hilburn, these were the most revealing of all. Who watered down the gritty edges of the original R&B versions of songs in the'50s, Presley reshaped them. He not only injected the tunes with his own vocal character but also made guitar, not piano, the lead instrument in all three cases.
 It became the first rock and roll album to top the Billboard chart, a position it held for 10 weeks.  While Presley was not an innovative guitarist like Moore or contemporary African-American rockers Bo Diddley and Chuck Berry, cultural historian Gilbert B.Rodman argued that the album's cover image, of Elvis having the time of his life on stage with a guitar in his hands played a crucial role in positioning the guitar... As the instrument that best captured the style and spirit of this new music. Milton Berle Show and "Hound Dog".
Presley signing autographs in Minneapolis in 1956. On April 3, Presley made the first of two appearances on NBC's Milton Berle Show.
His performance, on the deck of the USS Hancock in San Diego, California, prompted cheers and screams from an audience of sailors and their dates.  A few days later, a flight taking Presley and his band to Nashville for a recording session left all three badly shaken when an engine died and the plane almost went down over Arkansas. Twelve weeks after its original release, "Heartbreak Hotel" became Presley's first number-one pop hit. In late April, Presley began a two-week residency at the New Frontier Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip.  The shows were poorly received by the conservative, middle-aged hotel guests"like a jug of corn liquor at a champagne party", wrote a critic for Newsweek.  Amid his Vegas tenure, Presley, who had serious acting ambitions, signed a seven-year contract with Paramount Pictures.  He began a tour of the Midwest in mid-May, taking in 15 cities in as many days.  He had attended several shows by Freddie Bell and the Bellboys in Vegas and was struck by their cover of "Hound Dog", a hit in 1953 for blues singer Big Mama Thornton by songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller.
It became the new closing number of his act.  After a show in La Crosse, Wisconsin, an urgent message on the letterhead of the local Catholic diocese's newspaper was sent to FBI director J. It warned that Presley is a definite danger to the security of the United States.
[His] actions and motions were such as to rouse the sexual passions of teenaged youth. After the show, more than 1,000 teenagers tried to gang into Presley's room at the auditorium. Indications of the harm Presley did just in La Crosse were the two high school girls... Whose abdomen and thigh had Presley's autograph.
The second Milton Berle Show appearance came on June 5 at NBC's Hollywood studio, amid another hectic tour. Berle persuaded Presley to leave his guitar backstage, advising, Let'em see you, son. " During the performance, Presley abruptly halted an uptempo rendition of "Hound Dog with a wave of his arm and launched into a slow, grinding version accentuated with energetic, exaggerated body movements. Presley's gyrations created a storm of controversy.  Television critics were outraged: Jack Gould of The New York Times wrote, Mr. Presley has no discernible singing ability. His phrasing, if it can be called that, consists of the stereotyped variations that go with a beginner's aria in a bathtub. His one specialty is an accented movement of the body...
Primarily identified with the repertoire of the blond bombshells of the burlesque runway. " Ben Gross of the New York Daily News opined that popular music "has reached its lowest depths in the'grunt and groin' antics of one Elvis Presley. Elvis, who rotates his pelvis... Gave an exhibition that was suggestive and vulgar, tinged with the kind of animalism that should be confined to dives and bordellos.  Ed Sullivan, whose own variety show was the nation's most popular, declared him "unfit for family viewing".
 To Presley's displeasure, he soon found himself being referred to as "Elvis the Pelvis", which he called one of the most childish expressions I ever heard, comin' from an adult. Steve Allen Show and first Sullivan appearance.
Photo of Elvis and Ed Sullivan. Ed Sullivan and Presley during rehearsals for his second appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, October 26, 1956. The Berle shows drew such high ratings that Presley was booked for a July 1 appearance on NBC's Steve Allen Show in New York. Allen, no fan of rock and roll, introduced a "new Elvis" in a white bow tie and black tails.
Presley sang "Hound Dog" for less than a minute to a basset hound wearing a top hat and bow tie. As described by television historian Jake Austen, Allen thought Presley was talentless and absurd... [he] set things up so that Presley would show his contrition.  Allen later wrote that he found Presley's "strange, gangly, country-boy charisma, his hard-to-define cuteness, and his charming eccentricity intriguing" and simply worked him into the customary "comedy fabric" of his program. Just before the final rehearsal for the show, Presley told a reporter, I'm holding down on this show. I don't want to do anything to make people dislike me. I think TV is important so I'm going to go along, but I won't be able to give the kind of show I do in a personal appearance.  Presley would refer back to the Allen show as the most ridiculous performance of his career.  Later that night, he appeared on Hy Gardner Calling, a popular local TV show. Pressed on whether he had learned anything from the criticism to which he was being subjected, Presley responded, No, I haven't, I don't feel like I'm doing anything wrong. I don't see how any type of music would have any bad influence on people when it's only music. I mean, how would rock'n' roll music make anyone rebel against their parents?
The next day, Presley recorded "Hound Dog", along with "Any Way You Want Me" and "Don't Be Cruel". The Jordanaires sang harmony, as they had on The Steve Allen Show; they would work with Presley through the 1960s. A few days later, Presley made an outdoor concert appearance in Memphis, at which he announced, You know, those people in New York are not gonna change me none. I'm gonna show you what the real Elvis is like tonight.
 In August, a judge in Jacksonville, Florida, ordered Presley to tame his act. Throughout the following performance, he largely kept still, except for wiggling his little finger suggestively in mockery of the order.
 The single pairing "Don't Be Cruel" with "Hound Dog" ruled the top of the charts for 11 weeksa mark that would not be surpassed for 36 years.  Recording sessions for Presley's second album took place in Hollywood during the first week of September. Leiber and Stoller, the writers of "Hound Dog", contributed "Love Me".
Allen's show with Presley had, for the first time, beaten CBS's Ed Sullivan Show in the ratings.  The first, on September 9, 1956, was seen by approximately 60 million viewersa record 82.6 percent of the television audience.  Actor Charles Laughton hosted the show, filling in while Sullivan was recovering from a car accident. Presley appeared in two segments that night from CBS Television City in Los Angeles. According to Elvis legend, Presley was shot only from the waist up. Watching clips of the Allen and Berle shows with his producer, Sullivan had opined that Presley got some kind of device hanging down below the crotch of his pantsso when he moves his legs back and forth you can see the outline of his cock. I think it's a Coke bottle. We just can't have this on a Sunday night.
This is a family show! " Sullivan publicly told TV Guide, "As for his gyrations, the whole thing can be controlled with camera shots.  In fact, Presley was shown head-to-toe in the first and second shows. Though the camerawork was relatively discreet during his debut, with leg-concealing closeups when he danced, the studio audience reacted in customary style: screaming.  Presley's performance of his forthcoming single, the ballad "Love Me Tender", prompted a record-shattering million advance orders.
 More than any other single event, it was this first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show that made Presley a national celebrity of barely precedented proportions. Accompanying Presley's rise to fame, a cultural shift was taking place that he both helped inspire and came to symbolize. Igniting the biggest pop craze since Glenn Miller and Frank Sinatra... Presley brought rock'n'roll into the mainstream of popular culture, writes historian Marty Jezer. As Presley set the artistic pace, other artists followed.
Presley, more than anyone else, gave the young a belief in themselves as a distinct and somehow unified generationthe first in America ever to feel the power of an integrated youth culture. Crazed crowds and film debut. Presley performing live at the Mississippi-Alabama Fairgrounds in Tupelo, September 26, 1956. We're gonna do a sad song...
Presley's definition of rock and roll included a sense of humorhere, during his second Sullivan appearance, he introduces one of his signature numbers. The audience response at Presley's live shows became increasingly fevered. Moore recalled, He'd start out,'You ain't nothin' but a Hound Dog,' and they'd just go to pieces. They'd always react the same way. There'd be a riot every time.
 At the two concerts he performed in September at the MississippiAlabama Fair and Dairy Show, 50 National Guardsmen were added to the police security to ensure that the crowd would not cause a ruckus.  Elvis, Presley's second album, was released in October and quickly rose to number one on the billboard.
The album includes "Old Shep", which he sang at the talent show in 1945, and which now marked the first time he played piano on an RCA session. According to Guralnick, one can hear in the halting chords and the somewhat stumbling rhythm both the unmistakable emotion and the equally unmistakable valuing of emotion over technique. " Assessing the musical and cultural impact of Presley's recordings from "That's All Right" through Elvis, rock critic Dave Marsh wrote that "these records, more than any others, contain the seeds of what rock & roll was, has been and most likely what it may foreseeably become. After the performance, crowds in Nashville and St. Louis burned him in effigy. His first motion picture, Love Me Tender, was released on November 21. Though he was not top billed, the film's original titleThe Reno Brotherswas changed to capitalize on his latest number-one record: "Love Me Tender" had hit the top of the charts earlier that month. To further take advantage of Presley's popularity, four musical numbers were added to what was originally a straight acting role. The film was panned by the critics but did very well at the box office.  Presley would receive top billing on every subsequent film he made. On December 4, Presley dropped into Sun Records where Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis were recording and had an impromptu jam session, along with Johnny Cash. Though Phillips no longer had the right to release any Presley material, he made sure that the session was captured on tape. The results, none officially released for 25 years, became known as the "Million Dollar Quartet" recordings.  In his first full year at RCA, one of the music industry's largest companies, Presley had accounted for over 50 percent of the label's singles sales. Leiber and Stoller collaboration and draft notice. Publicity photos for Jailhouse Rock.
Presley made his third and final Ed Sullivan Show appearance on January 6, 1957on this occasion indeed shot only down to the waist. Some commentators have claimed that Parker orchestrated an appearance of censorship to generate publicity.
 In any event, as critic Greil Marcus describes, Presley did not tie himself down. Leaving behind the bland clothes he had worn on the first two shows, he stepped out in the outlandish costume of a pasha, if not a harem girl.From the make-up over his eyes, the hair falling in his face, the overwhelmingly sexual cast of his mouth, he was playing Rudolph Valentino in The Sheik, with all stops out. " To close, displaying his range and defying Sullivan's wishes, Presley sang a gentle black spiritual, "Peace in the Valley. At the end of the show, Sullivan declared Presley "a real decent, fine boy".  Two days later, the Memphis draft board announced that Presley would be classified 1-A and would probably be drafted sometime that year.
Each of the three Presley singles released in the first half of 1957 went to number one: "Too Much", "All Shook Up", and "(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear". Already an international star, he was attracting fans even where his music was not officially released. Under the headline "Presley Records a Craze in Soviet", The New York Times reported that pressings of his music on discarded X-ray plates were commanding high prices in Leningrad.  Loving Youthe soundtrack to his second film, released in Julywas Presley's third straight number-one album.
The title track was written by Leiber and Stoller, who were then retained to write four of the six songs recorded at the sessions for Jailhouse Rock, Presley's next film. The songwriting team effectively produced the Jailhouse sessions and developed a close working relationship with Presley, who came to regard them as his "good-luck charm".  "He was fast, " said Leiber. Any demo you gave him he knew by heart in ten minutes.
 The title track was yet another number-one hit, as was the Jailhouse Rock EP. Presley and costar Judy Tyler in the trailer for Jailhouse Rock, released October 1957.Presley undertook three brief tours during the year, continuing to generate a crazed audience response.  A Detroit newspaper suggested that the trouble with going to see Elvis Presley is that you're liable to get killed.  Villanova students pelted him with eggs in Philadelphia,  and in Vancouver the crowd rioted after the end of the show, destroying the stage.  Frank Sinatra, who had famously inspired the swooning of teenage girls in the 1940s, condemned the new musical phenomenon. In a magazine article, he decried rock and roll as brutal, ugly, degenerate, vicious.
It fosters almost totally negative and destructive reactions in young people. It smells phoney and false.It is sung, played and written, for the most part, by cretinous goons. This rancid-smelling aphrodisiac I deplore. " Asked for a response, Presley said, "I admire the man. He has a right to say what he wants to say. He is a great success and a fine actor, but I think he shouldn't have said it.
This is a trend, just the same as he faced when he started years ago. Leiber and Stoller were again in the studio for the recording of Elvis' Christmas Album.Toward the end of the session, they wrote a song on the spot at Presley's request: "Santa Claus Is Back in Town", an innuendo-laden blues.  After the session, Moore and Blackdrawing only modest weekly salaries, sharing in none of Presley's massive financial successresigned. Though they were brought back on a per diem basis a few weeks later, it was clear that they had not been part of Presley's inner circle for some time.  On December 20, Presley received his draft notice. It had been only 21 months since "Heartbreak Hotel" had brought him to the top for the first time. Recording sessions for the King Creole soundtrack were held in Hollywood in mid-January 1958. Leiber and Stoller provided three songs and were again on hand, but it would be the last time they and Presley worked closely together.
 As Stoller recalled, Presley's manager and entourage sought to wall him off: He was removed.  A brief soundtrack session on February 11 marked another endingit was the final occasion on which Black was to perform with Presley.  He died in 1965. See also: Elvis Presley's Army career.
Elvis being sworn into the U. Presley being sworn into the U. Army at Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, March 24, 1958. On March 24, 1958, Presley was drafted into the U. Army as a private at Fort Chaffee, near Fort Smith, Arkansas.
His arrival was a major media event. Hundreds of people descended on Presley as he stepped from the bus; photographers then accompanied him into the fort.  Presley announced that he was looking forward to his military stint, saying that he did not want to be treated any differently from anyone else: The Army can do anything it wants with me.Presley commenced basic training at Fort Hood, Texas. During a two-week leave in early June, he recorded five songs in Nashville.
 In early August, his mother was diagnosed with hepatitis, and her condition rapidly worsened. Presley, granted emergency leave to visit her, arrived in Memphis on August 12. Two days later, she died of heart failure, aged 46. Presley was devastated; their relationship had remained extremely closeeven into his adulthood, they would use baby talk with each other and Presley would address her with pet names. After training, Presley joined the 3rd Armored Division in Friedberg, Germany, on October 1.
 While on maneuvers, Presley was introduced to amphetamines by a sergeant. He became "practically evangelical about their benefits", not only for energy but for "strength" and weight loss as well, and many of his friends in the outfit joined him in indulging.  The Army also introduced Presley to karate, which he studied seriously, training with Jürgen Seydel. It became a lifelong interest, which he later included in his live performances. Fellow soldiers have attested to Presley's wish to be seen as an able, ordinary soldier, despite his fame, and to his generosity. While in Friedberg, Presley met 14-year-old Priscilla Beaulieu. They would eventually marry after a seven-and-a-half-year courtship.  In her autobiography, Priscilla said that Presley was concerned that his 24-month spell as a GI would ruin his career.
In Special Services, he would have been able to give musical performances and remain in touch with the public, but Parker had convinced him that to gain popular respect, he should serve his country as a regular soldier.  Media reports echoed Presley's concerns about his career, but RCA producer Steve Sholes and Freddy Bienstock of Hill and Range had carefully prepared for his two-year hiatus. Armed with a substantial amount of unreleased material, they kept up a regular stream of successful releases.
 RCA also generated four albums compiling old material during this period, most successfully Elvis' Golden Records (1958), which hit number three on the LP chart. See also: Elvis Presley on film and television.
"It's Now or Never". Presley broke new stylistic ground and displayed his vocal range with this number-one hit. The quasi-operatic ballad ends with Presley soaring up to an incredible top G sharp.  The train that carried him from New Jersey to Tennessee was mobbed all the way, and Presley was called upon to appear at scheduled stops to please his fans. On the night of March 20, he entered RCA's Nashville studio to cut tracks for a new album along with a single, "Stuck on You", which was rushed into release and swiftly became a number-one hit. , along with the rest of Elvis Is Back! The album features several songs described by Greil Marcus as full of Chicago blues menace, driven by Presley's own super-miked acoustic guitar, brilliant playing by Scotty Moore, and demonic sax work from Boots Randolph. Elvis' singing wasn't sexy, it was pornographic. " As a whole, the record "conjured up the vision of a performer who could be all things", in the words of music historian John Robertson: "a flirtatious teenage idol with a heart of gold; a tempestuous, dangerous lover; a gutbucket blues singer; a sophisticated nightclub entertainer; [a] raucous rocker.  Released only days after recording was complete, it reached number two on the album chart. Presley with Juliet Prowse in G. Also known as Welcome Home Elvis, the show had been taped in late March, the only time all year Presley performed in front of an audience.
The broadcast drew an enormous viewership. Blues, the soundtrack to Presley's first film since his return, was a number-one album in October. His first LP of sacred material, His Hand in Mine, followed two months later.It reached number 13 on the U. Pop chart and number 3 in the U. Remarkable figures for a gospel album.
In February 1961, Presley performed two shows for a benefit event in Memphis, on behalf of 24 local charities. During a luncheon preceding the event, RCA presented him with a plaque certifying worldwide sales of over 75 million records.
 A 12-hour Nashville session in mid-March yielded nearly all of Presley's next studio album, Something for Everybody.  As described by John Robertson, it exemplifies the Nashville sound, the restrained, cosmopolitan style that would define country music in the 1960s. Presaging much of what was to come from Presley himself over the next half-decade, the album is largely "a pleasant, unthreatening pastiche of the music that had once been Elvis' birthright".
 It would be his sixth number-one LP. It was to be Presley's last public performance for seven years. Parker had by now pushed Presley into a heavy film making schedule, focused on formulaic, modestly budgeted musical comedies.Presley, at first, insisted on pursuing higher roles, but when two films in a more dramatic veinFlaming Star (1960) and Wild in the Country (1961)were less commercially successful, he reverted to the formula. Among the 27 films he made during the 1960s, there were a few further exceptions.  His films were almost universally panned; critic Andrew Caine dismissed them as a "pantheon of bad taste".  Nonetheless, they were virtually all profitable.
Hal Wallis, who produced nine of them, declared, A Presley picture is the only sure thing in Hollywood. Of Presley's films in the 1960s, 15 were accompanied by soundtrack albums and another 5 by soundtrack EPs. The films' rapid production and release scheduleshe frequently starred in three a yearaffected his music.
According to Jerry Leiber, the soundtrack formula was already evident before Presley left for the Army: "three ballads, one medium-tempo [number], one up-tempo, and one break blues boogie".  As the decade wore on, the quality of the soundtrack songs grew "progressively worse".  Julie Parrish, who appeared in Paradise, Hawaiian Style (1966), says that he disliked many of the songs chosen for his films.  The Jordanaires' Gordon Stoker describes how Presley would retreat from the studio microphone: The material was so bad that he felt like he couldn't sing it.
 Most of the film albums featured a song or two from respected writers such as the team of Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman. But by and large, according to biographer Jerry Hopkins, the numbers seemed to be "written on order by men who never really understood Elvis or rock and roll".
 Regardless of the songs' quality, it has been argued that Presley generally sang them well, with commitment.  Critic Dave Marsh heard the opposite: Presley isn't trying, probably the wisest course in the face of material like'No Room to Rumba in a Sports Car' and'Rock-A-Hula Baby'. In the first half of the decade, three of Presley's soundtrack albums were ranked number one on the pop charts, and a few of his most popular songs came from his films, such as "Can't Help Falling in Love" (1961) and "Return to Sender" (1962). "Viva Las Vegas", the title track to the 1964 film, was a minor hit as a B-side, and became truly popular only later. During a five-year span1964 through 1968Presley had only one top-ten hit: "Crying in the Chapel" (1965), a gospel number recorded back in 1960.As for non-film albums, between the June 1962 release of Pot Luck and the November 1968 release of the soundtrack to the television special that signaled his comeback, only one LP of new material by Presley was issued: the gospel album How Great Thou Art (1967). It won him his first Grammy Award, for Best Sacred Performance. As Marsh described, Presley was "arguably the greatest white gospel singer of his time [and] really the last rock & roll artist to make gospel as vital a component of his musical personality as his secular songs". Shortly before Christmas 1966, more than seven years since they first met, Presley proposed to Priscilla Beaulieu. They were married on May 1, 1967, in a brief ceremony in their suite at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas.  The flow of formulaic films and assembly-line soundtracks rolled on. It was not until October 1967, when the Clambake soundtrack LP registered record low sales for a new Presley album, that RCA executives recognized a problem. "By then, of course, the damage had been done", as historians Connie Kirchberg and Marc Hendrickx put it. Elvis was viewed as a joke by serious music lovers and a has-been to all but his most loyal fans.
Elvis: the'68 Comeback Special. Presley, wearing a tight black leather jacket with Napoleonic standing collar, black leather wristbands, and black leather pants, holds a microphone with a long cord. His hair, which looks black as well, falls across his forehead. In front of him is an empty microphone stand. Behind, beginning below stage level and rising up, audience members watch him.
A young woman with long black hair in the front row gazes up ecstatically. The'68 Comeback Special produced "one of the most famous images" of Presley.  Taken on June 29, 1968, it was adapted for the cover of Rolling Stone in July 1969. Presley's only child, Lisa Marie, was born on February 1, 1968, during a period when he had grown deeply unhappy with his career.  Of the eight Presley singles released between January 1967 and May 1968, only two charted in the top 40, and none higher than number 28. His forthcoming soundtrack album, Speedway, would rank at number 82 on the Billboard chart. Parker had already shifted his plans to television, where Presley had not appeared since the Sinatra Timex show in 1960. He maneuvered a deal with NBC that committed the network to both finance a theatrical feature and broadcast a Christmas special. Recorded in late June in Burbank, California, the special, simply called Elvis, aired on December 3, 1968.
Later known as the'68 Comeback Special, the show featured lavishly staged studio productions as well as songs performed with a band in front of a small audiencePresley's first live performances since 1961. The live segments saw Presley dressed in tight black leather, singing and playing guitar in an uninhibited style reminiscent of his early rock and roll days. Director and co-producer Steve Binder had worked hard to produce a show that was far from the hour of Christmas songs Parker had originally planned.  The show, NBC's highest rated that season, captured 42 percent of the total viewing audience.
 Jon Landau of Eye magazine remarked, There is something magical about watching a man who has lost himself find his way back home. He sang with the kind of power people no longer expect of rock'n' roll singers.He moved his body with a lack of pretension and effort that must have made Jim Morrison green with envy. " Dave Marsh calls the performance one of "emotional grandeur and historical resonance. By January 1969, the single "If I Can Dream", written for the special, reached number 12. The soundtrack album rose into the top ten. According to friend Jerry Schilling, the special reminded Presley of what he had not been able to do for years, being able to choose the people; being able to choose what songs and not being told what had to be on the soundtrack. He was out of prison, man. " Binder said of Presley's reaction, "I played Elvis the 60-minute show, and he told me in the screening room,'Steve, it's the greatest thing I've ever done in my life.
I give you my word I will never sing a song I don't believe in. From Elvis in Memphis and the International. Beginning with his American Sound recordings, soul music became a central element in Presley's fusion of styles.
Here, he revels in lyrics full of sexual innuendo. Presley in a publicity photo for the film The Trouble with Girls, released September 1969. Buoyed by the experience of the Comeback Special, Presley engaged in a prolific series of recording sessions at American Sound Studio, which led to the acclaimed From Elvis in Memphis.
Released in June 1969, it was his first secular, non-soundtrack album from a dedicated period in the studio in eight years. As described by Dave Marsh, it is a masterpiece in which Presley immediately catches up with pop music trends that had seemed to pass him by during the movie years.He sings country songs, soul songs and rockers with real conviction, a stunning achievement. " The album featured the hit single "In the Ghetto", issued in April, which reached number three on the pop chartPresley's first non-gospel top ten hit since "Bossa Nova Baby in 1963. Further hit singles were culled from the American Sound sessions: "Suspicious Minds", "Don't Cry Daddy", and "Kentucky Rain".
Presley was keen to resume regular live performing. Following the success of the Comeback Special, offers came in from around the world. He responded, That's fine for me, now how much can you get for Elvis?  In May, the brand new International Hotel in Las Vegas, boasting the largest showroom in the city, announced that it had booked Presley.He was scheduled to perform 57 shows over four weeks beginning July 31. Moore, Fontana, and the Jordanaires declined to participate, afraid of losing the lucrative session work they had in Nashville. Presley assembled new, top-notch accompaniment, led by guitarist James Burton and including two gospel groups, The Imperials and Sweet Inspirations.  Costume designer Bill Belew, responsible for the intense leather styling of the Comeback Special, created a new stage look for Presley, inspired by Presley's passion for karate.  Nonetheless, he was nervous: his only previous Las Vegas engagement, in 1956, had been dismal.
Parker, who intended to make Presley's return the show business event of the year, oversaw a major promotional push. For his part, hotel owner Kirk Kerkorian arranged to send his own plane to New York to fly in rock journalists for the debut performance. Presley took to the stage without introduction.
The audience of 2,200, including many celebrities, gave him a standing ovation before he sang a note and another after his performance. A third followed his encore, "Can't Help Falling in Love" (a song that would be his closing number for much of the 1970s).  At a press conference after the show, when a journalist referred to him as "The King", Presley gestured toward Fats Domino, who was taking in the scene. "No, " Presley said, that's the real king of rock and roll.  Newsweek commented, There are several unbelievable things about Elvis, but the most incredible is his staying power in a world where meteoric careers fade like shooting stars.
" Rolling Stone called Presley "supernatural, his own resurrection.  In November, Presley's final non-concert film, Change of Habit, opened.
The double album From Memphis to Vegas/From Vegas to Memphis came out the same month; the first LP consisted of live performances from the International, the second of more cuts from the American Sound sessions. "Suspicious Minds" reached the top of the chartsPresley's first U. Pop number-one in over seven years, and his last.Cassandra Peterson, later television's Elvira, met Presley during this period in Las Vegas, where she was working as a showgirl. She recalled of their encounter, He was so anti-drug when I met him. I mentioned to him that I smoked marijuana, and he was just appalled. He said,'Don't ever do that again.  Presley was not only deeply opposed to recreational drugs, he also rarely drank. Several of his family members had been alcoholics, a fate he intended to avoid. Back on tour and meeting Nixon. Recordings from these shows were issued on the album On Stage.  In late February, Presley performed six attendance-recordbreaking shows at the Houston Astrodome.
 In April, the single "The Wonder of You" was issueda number one hit in the U. Adult contemporary chart, as well. MGM filmed rehearsal and concert footage at the International during August for the documentary Elvis: That's the Way It Is.Presley had been the target of many threats since the 1950s, often without his knowledge.  The FBI took the threat seriously and security was stepped up for the next two shows. Presley went onstage with a Derringer in his right boot and a. 45 pistol in his waistband, but the concerts succeeded without any incidents. The album, That's the Way It Is, produced to accompany the documentary and featuring both studio and live recordings, marked a stylistic shift. As music historian John Robertson noted, The authority of Presley's singing helped disguise the fact that the album stepped decisively away from the American-roots inspiration of the Memphis sessions towards a more middle-of-the-road sound. With country put on the back burner, and soul and R&B left in Memphis, what was left was very classy, very clean white popperfect for the Las Vegas crowd, but a definite retrograde step for Elvis.  After the end of his International engagement on September 7, Presley embarked on a week-long concert tour, largely of the South, his first since 1958.
Another week-long tour, of the West Coast, followed in November. A mutton-chopped Presley, wearing a long velour jacket and a giant buckle like that of a boxing championship belt, shakes hands with a balding man wearing a suit and tie. They are facing camera and smiling. Five flags hang from poles directly behind them.
President Richard Nixon in the White House Oval Office, December 21, 1970. On December 21, 1970, Presley engineered a meeting with President Richard Nixon at the White House, where he expressed his patriotism and explained how he believed he could reach out to the hippies to help combat the drug culture he and the president abhorred. He asked Nixon for a Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs badge, to add to similar items he had begun collecting and to signify official sanction of his patriotic efforts.Nixon, who apparently found the encounter awkward, expressed a belief that Presley could send a positive message to young people and that it was therefore important that he "retain his credibility".  Presley told Nixon that The Beatles, whose songs he regularly performed in concert during the era,  exemplified what he saw as a trend of anti-Americanism.  Presley and his friends previously had a four-hour get-together with The Beatles at his home in Bel Air, California in August 1965. On hearing reports of the meeting, Paul McCartney later said that he felt a bit betrayed. The great joke was that we were taking [illegal] drugs, and look what happened to him, a reference to Presley's early death, linked to prescription drug abuse.
Junior Chamber of Commerce named Presley one of its annual Ten Most Outstanding Young Men of the Nation on January 16, 1971.  Not long after, the City of Memphis named the stretch of Highway 51 South on which Graceland is located "Elvis Presley Boulevard". The same year, Presley became the first rock and roll singer to be awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award (then known as the Bing Crosby Award) by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, the Grammy Award organization.  Three new, non-film Presley studio albums were released in 1971, as many as had come out over the previous eight years. Best received by critics was Elvis Country, a concept record that focused on genre standards.
In the midst of ten painfully genteel Christmas songs, every one sung with appalling sincerity and humility, one could find Elvis tom-catting his way through six blazing minutes of'Merry Christmas Baby,' a raunchy old Charles Brown blues. If [Presley's] sin was his lifelessness, it was his sinfulness that brought him to life. Presley with friends Bill Porter and Paul Anka backstage at the Las Vegas Hilton on August 5, 1972.
MGM again filmed Presley in April 1972, this time for Elvis on Tour, which went on to win the Golden Globe Award for Best Documentary Film that year. His gospel album He Touched Me, released that month, would earn him his second competitive Grammy Award, for Best Inspirational Performance.  The evening concert on July 10 was recorded and issued in an LP form a week later. After the tour, the single "Burning Love" was releasedPresley's last top ten hit on the U. "The most exciting single Elvis has made since'All Shook Up'", wrote rock critic Robert Christgau.
Who else could make'It's coming closer, the flames are now licking my body' sound like an assignation with James Brown's backup band? High-collared white jumpsuit resplendent with red, blue, and gold eagle motif in sequins. Presley came up with his famous outfit's eagle motif, as "something that would say'America' to the world". Presley and his wife, meanwhile, had become increasingly distant, barely cohabiting. In 1971, an affair he had with Joyce Bova resultedunbeknownst to himin her pregnancy and an abortion.
 He often raised the possibility of her moving into Graceland, saying that he was likely to leave Priscilla.  The Presleys separated on February 23, 1972, after Priscilla disclosed her relationship with Mike Stone, a karate instructor Presley had recommended to her. Priscilla related that when she told him, Presley grabbed... And forcefully made love to" her, declaring, "This is how a real man makes love to his woman.
 She later stated in an interview that she regretted her choice of words in describing the incident, and said it had been an overstatement.  Five months later, Presley's new girlfriend, Linda Thompson, a songwriter and one-time Memphis beauty queen, moved in with him.  Presley and his wife filed for divorce on August 18.  According to Joe Moscheo of the Imperials, the failure of Presley's marriage was a blow from which he never recovered.
 At a rare press conference that June, a reporter had asked Presley whether he was satisfied with his image. Presley replied, Well, the image is one thing and the human being another...
It's very hard to live up to an image. The first show served as a practice run and backup should technical problems affect the live broadcast two days later. Servicemen based across Southeast Asia. In Japan, where it capped a nationwide Elvis Presley Week, it smashed viewing records.The next night, it was simulcast to 28 European countries, and in April an extended version finally aired in the U. Where it won a 57 percent share of the TV audience.  Over time, Parker's claim that it was seen by one billion or more people would be broadly accepted,  but that figure appeared to have been sheer invention.
 Presley's stage costume became the most recognized example of the elaborate concert garb with which his latter-day persona became closely associated. As described by Bobbie Ann Mason, At the end of the show, when he spreads out his American Eagle cape, with the full stretched wings of the eagle studded on the back, he becomes a god figure.  It proved to be Presley's last U.
Number-one pop album during his lifetime. At a midnight show the same month, four men rushed onto the stage in an apparent attack. Security men came to Presley's defense, and he ejected one invader from the stage himself. Following the show, he became obsessed with the idea that the men had been sent by Mike Stone to kill him.Though they were shown to have been only overexuberant fans, he raged, There's too much pain in me... His outbursts continued with such intensity that a physician was unable to calm him, despite administering large doses of medication. After another two full days of raging, Red West, his friend and bodyguard, felt compelled to get a price for a contract killing and was relieved when Presley decided, Aw hell, let's just leave it for now. Maybe it's a bit heavy. Medical crises and last studio sessions. Presley's divorce was finalized on October 9, 1973.  By then, his health was in major and serious decline.
Twice during the year, he overdosed on barbiturates, spending three days in a coma in his hotel suite after the first incident. Towards the end of 1973, he was hospitalized, semi-comatose from the effects of a pethidine addiction. According to his primary care physician, Dr.
Nichopoulos, Presley "felt that by getting drugs from a doctor, he wasn't the common everyday junkie getting something off the street".  Since his comeback, he had staged more live shows with each passing year, and 1973 saw 168 concerts, his busiest schedule ever.  Despite his failing health, in 1974, he undertook another intensive touring schedule. Presley's condition declined precipitously in September. Keyboardist Tony Brown remembered Presley's arrival at a University of Maryland concert: He fell out of the limousine, to his knees.
People jumped to help, and he pushed them away like,'Don't help me. He walked on stage and held onto the mic for the first thirty minutes like it was a post.
Everybody's looking at each other like,'Is the tour gonna happen'? " Guitarist John Wilkinson recalled, "He was all gut.
He was so fked up. It was obvious he was drugged. It was obvious there was something terribly wrong with his body. It was so bad the words to the songs were barely intelligible. He could barely get through the introductions." Wilkinson recounted that a few nights later in Detroit, "I watched him in his dressing room, just draped over a chair, unable to move. So often I thought,'Boss, why don't you just cancel this tour and take a year off... I mentioned something once in a guarded moment. He patted me on the back and said,'It'll be all right. Don't you worry about it.  Presley continued to play to sellout crowds. As cultural critic Marjorie Garber describes, he was now widely seen as a garish pop crooner: In effect, he had become Liberace.
Even his fans were now middle-aged matrons and blue-haired grandmothers. On July 13, 1976, Vernon Presleywho had become deeply involved in his son's financial affairsfired "Memphis Mafia" bodyguards Red West (Presley's friend since the 1950s), Sonny West, and David Hebler, citing the need to "cut back on expenses".
 Presley was in Palm Springs at the time, and some suggested that he was too cowardly to face the three himself. Another associate of Presley's, John O'Grady, argued that the bodyguards were dropped because their rough treatment of fans had prompted too many lawsuits.  However, Presley's stepbrother, David Stanley, claimed that the bodyguards were fired because they were becoming more outspoken about Presley's drug dependency.
RCA, which had enjoyed a steady stream of product from Presley for over a decade, grew anxious as his interest in spending time in the studio waned. After a December 1973 session that produced 18 songs, enough for almost two albums, he did not enter the studio in 1974. Recorded on March 20, it included a version of "How Great Thou Art" that would win Presley his third and final competitive Grammy Award.  All three of his competitive Grammy winsout of 14 total nominationswere for gospel recordings.  In 1976, RCA sent a mobile studio to Graceland that made possible two full-scale recording sessions at Presley's home.  Even in that comfortable context, the recording process became a struggle for him.
An R&B hit for Roy Hamilton in 1955 and a pop hit for blue-eyed soul singer Timi Yuro in 1961, Presley's deep soul version was picked up by country radio in 1976. For all the concerns of his label and manager, in studio sessions between July 1973 and October 1976, Presley recorded virtually the entire contents of six albums. Though he was no longer a major presence on the pop charts, five of those albums entered the top five of the country chart, and three went to number one: Promised Land (1975), From Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis, Tennessee (1976), and Moody Blue (1977).  The story was similar with his singlesthere were no major pop hits, but Presley was a significant force in not just the country market, but on adult contemporary radio as well.
Eight studio singles from this period released during his lifetime were top ten hits on one or both charts, four in 1974 alone. "My Boy" was a number-one adult contemporary hit in 1975, and "Moody Blue" topped the country chart and reached the second spot on the adult contemporary chart in 1976.  Perhaps his most critically acclaimed recording of the era came that year, with what Greil Marcus described as his "apocalyptic attack" on the soul classic "Hurt". "If he felt the way he sounded", Dave Marsh wrote of Presley's performance, the wonder isn't that he had only a year left to live but that he managed to survive that long. Presley and Linda Thompson split in November 1976, and he took up with a new girlfriend, Ginger Alden.
 He proposed to Alden and gave her an engagement ring two months later, though several of his friends later claimed that he had no serious intention of marrying again.  Journalist Tony Scherman wrote that by early 1977, Presley had become a grotesque caricature of his sleek, energetic former self. Hugely overweight, his mind dulled by the pharmacopia he daily ingested, he was barely able to pull himself through his abbreviated concerts." In Alexandria, Louisiana, he was on stage for less than an hour, and "was impossible to understand.  On March 31, Presley failed to perform in Baton Rouge, unable to get out of his hotel bed; a total of four shows had to be canceled and rescheduled.  Despite the accelerating deterioration of his health, he stuck to most touring commitments. According to Guralnick, fans were becoming increasingly voluble about their disappointment, but it all seemed to go right past Presley, whose world was now confined almost entirely to his room and his spiritualism books.  A cousin, Billy Smith, recalled how Presley would sit in his room and chat for hours, sometimes recounting favorite Monty Python sketches and his own past escapades, but more often gripped by paranoid obsessions that reminded Smith of Howard Hughes. "Way Down", Presley's last single issued during his career, was released on June 6. That month, CBS filmed two concerts for a TV special, Elvis in Concert, to be aired in October.
In the first, shot in Omaha on June 19, Presley's voice, Guralnick writes, "is almost unrecognizable, a small, childlike instrument in which he talks more than sings most of the songs, casts about uncertainly for the melody in others, and is virtually unable to articulate or project".  Two days later, in Rapid City, South Dakota, "he looked healthier, seemed to have lost a little weight, and sounded better, too", though by the conclusion of the performance, his face was "framed in a helmet of blue-black hair from which sweat sheets down over pale, swollen cheeks".  His final concert was held in Indianapolis at Market Square Arena, on June 26. A long, ground-level gravestone reads "Elvis Aaron Presley", followed by the singer's dates, the names of his parents and daughter, and several paragraphs of smaller text.It is surrounded by flowers, a small American flag, and other offerings. Similar grave markers are visible on either side. In the background is a small round pool, with a low decorative metal fence and several fountains. Presley's gravestone at Graceland. The book Elvis: What Happened?
Co-written by the three bodyguards fired the previous year, was published on August 1.  It was the first exposé to detail Presley's years of drug misuse.  By this point, he suffered from multiple ailments: glaucoma, high blood pressure, liver damage, and an enlarged colon, each magnifiedand possibly causedby drug abuse. On the evening of Tuesday, August 16, 1977, Presley was scheduled to fly out of Memphis to begin another tour. That afternoon, Ginger Alden discovered him in an unresponsive state on a bathroom floor.According to her eyewitness account, Elvis looked as if his entire body had completely frozen in a seated position while using the commode and then had fallen forward, in that fixed position, directly in front of it. It was clear that, from the time whatever hit him to the moment he had landed on the floor, Elvis hadn't moved.  Attempts to revive him failed, and his death was officially pronounced at 3:30 p.
At the Baptist Memorial Hospital. President Jimmy Carter issued a statement that credited Presley with having "permanently changed the face of American popular culture".
 Thousands of people gathered outside Graceland to view the open casket.  Presley left her nothing in his will. Presley's funeral was held at Graceland on Thursday, August 18. Outside the gates, a car plowed into a group of fans, killing two women and critically injuring a third.  About 80,000 people lined the processional route to Forest Hill Cemetery, where Presley was buried next to his mother. Within a few weeks, "Way Down" topped the country and U.  Following an attempt to steal Presley's body in late August, the remains of both Presley and his mother were reburied in Graceland's Meditation Garden on October 2. While an autopsy, undertaken the same day Presley died, was still in progress, Memphis medical examiner Dr. Jerry Francisco announced that the immediate cause of death was cardiac arrest. Asked if drugs were involved, he declared that "drugs played no role in Presley's death".  In fact, "drug use was heavily implicated" in Presley's death, writes Guralnick.
The pathologists conducting the autopsy thought it possible, for instance, that he had suffered "anaphylactic shock brought on by the codeine pills he had gotten from his dentist, to which he was known to have had a mild allergy". A pair of lab reports filed two months later strongly suggested that polypharmacy was the primary cause of death; one reported "fourteen drugs in Elvis' system, ten in significant quantity".  In 1979, forensic pathologist Cyril Wecht conducted a review of the reports and concluded that a combination of central nervous system depressants had resulted in Presley's accidental death.  Forensic historian and pathologist Michael Baden viewed the situation as complicated: Elvis had had an enlarged heart for a long time.
That, together with his drug habit, caused his death. But he was difficult to diagnose; it was a judgment call.
The competence and ethics of two of the centrally involved medical professionals were seriously questioned. Francisco had offered a cause of death before the autopsy was complete; claimed the underlying ailment was cardiac arrhythmia, a condition that can be determined only in someone who is still alive; and denied drugs played any part in Presley's death before the toxicology results were known. Allegations of a cover-up were widespread.  While a 1981 trial of Presley's main physician, Dr. George Nichopoulos, exonerated him of criminal liability for his death, the facts were startling: In the first eight months of 1977 alone, he had [prescribed] more than 10,000 doses of sedatives, amphetamines, and narcotics: all in Elvis' name. His license was suspended for three months.
It was permanently revoked in the 1990s after the Tennessee Medical Board brought new charges of over-prescription. In 1994, the Presley autopsy report was reopened. Joseph Davis, who had conducted thousands of autopsies as Miami-Dade County coroner,  declared at its completion, There is nothing in any of the data that supports a death from drugs. In fact, everything points to a sudden, violent heart attack.  More recent research has revealed that Dr.Francisco did not speak for the entire pathology team. Other staff could say nothing with confidence until they got the results back from the laboratories, if then. That would be a matter of weeks. One of the examiners, Dr.
Eric Muirhead could not believe his ears. Francisco had not only presumed to speak for the hospital's team of pathologists, he had announced a conclusion that they had not reached. Early on, a meticulous dissection of the body... Confirmed [that] Elvis was chronically ill with diabetes, glaucoma, and constipation.
As they proceeded, the doctors saw evidence that his body had been wracked over a span of years by a large and constant stream of drugs. They had also studied his hospital records, which included two admissions for drug detoxification and methadone treatments." Writer Frank Coffey thought Elvis' death was due to "a phenomenon called the Valsalva maneuver (essentially straining on the toilet leading to heart stoppageplausible because Elvis suffered constipation, a common reaction to drug use).  In similar terms, Dr. Dan Warlick, who was present at the autopsy, believes Presley's chronic constipationthe result of years of prescription drug abuse and high-fat, high-cholesterol gorgingbrought on what's known as Valsalva's maneuver. Put simply, the strain of attempting to defecate compressed the singer's abdominal aorta, shutting down his heart. Forest Tennant, who had testified as a defense witness in Nichopoulos' trial, described his own analysis of Presley's available medical records. He concluded that Presley's "drug abuse had led to falls, head trauma, and overdoses that damaged his brain", and that his death was due in part to a toxic reaction to codeineexacerbated by an undetected liver enzyme defectwhich can cause sudden cardiac arrhythmia.  DNA analysis in 2014 of a hair sample purported to be Presley's found evidence of genetic variants that can lead to glaucoma, migraines, and obesity; a crucial variant associated with the heart-muscle disease hypertrophic cardiomyopathy was also identified. Between 1977 and 1981, six of Presley's posthumously released singles were top-ten country hits.  Graceland was opened to the public in 1982.
Attracting over half a million visitors annually, it is the second most-visited home in the United States, after the White House.  It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 2006. Presley has been inducted into five music halls of fame: the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1986), the Country Music Hall of Fame (1998), the Gospel Music Hall of Fame (2001), the Rockabilly Hall of Fame (2007), and the Memphis Music Hall of Fame (2012). In 1984, he received the W.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. A Junkie XL remix of Presley's "A Little Less Conversation" (credited as "Elvis Vs JXL") 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, ELV1S, which was also an international success.  In 2003, a remix of "Rubberneckin'", a 1969 recording of Presley's, topped the U. Sales chart, as did a 50th-anniversary re-release of "That's All Right" the following year.  The latter was an outright hit in Britain, debuting at number three on the pop chart; it also made the top ten in Canada.  In 2005, another three reissued singles, "Jailhouse Rock", "One Night"/"I Got Stung", and "It's Now or Never", went to number one in the United Kingdom. They were part of a campaign that saw the re-release of all 18 of Presley's previous chart-topping U. The first, "All Shook Up", came with a collectors' box that made it ineligible to chart again; each of the other 17 reissues hit the British top five.  In November 2010, Viva Elvis: The Album was released, setting his voice to newly recorded instrumental tracks.  As of mid-2011, there were an estimated 15,000 licensed Presley products,  and he was again the second-highest-earning deceased celebrity. For much of his adult life, Presley, with his rise from poverty to riches and massive fame, had seemed to epitomize the American Dream.  In his final years and even more so after his death, and the revelations about its circumstances, he became a symbol of excess and gluttony.  Increasing attention, for instance, was paid to his appetite for the rich, heavy Southern cooking of his upbringing, foods such as chicken-fried steak and biscuits and gravy.  In particular, his love of calorie-laden fried peanut butter, banana, and (sometimes) bacon sandwiches,  now known as "Elvis sandwiches",  came to stand for this aspect of his persona.
 But the Elvis sandwich represents more than just unhealthy overindulgenceas media and culture scholar Robert Thompson describes, the unsophisticated treat also signifies Presley's enduring all-American appeal: He wasn't only the king, he was one of us. Since 1977, there have been numerous alleged sightings of Presley.A long-standing conspiracy theory among some fans is that he faked his death.  Adherents cite alleged discrepancies in the death certificate, reports of a wax dummy in his original coffin, and accounts of Presley planning a diversion so he could retire in peace.  An unusually large number of fans have domestic shrines devoted to Presley and journey to sites with which he is connected, however faintly.  Every August 16, the anniversary of his "death", thousands of people gather outside Graceland and celebrate his memory with a candlelight ritual.
 "With Elvis, it is not just his music that has survived death", writes Ted Harrison. He himself has been raised, like a medieval saint, to a figure of cultic status. It is as if he has been canonized by acclamation.
Presley's earliest musical influence came from gospel. His mother recalled that from the age of two, at the Assembly of God church in Tupelo attended by the family, he would slide down off my lap, run into the aisle and scramble up to the platform. There he would stand looking at the choir and trying to sing with them. In Memphis, Presley frequently attended all-night gospel singings at the Ellis Auditorium, where groups such as the Statesmen Quartet led the music in a style that, Guralnick suggests, sowed the seeds of Presley's future stage act. The Statesmen were an electric combination... Featuring some of the most thrillingly emotive singing and daringly unconventional showmanship in the entertainment world... Dressed in suits that might have come out of the window of Lansky's.
Bass singer Jim Wetherington, known universally as the Big Chief, maintained a steady bottom, ceaselessly jiggling first his left leg, then his right, with the material of the pants leg ballooning out and shimmering. "He went about as far as you could go in gospel music, " said Jake Hess. The women would jump up, just like they do for the pop shows.Preachers frequently objected to the lewd movements... But audiences reacted with screams and swoons. As a teenager, Presley's musical interests were wide-ranging, and he was deeply informed about both white and African-American musical idioms. Though he never had any formal training, he was blessed with a remarkable memory, and his musical knowledge was already considerable by the time he made his first professional recordings aged 19 in 1954.
When Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller met him two years later, they were astonished at his encyclopedic understanding of the blues,  and, as Stoller put it, He certainly knew a lot more than we did about country music and gospel music. " At a press conference the following year, he proudly declared, "I know practically every religious song that's ever been written. Presley received his first guitar when he was 11 years old.  Presley played guitar, bass, and piano.
While he couldn't read or write music and had no formal lessons, he was a natural musician and played everything by ear.  Presley often played an instrument in his recordings and produced his own music.
Presley played rhythm acoustic guitar in most of his Sun recordings and his 1950s RCA albums. Presley played electric bass guitar in one of his recordings called (You're So Square) Baby I Don't Care after his bassist Bill Black had trouble with the instrument.
 Presley played the bass line including the intro. Presley played piano in songs such as "Old Shep" and First In Line from his 1956 album called Elvis.  He is later credited with playing piano throughout some of the later albums that he recorded such as From Elvis in Memphis and "Moody Blue" which he played piano in Unchained Melody which was one of the last songs that he recorded.  Presley played lead guitar in one of his successful singles called "One Night".  Presley also played guitar on one of his successful singles called "Are You Lonesome Tonight" In the 68 Comeback Special, Elvis took over on lead electric guitar, the first time he had ever been seen with the electric guitar instrument in public and played it, performing songs such as Baby What You Want Me to Do, Lawdy Miss Clawdy, and others.
 Elvis played the back of his guitar in some of his hits such as "All Shook Up", "Don't Be Cruel", "(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear" and others providing a percussion through his guitar playing by slapping on it to create a beat.  The album Elvis is Back! Features Presley playing a lot of acoustic guitar in songs such as I Will Be Home Again, Like a Baby, and others. Photo of Elvis and the Jordanaires.Presley with his longtime vocal backup group, the Jordanaires, March 1957. Presley was a central figure in the development of rockabilly, according to music historians. "Rockabilly crystallized into a recognizable style in 1954 with Elvis Presley's first release, on the Sun label", writes Craig Morrison.  Paul Friedlander describes the defining elements of rockabilly, which he similarly characterizes as essentially...
An Elvis Presley construction": "the raw, emotive, and slurred vocal style and emphasis on rhythmic feeling [of] the blues with the string band and strummed rhythm guitar [of] country.  In "That's All Right", the Presley trio's first record, Scotty Moore's guitar solo, a combination of Merle Travisstyle country finger-picking, double-stop slides from acoustic boogie, and blues-based bent-note, single-string work, is a microcosm of this fusion. " While Katherine Charlton likewise calls Presley "rockabilly's originator",  Carl Perkins has explicitly stated that "[Sam] Phillips, Elvis, and I didn't create rockabilly." and, according to Michael Campbell, "Bill Haley recorded the first big rockabilly hit. " In Moore's view, too, "It had been there for quite a while, really. Carl Perkins was doing basically the same sort of thing up around Jackson, and I know for a fact Jerry Lee Lewis had been playing that kind of music ever since he was ten years old. At RCA, Presley's rock and roll sound grew distinct from rockabilly with group chorus vocals, more heavily amplified electric guitars and a tougher, more intense manner.  While he was known for taking songs from various sources and giving them a rockabilly/rock and roll treatment, he also recorded songs in other genres from early in his career, from the pop standard "Blue Moon" at Sun to the country ballad How's the World Treating You?
" on his second LP to the blues of "Santa Claus Is Back in Town. In 1957, his first gospel record was released, the four-song EP Peace in the Valley.  Presley would record gospel periodically for the rest of his life. From How Great Thou Art (1967), a traditional song popular in the black gospel tradition.
The arrangement evokes the percussive style of the 1930s Golden Gate Quartet. After his return from military service in 1960, Presley continued to perform rock and roll, but the characteristic style was substantially toned down. His first post-Army single, the number-one hit "Stuck on You", is typical of this shift. RCA publicity materials referred to its "mild rock beat"; discographer Ernst Jorgensen calls it "upbeat pop".  The number five "She's Not You" (1962) "integrates the Jordanaires so completely, it's practically doo-wop".
 The modern blues/R&B sound captured with success on Elvis Is Back! Was essentially abandoned for six years until such 196667 recordings as "Down in the Alley" and "Hi-Heel Sneakers".
 Presley's output during most of the 1960s emphasized pop music, often in the form of ballads such as Are You Lonesome Tonight? "It's Now or Never", which also topped the chart that year, was a classically influenced variation of pop based on the Neapolitan "'O sole mio" and concluding with a "full-voiced operatic cadence".  These were both dramatic numbers, but most of what Presley recorded for his many film soundtracks was in a much lighter vein. While Presley performed several of his classic ballads for the'68 Comeback Special, the sound of the show was dominated by aggressive rock and roll.He would record few new straight-ahead rock and roll songs thereafter; as he explained, they were "hard to find".  A significant exception was "Burning Love", his last major hit on the pop charts.
Like his work of the 1950s, Presley's subsequent recordings reworked pop and country songs, but in markedly different permutations. His stylistic range now began to embrace a more contemporary rock sound as well as soul and funk. Much of Elvis in Memphis, as well as "Suspicious Minds", cut at the same sessions, reflected his new rock and soul fusion. In the mid-1970s, many of his singles found a home on country radio, the field where he first became a star.The developmental arc of Presley's singing voice, as described by critic Dave Marsh, goes from high and thrilled in the early days, [to] lower and perplexed in the final months. " Marsh credits Presley with the introduction of the "vocal stutter" on 1955's "Baby Let's Play House.  When on "Don't Be Cruel", Presley "slides into a'mmmmm' that marks the transition between the first two verses, " he shows how masterful his relaxed style really is.
" Marsh describes the vocal performance on "Can't Help Falling in Love" as one of "gentle insistence and delicacy of phrasing", with the line "'Shall I stay' pronounced as if the words are fragile as crystal. Publicity photo of Elvis playing guitar. Publicity photo for the CBS program Stage Show, January 16, 1956. Jorgensen calls the 1966 recording of "How Great Thou Art" "an extraordinary fulfillment of his vocal ambitions", as Presley "crafted for himself an ad-hoc arrangement in which he took every part of the four-part vocal, from [the] bass intro to the soaring heights of the song's operatic climax", becoming "a kind of one-man quartet". Guralnick finds "Stand By Me" from the same gospel sessions "a beautifully articulated, almost nakedly yearning performance, " but, by contrast, feels that Presley reaches beyond his powers on "Where No One Stands Alone", resorting "to a kind of inelegant bellowing to push out a sound" that Jake Hess of the Statesmen Quartet had in his command. Hess himself thought that while others might have voices the equal of Presley's, he had that certain something that everyone searches for all during their lifetime.
" Guralnick attempts to pinpoint that something: "The warmth of his voice, his controlled use of both vibrato technique and natural falsetto range, the subtlety and deeply felt conviction of his singing were all qualities recognizably belonging to his talent but just as recognizably not to be achieved without sustained dedication and effort. Marsh praises his 1968 reading of U. Male", "bearing down on the hard guy lyrics, not sending them up or overplaying them but tossing them around with that astonishingly tough yet gentle assurance that he brought to his Sun records. " The performance on "In the Ghetto" is, according to Jorgensen, "devoid of any of his characteristic vocal tricks or mannerisms", instead relying on the exceptional "clarity and sensitivity of his voice.
So quietly confident in its simplicity.  On "Suspicious Minds", Guralnick hears essentially the same "remarkable mixture of tenderness and poise", but supplemented with "an expressive quality somewhere between stoicism (at suspected infidelity) and anguish (over impending loss)". Music critic Henry Pleasants observes that Presley has been described variously as a baritone and a tenor. And a very wide range of vocal color have something to do with this divergence of opinion.
" He identifies Presley as a high baritone, calculating his range as two octaves and a third, "from the baritone low G to the tenor high B, with an upward extension in falsetto to at least a D-flat. Presley's best octave is in the middle, D-flat to D-flat, granting an extra full step up or down. " In Pleasants' view, his voice was "variable and unpredictable" at the bottom, "often brilliant" at the top, with the capacity for "full-voiced high Gs and As that an opera baritone might envy.
 Scholar Lindsay Waters, who figures Presley's range as two-and-a-quarter octaves, emphasizes that his voice had an emotional range from tender whispers to sighs down to shouts, grunts, grumbles, and sheer gruffness that could move the listener from calmness and surrender, to fear. His voice can not be measured in octaves, but in decibels; even that misses the problem of how to measure delicate whispers that are hardly audible at all. " Presley was always "able to duplicate the open, hoarse, ecstatic, screaming, shouting, wailing, reckless sound of the black rhythm-and-blues and gospel singers, writes Pleasants, and also demonstrated a remarkable ability to assimilate many other vocal styles.  From the beginning of his national fame, Presley expressed respect for African-American performers and their music, and disregard for the norms of segregation and racial prejudice then prevalent in the South. Interviewed in 1956, he recalled how in his childhood he would listen to blues musician Arthur Crudupthe originator of "That's All Right"bang his box the way I do now, and I said if I ever got to the place where I could feel all old Arthur felt, I'd be a music man like nobody ever saw.
" The Memphis World, an African-American newspaper, reported that Presley, "the rock'n' roll phenomenon", "cracked Memphis' segregation laws" by attending the local amusement park on what was designated as its "colored night.  Such statements and actions led Presley to be generally hailed in the black community during the early days of his stardom.  In contrast, many white adults, according to Billboard's Arnold Shaw, did not like him, and condemned him as depraved.
Anti-negro prejudice doubtless figured in adult antagonism. Regardless of whether parents were aware of the Negro sexual origins of the phrase'rock'n' roll', Presley impressed them as the visual and aural embodiment of sex. A journalist with the national African-American weekly Jet, Louie Robinson, pursued the story.On the set of Jailhouse Rock, Presley granted Robinson an interview, though he was no longer dealing with the mainstream press. He denied making such a statement or holding in any way to its racist view: I never said anything like that, and people who know me know that I wouldn't have said it.
A lot of people seem to think I started this business. But rock'n' roll was here a long time before I came along. Nobody can sing that kind of music like colored people. Let's face it: I can't sing like Fats Domino can.  Robinson found no evidence that the remark had ever been made, and on the contrary elicited testimony from many individuals indicating that Presley was anything but racist. Blues singer Ivory Joe Hunter, who had heard the rumor before he visited Graceland one evening, reported of Presley, He showed me every courtesy, and I think he's one of the greatest.  Though the rumored remark was wholly discredited at the time, it was still being used against Presley decades later.  The identification of Presley with racismeither personally or symbolicallywas expressed most famously in the lyrics of the 1989 rap hit "Fight the Power", by Public Enemy: "Elvis was a hero to most / But he never meant shit to me / Straight-up racist that sucker was / Simple and plain". The persistence of such attitudes was fueled by resentment over the fact that Presley, whose musical and visual performance idiom owed much to African-American sources, achieved the cultural acknowledgement and commercial success largely denied his black peers.
 Into the 21st century, the notion that Presley had "stolen" black music still found adherents.  Notable among African-American entertainers expressly rejecting this view was Jackie Wilson, who argued, A lot of people have accused Elvis of stealing the black man's music, when in fact, almost every black solo entertainer copied his stage mannerisms from Elvis.  And throughout his career, Presley plainly acknowledged his debt. Addressing his'68 Comeback Special audience, he said, Rock'n' roll music is basically gospel or rhythm and blues, or it sprang from that.
People have been adding to it, adding instruments to it, experimenting with it, but it all boils down to [that]. " Nine years earlier, he had said, "Rock'n' roll has been around for many years. It used to be called rhythm and blues. Film poster with Presley on the left, holding a young woman around the waist, her arms draped over his shoulders.
To the right, five young women wearing bathing suits and holding guitars stand in a row. The one in front taps Presley on the shoulder. Along with title and credits is the tagline Climb aboard your dreamboat for the fastest-movin' fun'n' music!
Poster for the film Girls! (1962), visualizing Presley's sex symbol image. Presley's physical attractiveness and sexual appeal were widely acknowledged."He was once beautiful, astonishingly beautiful", in the words of critic Mark Feeney.  Television director Steve Binder, no fan of Presley's music before he oversaw the'68 Comeback Special, reported, I'm straight as an arrow and I got to tell you, you stop, whether you're male or female, to look at him.
He was that good looking. And if you never knew he was a superstar, it wouldn't make any difference; if he'd walked in the room, you'd know somebody special was in your presence.  His performance style, as much as his physical beauty, was responsible for Presley's eroticized image.Writing in 1970, critic George Melly described him as "the master of the sexual simile, treating his guitar as both phallus and girl".  In his Presley obituary, Lester Bangs credited him as "the man who brought overt blatant vulgar sexual frenzy to the popular arts in America".  Ed Sullivan's declaration that he perceived a soda bottle in Presley's trousers was echoed by rumors involving a similarly positioned toilet roll tube or lead bar.
While Presley was marketed as an icon of heterosexuality, some cultural critics have argued that his image was ambiguous. In 1959, Sight and Sound's Peter John Dyer described his onscreen persona as "aggressively bisexual in appeal".  Brett Farmer places the "orgasmic gyrations" of the title dance sequence in Jailhouse Rock within a lineage of cinematic musical numbers that offer a "spectacular eroticization, if not homoeroticization, of the male image".
 In the analysis of Yvonne Tasker, Elvis was an ambivalent figure who articulated a peculiar feminised, objectifying version of white working-class masculinity as aggressive sexual display. Reinforcing Presley's image as a sex symbol were the reports of his dalliances with various Hollywood stars and starlets, from Natalie Wood in the 1950s to Connie Stevens and Ann-Margret in the 1960s to Candice Bergen and Cybill Shepherd in the 1970s. June Juanico of Memphis, one of Presley's early girlfriends, later blamed Parker for encouraging him to choose his dating partners with publicity in mind.
 Presley never grew comfortable with the Hollywood scene, and most of these relationships were insubstantial. Further information: Colonel Tom Parker. Photo of Elvis and Colonel Tom Parker. Presley and Colonel Tom Parker, 1969.
Once he became Presley's manager, Colonel Tom Parker insisted on exceptionally tight control over his client's career. Early on, he and his Hill and Range allies, the brothers Jean and Julian Aberbach, perceived the close relationship that developed between Presley and songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller as a serious threat to that control.  Parker effectively ended the relationship, deliberately or not, with the new contract he sent Leiber in early 1958. Leiber thought there was a mistakethe sheet of paper was blank except for Parker's signature and a line on which to enter his. "There's no mistake, boy, just sign it and return it", Parker directed.
Don't worry, we'll fill it in later. Leiber declined, and Presley's fruitful collaboration with the writing team was over.  Other respected songwriters lost interest in or simply avoided writing for Presley because of the requirement that they surrender a third of their usual royalties. By 1967, Parker's contracts gave him 50 percent of most of Presley's earnings from recordings, films, and merchandise.  Beginning in February 1972, he took a third of the profit from live appearances; a January 1976 agreement entitled him to half of that as well. Priscilla Presley noted that Elvis detested the business side of his career. He would sign a contract without even reading it. " Presley's friend Marty Lacker regarded Parker as a "hustler and a con artist. Lacker was instrumental in convincing Presley to record with Memphis producer Chips Moman and his handpicked musicians at American Sound Studio in early 1969. The American Sound sessions represented a significant departure from the control customarily exerted by Hill and Range. Moman still had to deal with the publisher's staff on site, whose song suggestions he regarded as unacceptable. He was on the verge of quitting, until Presley ordered the Hill and Range personnel out of the studio.  Although RCA executive Joan Deary was later full of praise for the producer's song choices and the quality of the recordings,  Moman, to his fury, received neither credit on the records nor royalties for his work. Throughout his entire career, Presley performed in only three venues outside the United Statesall of them in Canada, during brief tours there in 1957.  In 1968, he remarked, Before too long I'm going to make some personal appearance tours.
I'll probably start out here in this country and after that, play some concerts abroad, probably starting in Europe. I want to see some places I've never seen before. Parker was uncharacteristically reluctant, prompting those close to Presley to speculate about the manager's past and the reasons for his evident unwillingness to apply for a passport.
 After Presley's death, it was revealed that Parker was born Andreas Cornelis van Kuijk in the Netherlands; having immigrated illegally to the U. He had reason to fear that if he left the country, he would not be allowed back in again.  Parker ultimately squelched any notions Presley had of working abroad, claiming that foreign security was poor and the venues unsuitable for a star of his magnitude. Parker arguably exercised tightest control over Presley's film career.
Hal Wallis said, "I'd rather try and close a deal with the devil" than with Parker. Fellow film producer Sam Katzman described him as "the biggest con artist in the world".
 In 1957, Robert Mitchum asked Presley to costar with him in Thunder Road, which Mitchum was producing and writing.  According to George Klein, one of his oldest friends, Presley was also offered starring roles in West Side Story and Midnight Cowboy.
 In 1974, Barbra Streisand approached Presley to star with her in the remake of A Star is Born.  In each case, any ambitions Presley may have had to play such parts were thwarted by his manager's negotiating demands or flat refusals. In Lacker's description, The only thing that kept Elvis going after the early years was a new challenge.But Parker kept running everything into the ground.  The prevailing attitude may have been summed up best by the response Leiber and Stoller received when they brought a serious film project for Presley to Parker and the Hill and Range owners for their consideration.
In Leiber's telling, Jean Aberbach warned them to never again "try to interfere with the business or artistic workings of the process known as Elvis Presley". In the early 1960s, the circle of friends with whom Presley constantly surrounded himself until his death came to be known as the "Memphis Mafia".
 "Surrounded by the[ir] parasitic presence", as journalist John Harris puts it, it was no wonder that as he slid into addiction and torpor, no-one raised the alarm: to them, Elvis was the bank, and it had to remain open. " Tony Brown, who played piano for Presley regularly in the last two years of Presley's life, observed his rapidly declining health and the urgent need to address it: "But we all knew it was hopeless because Elvis was surrounded by that little circle of people...  In the Memphis Mafia's defense, Marty Lacker has said, [Presley] was his own man. If we hadn't been around, he would have been dead a lot earlier. Larry Geller became Presley's hairdresser in 1964.Unlike others in the Memphis Mafia, he was interested in spiritual questions and recalls how, from their first conversation, Presley revealed his secret thoughts and anxieties: I mean there has to be a purpose... There's got to be a reason... Why I was chosen to be Elvis Presley. I swear to God, no one knows how lonely I get. And how empty I really feel.  Thereafter, Geller supplied him with books on religion and mysticism, which Presley read voraciously.  Presley would be preoccupied by such matters for much of his life, taking trunkloads of books on tour. Further information: Cultural impact of Elvis Presley, Cultural depictions of Elvis Presley, Elvis has left the building, and List of songs about or referencing Elvis Presley. I know he invented rock and roll, in a manner of speaking, but... That's not why he's worshiped as a god today. He's worshiped as a god today because in addition to inventing rock and roll he was the greatest ballad singer this side of Frank Sinatrabecause the spiritual translucence and reined-in gut sexuality of his slow weeper and torchy pop blues still activate the hormones and slavish devotion of millions of female human beings worldwide.
Presley's rise to national attention in 1956 transformed the field of popular music and had a huge effect on the broader scope of popular culture.  As the catalyst for the cultural revolution that was rock and roll, he was central not only to defining it as a musical genre but in making it a touchstone of youth culture and rebellious attitude.  With its racially mixed originsrepeatedly affirmed by Presleyrock and roll's occupation of a central position in mainstream American culture facilitated a new acceptance and appreciation of black culture.  In this regard, Little Richard said of Presley, He was an integrator.
They wouldn't let black music through. He opened the door for black music. " Al Green agreed: "He broke the ice for all of us." President Jimmy Carter remarked on his legacy in 1977: "His music and his personality, fusing the styles of white country and black rhythm and blues, permanently changed the face of American popular culture. His following was immense, and he was a symbol to people the world over of the vitality, rebelliousness, and good humor of his country.  Presley also heralded the vastly expanded reach of celebrity in the era of mass communication: at the age of 21, within a year of his first appearance on American network television, he was one of the most famous people in the world. Presley's name, image, and voice are instantly recognizable around the globe.  He has inspired a legion of impersonators.
 In polls and surveys, he is recognized as one of the most important popular music artists and influential Americans. [e] "Elvis Presley is the greatest cultural force in the twentieth century", said composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein. He introduced the beat to everything and he changed everythingmusic, language, clothes. It's a whole new social revolutionthe sixties came from it. " In the words of John Lennon, "Nothing really affected me until Elvis." Bob Dylan described the sensation of first hearing Presley as "like busting out of jail. Presley's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6777 Hollywood Blvd. On the 25th anniversary of Presley's death, The New York Times asserted, All the talentless impersonators and appalling black velvet paintings on display can make him seem little more than a perverse and distant memory. But before Elvis was camp, he was its opposite: a genuine cultural force. Elvis' breakthroughs are underappreciated because in this rock-and-roll age, his hard-rocking music and sultry style have triumphed so completely.  Not only Presley's achievements, but his failings as well, are seen by some cultural observers as adding to the power of his legacy, as in this description by Greil Marcus. Elvis Presley is 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 really dirty blues. Elvis has emerged as a great artist, a great rocker, a great purveyor of schlock, a great heart throb, a great bore, a great symbol of potency, a great ham, a great nice person, and, yes, a great American.
Presley holds the records for most songs charting in Billboard's top 40115and top 100: 152, according to chart statistician Joel Whitburn,  139 according to Presley historian Adam Victor.  Presley's rankings for top ten and number-one hits vary depending on how the double-sided "Hound Dog/Don't Be Cruel" and "Don't/I Beg of You" singles, which precede the inception of Billboard's unified Hot 100 chart, are analyzed. [f] According to Whitburn's analysis, Presley holds the record with 38, tying with Madonna; per Billboard's current assessment, he ranks second with 36.  Whitburn and Billboard concur that the Beatles hold the record for most number-one hits with 20, and that Mariah Carey is second with 18.
Whitburn has Presley also with 18, and thus tied for second; Billboard has him third with 17.  Presley retains the record for cumulative weeks at number one: alone at 80, according to Whitburn and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; tied with Carey at 79, according to Billboard. He holds the records for most British number-one hits with 21, and top ten hits with 76. As an album artist, Presley is credited by Billboard with the record for the most albums charting in the Billboard 200: 129, far ahead of second-place Frank Sinatra's 82. He also holds the record for most time spent at number one on the Billboard 200: 67 weeks.  In 2015 and 2016, two albums setting Presley's vocals against music by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, If I Can Dream and The Wonder of You, both reached number one in the United Kingdom. This gave him a new record for number-one U. Albums by a solo artist with 13, and extended his record for longest span between number-one albums by anybodyPresley had first topped the British chart in 1956 with his self-titled debut. As of 2018, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) credits Presley with 146.5 million certified album sales in the U. Third all time behind the Beatles and Garth Brooks.  He holds the records for most gold albums (117, more than twice as many as second-place Barbra Streisand's 51),  most platinum albums (67),  and most multi-platinum albums (27).  His total of 197 album certification awards (including one diamond award), far outpaces the Beatles' second-best 122.  He has the most gold singles (54) and the fourth-most platinum singles (27, behind Rihanna, Taylor Swift, and Chris Brown). In 2012 the spider Paradonea presleyi was named in his honor.
In 2018, President Donald Trump awarded Presley the Presidential Medal of Freedom posthumously. Main articles: Elvis Presley albums discography, singles, songs, and hit albums. A vast number of recordings have been issued under Presley's name.
The total number of his original master recordings has been variously calculated as 665 and 711.  His career began and he was most successful during an era when singles were the primary commercial medium for pop music. In the case of his albums, the distinction between "official" studio records and other forms is often blurred. For most of the 1960s, his recording career focused on soundtrack albums.
His Hand in Mine (1960). How Great Thou Art (1967). From Elvis in Memphis (1969). From Memphis to Vegas / From Vegas to Memphis (1969). That's the Way It Is (1970).Elvis Country (I'm 10,000 Years Old) (1971). Love Letters from Elvis (1971).
Elvis sings The Wonderful World of Christmas (1971). Elvis (1973) (The "Fool" Album). Raised on Rock / For Ol' Times Sake (1973). From Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis, Tennessee (1976).It Happened at the World's Fair (1963). Main article: Elvis Presley on film and television.
Wild in the Country (1961). Easy Come, Easy Go (1967). Live a Little, Love a Little (1968). The Trouble with Girls (1969). Elvis: That's the Way It Is (1970).
Brook Benton (born Benjamin Franklin Peay; September 19, 1931 April 9, 1988) was an American singer and songwriter who was popular with rock and roll, rhythm and blues, and pop music audiences during the late 1950s and early 1960s, with hits such as "It's Just a Matter of Time" and "Endlessly", many of which he co-wrote. He made a comeback in 1970 with the ballad Rainy Night in Georgia. Benton scored over 50 Billboard chart hits as an artist, and also wrote hits for other performers. When Benton was young, he enjoyed gospel music, wrote songs and sang in a Methodist church choir in Lugoff, South Carolina, where his father, Willie Peay, was choir master.  In 1948, he went to New York to pursue his music career, going in and out of gospel groups, such as The Langfordaires, The Jerusalem Stars and The Golden Gate Quartet.
Returning to his home state, he joined a R&B singing group, The Sandmen, and went back to New York to get a big break with his group. The Sandmen had limited success and their label, Okeh Records, decided to push Peay as a solo artist, changing his name to Brook Benton, apparently at the suggestion of label executive Marv Halsman. Brook earned a good living by writing songs and co-producing albums.
He wrote songs for artists such as Nat King Cole, Clyde McPhatter (for whom he co-wrote the hit "A Lover's Question") and Roy Hamilton. He eventually released his first minor hit, "A Million Miles from Nowhere", before switching to the Mercury label, which would eventually bring him major success.He also appeared in the 1957 film, Mr Rock And Roll with Alan Freed. In 1959, he finally made his breakthrough with hits like "It's Just a Matter of Time" and "Endlessly".
 "Endlessly" made it to #12. Both of the first two hits were written by Benton with Clyde Otis. They were originally offered to Nat King Cole, but when Otis became an A&R manager and producer at Mercury, he convinced Benton to sign with the label and record them himself, while asking Cole not to record the songs as planned.  Benton followed this success with a series of hits, including "So Many Ways" (#6), "Hotel Happiness" (#3), "Think Twice" (#11), "Kiddio" (#7), and "The Boll Weevil Song" (#2).
In 1960, he had two top 10 hit duets with Dinah Washington: "Baby (You've Got What It Takes)" (#5) and "A Rockin' Good Way (To Mess Around and Fall in Love)" (#7). In the mid 1960s, Benton recorded for RCA Records and Reprise Records with minimal commercial success. Then, in 1968, he signed with Cotillion Records, a subsidiary of Atlantic Records, where, the following year, he enjoyed his last major hit with "Rainy Night in Georgia", written by Tony Joe White and produced and arranged by Arif Mardin. Benton recorded a total of five albums with Mardin, including a gospel album, during his stay at Cotillion. Benton eventually charted a total of 49 singles on the Billboard Hot 100, with other songs charting on Billboard's rhythm and blues, easy listening, and Christmas music charts.  The last album made by Benton was Fools Rush In, which was released posthumously in 2005. He also had records released on various other labels, including All-Platinum, Brut, Olde Worlde, Stax and Groove Records. Weakened from spinal meningitis, Brook died of pneumonia in Queens, New York City, at the age of 56 on April 9, 1988. He was survived by his wife, Mary Benton, and five children, Brook Jr.
Vanessa, Roy, Gerald and Benjamin, all of Queens. It's Just a Matter of Time. I Love You in So Many Ways. The Two of Us (with Dinah Washington). The Boll Weevil Song and 11 Other Great Hits.Singing the Blues Lie to Me. Born to Sing the Blues. Laura (What's He Got That I Ain't Got). " This is Brook Benton" also released in the UK as "Mister Bartender" on the All Platinum label. The Incomparable Brook Benton 20 Greatest Hits (Warwick). "Brook Benton Today" also hit #4 on the US RnB LP charts in 1970. Brook Benton At His Best!! "Some of My Best Friends". "Love Made Me Your Fool". B/w "Give Me a Sign". B/w "All My Love Belongs to You" (from The Soul Of Brook Benton). B/w "I Wanna Do Everything for You" (from Brook Benton). "A Million Miles from Nowhere". "It's Just a Matter of Time".
I Love You In So Many Ways. "With All of My Heart". "This Time of the Year". B/w "Nothing In The World (Could Make Me Love You More Than I Do)" (first pressings).
"How Many Times" (later pressings). "Baby (You've Got What It Takes)". (Both sides with Dinah Washington).
"Hither and Thither and Yon". "A Rockin' Good Way (To Mess Around and Fall In Love)". "Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear to Tread)". Songs I Love to Sing.
"Someday You'll Want Me to Want You". B/w "Merry Christmas, Happy New Year". "It's Just a House Without You". B/w "Really, Really" (Non-album track). "Walk on the Wild Side".
B/w "Somewhere in the Used to Be" (Non-album track). "With the Touch of Your Hand".
"I Got What I Wanted". B/w "Don't Hate Me". "Baby, You've Got It Made" (w/ Damita Jo). "Stop Foolin'" (w/ Damita Jo).
"You're All I Want for Christmas". B/w "This Time of the Year". B/w "After Midnight"(from Born to Sing the Blues). "Too Late to Turn Back Now".
"A House Is Not a Home". B/w "Don't Do What I Did (Do What I Say)". "Please, Please Make It Easy". B/w "Where There's a Will (There's a Way"). B/w "A Sleepin' at the Foot of the Bed".
B/w "Where There's Life (There's Still Hope)". "Only a Girl Like You".
B/w "While There's Life (There's Still Hope)". B/w "A Sailor Boy's Love Song".B/w "In the Evening by Moonlight". B/w "So True in Life, So True in Love". "All My Love Belongs to You". "Laura (What's He Got That I Ain't Got)". B/w "You're the Reason I'm Living". Laura, What's He Got That I Ain't Got. B/w "The Glory of Love" (from Laura, What's He Got That I Ain't Got). B/w "Instead (of Loving You)". B/w "I Just Don't Know What to Do with Myself". B/w "She Knows What to Do for Me". "Nothing Can Take the Place of You". B/w "Where Do I Go from Here". B/w "A Little Bit of Soap". "Don't It Make You Want to Go Home". B/w "I've Gotta Be Me" (from Brook Benton Today). B/w "Let Me Fix It" (from Home Style). B/w "Whoever Finds This (I Love You)" (from Home Style). "Take a Look at Your Hands".
B/w "If You Think God Is Dead". "Please Send Me Someone to Love". B/w "She Even Woke Me Up to Say Goodbye"."A Black Child Can't Smile". B/w "If You Think God Is Dead" (from The Gospel Truth). B/w "Let Us All Get Together with the Lord" (from The Gospel Truth). "If You Got the Time". B/w "You Take Me Home Honey". B/w "A Touch of Class". B/w "All That Love Went to Waste".
"Can't Take My Eyes Off You". "Making Love Is Good for You".
Makin' Love Is Good for You. The item "ERNEST WITHERS PHOTO 8X10 AFRICAN AMERICAN ARTIST PHOTOGRAPHER NEGRO LEAGUES" is in sale since Tuesday, October 13, 2020. This item is in the category "Art\Art Photographs". The seller is "collectiblecollectiblecollectible" and is located in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
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