Elvis Presley By: Amanda Blair

Elvis Presley continues to represent rock n roll even after his death in 1977. He can be considered a musical legend because of his numerous accomplishments throughout his career. It is amazing how quickly Elvis became successful through Sam Phillip's discovery in 1954.

Elvis was born to Vernon and Gladys Presley in 1935. As an only child, he was the center of his parents lives. Growing up in a very poor area with little money in the family, Elvis grew up to be an extremely humble child with a lot of talent. They could not afford to get a bicycle for him for his birthday, so he instead got a guitar. He got his musical influence from church and the gospel music sang there and by watching other musicians. His other musical influences included pop and country.

In 1954, Elvis was discovered by Sun Record's boss, Sam Phillips. Phillips was Elvis's starting point to what would become an amazing career. Elvis received positive feedback very early and unexpectedly. In 1956, "Heartbreak Hotel", was released and became the number one hit in the United States. Also, "In 1954, Elvis began his singing career with the legendary Sun Records label in Memphis. In late 1955, his recording contract was sold to RCA Victor. By 1956, he was an international sensation" ("Graceland- The Home of").

"Memphis, 1954, and Sun recording studio boss Sam Phillips dreams of discovering a new sound: a blend of the best of black music and the best of white music" (Guralnick). That is exactly what Elvis was. Most of his musical influence came from black culture. He became more of a performer than artist. Although he did not write his own songs, he was still an extremely talented performer. Because his performances were unpredictable yet distinct to his name, he kept his fans always wanting to hear and watch more.

Phillips created Elvis's image. He played with his performances and gave him a distinct performing image. Elvis became known as the "King of Rock" and had a very unique look, dance moves, and music style which keeps him famous to this day.

Elvis was an artist that made Rock n Roll popular in America. His unforgettable performances and style made everyone love it. He combined styles to create his own and made it so popular.

Black culture influenced Elvis Presley in many ways. Growing up in a poor, black community, it was all he was exposed to. At his church, he sang gospel music along with his community members which really influenced who he was as a singer and performer.

Along with Elvis many accomplishments he is still a musical legacy today. He will always be a famous icon of American Music. He still has fans even after his death in 1977, and his music is still popular and well-known. Along with thousands of concert performances he also won three Grammy Awards. Surprisingly, all of his successes happened in such little time. Elvis will continue to be a true legacy in American Music.

Works Cited

The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

Davidcici11Evolution. "African American Influence on Pop Culture Rock N Roll & Elvis Presley Part 1." YouTube. YouTube, 09 June 2013. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

"Elvis Presley Biography." Elvis Presley Biography - Elvis Presley Life Story - Official Elvis Biography. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

"Elvis Presley Biography." Elvis Presley Biography - Life, Family, Death, Wife, School, Mother, Young, Information, Born, Drugs. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

"Elvis Presley Success Story." Elvis Presley Story - Bio, Facts, Networth, Family, Auto, Home | Famous Singers | SuccessStory. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

"Elvis Racism ... Did He Steal or Popularize R&B Music?" Elvis Racism ... Did He Steal or Popularize R&B Music? N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

Memphisvic. "SAM PHILLIPS The Man Who Invented Rock & Roll (PART 1)." YouTube. YouTube, 01 Feb. 2013. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

"Sam Phillips." Sun Record Company. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.

"Sam Phillips' Sun Records." Sam Phillips Sun Records. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.


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