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Chapter 3. Becoming `The King`
story background of Elvis Presley biography website

This page is dedicated to providing the site visitor with quality Elvis Presley biography information, on becoming `The King` of rock & roll, pictures and articles for your entertainment. The contents of this Elvis Presley biography site is written by a fan for his fans.

Read about Elvis` personal collection here ELIVS` OWN COLLECTION

Read here to find out more about his studio recordings including lyrics and much more The Sun Recordings By Elvis Presley

Article also continues below for more information about `Elvis Presley ` his Military service:


G.I. Blues was released in in 1960 and "It's Now Over Never" reached #1

Presley had five number #1 hits in the early 60s, "Stuck On You," "It's Now or Never, "Are You lonesome Tonight," (1960); "Surrender (1961); and "Good Luck Charm" (1962).

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1960 3rd March Elvis recorded the great Peggy Lee hit `Fever` as part of `Elvis is Back` an album celebrating his return from the US Army and his return to live performing.

Read more information here about Elvis Presley Star sign And Fame

Read here find out more about his remarkable voice with comments from his fans in their survey replies to me and more Elvis Presley ` Voice Characteristics

Every time I felt low I just put on an Elvis record and I`d feel great.
Paul McCartney

Elvis was my Idol from the beginning and even today whenI`m alone, I`ll often put on the King Creole album.
He`s produced the most exciting pop music sounds of all time
Cliff Richard

On the 4th of March Elvis recorded `Are You Lonesome Tonight` which was also one day to be used as the title of a biographical musical about the King.

If I slept with every woman the weekly magazines say I have, Iwould have been dead a long time ago.

Elvis Presley pictures head shot dressed in black leather

27th April of the same year, Elvis recorded the title song of both an album and a movie `GI Blues`.

I wasn't exactly a James Bond in Movies, but then no one ever asked Sean Connery to sing a song while dodging bullets.

May 12th Elvis appeared on `The Frank Sinatra Show` in a more clean cut image when Frank Sinatra gave his variety show a `Welcome Home, Elvis` theme to herald Elvis` return from the army.

Elvis was paid $125,000 to appear — again, making history.

30th October Elvis recorded his first gospel record `His Hand in Mine` at the RCA Studios in Nashville.

Priscilla Beaulieu , a teenage daughter of an Army officer that Presley had met while in Germany, visited Graceland during Christmas 1960. In early 1961 she moved in, it was said, under the supervision of Vernon and Davada.

The press went along with the spin Colonel Parker put on the story, and few seemed to care the King of Rock and Roll was sharing his house with a teenaged girlfriend.

Elvis Presley pictures of him playing piano 1961

1961 25th February `Elvis Presley Day` was proudly announced publicly by Tennessee Governor Buford Ellington. Elvis was Guest of Honour and all the proceeds of the celebrations were donated to 38 charities.

`Money is meant to be spread around, the more happiness it helps create, the more it`s worth.`

After a live performance on March 25, 1961 Presley quit performing and spent the next eight years making movies. The soundtracks from his movies were generally poor.

By the mid-Sixties Presley was earning $1 million per movie plus a large percentage of the gross. Each movie had a concurrently released soundtrack album, five of which went gold.

Presley was displeased with these films, but Colonel Parker insisted that Presley stick with this winning formula.

Years later Parker's shortsightedness would result in his turning down Barbara Streisand's offer to have Presley costar with her the 1974 remake of A Star Is Born.

Parker felt Streisand didn't deserve equal billing with Presley.

If he was a revolutionary, then he was an accidental one, an innately talented young man who arrived on the scene at the right place at the right times.

And though his music symbolized the coming together of black and white cultures into the mainstream in a way that had never happened before, that seemed to hold little interest for him.

What Elvis Aaron Presley really wanted from the start was to go to Hollywood and become a movie star like his heroes, James Dean and Marlon Brando. And just like them to be the rebel up on the screen.

It was almost as if the music that shook the world was incidental, Brando and Dean were his role models.

When he finally got to Hollywood and met director of Rebel Without A Cause, Nicholas Ray, Elvis got down on his knee and started reciting whole pages from the script.

Obviously Elvis had seen Rebel at least a dozen times and memorized every line that Dean spoke.

However, Elvis was never given the chance to rival Brando and Dean as a movie actor, but he did learn from them one critical lesson: never smile.

Elvis was convinced that that serious, sultry and sexy look was the key to their success. Now even Robert Mitchum (another favourite actors of Elvis) used that down cast appearance at times.

He was sure he could manage the same kind of sultry and sexy persona of his Hollywood idols.

As a teenager, in the privacy of his bedroom Elvis spent hours in front of the mirror working on the look and used it to maximum effect own screen and stage appearance.

The perfect example of this can be seen in the movie "Jailhouse Rock" when Elvis impulsively grabs his new manager (Judy Tyler) and kisses her.

When she objects he claims "It's just the beast in me..." A sexually charged moment in the movie as he walks away with a sneer.

And again, if you care to notice, all professional photo shoots of the 50's rarely show Elvis with a smile on his face.

However, the difference between Dean, Brando, and Elvis was that although a sinner on-stage, he was a saint off-stage.

Whereas, Dean and Brando remained sullen, self-obsessed and at times completely anti-social.

Interview with RED

Let me go through the thing here. He started out great doing personal appearances, then he went into the movies, the movies got to be a drag because of what we`ve been talking about — the songs were terrible, the scripts were terrible.

So he went to Vegas instead of working maybe 5 nights a week and 2 nights off or 6 nights and 1 night off for a couple of weeks, like Frank Sinatra and everybody else did, he worked for 4 weeks for 7 nights a week, 2 shows a night.

The Colonel was downstairs gambling enjoying himself. So, this got to be .. OK I want to go back on the road, I want out of this.

The movies got to be a drag, this is getting to be a drag, I want to get back in front of the audience around the country, the world.

The Colonel started booking him into the same towns. Each tour we`d hit Roanoke, Virginia, we`d hit so-and so and so-and-so, Atlanta, Georgia.

He wanted to come here. He wanted to go to Australia, he wanted to go to Germany, he wanted to go anywhere but Roanoke, Virginia and Atlanta, Georgia, but no, and why the Colonel did that?

I asked the Colonel why can`t we tour Europe. Why can`t we go to Australia. Can`t handle security, can`t handle security.

We didn`t know he was an illegal alien and he could not go outside the US.

I wondered why he never came to Germany while we were there. He always sent other people there.

He never left the USA, once he got there he never left, and that hurt Elvis.

If Elvis could have gotten out and seen you people and entertained you and everybody else, it could`ve been different, but he was a prisoner of his own success and let`s just say the Colonel got him where he was, but he also put him where he is.

Elvis' Shopping List

The following list are the items which had to be kept at Graceland "for Elvis — AT ALL TIMES — EVERY DAY."

` fresh, lean, unfrozen ground meat
` one case regular Pepsi
` one case orange drinks
` rolls (hot rolls — Brown 'n' Serve)
` cans of biscuits (at least six)
` hamburger buns
` pickles
` potatoes and onions
` assorted fresh fruits
` cans of sauerkraut
` wieners
` at least three bottles of milk and 1/2 & 1/2 cream
` thin, lean bacon
` mustard
` peanut butter
` fresh, hand-squeezed cold orange juice
` banana pudding (to be made each night)
` ingredients for meat loaf and sauce
` brownies (to be made each night)
` ice cream — vanilla and chocolate
` shredded coconut
` fudge cookies
` gum (Spearmint, Doublemint, Juicy Fruit — three each)
` cigars (El Producto Diamond Tips & El Producto Altas)
` cigarettes
` Dristan
` Super Anahist
` Contac
` Sucrets (antibiotic red box)
` Feenamint gum
` matches (four to five books)

This list is taken from the book "The Life and Cuisine of Elvis Presley"

`Elvis was a complex and contradictory type of person. I mean, he had many sides to him.

Elvis could not really bring himself to say I'm sorry to anybody.

If he got mad at them or did something that he knew he shouldn't have done, and he'd get over it in 30 minutes.

But...instead of saying I'm sorry, instead of saying I'm sorry, he'd buy you something`

The only time I ever heard him say I'm sorry, is he said it to me because of an argument, the one and only argument we ever had.

And it shocked me when he did it, because he just didn't do that. He'd go buy you something.`
- Lacker

On March 25th Elvis gave a benefit concert in Hawaii, it was to be his last live performance until 1968, Elvis quit stage performing and spent the next seven years making movies to launch his film career. Arizona Memorial Benefit Show This is one of the all time great benefit performances in history of show business.

Elvis Presley pictures with fans May 16th Elvis recorded the early hit of Bob Dylan `Don`t think twice, it`s alright` in Nashville Tennessee.

Reply to being asked whether being a prisoner was sort of counteractive to what Elvis could`ve actually done... Do you think he was too frightened, or was it instilled in him to be so protected and protective that he dared not go out into the general public?

"No, he tried. Even in Las Vegas where people like Frank Sinatra, many of the stars, Sammy Davis — they could go out and pretty well mingle.

They could go down if they wanted to gamble or whatever. People didn`t bother them too much.

But Elvis tried it — once — and the whole casino... everybody stopped playing and came around just to watch and see what he was doing, and he could not get out and do what most people do, and everything had to be at night." — Red West

In the early 60`s Elvis had five number #1 hits, they were `It`s now or never`, `Stuck on you`, Are you lonesome tonight` `Surrender` (1961) also `Good luck charm` (1962)


March 19 Elvis first recorded `Suspicion` on the B site and `Kiss me quick` on the A side of the record which made number #1 in the UK


`Before Elvis there was nothing.` John Lennon

August 27 — The Beatles spend the evening talking and playing music with Elvis Presley at his Bel air home.

I guess when the British invasion first started to penetrate the charts in the States, Elvis at that time, and you all at that time, must have taken a step back and said to yourselves what`s happening here, we need to reassert our place in the marketplace because all these limeys are coming over and taking our money.

RW --No, Elvis always said there`s room for everybody. He was never threatened, in fact when he had his home in Bel Air, and I guess everybody knows about when the Beatles came to his house.

It was one of the best, fun times we ever had. We just sat around. Ringo, myself and my cousin played pool.

Ringo was kind of a loner, the rest of them and Elvis sat and chit-chatted all night and had a ball.

The only thing, when he was in the Army, he felt like his hands were tied and everybody was doing their thing when he was in the Army but he said I`ve got this to do, and then I hope they`ll remember me when I get out, but he never wished anybody any bad luck or anything like that.

Maybe you`ve heard he did, but don`t believe it.


On May 1 Presley married Priscilla at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas

Elvis was excited to be apart of Priscilla`s Graduation day

Fearing he had been forgotten, Presley defied Parker and made a comeback television special.

Over the summer he taped the television special that was released on December 3 to high ratings.

It's soundtrack reached #8 and produced his first Top Twenty single "If I Can Dream" (#12, 1968) since 1965.


February 1, 1968 their only child Lisa Marie was born, exactly nine months after the wedding.

Lisa Marie Presley Interview With Andrew Denton

Lisa chases her inner punk Lisa Marie

June 28 Elvis began taping a Christmas special for NBC Television, dressed in his black leather. He returned back to the top of the American Entertainment scene.

More information about Elvis Presley 68 Comeback Special

With this success Presley turned to performing in Las Vegas.

Read here about how his music allow him to express himself Music From The Heart


On July 26, Presley began a month long appearance at the International Hotel. This set the course for all of his future performances.

His fee for four months was over a $1 million. Riding the crest of the comeback Presley released a series of top singles, including "In the Ghetto," "Suspicious Minds," "Don't Cry Daddy," and The Wonder of You".

Presley began touring again, his shows selling out and frequently breaking box office records.

Two on tour documentaries were released Elvis: That's the Way It Is (1970) and Elvis On Tour (1972), the latter which won the Golden Globe Award for Best Documentary.

Outwardly, Presley was more popular than ever and one of the biggest personality cults in modern history was taking hold.

Off stage Presley was plagued with self doubt, poor management, and a basic dissatisfaction with his life.

He repeatedly threatened to quit show business, but debts and financial obligations to his large extended family, employees, and assorted hangers on made that impossible. Presley turned to drugs.

After leaving the army he became wary of the public and would often rent whole movie theatres and amusement parks that he would visit at night.

By the late Sixties he was an almost total recluse.

Although evidence that Presley began taking drugs shortly after began performing or while in the army, his abuse of prescription drugs increased during the last years of his life.

Through all this he remained highly spiritual and publicly denounced the use of recreational drugs.

Elvis Presley pictures on stage Aloha concert click to buy elvis presley pictures and posters....

The Elvis Presley(R) Hits JFK Coin Collection


September 16 Elvis`s sellout series of concerts come to an end at the International Hotel in Las Vegas.

In Elvis`s concerts of the 1970`s he would often wear his ornamented jumpsuits with a cloak, worth thousands of dollars.

Elvis`s suits in the 70s have been said to weigh up to thirty pounds.


July 20 Elvis started a series of stage performances at the Las Vegas International Hotel and at the Sahara Tahoe and finished on September 6

PAUL McCartney: "The Beatles would've happened had he not been around"

John Lennon: "Before Elvis there was nothing..."

Roy Orbison: "He was the greatest natural talents in the world 'cause he never took lessons..."

Frank Sinatra: "I'm just a singer. Elvis was the embodiment of the whole American culture."

Paul Simon: "Elvis sang, Bridge Over Trouble Water, with great feeling — like it should've been sung..."

Mick Jagger: "No-one but on-one is his equal or ever will be!

Bruce Springsteen: "Elvis is my religion. But for him, I'd be selling encyclopaedias right now!"

John Cougar Mellencamp: "Elvis was a time went rock n roll really meant somethin'!"


June 9 Elvis performed to an audience of 80,000 people in the first of his three concerts in Madison Square Gardens, New York and recorded a live Album

I don`t admire nobody but Elvis Presley. He was the sweetest most humble and nicest man you`d ever meet.
Muhammad Ali

Elvis worked out doing Karate along with other physical activities when he was `The King` Elvis Karate

Meanwhile Presley's personal life had become the subject of countless tabloids.

In February 1972, Presley separated from Priscilla and on his birthday in 1973 filed for divorce.

Less than a week later the TV special Elvis: Aloha from Hawaii was broadcast over satellite to over a billion people in forty countries, an indication of his international appeal although (with the exception of three dates in Canada in 1957 and an impromptu performance in Paris while on leave in 1959)

Presley never performed outside the United States.

During his career Presley had 94 gold singles, three gold EPs, and over 40 gold albums.

His movies grossed over $180 million and millions more were made by the merchandising of Elvis products, the rights which were controlled by Colonel Parker


October 9, Elvis and Priscilla Presley divorce in Santa Monica, California.

Despite deteriorating health, Presley maintained a frantic tour schedule, because in 1973 Colonel Parker negotiated a deal with RCA to the rights of many of his masters in exchange for a lump sum payment of which only 2.8 million came to him.

After 1973, Parker was earning nearly 50% commission.

Worse yet Presley wasn't earning royalties on records recorded before 1973, although they continued to sell millions.

Presley opposed tax shelters on principle; naively relied on his father for business advice; gave away expensive gifts and cash.

The result was by the mid-Seventies was an impending financial disaster.


May/June 26 Elvis Presley gave his final performance in Madison Square Arena at Indianapolis, Indiana.

` `Til we meet you again, may God bless you. Adios.`
-Said in 1977 at the end of a concert during his last tour.

August 6 Elvis sang with friends for the last time. The songs were mostly hymns such as `How Great Thou Art` at his girlfriend Ginger Alden`s house.

August 16th 1977

On this day `The King` Elvis Presley was found dead at his home `Graceland`.

Article also continues below for more information about
`Cause of death of Elvis — Why Elvis Died:
The King has left the building

`Death and burial of Elvis Presley:

The day before his next scheduled concert, Presley was discovered by his girlfriend Ginger Alden dead in his bathroom at Graceland.

An unconscious Elvis Presley is rushed to Baptist Memorial Hospital around 3 p.m. Despite efforts to revive him, Presley is subsequently pronounced dead.

His death was attributed to congestive heart failure. A later autopsy revealed advanced hardening of the arteries and an enlarged liver.

Read on and also see famous quotes on His Lasting Legacy

Later it was determined that drug abuse may have been a contributing factor.

At a press conference that evening, medical examiner Dr. Jerry Francisco indicates that the cause of death appeared to be "cardiac arrhythmia," noting that, "There was severe cardiovascular disease present."

September 1979 Presley's private doctor Dr. George Nichopoulos was charged by the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners with indiscriminately prescribing 5,300 and vials in the seven months before his death. He was later acquitted.

Thousands gathered at Graceland where his body lay in state before he was buried in a mausoleum at Forest Hills Cemetery in Memphis.

This is my small tribute to him, my small way of saying....Thank you for the gift of You!! Rest In Peace DEEPEST LOVE-----LOST { BEAUTIFUL POEM OF ELVIS}

After attempts to break into the mausoleum, Presley's body and that of his mother were moved to the Meditation Garden behind Graceland.

Nearly two years later, Vernon died and was also buried there. The estate now passed on to Lisa Marie.

Court battles over the estate ended in June 1983 after twenty one months of litigation with a settlement of four lawsuits.

Colonel Parker was forced to turn over most of his interests in Presley's audio and visual recordings to RCA and the Presley family in return for a large monetary settlement.

Priscillia Presley assumed control of the estate and through a number of business moves made Presley's estate more valuable than it had ever been.

The cornerstone of the Elvis Presley Enterprise, Inc. financial empire is the Tennessee state law Priscillia Presley pushed for that guarantees to heirs of commercial rights to the deceased celebrity's image and likeness.

Check it out here Elvis in the 21st Century

Elvis is the greatest Blues singer in the world today.
Joe Cocker

Nothing really affected me until I heard Elvis. If there hadn`t been an Elvis, there wouldn`t have been the Beatles.
John Lennon

Like every artist to emerge during the rock scene Elvis was my influence and my idol.
Marty Wilde(Rock`n Roll singer)

His two most critically acclaimed films, Jailhouse Rock (1957) and King Creole (1958) have become classics of their era and a Legacy of `The King` for future generations of his fans.

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Chapter 4 ` The Band Members.

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A Short History of Elvis Presley 
Elvis Aaron Presley was born on January 8, 1935 in the town of Tupelo in Mississippi. As a member of the Pentecostal church in his hometown, he was exposed ...

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