Elvis Aaron Presley was born January 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi to Vernon Elvis Presley and Gladys Love Presley (née Smith). In school, Presley was always strumming a guitar that was given to him for his birthday and although shy at first, with a little help he was soon singing. In November of 1948, they moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where Elvis was raised on the blues. He loved listening to the jukebox, which had a whole bunch of country songs, and he soon knew the songs by heart.
Everyone talks of the tale when he went to Sun Records to pay studio time to record a record for his mother for her birthday. He sang “My Happiness” and “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin“, some say he was hoping to be discovered. The songs may have sounded beautiful but maybe the sound just wasn’t his own. Presley was presenting the popular sound that everyone was use to hearing, and from him apparently it sounded like nothing particularly special. He auditioned for lots of acts and received many rejections. Elvis worked at his sound and his moves. He grew up listening to Southern Gospel, the Blues, Country, and spiritual music.
Sam Phillips, the owner of Sun Records called him back, he thought he heard something, but when he and the backup band played the ballads, he wasn’t getting the sound he wanted. He wanted a southern black sound. They played, played, and still no sound. Phillips told Elvis and the boys to take a break. Elvis started relaxing and started playing “That’s All Right”, and there was the sound Phillips was looking for. Not long after that Elvis gave his first live performance at the Bon Air Club. He would be shaking his hips and the girls would be screaming. The crowd was wild.
The Elvis Presley sound became so big, well, you know, he became the King of Rock and Roll. He had many number one singles including “Jailhouse Rock” which I am sharing with you. Presley ran into a few problems with his moves, apparently they were found in some ways to be a little too sexual and needed to be censored. He didn’t only love to sing, he grew to love acting. I loved watching all his movies including Viva Las Vegas with Ann-Margret and Blue Hawaii as crazy as they were. But when you listen to him sing “Love Me Tender” you could just melt.