How Elvis Presley Became The ‘King’ Of Rock And Roll

Be it Can’t Help Falling In Love or Jailhouse Rock, Elvis Presley has made the world a better place with his brilliant masterpieces. The singer-songwriter was not just the king of Rock and Roll. He was also one of the most dashing and charming faces that Hollywood has ever seen. Besides having a career in music, Presley was also a professional actor and movie producer.

Here is how Elvis became one of the most iconic figures in the entertainment business.

The Struggles In His Early Life

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Before being launched into fame and stardom, life was not very smooth for young Elvis. Born Elvis Aaron Presley in Tupelo, Mississippi, on 8th January 1935, his family struggled financially, and his parents lived in a two-room house. Still, their presence was a nurturing one in Presley’s life as they toiled to give the best life possible to their son. They valued Presley even more because his twin was stillborn.

His father, Vernon, spent all day working hard at all kinds of odd jobs while his mother Gladys worked hard to maintain a healthy environment in the house. But when Elvis was about three years old, Vernon Presley went to jail for having a conflict over altering a check with his employer. Elvis was introduced to music through the church choir before becoming intrigued by jazz music he heard on the streets.

Elvis was not extraordinary when it came to academics, but his teachers loved him for his talents as a singer and musician. He got well-groomed in his craft after receiving a guitar on one of his birthdays, but Elvis remained a shy kid and was hesitant to perform in public. He moved to Tennessee at the age of 13 and began to pursue music seriously. He got enrolled in music classes after having flunked some musical tests at school. In the process, he also landed the opportunity to train in music alongside some professionals who would later, like him, become pioneers of the music industry. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Elvis was not good at reading music, but he was a ‘natural’ with a trained ear, and he could tell the right notes just by listening to them.

A Glamorous Career In Music

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Elvis began his journey as a professional in the music industry after graduating from Humes High School in 1953, as stated by Graceland. His first stepping stone was recording two of his singles at Sun Records, which were so well performed that Sam Phillips was immediately impressed by him. At this point, Elvis had not yet become a professional singer and was still working as a truck driver.

Soon enough, he heard from Phillips, who invited Elvis back into his studio to work his wonder and make African-American music marketable to the audience. This venture ultimately resulted in the long and challenging recording of the song That’s All Right, which became the first hit song by Presley in1954, as stated by Biography. For Elvis, the shaking of legs on stage was his bodily reaction to stage fright, but soon it became famous as an exclusive style, and fans would swoon over it when Presley was performing on the stage.

‘Rockabilly’ became an official music genre, thanks to Presley, and soon enough, it also became one of the most liked performance styles. But it became slightly tricky to market the songs of Presley because he was the pioneer of a whole new genre in music, and radio jockeys did not know how to introduce it to a wider audience.

Presley landed a contract with RCA in 1955 for a fancy amount of about $40,000. Within a year, his first album was released, featuring hit singles such as Blue Suede Shoes. His song became a super hit despite it being a cover of a Carl Perkins song. The dropping of his debut album was crucial to the development of a new genre in music which would later be termed ‘Rock and Roll,’ and Elvis would be dubbed its ‘King.’ Some of his classics that became sensations include Heartbreak Hotel, Don’t Be Cruel, Love Me Tender in 1956, and All Shook Up in 1957, as stated by Britannica.

Although Elvis drew both negative and favorable criticism for bringing about a revolution in the music industry, in the long run, he became one of the most iconic figures in showbiz. He earned over $20 million in merchandise sales alone by 1956. Other sources contributed to his rising net worth, like record sales and a budding career in the film industry.

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A Newfound Career In Acting

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Elvis Presley had also been enlisted in the special services once before taking a hiatus from it to tend to his ailing mother. He launched a career in music and Hollywood in the meantime. His journey on the big screen began with appearances he made in formulaic comedic musicals, and in most cases, he would release his music through the soundtracks of the films.

This practice proved to be unfavorable to his specialized music career as his popularity drastically dropped for a bit. He, however, gained back his position as the king of entertainment in the 60s and 70s when he performed in some TV shows and did some successful music tours.

The legendary singer met with his unfortunate demise in 1977 and shocked the world. His net worth at the time of death was about $5 million, equivalent to an extravagant $20 million as per the current figures.

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Source: Britannica, Biography, Graceland, Celebrity Net Worth

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