Elvis Aaron Presley, in the humblest of circumstances, was born to Vernon and Gladys Presley in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon, was stillborn, leaving Elvis to grow up as an only child. He and his parents moved to Memphis, Tennessee in 1948, and Elvis graduated from Humes High School there in 1953.
Elvis' musical influences were the pop and country music of the day, the country gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager.
n 1954, he began his singing career at the legendary Sun Studio in Memphis. In late 1955, his recording contract was sold to RCA Victor. By 1956, he was an international sensation. With a sound and style that uniquely combined his diverse musical influences and blurred and challenged the social and racial barriers of the time, he ushered in a whole new era of American music and popular culture.
He starred in 33 successful films, made history with his television appearances and specials, and knew great acclaim through his many, often record-breaking, live concert performances on tour and in Las Vegas. Globally, he has sold over one billion records, more than other artist. His American sales have earned him gold, platinum or multi-platinum awards for 111 different albums and singles, far more than any other artist or group. Among his many awards and accolades were the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, which he received at age 36, from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, and his being named One of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Nation for 1970 by the United States Jaycees. Without any of the special privileges his celebrity status might have afforded him, he honorably served his country in the U.S. Army.
His talent, good looks, sensuality, charisma, and good humor endeared him to millions, as did the humility and human kindness he demonstrated throughout his life. Known the world over by his first name, he is regarded as one of the most important cultural figures of the twentieth century.
Elvis died at his beloved Memphis home, Graceland, on August 16, 1977.









"Hi, this is Elvis Presley.

I guess the first thing people want to know is why I can't stand still when I'm singing. Some people tap their feet, some people snap their fingers, and some people just sway back and forth. I just started doing them all together, I guess. Singing rhythm and blues really knocks it out. I watch my audiences and I listen to them and I know that we're all getting something out of our system but none of us knows what it is. The important thing is that we're getting rid of it and nobody's getting hurt.

I suppose you know I've got a lot of cars. People have written about it in the papers and a lot of them ask me why. Well, while I was driving a truck, every time a big shiny car drove by it started me sort of daydreaming. I always felt that some day, somehow, something would happen to change everything for me, and I'd daydream about how it would be.The first car I ever bought was the most beautiful car I've ever seen. It was second-hand, but I parked it outside my hotel the day I got it and stayed up all night just looking at it. And the next day it caught fire and burned up on the road.

In a lot of the mail I get people ask questions about the kind of things I do and that sort of stuff. Well, I don't smoke and I don't drink and I like to go to the movies. Maybe some day I'm gonna have a home and a family of my own and I won't budge from it. I was anonly child, but maybe my kids won't be. I suppose this kind of talk raises another question: Am I in love? No. I've thought I've been in love but I guess I wasn't. It just passed over. I guess I haven't met the girl yet, but I will, and I hope it won't be too long, because I get lonesome sometimes. I get lonesome right in the middle of a crowd. I get a feeling that with her, whoever she may be, I won't be lonesome any more.

Well, thanks for letting me talk to you and sort of get things off my chest. I want to thank all my loyal fans who watch my performances and who in a way have become friends of mine. I sure appreciate you listening to my RCA Victor records and I would like to thank the disc jockeys for playing them. Thanks to all my faithful teenage fans, I have made a lot of money all of a sudden. Just two years ago I was driving a truck for $35 a week in Memphis, Tennessee, and before that I was knocking down $14 a week (that's less than R5 in your money) as a theatre usher.

Then one day my father gave me a guitar. Although I didn't know a B-flat from C-sharp, I finally learned to play.

My career as a singer started by accident. I went into a record shop to make a record for my mother, just to surprise her. Some man in there heard me sing and said he might call me some time. He did... a year and a half later. He was Sam Phillips, the owner of Sun Records, and I made a couple of records for him. Mr. Steve Sholes, who is the head of country-western music at RCA Victor, happened to hear one of them and wanted to sign me up with his company. It was Mr. Sholes who gave me "Heartbreak Hotel" to cut and, as you know, it turned out to be a million seller.

A lot of people ask me where I got my singing style. Well, I didn't copy my style from anybody. I've got nothing in common with Johnnie Ray, except that we both sing – if you want to call it singing, I jump around because it is the way I feel. In fact, I can't even sing with a beat at all if I stand still. The kids are really wonderful the way they respond to my style. I get around 10,000 fan letters a week. So many people all over the country are starting fan clubs for me. I certainly am grateful to them all, and in answer to some of the questions they ask, here are a few statistics about myself.

I was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. I was raised and went to high school in Memphis, Tennessee, which is still my home. I never took any singing lessons, and the only practising I ever did was on a broomstick before my Dad bought me my first guitar.

I'm six feet tall and weigh 195 pounds. I've gained about twenty pounds in the last year. I can't understand that because my appetite isn't as good as it used to be. I don't have much time for regular meals any more, because I'm always travelling around the country, working in a different city every day. I usually gulp down a quick sandwich in between shows, but when I can, I enjoy having a big dinner with three pork chops and plenty of mashed potatoes and gravy.

I understand there have been a lot of rumours concerning me, I am beginning to think that they have more rumours about me than records. A while ago, they thought I was dead. Well, I'm as alive and kicking as I'll ever be. I can't seem to relax ever, and I have a terrible time falling to sleep at night. At the most I usually get two or three hours ofbroken sleep. There was even a wild rumour that I shot my mother. Well, that is pretty silly. She's my bes girl friend, and I bought her and Dad a home in Memphis, where I hope they'll be for a long, long time. I made my father retire a few months ago. There isn't much sense in his working, because I can make more in a day than he can make in a year. There were some rumours, too, about my getting married. Well, I have no plans for that, and I am not engaged. I guess I just haven't found the right girl yet. Besides records and personal appearances, I am looking forward to making a movie. I took a screen test a couple of months ago and Paramount Pictures signed me to a contract. I may make a picture before the end of the year. In fact, everything is going so fine for me that I can't believe it's not a dream. I hope I never wake up."