“Before Elvis, there was nothing” (John Lennon)
University of Phoenix
Before Elvis, there 2
“Before Elvis, there was nothing.”
The twentieth century produced many of the most talented and influential individuals of western culture, some which have made a lasting impression on multiple generations, some so popular they are known around the world, and some who’s legacy will live on indefinitely. Elvis Presley, commonly known as “the king of rock and roll,” was among the powerful individuals of the twentieth century, not only did he conquer and contribute the culture of music, but he indulged in almost every aspect of entertainment including films, books, television appearances, and live performances. In the eyes of many he was recognized as a genius for his works and his contributions to the culture of music.
Elvis was born January 8, 1935 to a poor couple in Mississippi where he spent the early years of his adolescence. Living just above poverty line throughout grammar school, Elvis began his entertainment career performing in local talent contest which earned him money never knowing where his talent was going to take him. Throughout his school years Elvis worked multiple jobs, all the while keeping up on his music, practicing guitar or singing the blues on the streets of Memphis as teen. Upon graduating from high school Elvis produced some of his first recordings, including “My Happiness” and “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin,” with sun records; “anyone with four dollars could record ten inch acetate” at that time. These recordings were just the beginning of his illustrious career.
Since the 1950s Elvis Presley has made an impact on “American and world culture.” He crossed lines which had not been crossed before and opened doors for black music which had otherwise been bolted shut (Australia, 1). He was more than a just an entertainer and sex symbol, Elvis “made rock and roll the international language of...