Elvis Presley - King of Rock or Karaoke


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Having just posted on the partnerships thread about an Elvis song I thought it was appropriate to start an Elvis thread. If anybody gets snooty about his influence they should look at what he achieved and some of the songs that he sang. OK, he didn't actually write any songs but his style, vocals and charisma cannot be denied. Some songs to think about:

Jailhouse Rock
Heartbreak Hotel
Suspicious Minds
King Creole
In the Ghetto


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Jailhouse Rock was one of my favourites as I preferred Elvis during the 1950s and 1960s. I saw a music video of the song recently, and I am not surprised that he had quite the effect on people that he did.

Elvis is King!


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I have to to totaly agree with the last post. Elvis was awsome. I love the younger Elvis as well. I think his songs, even if he didnt write them were great. Love me Tender still touches me when i hear it. I think there is something to be said for a musician young or old who transends generations and has all ages loving thier music.


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Personally, I'm not a huge fan of Elvis Presley - Don't ask me why, though most people seem to think that everyone should love at least one Elvis track.

Having said that, I would have to say that he has done more for the genre than most - after all, everyone has heard of Elvis. He had countless hits that have stood the test of time, and whilst I cannot say I love the music, I do appreciate the talent and his unique stage presence that made him into a legend.


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Sadly i wasn't yet alive when Elvis Presley ran around as " The King". Although this may have hindered me from becoming one of his fans i must say that his songs are quite catchy and i can easily imagine people dancing and swinging around to the music. I guess even if people dont appreciate his music he will forever have a place in the rock n roll hall of fame.


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I too, wasn't alive yet when Elvis was in his glory days, but there is no denying the influence he had on music, and how what he did still influences artists today. Personally, I'm not a fan and never have been but no one can deny that he was a legend, and is still loved by millions.

I do want to add though that a few years back there was a remix of his songs 'A Little Less Conversation', I hated it so much. As I began to hear it more, it grew on me, and not only do I like the updated remix version, but the original version as well.


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Elvis Presley - King of Rock or Karaoke?
My personal opinion - is both. Let me explain here. Back in the old days he was like an iconic person, a head of the whole musical world in local(Usa that is). And for many-many people he still like it.
On the other hand, now this like a dinosaur, mostly like Frank and Beatles and all the rest - listen in a silent room on evenings or sing in the karaoke bars

John Watt

Active member
There's something very important about Elvis that no-one has mentioned here,
to explain his enduring popularity even in the new millennium.
He toured for two years as a live act, singing and playing guitar with a guitarist and drummer,
made studio singles that became huge chart hits, made controversial television appearances,
and then, as many people think, joined the army to help the American war effort to avoid criminal charges.
They came after him, and look what happened afterward.
He didn't tour as a live band. He only made movies with Hollywood soundtracks.
That's why he has more presence than any other recording artist of his time, 26 years of movies.
He was the rock and roller of Hollywood fame, an icon who became more popular than Mickey Mouse.

I agree with AlderonFrederic about Frank and the Beatles and Elvis being like a dinosaur.
However, here's some serious Elvis trivia you might not know.

Douglas Roy is a Metis man from Niagara Falls Ontario, his father owning a used car dealership.
His father let him use a room on the car lot to start a band.
Douglas bought the same Shure P.A. Elvis used, a Vocalmaster, and Shure SM58 mikes.
He bought a Fender Twin, a Fender Quad Reverb and the same bass amp, hiring musicians to back him up.
When they started touring as an Elvis copy band they went far, into the States and going to Hawaii.
They had a gig in the bar/hotel that was in an Elvis movie, where Elvis was a helicopter tour guide,
taking his date to that outer island for a romantic rendevouz in the bar and on the beach.

The owner of the bar told Douglas he would pay to get an Elvis jump suit made for him,
and pay to make one of those 45's that had two songs on each side, something Elvis put out.
Douglas was making $5,500 a week already doing his Elvis show. He went along with the bar owner.

When Elvis came back to Hawaii for a reunion gig Douglas dressed up and took a record with him.
He made it to the front of the stage and threw the record up there. Elvis saw the record, looked at Douglas,
and stopped the show. He motioned for Douglas to come up and asked him to sing a song, holding the mike for him.
After the show, Elvis took Douglas backstage and gave him two shirts to go with the jumpsuit.
Douglas Roy is the only Elvis imitator to appear onstage with Elvis and sing a song.

As a Toronto show-band player I was a salary lead guitarist for "Selvis", the second biggest earner, for eight months.
"Elvis Little", an imitator from St. Catharines, would hitch-hike to Toronto to hand Selvis the scarves he gave away onstage.
I helped him start a band after I moved back home to Welland.
When I was playing with Selvis in Toronto our band would hang out with Douglas and his band when they were in town,
and after I moved back to Welland Douglas would hire me when he had a special concert in Niagara Falls.
Douglas gets paid a lot to do his Elvis thing in motel and hotel rooms in Niagara Falls, a very special act for many Americans.
He's not into the "young stuff" like Elvis was, but he's into all "the action and attraction" he can find.

If there is something musical about Elvis songs that I really liked, it was doing "Suspicious Minds".
Going to the Em chord there is one of my favorite Em applications.
Doing it in G, the Scotty Moore strumming goes to an open C chord, and then a three finger open D chord.
I didn't do that, taking the open C chord up two frets as a barre chord to continue the same picking pattern.
Every Elvis imitator I worked with or saw said the same thing.
If Elvis was alive he would want the best guitarist to be on stage with him, and that would be Jimi Hendrix.
Doing Elvis songs with a Jimi style really went over and all the musicians thought it filled out the sound.
Using all six strings almost all of the time with a Stratocaster tremolo unit, I still get into and get off on that.
It's also hard not to like "Viva Las Vegas" when you can dance around to that rhythm.

Here's a Dini Petty TV show appearance by Selvis.
His father was an opera singer from Italy and Selvis promoted himself as singing the high notes Elvis couldn't.
Salvatore Accaputo cleared over $80,000 himself that year, doing one set of Elvis while we did two show-band sets.
We could be playing in a mall on a Saturday afternoon, and after the gig people would be rocking the van we sat in.

Elvis also did his first return to the stage concert in Niagara Falls Ontario,
rehearsing and setting up the show there and then performing one night before he took his show into the States.
What happened there is legendary in Niagara Falls music, motel and casino circles.


John Watt

Active member
If someone is using Elvis music for new technology and new dance moves, the King is still alive.