Elvis Presley

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Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley was naturally blonde with blue eyes and he dyed his hair black.jpg

Elvis Presley was naturally blonde with blue eyes

Born 8 January 1935
Tupelo, Mississippi, U.S.
Died 16 August 1977
Memphis, Tennessee
  • Singer
  • Actor
Spouse Priscilla Ann, née Wagner,[1] from 1967 to 1973
Children Lisa Marie Presley (1968–2023)
Relatives Riley Keough (granddaughter)
  • Good Conduct Medal (military service with the United States Army 1958–1960, finally reaching the rank of sergeant)
  • Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1986)
  • Presidential Medal of Freedom (2018)

Elvis Aaron Presley (8 January 1935 – 16 August 1977), often referred to mononymously as Elvis, was an American singer and actor, internationally considered the "King of Rock and Roll".


German descent

Germany was gripped by "Elvis fever" as early as the Fifties, when the "King" went to Bad Nauheim (Hessen) to fulfill his military obligations. Little did his German fans know that they had another reason to love him he was, it turns out, a German. According to Donald W. Presley and Edward C. Dunn, both distant relatives of the King, a direct link can be made from Elvis back to a certain Johann Valentin Pressler, a winegrower who emigrated to America in 1710. Pressler came from a village in southern Palatinate called Niederhochstadt. Niederhochstadt became Hochstadt sometime during the 250 years after Johann Pressler left it, but there are still many Presslers there, among them a winegrower like Johann Valentin. Johann Valentin first settled in New York and later moved his family to the South. The name was Anglicized during the Civil War by a Pressler serving in the Confederate Army, Presley and Dunn report in a forthcoming book on the Presley family. There was no word, however, on whether Hochstadt was planning any Elvis shrines along the lines of Graceland in Memphis, the last residence of the "King of Rock 'n Roll."[2]

Hair colour

Born Germanic blond, Elvis’ hair naturally grew darker to a sandy blonde by his high school years, and was a chestnut colour during his service in the army. Presley began dying his hair black in the mid 50s (the first hair dye he used was boot polish, which wasn’t successful, later he used Miss Clairol 51 D, “Black Velvet”) and continued to do so until his death in 1977. Actor Robert Mitchum meanwhile reportedly inspired his trademark hairstyle.

Short biography

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 time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended [...]. In 1954, he began his singing career with the legendary Sun Records label 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 any other artist. His American sales have earned him gold, platinum or multi-platinum awards for 150 different albums and singles, far more than any other artist. Among his many awards and accolades were 14 Grammy nominations (3 wins) from the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, which he received at age 36, 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 figures of twentieth century popular culture. Elvis died at his Memphis home, Graceland, on August 16, 1977.[3]

Artist and entertainer

He cut his first demo record at what later became known as Sun Studio that year, and before long, Sam Phillips, the record label owner, decided to take the young performer under his wing. Presley soon began touring and recording, trying to catch his first big break. "That's All Right" was Presley's first single in 1954. In 1955, Presley began to develop a following with fans being drawn to his unusual musical style, provocative gyrating hips and good looks. That same year, he signed with RCA Records, a deal worked out by his manager, Colonel Tom Parker. Presley scored his first No. 1 single with "Heartbreak Hotel," as well as his first No. 1 album, Elvis Presley, and signed a movie contract with Paramount Pictures — all in 1956. His first film, "Love Me Tender", was a box office hit. Despite the uproar that his "vulgar" dance moves caused, he also became a popular guest on a number of television variety shows.

He received his draft notice in 1957 and was inducted into the Army the following March. He eventually served in Germany for about a year and a half. Shortly before Presley left for Europe, his beloved mother, Gladys, died. He was granted a leave and returned to Memphis for the funeral. Deeply saddened by her death, Presley returned to duty. While in West Germany, his spirits were lifted slightly when he met a young teenager named Priscilla Beaulieu. The pair fell in love and married on 1 May 1967, in Las Vegas, Nevada.[4]

External links


  1. Priscilla's biological father was German American US Navy pilot James Frederick Wagner (1921–1945), son of Kathryn (1901–1995) and Harold Wagner (1897–1958) of Cherrytree Township, Pennsylvania. At age 23, he married Priscilla's mother, Ann, on August 10, 1944; they had been dating for more than three years. Wagner died in a plane crash returning home on leave when Priscilla was six months old. In 1948, Ann married a United States Air Force officer named Paul Beaulieu (1925–2018), from Quebec, Canada. The couple raised Priscilla along with half-siblings Donald (b. 1949), Michelle (b. 1954), Jeffrey (b. 1959) and twins Thomas (1962–2013) and Timothy Beaulieu (b. 1962). Priscilla took the Beaulieu surname on 17 April 1950 after being adopted.
  3. Elvis Aron Presley (Pressler)
  4. Elvis Presley - Songs, Death & Daughter - bio. Biography.com