-By Piers Beagley
The sensational introduction explains it concisely. . .
The article features plenty of stunning photos (as above) as well as some well-placed interviews with the witnesses of this rock’n’roll earthquake. These include Memphis Mafia members Lamar Fike & Marty Laker, as well as interesting insights from SUN Studios producer Jack Clement & many others.
At the start Gordon writes...
Indeed, Presley's attitude, his appearance, his music, was trashy, an up-ended rubbish bin exposing last week's casserole with this week's gin bottles, the kids' homework and a used condom, a blood-stained handkerchief and a beautifully executed grocery list. Elvis Aaron Presley-born in poverty, raised on public assistance, employed as a truck driver - made visible what had previously not been seen or was deliberately shunned. And as a rising regional star with national potential, he was about to hit America like a big, beautiful train wreck."
There are plenty of fascinating quotes and observations, and the article made me reach out for my ‘Elvis 1956’ video once again! This is very enjoyable stuff.
One of the best Elvis magazine articles in a long while, Robert Gordon states the case we all know too well, but expresses it perfectly…
"Would there be rock'n'roll without Elvis? Sure there would. Bill Haley rocked before him, as did Ike Turner and others, but while the rhythm was mutual, the hues were unique. His music, his appearance, his success - Elvis tore open the hermetic vision of mid-century Middle America.
No one surfed rock'n'roll like Elvis: bad boy Jerry Lee, unfortunate Carl Perkins, old man Bill Haley. Their identities were fixed, while Elvis shimmered with different worlds. Anything the viewer brought to the table changed how Elvis was seen, what rock'n'roll "meant". In Elvis, the world was opening itself to the other. He stitched together all the issues that would explode over the coming years, and then he let go: black and white, blues and country, sex and androgyny, male and female, dogpatch and Hollywood. It was the unfinished nature of Elvis, the rough edges, which disturbed his critics. Like America itself, he held multiple meanings in one body, and he liberated them. He liberated the individual from the masses, allowed people to redefine themselves, and through rhythm he gave an authentic meaning to free speech, to freedom."
Not only does the MAY issue of MOJO feature this great article, but it also comes with an excellent Free CD featuring 15 Elvis tracks performed by an incredible array of artists from Jerry Lee Lewis to Mexican ETA ‘El Vez’ who all salute rock's greatest revolutionary.
Verdict – An outstanding music magazine plus bonus CD for just $10! You just can’t go wrong. Thank God for Elvis - and all who salute him.
Quote:"Elvis Presley is the supreme socio-cultural icon in the history of pop culture"
(Dr. Gary Enders)
Quote:" Elvis is the 'glue' which holds our society together....which subconciously gives our world meaning"
Quote:"Eventually everybody has to die, except Elvis"
(humorist Dave Barry)
Quote:"He is the "Big Bang", and the universe he detonated is still expanding, the pieces are still flying"
(Greil Marcus, "Dead Elvis")
Quote:"I think Elvis Presley will never be solved"
Quote:"He was the most popular man that ever walked on this planet since Christ himself was here"
Quote:"When I first heard Elvis' voice I just knew I wasn't going to work for anybody...hearing him for the first time was like busting out of jail"
Quote:"When we were kids growing up in Liverpool, all we ever wanted was to be Elvis Presley"(Sir Paul McCartney)