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"Elvis Presley is the greatest cultural force in the 20th century."

(Leonard Bernstein)


"If you're an Elvis fan, no explanation is necessary; If you're not an Elvis fan, no explanation is possible."

(George Klein)


"For a dead man, Elvis Presley is awfully noisy."

(Professor Gilbert B. Rodman)



"Absolute id crashed into absolute superego...as the uptightset man in America shook hands with just about the loosest."

(Mark Feeney on the 'Elvis meets Nixon' meeting)


"Elvis is everywhere"

(Mojo Nixon & Skid Roper)


"...especially in the South, they talk about Elvis and Jesus in the same breath"

(Michael Ventura, LA Weekly)


"The image is one thing and the human being is another...it's very hard to live up to an image"


(Elvis Presley, Madison Square Garden press conference, 1972)


"Elvis was a major hero of mine. I was actually stupid enough to believe that having the same birthday as him actually meant something"

(David Bowie)


"No-one, but no-one, is his equal, or ever will be. He was, and is supreme"

(Mick Jagger)


"I wasn't just a fan, I was his brother...there'll never be another like that soul brother"

(Soul legend, James Brown)


"Before Elvis there was nothing!"

(John Lennon)


"There were rock 'n' roll records before Heartbreak Hotel, but this was the one that didn't just open the door…it literally blasted the door off its rusted, rotten, anachronistic hinges...producing, no propelling, a fundamental, primordial and unstoppable shift in not only musical, but social, political and cultural history"

(JNP, BBC website)


"Elvis, the musician, is largely a relic belonging to the baby boomer generation...Elvis, the icon, is arguably one of the most potent symbols of popular culture"

( Dr. John Walker)


"It [rock & roll] was always about Elvis; not just because he was Elvis, but because he was the big star"

(Bono from U2)


"If they had let me on white radio stations back then, there never would have been an Elvis"

(Little Richard)


"Elvis loved opera, and he especially liked Mario Lanza. He would watch The Student Prince which was set in Heidelberg, over and over again. He loved the power of the big voices. And he loved big orchestras. He liked real dramatic things"

(Marty Lacker in 'Elvis and the Memphis Mafia')


"If life was fair, Elvis would be alive and all the impersonators would be dead"

(Johnny Carson)

Elvis' #1 Pop Singles on Cashbox, USA:

Heartbreak Hotel (1956)

Don't Be Cruel (1956)

Hound Dog (1956)

Love Me Tender (1956)

Too Much (1957)

All Shook Up (1957)

Teddy Bear (1957)

Jailhouse Rock (1957)

Don't (1958)

Stuck On You (1960)

It's Now Or Never (1960)

Are You Lonesome Tonight? (1960)

Surrender (1961)

Good Luck Charm (1962)

Return To Sender (1962)

In The Ghetto (1969)

Suspicious Minds (1969)

Burning Love (1972)

(The Cashbox chart is now defunct)

Elvis Facts:

Elvis was 5' 11" tall


Elvis' natural hair color was dark blond


Elvis' blood type was O Positive


Elvis' shoe size was 11D


One of Elvis'( maternal) ancestors, Morning White Dove (born 1800, died 1835), was a full-blooded Cherokee Indian


Elvis' uncle, Noah Presley, became Mayor of East Tupelo on January 7, 1936


The Presley family moved to Memphis on November 6, 1948


Elvis was issued a Social Security card in September 1950 with the # 409-52-2002


In 1954 some of the shows played by Elvis & The Blue Moon Boys were at the Overton Park Shell; the Bel-Air Club; Sleepy-Eyed John's Eagle's Nest Club and the Louisiana Hayride


Elvis' first manager was Scotty Moore, then Bob Neal, before signing with Colonel Tom Parker


The first DJ to play an Elvis record was Fred Cook (WREC), not Dewey Phillips (WHBQ). However, Dewey had the distinction of being the first DJ to play an Elvis record in its entirety


Elvis once dated famous stripper, Tempest Storm


Elvis was filmed from the waist up only during his 3rd and final appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show


In the 50s Elvis was friendly with rising stars, Natalie Wood, Robert Wagner and Ty (Bronco Lane) Hardin


Gladys Presley was 46 years old when she died, not 42, as many books suggest


The Roustabout album sold 450,000 copies on its initial release, 150,000 copies more than any of the preceding three soundtrack LPs. It was Elvis' last "soundtrack" album to reach #1 on the major album charts in the US


Elvis received $1m for filming Harum Scarum (aka Harum Holiday). The film grossed around $2m in the US


Elvis and Priscilla married on May 1, 1967


They were officially divorced on October 9, 1973


Elvis earns nearly $3.5m in 1968 and pays just over $1.4m in income tax


Elvis' return to live performing in Las Vegas on July 31, 1969 was in front of an "by invitation only" audience. Stars in attendance included Wayne Newton, Petula Clark, Shirley Bassey, Burt Bacharach and Angie Dickinson


On January 9, 1971, the national Junior Chamber of Commerce (Jaycees) announced Elvis as one of "The Top Ten Young Men of the Year". Elvis spoke at the official awards ceremony on January 16


"Elvis: Aloha From Hawai" made entertainment history on January 14, 1973, when it was beamed around the world by satellite. In the Philippines it drew 91% of the audience, in Hong Kong 70%. The viewing audience was estimated at more than 1 billion


For his 4 week Hilton Vegas season in August 1973 Elvis received $610,000

Sales of Elvis' 1973 album, Raised On Rock, were less than 200,000 units on its initial release


Elvis paid $2,959,000 in income tax in 1973


In December 1976 Elvis was sworn in as a special deputy sheriff of Shelby County (Memphis) by Sheriff Gene Barksdale


Elvis' final live concert was in Indianapolis on June 26, 1977

When Elvis died, he and his father Vernon, were embroiled in an FBI investigation called Operation Fountain Pen

More than 1,500 books have been published about The King in more than 30 languages


At Dec 2005 Elvis' biggest selling album in the US is the budget priced, Elvis' Christmas Album, with accredited sales of 9 million units (fingers crossed it reaches 10 million to give Elvis his first "Diamond" award)


By early2006, Sony BMG's "collectors label", Follow That Dream, had released more than 50 Elvis CDs


During the 1980s, tour guides at Graceland stated that Elvis' biggest selling album (globally) was Moody Blue, with sales exceeding 14 million


While Sony BMG estimates Elvis' global sales exceed 1 billion, the company is unable to substantiate this figure. Accredited sales worldwide are estimated to be less than 400 million
















































































































































































































































































The King has rebel roots


The Evening Sun

The King of Rock and Roll is famous for his blue suede shoes, but a local woman wants him to be remembered for his relatives who sported gray.

Barbara Lee Rowe, who says she's a fourth cousin of Elvis, recently opened a store on Steinwehr Avenue commemorating Elvis' Confederate cousins and uncles who served at the Battle of Gettysburg. The store is something she hopes won't get people all shook up, but will just bring another dimension to Civil War history. She thinks her cousin can bring excitement and interest to the stodgy history of the battle.
"I hope the store will bring Elvis into American history where he belongs," Rowe said. "He is a present day figure who had roots in the Civil War. I'm hoping it will help them find more of an interest."
Barbara Lee Rowe finishes putting up Elvis posters and memorabilia at Kin of Rock and Roll, a new Elvis store at Patriot Point in Gettysburg. (Evening Sun photo by Emily Rasinski)
The store is small for now, but Rowe said it's doing great business so far.
Elvis DVDs, decorative plates, candle holders and T-Shirts are strewn across the walls and on the shelves. Rowe also has a section for POW and MIA products, to commemorate Presley relatives who were prisoners of war.

She also sells framed photographs taken by Ed Bonja, Elvis' official photographer.

Rowe has always been interested in history. It's part of the reason she moved to Gettysburg three years ago, she said.

She thinks of Gettysburg as a living classroom and thinks Elvis' popularity will fuel Civil War scholarship.

Rowe started doing intense research on her genealogy after her father, William Harrison Rowe, passed away in 1992. He knew they were related to Elvis but didn't want the family to get too involved
According to Gettysburg store owner Barbara Lee Rowe, Confederate Gen. John Bell Hood is a relative of Elvis Presley. See a resemblance? (Submitted photo)
in the hype, Rowe said.

Since then, Rowe has contacted Elvis' other cousins and participated in DNA tests to prove the link between them. And she started tracing the Presley family back as far as she could.

Rowe says Elvis is related to Confederate Gen. John Bell Hood, who lost use of left arm when he was wounded at Gettysburg. Hood was the cousin to Elvis' grandmother, Rowe said.

In a black binder with shiny silver text saying "Elvis' Family," Rowe has pages and pages of enlisted Presley kin from the Civil War. But she's proven Elvis' connection to only some of them, like Darlin Presley of the 26th North Carolina, who fought in Pickett's Charge and was taken prisoner. He later died at Point Lookout Prison in Maryland.
Horton Presley, of the 55th North Carolina infantry also served at Gettysburg and is related to Elvis. "Confederate Americans are Americans too," Rowe said. "He knew he had Confederate ancestors and he was proud of it.

But he was also proud to be an American. He would have put it in the proper perspective."

Famous for his sideburns, slicked-back hair and gyrating dance moves, it's hard to imagine Elvis' forebearers with bayonets and beards. But Rowe said many Presleys shared his characteristic blue eyes and brown hair, a family trait.
And Elvis served in the military as well. He was drafted and served in Germany during the peak of his career.
Rowe wasn't a die-hard Elvis fan when she was growing up, she said, though that's hard to believe it coming from a woman wearing a blue T-shirt with a gigantic picture of Elvis' face on the front. Instead, the only Elvis memories she really has from her childhood in New York are eating peanut-butter and banana sandwiches, one of Elvis' favorite treats, and going to the drive-in to see his movies. It wasn't until she saw information on her great-grandmother that she saw the Presley name and wondered if she was related to Elvis. It turns out she's related to Elvis' grandfather.

And, no, she doesn't think Elvis is still alive.

"When people say Elvis is alive, I tell them look at pictures of him at his last concert. It's really scary," Rowe said.

She believes Elvis died from ailments that plagued his young body, not from drug abuse.

"He was a gift," Rowe said. "He left a special mark and I want to make sure he has a special place in history. He deserves more."

The store's name is The Kin of Rock and Roll: Elvis and History and is located at Patriot Point, on Steinwehr Avenue.

Two Elvis Events:

There will be a raffle for an Ed Bonja portrait, "Elvis for America," on July 3. Tickets are $5 a ticket with a limit of two tickets per person. They will go on sale at the store sometime this week.
Come to "A Night With Elvis" on August 19 at 8 p.m. at the Patriot Point Theater for an Elvis impersonator performance. For tickets, call 717-337-0080.

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"Elvis Presley is the supreme socio-cultural icon in the history of pop culture"

(Dr. Gary Enders)


"Elvis is the 'glue' which holds our society together....which subconciously gives our world meaning"



"Eventually everybody has to die, except Elvis"

(humorist Dave Barry)


"He is the "Big Bang", and the universe he detonated is still expanding, the pieces are still flying"

(Greil Marcus, "Dead Elvis")


"I think Elvis Presley will never be solved"

(Nick Tosches)


"He was the most popular man that ever walked on this planet since Christ himself was here"

(Carl Perkins)


"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"

(Bob Dylan)


"When we were kids growing up in Liverpool, all we ever wanted was to be Elvis Presley"

(Sir Paul McCartney)


"You can't say enough good things about Elvis. He was one of a kind"

(Johnny Cash)


"And don't think for one moment he's just a passing fancy....he's got enough of it to keep him on top for a long time"

(R. Fred Arnold, Fury magazine, Aug 1957)


"It isn't enough to say that Elvis is kind to his parents, sends money home, and is the same unspoiled kid he was before all the commotion began. That still isn't a free ticket to behave like a sex maniac in public"

(Eddie Condon, Cosmopolitan)

Elvis records reaching #2 & #3 on the Cashbox Pop Singles chart:

#2: A Fool Such As I (1959)

#2: A Big Hunk Of Love (1959)

#3: Hard Headed Woman (1958)

#3: One Night (1958)

#3: (You're The Devil) In Disguise (1963)

Elvis Facts:

Tickets for Elvis' show on March 29, 1957 in St. Louis cost $2.00 to $2.50

While in Germany Elvis was hospitalised with tonsillitis in October 1959

Despite being an illegal immigrant, photographic evidence shows Colonel Tom Parker traveled to Canada with Elvis in 1957

Elvis strongly believed there weren't enough good songs in King Creole to justify releasing a soundtrack album. RCA initially agreed, releasing two very successful EPs from the movie. A soundtrack LP eventually followed

During the 1960s Elvis had his own football team, Elvis Presley Enterprises, which played in the Memphis touch football league. In the 1962 final, EPE narrowly lost to Delta Automatic Transmission, 6-13

In Clambake, (Elvis) Scott Hayward's driving licence shows February 23, 1940...taking 5 years off Elvis' real age

In the 1970s Elvis was offered $5m to stage a concert in front of the Pyramids in Egypt. When the Colonel declined the offer, Saudi billionaires raised the offer to $10m