Elvis Aaron Presley (1935-1977) was a rock and roll pioneer, with fans worldwide that refuse to forget him. His unique sound was influenced by country music, gospel singing, and rhythm and blues (R&B.) This month marks fifty-one years since his first studio recording. Find out why he's still the King of Rock and Roll at the following sites.
"Welcome to Elvis Presley's official web site, home of the undisputed King of Rock 'n' Roll and his beloved Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tennessee!" On July 5, 1954, Elvis recorded his first album, and Memphis is commemorating the event with a celebration of fifty years of rock 'n' roll. Since much of the site deals with visiting Graceland, the best click for virtual visitors is All About Elvis which leads to a bio, billboard chart stats, Elvis quotes, great trivia games, e-cards and free computer wallpaper.
Elvis Number Ones is the companion website to the 2002 "ELVIS 30 #1 Hits" album. If your speakers are on, you will hear the introductory video playing at the top of the page, followed by cuts from each of the album's tracks. The audio control is at the bottom of the page, where you can skip from song to song, or from year to year. That's also where you'll find links to two Elvis games, a photo gallery, a huge selection of video clips, and short articles about Elvis' various artistic roles: musician, singer, composer, and movie star.
Although not as polished as the two previous sites, the Fifties Web is worth visiting for its coverage of Elvis' early years (scroll down to get to the bio.) Other fun clicks are four Elvis games (concentration, jigsaws and hangman) and the audio video clips that are sprinkled throughout. There is also a photo gallery, wallpaper pix for various screen sizes, and a time line of Elvis' life.
"Elvis Presley met President Richard M. Nixon in the Oval Office in December 1970. A photograph of that meeting is one of the most famous in the holdings of the National Archives. Through the original letters and memorandums written by Presley and the White House staff, this exhibit tells the behind-the-scenes story of how the meeting was arranged." This is a great story, and the National Archives does a great job telling it. The only thing missing is a picture of the badge that Nixon's staff gave Elvis. What badge? You'll have to visit the exhibit to find out.
In 1997, on the twentieth anniversary of Elvis' death, PBS' NewsHour radio show did a two-part Elvis tribute. This site has the those shows in RealPlayer format, along with an illustrated transcript. I highly recommend listening to the audio, because the transcript alone is a bit hard to follow. Because of his gyrating hips, censorship "became a roadblock in Elvis' TV career." As you learn about how the television censors reacted to Elvis in the fifties, think about the kind of musical performances you see on TV today.