The Face of the Artist
January 08, 1935. ELVIS PRESLEY








































We are born and grow up believing that our life could be wonderful, day by day we feed our dreams looking for happiness and expanding our knowledge, our experience. Each one seeks a goal in life and, through this, their own fulfillment.  But in our walk, there are many who deviate from their path, from what is expected, what is longed for... due to circumstances, due to obligations, due to family, by chance, others manage to achieve success. There are also other characters who see their destiny linked to an urgent need to follow a vocation. The true artist is born, he is made and in his interior he illuminates some feelings that sometimes sprout without control when he interprets his music, when his life goes by, he tries to grow with his art, his feelings... but that immense sensation that he carries inside never dies . Sometimes the lived experience becomes and changes, but although the artist continues trying to be at the top, although it may not be what is expected... that feeling is still there, lurking as if it were another part of our self, something inseparable that is reflected in our face. 
As the years go by we grow, not only physically, but also inside us, maturation is happening day by day and leaving a mark at every moment. All the moments lived mark small traces on our faces. Music grew up with Elvis Presley and matured with him. In his face you can see that light of inspiration that could lift us up with his voice. In his life full of coincidences and causalities, everything would follow a course of ascent and success. Although it is very likely that his fate would have been different, if he had not been an artist... another life would have been different if his twin brother had been born... Another determined path would have existed if he had not remained tied to his manager, the Colonel Parker... Life has so many causal effects on our existence, that the possibilities of what would have happened to us or to the people we affect with our actions could be so different from what we lived... that we could never know ...Elvis Presley would be born with a gift so great that it went beyond his ideals, his dreams,  his voice and his way of interpreting breaks all our schemes, it stays inside us because it reaches us beyond ourselves.  His music, his magic is reflected, when we listen to him, in our face... 
The reason for his life, his actions, his reasons... Elvis as a child was already the result of his innate sensitivity, without knowing how to sing... He sang, without studying music, he would learn in a simple way to express himself with his singing; in his growth he would enjoy that music that he did not know how to control with his movements, his youth and freshness would also grow in his art... his wealth and experience too, his look, his face sometimes reflected doubt, sadness, but many times joy, optimism. In his maturity we can observe the music through his movements, his unpredictable direction in rhythm in his tireless interpretation and improvisation without sometimes taking into account the technique, modes or forms. Because Elvis was first of all a pure feeling in his performance. And we can observe in his gaze, in the passing of time, that his longings, although satisfied in many moments, were still to be fulfilled... in his gaze sometimes the search for him was revealed again. His music would follow the passing of the years in growth and feeling and the great love he felt for his audience would give him the courage to continue acting until the end, even with pain and fatigue. 
The face of the artist is perceived in time, It would be marked in his expression and his eternal smile, because despite everything, a spark of humor was always perceived in him. The influence of Elvis Presley's music in his time is undoubted, his legacy that we still have is so great, that we could listen to his music over and over again. It is so immense that we are left with a richness and variety that can occupy us on our way, to accompany us in all our experiences. January 8, 1935, the birth of a King. Elvis Presley, the man, the myth... the voice.


FROM TUPELO TO MEMPHIS


"Following the Path of the King..."



For many music is entertainment, it is decoration, it is laughter or memories, for others music is essence, it is heartbeat, it is Soul and ultimately Life. And life is celebrated day by day, music can be the reason and the Path of our journey, for this reason we celebrate the life of Elvis Presley. His day-to-day life, his absolute dedication to music, which was everything to him. And that despite his absence, he is still alive in our hearts. Music is life and for this reason Elvis is and will continue to be alive despite the distance, despite the time.


They say that when the body stops beating, life no longer exists... and our soul is freed from our body...Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977....But his memory, his legacy, all that vibration that he deposited in his songs, his strength, his passion... is still in our hearts... On August 16, 1977, his Soul was freed from his prison, from his body... but today his Alma still lives... today it still prevails in her music... 

That music that reached its fullness and crossed the borders of time and space, of language, social classes, age, prejudice... 

That music that when we listen to it, it makes us relive his story, his virtues, his mistakes... feel his joys, cry his sadness... 

His soul still lives through his music, that's why we know that Elvis Presley still lives and will live despite time ...

The voice of his soul will remain forever in our hearts,...

Always Elvis...

For his music...

"Following the path of the King..."


FROM TUPELO TO MEMPHIS 

We are living history!

Elvis Aron Presley 1935

January 8, 1935 Tupelo. Elvis Presley is born at 4:35 a.m. that morning. Son of Vernon Presley and Gladys Love Smith. His twin brother Jesse Garon dies in childbirth a few minutes before Elvis is born. They called him Elvis Aron Presley. His mother's influence was always very important to him. 
His love, his unconditional support and his protection were present throughout his life and although Elvis looked for love when he grew up, in other women, that full trust would never be found in anyone else. 
The figure of his brother Jesse would also be important in his growth even over the years, Elvis would name him on many occasions, as if he had really known him and was still with him. His family was humble, with a lack of resources, so in his Childhood had many shortcomings. But the most important thing is that this child was special and a gift grew in him that would mark his life forever. Since he was a child Elvis felt inexplicably attracted to music, without knowing the reason, it would always be his escape, his alien world others and his own blood. Although shy as a child, Elvis felt magnetized by music and grew and evolved with it. He would receive his first guitar at the age of eleven and from that moment on, he would learn to play some chords with his uncle and later on his own and to sing. 
Everyone remembers him from one place to another with his guitar, a nice boy, shy in appearance with his instrument on his shoulder....


"Childhood, poverty and music"
The Presley Family -1

Gladys Love Smith was born on April 25, 1912, in Pontotoc, Mississippi.
Vernon Presley was born on April 10, 1916, in Fulton, Mississippi. Both of humble origins, they marry in 1933, continue working and live with relatives, until Vernon builds a small house next to their parents, Jessie and Minnie Mae, on Old Saltillo Road, east of Tupelo. is pregnant and had a difficult pregnancy, until the day of delivery arrives.
At 4 a.m. on January 8 Gladys gives birth to a deceased child, Jessie Garon, at 04:35 a.m. the second child who will receive the name of Evis Aaron is born. That loss would be irreplaceable for Gladys and for Elvis himself , since his mother would always have him present in her prayers and in her life. This would always affect the mood of Elvis himself, as if the twin being had lost half of himself, it would be a complicated feeling to understand.
They say that Elvis visited his grave from time to time and his mother had the belief that when one of the two twins died, the other received all the strength and would be Elvis would grow up in a simple and poor home, but the love, the affection that received from his parents, his education would be based on respect and love. They were very religious and also had a very reserved way of being, since they did not have many relationships.
Elvis's relationship with her mother was always very special, he was overprotected because Gladys was always afraid of losing her son. But in addition to being a mother, she was his friend, his support and his confidence, although the relationship with his father was good, it was different because her personality was outstanding compared to others. His mother wanted Elvis to study and in the fall of 1941, He entered the East Tupelo Consolidated School, less than a km from his home. When Elvis began to read, he liked comics a lot, colored drawings, but at home the environment was economically problematic and this remained in his mind.
He always told his parents that one day he would buy them a Cadillac and also a house. He was a shy, reserved kid and didn't really excel at school, he was normal. The Presleys were faithful to the small congregation, singing at mass and going to evangelical meetings. Elvis used to sing at these meetings since he was a child and at his house they sang in a trio, it was his way of communicating or relaxing. But the influence of music on Elvis was clear and would remain etched in him forever.
Music was always something inexplicable for him, but it brought him peace, serenity, he felt inexplicably attracted to that full feeling when singing, although he was still too young. When he turned 11, Elvis received his first guitar, although what he really wanted it was a bike, because I was afraid something would happen to it. So thanks to his uncle Vester brother of Vernon and his other uncle Johnny, brother of Gladys, Elvis began to play chords, but really the one who influenced him the most was Pastor Frank Smith, who instructed him better. On October 3 1942, it's Children's Day at the annual Mississippi, Alabama Dairy Fair and Fairs in downtown.
There's a talent show. Elvis's fifth-grade teacher, Oleta Grimes, entered Elvis in the contest because she had heard him sing in the prayer program at school. Elvis at just seven years old performed the song "Old Shep", a song about a boy and his dog. He would sing without any accompaniment, with his glasses, receiving a fifth place.
Although this would not affect him for better or for worse. His interest in music was clear and in time he would visit a well-known radio station in Tupelo, WELO. There he went with his partner James Ausborn, he was the brother of Mississippi Slim, a radio artist, he would be the one who would teach him even more and discovered that love for music in Elvis. He learned to observe and repeat what he saw in the instrumentalists and then keep that learning and every Saturday he listened to the Opry on the radio, where he heard more singers.
"Following the Path of the King..."

The Presley Family -2
The changes and designs of Destiny



In the summer of 1946, they moved to live in the center of Tupelo, because they could not keep up with the house payments. They lived in Mulberry Alley, which was very close to the fairgrounds and across from Shake Rag, which was a popular black neighborhood, which was close to where Vernon worked. They had improved their situation since they lived downtown, although they lived in a tiny house and were still poor, but Elvis had to change schools, called Milan, in Mulberry Alley.
It was a very unstable and confusing life for little Elvis, because the following year he would have more house changes, until Gladys would go back to work and they finally moved to North Green Street, closer to the school. They were still in a black neighborhood, but it was a better-regarded, more respectable area. The influence and treatment was also a reflection of the place, Elvis was surrounded by that environment. From the seventh grade he began to take his guitar to school every day and he liked to sing in his spare time, but he still did not catch the attention of almost anyone, because they still seemed like a too abstracted and different boy.
He sang Gospel and also Country, the curious thing is that Elvis said at that time that one day he would perform at the Great Opry. Although he was teased by many colleagues who saw him differently, the rest remembered him with his guitar and because he only talked about music.
Elvis had the habit of coming to listen behind the doors of the premises, on North Green Street, where music was played, and also in the religious assemblies of the place. There was a tent there where evangelical meetings were held on Fridays and Saturdays, they sang and Elvis could wrap himself in this atmosphere, this music. The striking and bright colors of the clothing that they wore on gala, came from everywhere, both black and white students from wealthy families. There they moved their body without inhibition, lost in the songs, inspired and breaking into song.
In 1948, during the beginning of the course, some boys took his guitar from him, breaking the strings, although the rest of the classmates made a collection to replace it. These details made him reject and afraid to be closer with the boys, although it was clear that they did appreciate him for this gesture. The Presleys finally left Tupelo in November of this year to live in Memphis. A classmate at the time named Leroy Green approached Elvis the last day before leaving Tupelo and said goodbye to him: "Elvis, one day you will be famous", he smiled at her and replied naturally "I hope so".
Everyone was sure that this change was good for the family and hoped for better times, fortunately they were optimistic despite the comings and goings, house changes, etc. Vernon, Elvis's father, would remember that at one of these moments  They only had cornbread and water, obviously for a 13-year-old boy, this was hard to live with, his thought at all times was to get his parents out of this situation.

"Following the Path of the King..."





The Presley Family - 3
Destination Memphis

En Memphis de momento en alguna casa provisional, en alguna pensión , hasta un año después en septiembre de 1949 , cuando consiguieron una vivienda en los Courts, cuando Elvis inició su primer año en la escuela Humes. En esta casa al menos tenían dos habitaciones, un salón, una cocina y un cuarto de baño propio. A pesar de la precaria situación, al menos Elvis tenía un poquito más de intimidad y la sensación de mejora. Seguían siendo una familia un poco aislada frente al mundo, por su forma de ser tan especial.
Elvis seguía siendo modesto y tímido , pero obediente , sus notas como estudiante eran aceptables y le pasaba como en la escuela, no era popular, porque le veían raro, extraño. Aunque realmente en esta época con sus compañeros, simplemente era su timidez, no vestía diferente a los demás.
En su barrio comenzaría a tener amigos Bizzy Forbes, Farley Guy y Paul Dougher. En sus primeros años en Humes, Elvis no llevaba la guitarra, sólo tocaba con sus amigos,
Elvis seguía escuchando la Radio, la WDIA, donde B.B King trabajaba allí como disc-jockey , la música seguía siendo importante. A veces tocaba con sus amigos debajo de los árboles y sí llamaba la atención porque la gente se sentaba a escucharle.
Una curiosa costumbre que tenía era tocar la guitarra a oscuras y sus padres se sentaban sobre unas colchas en el césped para escucharle. Una vez su madre le dijo "cantas tan bien que deberías hacerlo en la radio" , esto hizo sonrojar a Elvis que respondería "Sra Rooker, yo no se cantar".


En 1950, Elvis gustaba mucho más de la compañía de las mujeres, de cualquier edad, porque se sentía más cómodo con ellas. Salía afuera con las chicas y se ponía a cantar hasta que ya no podía más. Mejor que con cualquier amigo, posiblemente porque ellas vieron en él esa vulnerabilidad especial.
Al comienzo de secundaria, Elvis comenzaría a trabajar en Precision Tool, hasta que un inspector descubrió que era menor, por eso duró poco. Poco después trabajó de acomodador en el Cine Loew´s State.
A partir de ahí se notó un cambio importante en Elvis, que todos notaron en el instituto. Comenzó a llevar el peo diferente utilizando oción de cabello Rose Oil y vaselina para mantenerlo fijo, dejándose las patillas más largas. Se notaba en él más seguridad personal, aunque seguía siendo muy callado, su forma de ser diferente se mostraba a través de la ropa y el pelo.
Elvis se apuntó para jugar en un equipo, pero sus compañeros quisieron cortarle el pelo y al negarse el entrenador le echó del equipo, esto sería una gran decepción para él, por verse tan rechazado, simplemente por como vestía o su pelo.
En su tiempo libre , Elvis frecuentaba una tienda de música llamada Charlie´s , situada al lado del Suzore n. 2 de Norh Main.  Allí podía escuchar música en la Jukebox y comprar clandestinamente los discos verdes de Redd Foxx. Es pra asiduo a la tienda, al cine y paseaba por las calles Beale y Main. También se paraba en una tienda de moda llamada Lansky, donde podía ver las últimas tendencias en moda, aunque no entraba porque no podía gastarse un centavo en esto.
La música se fue convirtiendo poco a poco en el eje de atención de Elvis, quien ya acostumbraba a cantar en las fiestas de Los Courts, su barrio. Le gustaba cantar a oscuras, sin luces, porque seguía siendo muy tímido.
En su último año de secundaria, Elvis trabajaba demasiado, comenzaría en Mari, Metal Products y esto hizo que en alguna ocasión se durmiera en clase. Era evidente que no podía mantener este trabajo, por lo que Gladys le obligó a dejarlo.
Pero en el instituto Elvis se sentía solo o al menos lo parecía, seguía siendo diferente a los demás y su forma de vestir y su peinado no le ayudaron para nada a encontrar amigos. Solo un chico llamado Red West, que le defendió una vez de ser pegado por unos chicos del instituto.
Dicen de Elvis que en el instituto andaba como si fuera un vaquero a punto de sacar una pistola.
En abril de 1953, los Presley se mudaron de casa de nuevo para finalmente volver al antiguo barrio, al 462 de la calle Alabama.
Aunque nunca fue popular en el instituto le apuntaron a un concurso de talentos y Elvis cantaría su primera canción, "Till I Waltz Again with You", de Teresa Brewer. Como nadie sabía que podría cantar , a partir de entonces llegaría a ser popular y llegó el momento de graduarse, era el 3 de junio de 1953.

"Siguiendo el Camino de el Rey..."

EL REY DEL ROCK AND ROLL

Elvis Presley se hizo famoso por su natural forma de cantar. Diferente entonces a todos los cantantes de la época, en su voz, su estilo, su forma de moverse. 

La frescura y la espontaneidad serían lo más importante, con una voz diferente a todo lo demás. 

Lo más importante, un artista capaz de interpretar varios estilos con el tiempo y adentrarse en lo más hondo de la partitura haciéndola suya.

Con el tiempo la variedad de repertorio y la madurez cambiaron todo. Aunque se perdió esa espontaneidad y esa fresca interpretación, se ganaría en experiencia y en conocimiento . La profundidad en la interpretación de una voz sentida y entregada a un público que le sería fiel hasta el final.

Cuando Elvis Presley inició su camino musical, nadie hubiera pensado que llegaría a ninguna parte. 

La vida a veces nos coloca en la senda apropiada, nos da la oportunidad y la suerte que necesitamos para poder demostrar nuestra valía.

Elvis tuvo esa oportunidad, que buscó y supo aprovechar.
Su carrera musical comenzaría en La Sun Records Estudio , gracias a su director Sam Phillips, quien vio en él algo nuevo, por lo que pudo comenzar a grabar discos y darse a conocer. 

 Era el año 1954 y con Elvis Presley nacería un nuevo estilo musical, de forma casual...
En Octubre de 1956 , Variety le comenzó a dar  a conocer como 

"El Rey del Rock and Roll"


ELVIS PRESLEY

The artist's dream 1953





Music sometimes becomes an obsession in the life of the artist, as if it were part of the blood that runs through our body... the notes of the score, the rhythm, the silences... all of this takes shape in the interpretation that is made of a score, brings out all the sensitivity that we carry inside and makes it reach the heart.
Elvis had a special gift that he always wanted to share through his voice. But his life was not easy, his family had very humble origins and had many economic problems, so he would have to start working and Elvis had to combine his studies with work. In June 1953 he finished his studies at Humes High School. From this moment on, he can dedicate all his time to work. But his musical concerns would be vital to try to find another way to change course.

It is important to know how was the rise of Elvis Presley, a young man of humble origins. His desire to be a singer and be able to get out of poverty led him to want to prove his own worth. Elvis knew that his voice was special and he needed to prove to himself that he could reach very high.

SUN RECORDS.
Elvis Presley guitar and voice. 

Private recording:
"My Happiness" 

Elvis adored his mother Gladys and wanted to give her a present. Another type of person would have given him some chocolates, a handkerchief, something physical or that could be to his liking. But Elvis Presley was different and he wanted to give her a little bit of himself, recorded on a record, his voice, his feelings helped by a guitar that he himself played.
On July 18, 1953, an unknown young man from the city of Tupelo named Elvis Presley went to the Sun Records Studio in Memphis, to record two songs and record them on acetate "My Happiness" and
"That's When Your Heartaches Begin". He paid for this recording $3.98. He told Marion Keisker that she was in charge at the moment and explained that it was for her mother.
His acting is a bit shy and his voice sounds higher, softer... then he was 18 years old. This first recording was found decades later and was included on "The Great Performances", "The King of Rock N Roll", "Sunrise", "The Complete Sun Sessions", etc.
The song was written by Borney Bergantine in 1933. The most famous version of the song, with lyrics by Betty Peterson Blasco, was first published in 1948. The earliest known recording of this version was in December 1947 by the Marlin sisters but the song became a hit in May 1948 by Jon and Sondra Steele.
Elvis had aspirations as a singer and despite his youth he wanted to have his chance at Sun Records, for which he would go there again.
The reason was clear to be able to meet his producer Sam Phillips.(FROM TUPILO TO MEMPHIS I)

Elvis Presley-

Elvis Presley - My Happiness (2021 Remaster) - YouTube





"That's When Your Heartaches Begin"

SUN RECORDS.

Elvis Presley voice and guitar.

The other song recorded on Sun Records in 1953, on July 18. Just like "My happiness", a song recorded in a somewhat shy way and accompanied by Elvis' own guitar.
A very heartfelt song in the voice of the artist. It would be the first recording of him on disc but private.
This song was written in 1940 by William J. Raskin, Billy Hill and Fred Fisher. The Ink Spots recorded it in 1950.
In 1951, a Bob Lamb recording was released. In 1952, Billy Bunn and his friends released a version of it.
Elvis re-recorded it for RCA on January 13, 1957 at Radio Recorders. This version was the B-side of the "All Shook Up" single and peaked at #58 on the Hot 100 Chart.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kUi6PzCoAa8ow

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The birth of a myth

Elvis Presley was a different boy, his way of dressing attracted a lot of attention, with bright and striking colors. His long hair combed with a high slicked-back quiff and his sideburns completed an image that was difficult to forget and accompanied by a guitar. His character was introverted, shy and sensitive... the reason could be the maternal influence and that difference in the way he was compared to the boys of the time. 

In many cases he was rejected for that particular way of dressing, even at his job they threatened to fire him if he didn't cut his hair. But the most important thing was that in spite of everything, Elvis would continue his path in his own way, with his style and marking distance with the rest of the others. 

His mother sometimes accompanied him on the piano, where Elvis improvised hymns, songs that he listened to in the radio... he had an innate ear and a warm, penetrating voice... his way of singing pleased everyone who was lucky enough to listen to him at the time. At the age of 18 he worked for Crown Electrics, driving a truck and had the hobby of go to the movies twice a week, I also visited the radio. 

He earned 40 dollars a week and every Friday he gave the money to his father, he was a responsible and careful young man. At this time he had a girlfriend named Dixie Locke whom he dated often and intended to marry. 

He sang a lot of songs to her, sweet, ballads like "Tomorrow nights" or "My happiness". They shared hobbies, the movies, visits to the WMPS radio station to see the rebroadcasts offered by Bob Neal... At that time he had the dream of being able to sing in a quartet of voices called the Songfellows, an amateur group with which he auditioned and was refused. He still didn't have a very clear idea of ​​what he wanted to do, but the truth is that he always walked around with his guitar and music was part of his being. 

On July 18, 1953 it would be the first time that Elvis would enter Sam Phillips' studio, Sun Records, a modest label that gave the opportunity to record to all kinds of artists. His assistant Marion Keisker, who was known and highly regarded in Memphis for her radio fame where she worked, would be the first person to notice a nervous, unknown young man who wanted to record a song to give to his mother. 


Elvis who had often passed in front of the studios at 706 Union Avenue, she would finally decide to enter the door and ask to record a double-sided vinyl. Marion's memory of a question she asked Elvis is anecdotal: "Who do you look like?" singing?", the answer would be: "I don't look like anyone" 

Obviously, the reality is that Marion thought it was different from the first notes... her feeling would be that it didn't sound like anyone. Elvis would record two songs "My happiness"

  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZqGOIdFG3I 

and "That´s when your heartache begins"

  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kUi6PzCoAa8

Sam who was in the booth wrote down the boy's name... "good ballad singer. Pending". Despite the recording, Elvis left with the intuition that something big was going to happen to him... but it would take a long time for him to be called back into the studio and given the chance that he could sing something other than ballads. . Elvis came by from time to time, but nothing... It is important to know the importance that Marion Keisker had due to her influence on Sam Phillips. 

She was impressed by this young man and advised him to include him in further recording sessions. Although Elvis's spirits were unsettled by the lack of interest, he would once again return to Sun Records. Finally, in January 1954, he decided to record another record: Joni James's 

"I'll Never Stand in Your Way." 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aj_jaSwJCFo 

and the song "It wouldn´t be the same without you" by Jimmy Wakely 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytXzkkWno-M

But Elvis was very nervous that these recordings would not yet show the potential that he had hidden. Elvis was like a stone yet to be polished, a raw material... his shyness and his nervousness meant that he still couldn't control what he was doing when singing. But fortunately, the vision of the businessman and his assistant Marion went beyond the moment and knew how to envision the artist's future.

 On Saturday, June 26, Elvis would finally get his big break... Marion Keisker called him to go to the Sun Records, at the request of Sam Phillips who was looking for a voice to record a song he would be interested in called "Without you", a tender lament that could use a special voice. Although Elvis tried his best on this recording, the result was not what Sam had hoped for. But he knew that this boy kept something very big and he listened to him for a long time the rest of the songs... he was different and he had something that he could not explain... 

Sam wanted to find someone special, who sang differently, his vision went beyond all evidence and would give him the opportunity to prove it once again. 


On July 4, 1954, Elvis Presley accompanied by a young guitarist named Scotty Moore and Double Bass Bill Black would meet at the request of Sam Phillips, to meet and thus be able to play together. 

It was the first time they were going to improvise at Sun Records, everything would start there... 

The rest is history.


"Following the Path of the King..."

The image of the artist.
Lansky Brothers


The image of the artist.
Elvis Presley was a unique and special person, different from the others and he had a clear idea of ​​what he liked. When it came to combing his hair, getting dressed, he always did something special and different. Although he had no financial means in his youth, since he started working he would try to buy his clothes as well with a different and particular style.
Keep in mind that in his early days, the conservative society of the 1950s demanded a correct image and a simple hairstyle, as well as austere manners. The youth were so repressed that they wanted to change or follow a new course and Elvis Presley would mean a break with tradition, not only musically, but also in his image and way of dressing.

Elvis was in love with clothes, he liked to dress original, bright colors, new and special designs and although he was very shy, with clothes he would also find a way to express himself and strengthen his own personality. the. Since 1952 Elvis had been in the habit of admiring the Lansky Bros. window at 126 Beale Street, Memphis. A modern and special clothing store on the busiest street in the city. The place best known for artists and where the best music was performed. Elvis stopped to admire everything on display. The store developed into haute couture, offering extravagant clothing in the latest styles, including California Peggers, the design on baggy pants that tapered to the hem; in Ivy League-style clothing such as single-breasted blazers embellished with narrow lapels; and the Levi's Jeans type, made popular by James Dean and Marlon Brando.
There they dressed artists, musicians... and also many people of color. Bernard Lansky the owner of the store, he would see Elvis looking at the store windows, it was the spring of 1952. He would go outside and invite him in, Elvis told him, that he had no money to buy, but that he had very good things, very interesting clothes and that when I was rich, I would buy him. Since he got his first paycheck from him, soon after Elvis would walk into the store at last to buy his first shirt for $3.95. The next thing he would buy while he was still attending L.C. Humes High School, it would be a set of black pants, pink coat, a pink and black sash, it was for prom.
When Elvis started performing he would continue to shop at Lansky and for years to come he would remain loyal to his favorite store. Lansky Brothers provided his clothing for appearances on the Louisiana Hayride, the Dorsey Brothers Stage Show, the Ed Sullivan Show, etc. One of the best known anecdotes was when Elvis was already known and famous, Elvis went to the store and told Bernard Lansky that he was going to act on TV on the Ed Sullivan Show. He needed me to dress him but the problem he had was financial and he told Bernard. He entrusted the clothes to him and told him that when he could, he would pay for it... this would mark a special and trusting relationship for years. Another moment that Lansky would recount: Elvis received a rare German Messerschmitt car from RCA, a car that greatly amused him. One day Elvis parked his car in front of the store and was excited to show Bernard his new car. It was a special three-wheeled car, which caught the attention of Bernard, who told Elvis that when he got tired of the car, he would leave it to him. Then Elvis told him that if he could choose all the clothes he wanted in the store, he would change him for the car... What Elvis would say later is that he was there for more than two hours and he left the store completely in disarray. ...
His clothes attracted so much attention that they would create fashion, their high collars, the turtlenecks, the short-sleeved shirts with bowling cuts. Elvis was not afraid of color and he also liked to wear everything from neutral shirts to striped ones, in shades of yellow, pink or green... jackets, biker jackets...
His taste was modern for the time and innovative. Over the years he continued to dress there and in the 70s, apart from Lansky, Elvis would have Bill Bellew, also to dress. But Lansky dressed him in his first suit and in his last one, too, when he passed away.
When Elvis couldn't get to the store, Bernard Lansky made deliveries for him at Graceland. Sometimes he had to open the store at night, at another time when Elvis could shop safely and privately. Starting with Elvis, the store became well known and all artists would want to shop there, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis...
What was clear is that Elvis made this store fashionable forever. Elvis was not only the voice, it was also fashion.

"Following the Path of the King..."

FROM TUPELO TO MEMPHIS













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