Elvis is still amazing
75 years of Elvis: Elvis is alive - guaranteed!
If you believe the rumors, an aging superstar will celebrate his 75th birthday somewhere in the world today. The quiff of the jubilee should have turned gray by now.
A poll by the broadcaster CBS showed that seven percent of US citizens, around 20 million people, believe that Elvis Presley is still alive.
The astonishing results prove at least one thing: Even 32 years after his death, the “King of Rock'n'Roll” will not be forgotten. Elvis would have turned 75 on January 8th.
Elvis fans have set up a website on the Internet that records exactly when and where the idol was allegedly spotted.
"I never believed that Elvis was still alive," reports Terry Fellers from Kansas. But then, quite unexpectedly, there was this magical encounter - of all things, on the toilet of a gas station.
Other fans have allegedly seen Elvis in the supermarket, in the swimming pool or in the hamburger stall - mostly in the US province, but also occasionally in Norway or in the Sultanate of Oman.
Such excesses of fan worship illustrate how much fascination still emanates from the Elvis phenomenon. The memory of the idol is so vivid that his early death is simply denied. His Graceland mansion on Elvis Presley Boulevard in Memphis still attracts 600,000 visitors a year.
55 million francs annual income
In the past year alone, Elvis brought in his heir $ 55 million through record sales and license fees, according to Forbes magazine. Even the lively Madonna cannot keep up with "only" 40 million dollars in income.
Nothing seemed further than wealth and fame when Elvis Aaron Presley was born on January 8, 1935. His parents were constantly in need of money, the boy grew up in a modest wooden house in the small town of Tupelo in the state of Mississippi.
The parents went to church, the service brought the son closer to music. Gospel and blues shaped the musical tradition of the area, and Elvis' Rock'n'Roll later drew his strength from these Afro-American roots.
His hit "Heartbreak Hotel" brought the breakthrough in 1956. Lascivious hip swing, wild guitar rhythms and Elvis' unmistakable voice brought the fans into ecstasy. The older generation reacted in shock.
Elvis set new standards in two respects: On the one hand, he revolutionized popular music and laid the musical basis for a new youth culture that made stars like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones possible.
On the other hand, Elvis' will to totally market his talent created the new pop phenomenon of the superstar. His shrewd manager "Colonel" Tom Parker opened up huge markets for Elvis products.
Grandiose show appearances in golden Cadillacs, targeted reports of romances, a perfectly marketed military service in Germany made Elvis rise to the greatest idol of his time.
Many experts see this limitless commercialization as the beginning of Elvis' end. In the 1960s, his career went on the spot, before he made a terrific comeback as a live entertainer in Las Vegas in 1969.
Elvis created a new look: black leather clothing, colorfully embroidered fantasy overalls with bell-bottoms. Until 1976 Elvis kept the show spectacle through. Hundreds of appearances were hard physical labor, the star put on a coup with alcohol and medication.
His last months were marked by loneliness and illness. Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977 at Graceland at the age of 42.
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