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  #51  
Old 04-14-2003, 02:50 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
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His Sun Sessions material is absolutely legendary rock'n'roll. I normally do prefer the original R&B recordings over white artists' cover recordings. But while giving Wynonie Harris, Big Mama Thornton, and Arthur Crudup props for being the originators, what Elvis and his boys did with their songs just sends chills down my spine.
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  #52  
Old 04-15-2003, 07:21 AM
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Elvis had charisma. Charisma is a thing rooted in time and context. The films and recordings don't convey much but a hint of that magnetism. If you weren't there, you probably won't ever understand it.
Think of it in these terms: When you watch old newsreels, do FDR and Hitler seem like particularly charismatic guys? To the people of their time and place, they were.
ps Elvis was also genuinely a very talented performer. He can hang with any of the great musical performers, no question about it.
  #53  
Old 04-15-2003, 06:50 PM
PunditLisa PunditLisa is offline
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Which songs did ANYone else do better than he?
Love Elvis to pieces, but Simon & Garfunkel OWN "Bridge Over Troubled Water." I've yet to hear one person or group that could sing it better.
  #54  
Old 06-19-2017, 03:57 PM
forreal7 forreal7 is offline
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are you serious?

that's an insult. how can you compare him to madonna? unlike most singers today, elvis was a straight, talented, soulful and respectable singer who deeply believed in God. He didn't cross dress, sing like a girl such as prince or perform homosexual and sacriligious acts like madonna. Elvis was the King of rock 'n' roll. today's musicians are disgusting. singers like elvis, would wear the best suits and ties and the women were always well-dressed. now it's all about body piercings, tattoos, sex, drugs, and sexual perversion.



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Originally Posted by Mockingbird View Post
He was the first to be a charismatic white rock and roll singer.

He was the Madonna of his time, without longevity.

Remember: his career ended with him being a bloated joke, sorta like Delta Burke, but less attractive.
  #55  
Old 06-19-2017, 04:16 PM
running coach running coach is online now
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Originally Posted by forreal7 View Post
that's an insult. how can you compare him to madonna? unlike most singers today, elvis was a straight, talented, soulful and respectable singer who deeply believed in God. He didn't cross dress, sing like a girl such as prince or perform homosexual and sacriligious acts like madonna. Elvis was the King of rock 'n' roll. today's musicians are disgusting. singers like elvis, would wear the best suits and ties and the women were always well-dressed. now it's all about body piercings, tattoos, sex, drugs, and sexual perversion.
This thread is 14 years old, Mockingbird hasn't posted here since 2006.
Capitals can be your friend.

Last edited by running coach; 06-19-2017 at 04:16 PM.
  #56  
Old 06-19-2017, 04:18 PM
naita naita is offline
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I'd like to hear from a higher ranked "for real" than no. 7.
  #57  
Old 06-19-2017, 04:43 PM
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that's an insult. how can you compare him to madonna? unlike most singers today, elvis was a straight, talented, soulful and respectable singer who deeply believed in God. He didn't cross dress, sing like a girl such as prince or perform homosexual and sacriligious acts like madonna. Elvis was the King of rock 'n' roll. today's musicians are disgusting. singers like elvis, would wear the best suits and ties and the women were always well-dressed. now it's all about body piercings, tattoos, sex, drugs, and sexual perversion.
And that has what to do with the music?
  #58  
Old 06-19-2017, 05:19 PM
lisiate lisiate is online now
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Rhinestone encrusted jumpsuits were the best suits around in the 70s?
  #59  
Old 06-19-2017, 05:25 PM
Darren Garrison Darren Garrison is offline
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Capitals can be your friend.
I was once in a bowling league with Ulaanbaatar.
  #60  
Old 06-19-2017, 05:33 PM
snfaulkner snfaulkner is online now
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that's an insult. how can you compare him to madonna? unlike most singers today, elvis was a straight, talented, soulful and respectable singer who deeply believed in God. He didn't cross dress, sing like a girl such as prince or perform homosexual and sacriligious acts like madonna. Elvis was the King of rock 'n' roll. today's musicians are disgusting. singers like elvis, would wear the best suits and ties and the women were always well-dressed. now it's all about body piercings, tattoos, sex, drugs, and sexual perversion.
Are you not aware of the nickname Elvis the Pelvis? I'm not sure what you mean by "sacriligious acts" but he certainly played up the fucking motion to the teens...like Madonna.
  #61  
Old 06-19-2017, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by forreal7 View Post
that's an insult. how can you compare him to madonna? unlike most singers today, elvis was a straight, talented, soulful and respectable singer who deeply believed in God. He didn't cross dress, sing like a girl such as prince or perform homosexual and sacriligious acts like madonna. Elvis was the King of rock 'n' roll. today's musicians are disgusting. singers like elvis, would wear the best suits and ties and the women were always well-dressed. now it's all about body piercings, tattoos, sex, drugs, and sexual perversion.
In addition to reviving a zombie thread, you complete ignore the reaction to Elvis by the "older" generation at that time. He was accused of corrupting the youth and endangering American culture.
  #62  
Old 06-19-2017, 06:28 PM
Weisshund Weisshund is offline
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Since elvis is probably sitting someplace incognito reading this thread, even after 14 years
I would just like to mention slightly pudgy spandex jumpsuited elvis could roll into Vegas broke and go home rich on an at will basis.

I imagine that kind of gives him the last laugh
  #63  
Old 06-19-2017, 08:27 PM
igor frankensteen igor frankensteen is offline
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I get that Elvis was a great artist. I don't get the Elvis religion, though. I'm just not a worshiping kind of fan. No matter how much I like or even love the performer.
  #64  
Old 06-19-2017, 10:39 PM
nearwildheaven nearwildheaven is online now
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Originally Posted by forreal7 View Post
that's an insult. how can you compare him to madonna? unlike most singers today, elvis was a straight, talented, soulful and respectable singer who deeply believed in God. He didn't cross dress, sing like a girl such as prince or perform homosexual and sacriligious acts like madonna. Elvis was the King of rock 'n' roll. today's musicians are disgusting. singers like elvis, would wear the best suits and ties and the women were always well-dressed. now it's all about body piercings, tattoos, sex, drugs, and sexual perversion.
He was apparently REEEEEALLY weird sexually. He was really hung up on his mother, to the point where he could not perform sexually with women who had given birth.

I realize that has nothing to do with how well he could sing, and unlike far too many modern performers, that WAS something he could do.

I had a friend who was a big fan of his, and actually met him and said he was as charismatic in real life, even based on that short meet & greet, as he was onstage.
  #65  
Old 06-20-2017, 01:13 AM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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He was apparently REEEEEALLY weird sexually. He was really hung up on his mother, to the point where he could not perform sexually with women who had given birth.
That's not that weird. I don't know how common it is, but it's an actual thing. It's Freud's Madonna-Whore Complex.
I've never heard of Elvis having it so I have no idea of what the specifics were and I don't really know all the ins and outs of the complex, but it basically comes down to men (and I'm sure women) that can't have sex with people, such as mothers, but generally mother's of their children, either because they respect them too much to be attracted to them or they felt sex was degrading and couldn't bring themselves to degrade someone they respect that much. [Keeping in mind this was written something like a hundred years ago], this would tend to drive men to find sex outside their marriage with someone he didn't respect, like a whore.
  #66  
Old 06-20-2017, 10:03 AM
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I always understood why he was so popular, what confounded me was where the stupid nickname came from.

I mean, what the heck is a "Belvace"?
  #67  
Old 06-20-2017, 10:35 AM
snoe snoe is online now
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In honor of the zombie thread, I'm gonna plug Greil Marcus's Dead Elvis, which posits that Elvis was more powerful dead than alive. http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.p...=9780674194229
  #68  
Old 06-20-2017, 11:50 AM
Just Asking Questions Just Asking Questions is online now
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And, speaking of zombies, ain't nobody can battle undead soul-sucking Egyptian mummies like Elvis!
  #69  
Old 06-20-2017, 02:35 PM
Kimballkid Kimballkid is offline
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No, Elvis is not dead, he just went home.
  #70  
Old 06-20-2017, 04:05 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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I always understood why he was so popular, what confounded me was where the stupid nickname came from.

I mean, what the heck is a "Belvace"?
I've never heard that and casually googling "Belvace" and "belvis"(which would make more sense) isn't bringing up any hits that have anything to do with him.
Are you sure you weren't hearing pelvis?
  #71  
Old 06-20-2017, 06:28 PM
aceplace57 aceplace57 is offline
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Elvis was a natural singer. A very powerful belter and interpreter of music. He felt the music and sang it.

He's a perfect example of someone who shouldn't take music lessons. Three years of vocal study would have stripped away all his natural talent. Everything that made him great. He would have been just another cookie cutter singer.

He admitted one time that he failed a music class in high school.

That just means he wouldn't sing the way the teacher expected.
http://www.musicianguide.com/feature...gh-School.html

Last edited by aceplace57; 06-20-2017 at 06:32 PM.
  #72  
Old 06-20-2017, 07:33 PM
RealityChuck RealityChuck is offline
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Since the thread was started, there was an interesting comment from Ian Whitcomb, a minor one-hit wonder in the UK during the British Invasion of the 60s who turned to journalism. His original impression of Elvis was the he was just imitating Dean Martin.

As soon as I heard it, I realized he was right. Elvis's ballads sound a lot like Martin, and his uptempo songs would the was Dino would have sounded like if he had done rock.

Elvis might have denied the connection and would have said he was trying to imitate Bing Crosby.
  #73  
Old 06-20-2017, 08:08 PM
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Back in college I had a friend whose tastes in contemporary music ranged from Captain Beefheart to Frank Zappa. Rock and Roll singers were pretty much beneath contempt for him. But even he acknowledged Elvis Presley's charisma in Jailhouse Rock.
  #74  
Old 06-20-2017, 11:03 PM
Enter the Flagon Enter the Flagon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RealityChuck
Elvis's ballads sound a lot like Martin, and his uptempo songs would the was Dino would have sounded like if he had done rock.

Elvis might have denied the connection and would have said he was trying to imitate Bing Crosby.
I could see that, and since Dean Martin was himself so heavily influenced by Bing Crosby, I won't call him a liar to his face if he does.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey P
I've never heard that and casually googling "Belvace" and "belvis"(which would make more sense) isn't bringing up any hits that have anything to do with him.
Are you sure you weren't hearing pelvis?
Oh, pelvis? I guess it could be; at least it rhymes. But in that case, why not Elvis the Vertebra, or Elvis the Mandible? Certainly you could think of more charismatic skeletal components than a pelvis.
  #75  
Old 06-20-2017, 11:09 PM
snfaulkner snfaulkner is online now
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I could see that, and since Dean Martin was himself so heavily influenced by Bing Crosby, I won't call him a liar to his face if he does.




Oh, pelvis? I guess it could be; at least it rhymes. But in that case, why not Elvis the Vertebra, or Elvis the Mandible? Certainly you could think of more charismatic skeletal components than a pelvis.
But the pelvis has the sexy bits.
  #76  
Old 06-20-2017, 11:37 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Oh, pelvis? I guess it could be; at least it rhymes. But in that case, why not Elvis the Vertebra, or Elvis the Mandible? Certainly you could think of more charismatic skeletal components than a pelvis.
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Originally Posted by snfaulkner View Post
But the pelvis has the sexy bits.
It rhymes is probably the main reason, but back in the day, it was catching peoples attention. While I've never looked into myself, I always hear that on certain shows (or maybe a specific prime time type show) they could only show him from the waist up.
Think about the music that the kids were listening to a the time and as well as the music that the parents were listening to, then go watch a live version of Hound Dog and you can see why they may not have been happy with his gyrating hips.

It's not that different than in the 80s/90s when Michael Jackson showed up. How often did we hear 'grabbing his crotch' when someone was talking about him or Madonna and all the heat she took on her Blonde Ambition tour.

No one would think anything of Elvis' dance moves now. MJ's 'grabbing his crotch' is practically standard and what Madonna did on that tour, while still racy, probably wouldn't draw a police presence, have her threatened with arrest and cause an international fuss (this in the days before the internet, as we know it).

So yeah, it might seem like something hardly noteworthy 70 years later, but it was a big deal then. Just like in 70 years we might not think anything of Justin ripping Janet's top off at the Superbowl.
  #77  
Old 06-22-2017, 12:30 AM
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Elvis' "Sun records" from 1954-1956 are at the cornerstone of much later rock and roll. After that, the only Elvis music that does anything for me is from the 1969 "Memphis" sessions. There are a few gems here and there.

The fact that Elvis wrote no songs was less of an issue in the era before Bob Dylan and the Beatles made rock and pop music center more on songwriter-performers. Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, and most of the other great singing stars who emerged before 1964 did not write much or any of their own material.The idea was that singers demonstrated their talent by wisely choosing songs and placing a unique vocal stamp on the material. There were some exceptions, such as Mel Tormé.

Likewise, even acts that performed with instruments on stage often did not play their own instruments on record but used studio musicians. The Beatles and other such bands largely ended that pattern after 1964.
  #78  
Old 06-28-2017, 11:51 AM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
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I used to think Elvis was a silly Vegas lounge act. I thought 'big deal' when he died. Now I think he was incredibly talented. I'm sorry he got drugged up and died so young.

3 things changed my opinion:

1. Emmylou Harris, whom I really respect, said wonderful things about him in an interview in Frets Magazine.

2. I watched his 'Comeback Special' and was blown away by his charismatic performances. Especially good is the segment where there is just Elvis, Scotty Moore, and 2 others sitting in a circle playing.

3. I listened closely to his singing and phrasing on All Shook Up. Wow! Listen to how he sings 'Well she touched my hand what a chill I got.'

Oh, and gosh, when he was young, was he ever handsome! What a smile. In case you think I'm some fanzine-reading cracker, I'm an opera fan with a degree in philosophy.
5. Another "quote" always sold me is the beginning of Heartbreak Hotel. Those who haven't listened to the record typically imagine that he sings it in a normal English cadence, something like:

Well SINCE my BA-by LEFT me...

But he doesn't do that. Instead he kills it by singing this:

WELL since MYYYY baby LEFT me...

And it amps uo the song's intensity by an order of magnitude. The first version, had Presley recorded it that way, might have given a young John Lennon some welcome relief from the bland BBC pop of the day. But the way he actually did sing it is like a shot of soul. It mourns your first break-up with pure intensity.





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  #79  
Old 06-28-2017, 12:56 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
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Whoops. Unintended Monty Python reference, there.

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  #80  
Old 06-28-2017, 02:19 PM
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Story goes that, when the Beatles were introduced to Elvis, they were utterly starstruck, and for a change, even Lennon didn't have a single thing to say.

After a few seconds of that, Elvis sighed, "If y'all are just gonna stare at me all night, I'm going to bed."
I may be remembering this incorrectly, but when I watched the Beatles Anthology, I though the Beatles were initially impressed and starstruck with Elvis, but that quickly soured when they discovered that he didn't want to talk music, and wasn't as serious a musician as they were. I think the Beatles always wanted to be the best musicians that they could be, and the Elvis wanted to be the best performer.

Having said this, I love me the Elvis. I'm in the middle of the first volume of a biography on him - pretty fascinating.
  #81  
Old 06-28-2017, 02:30 PM
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I'm in the middle of the first volume of a biography on him - pretty fascinating.
Last Train to Memphis by Peter Guralnick? Excellent book - I haven't read the second volume Careless Love because I know how crushing I'll find it. But that set is considered the definitive Elvis bio to date.
  #82  
Old 06-28-2017, 03:34 PM
WordMan WordMan is offline
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Originally Posted by Spectre of Pithecanthropus View Post
5. Another "quote" always sold me is the beginning of Heartbreak Hotel. Those who haven't listened to the record typically imagine that he sings it in a normal English cadence, something like:

Well SINCE my BA-by LEFT me...

But he doesn't do that. Instead he kills it by singing this:

WELL since MYYYY baby LEFT me...

And it amps uo the song's intensity by an order of magnitude. The first version, had Presley recorded it that way, might have given a young John Lennon some welcome relief from the bland BBC pop of the day. But the way he actually did sing it is like a shot of soul. It mourns your first break-up with pure intensity.
Nice. I hear it but wouldn't've called it out that thoughtfully.
  #83  
Old 06-28-2017, 05:10 PM
PunditLisa PunditLisa is offline
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Originally Posted by spifflog View Post
I may be remembering this incorrectly, but when I watched the Beatles Anthology, I though the Beatles were initially impressed and starstruck with Elvis, but that quickly soured when they discovered that he didn't want to talk music, and wasn't as serious a musician as they were. I think the Beatles always wanted to be the best musicians that they could be, and the Elvis wanted to be the best performer.
Here are various recollections of that night. None of them mention a souring of their opinion.

https://www.elvis.com.au/presley/elv...-beatles.shtml
  #84  
Old 06-28-2017, 06:47 PM
Marci Al Marci Al is offline
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Compare him with Jacko. If both sang the same romantic song to a girl in their respective styles, who do you think the girl will consider?
  #85  
Old 06-29-2017, 11:02 AM
spifflog spifflog is offline
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Here are various recollections of that night. None of them mention a souring of their opinion.

https://www.elvis.com.au/presley/elv...-beatles.shtml
You're right. I didn't remember that correctly after all. Thanks for correcting that.
  #86  
Old 08-20-2017, 03:25 AM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
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Aside from the fact that he was drop dead gorgeous, he was also immensely charismatic, witty, talented, excrutiatingly humble (He always addressed people as "ma'am" or "sir," for instance) and generous to a fault.
Exactly. It wasn't just a kind of charisma specific to a period in cultural history; I think it was the kind that's timeless. I've been listening again to the material on YouTube; there's not a whole lot of good live footage, but the montages of stills that you can watch while the music plays really shows off what the man looked like and a little bit of how he owned the stage.

IMHO, he held onto that charisma at least through the end of the 1960s. He grew out his hair quite a bit more and, in terms of appearance, didn't look too out of place among the rock stars of that time, even if his major recording successes had been several years before.

Later I think he lost it when he got into the jumpsuits, put on all that weight, and gave rushed and careless performances. It is true that the early 70s were when a lot of the more current male musicians and bands were donning similar "glam" outfits, but they sure didn't work on Elvis. Not at all.
  #87  
Old 08-20-2017, 03:56 AM
Reddy Mercury Reddy Mercury is offline
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Exactly. It wasn't just a kind of charisma specific to a period in cultural history; I think it was the kind that's timeless. I've been listening again to the material on YouTube; there's not a whole lot of good live footage, but the montages of stills that you can watch while the music plays really shows off what the man looked like and a little bit of how he owned the stage.

IMHO, he held onto that charisma at least through the end of the 1960s. He grew out his hair quite a bit more and, in terms of appearance, didn't look too out of place among the rock stars of that time, even if his major recording successes had been several years before.

Later I think he lost it when he got into the jumpsuits, put on all that weight, and gave rushed and careless performances. It is true that the early 70s were when a lot of the more current male musicians and bands were donning similar "glam" outfits, but they sure didn't work on Elvis. Not at all.
He looked pretty great during the Aloha from Hawaii performances. Still in tip-top shape there. Also, he was the first rockstar to wear the jumpsuit - the others like Jagger and Bowie were inspired by Elvis in their own jumpsuits.

Elvis didn't begin to decline until the second half of 1973, after his divorce was finalized.
  #88  
Old 08-20-2017, 07:08 AM
Jim's Son Jim's Son is offline
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Since the thread was started, there was an interesting comment from Ian Whitcomb, a minor one-hit wonder in the UK during the British Invasion of the 60s who turned to journalism. His original impression of Elvis was the he was just imitating Dean Martin.

As soon as I heard it, I realized he was right. Elvis's ballads sound a lot like Martin, and his uptempo songs would the was Dino would have sounded like if he had done rock.

Elvis might have denied the connection and would have said he was trying to imitate Bing Crosby.
Actually Presley was an admirer of Martin. He told Dean's daughter Deena that her father was the King of Cool. But more importantly in an early audition at Sun records, he sang a number of Martin's songs and Marion Kreisker decided that if he wanted to be anyone, it would be Martin. But since Martin was considered a cultural lightweight, this tidbit got left out of a Jerry Hopkins biography and many others that followed

https://www.elvis.com.au/presley/elv...n-martin.shtml
  #89  
Old 08-20-2017, 07:14 AM
ElvisL1ves ElvisL1ves is offline
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He lives.
  #90  
Old 08-20-2017, 07:25 AM
ElvisL1ves ElvisL1ves is offline
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More seriously, he made it acceptable for white people to like what was still called "race music", a pastime that was only furtively engaged in by people who publicly had to claim to prefer Sinatra. Elvis sang "black" songs in a black style with a black voice, but was still acceptably white. It was OK to like his "Hound Dog" when it wasn't quite as OK to like Big Mama Thornton's, for instance. And the leg-shaking thing gave the ladies a thrill a little different from what Little Richard gave them.
  #91  
Old 08-20-2017, 09:23 AM
jz78817 jz78817 is offline
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Originally Posted by ElvisL1ves View Post
More seriously, he made it acceptable for white people to like what was still called "race music", a pastime that was only furtively engaged in by people who publicly had to claim to prefer Sinatra. Elvis sang "black" songs in a black style with a black voice, but was still acceptably white. It was OK to like his "Hound Dog" when it wasn't quite as OK to like Big Mama Thornton's, for instance. And the leg-shaking thing gave the ladies a thrill a little different from what Little Richard gave them.
this is pretty much it. he was at the forefront of introducing a newer genre of music to a huge population of kids (early Boomers) at the time of their lives (adolescence) when they latch on to their favorite kinds of music. Same for the Beatles.

's why on the other hand, people like Bieber won't have that kind of "staying power." he's not doing anything new or novel, he's just the latest puppet for the tween pop music crap factory.
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