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Posts tagged ‘Elvis’

Elvis

Who says America doesn’t have any Royalty. Besides Donald Trump, Warren Buffett, and any one else who’s rich, America does have a King. And that King is Elvis. Now in this oligarchy we call the USA, lots of folks are treated like royalty.

Take Bernie Madoff, of Wall Street Ponzi scheme fame. He was worshiped by greedy shareholders for getting them those 10% plus annual returns, until they woke up to the fact he was screwing them, and royally. Bernie is now in a “country club” prison for the rest of his life, but treated like royalty by his fellow inmates because of the magnitude of his crimes. They stole thousands; Bernie stole billions.

The real King though, is Elvis Aaron Presley; the King of Rock and Roll. Elvis is the American story personified. Coming from below modest southern roots. He learned to play guitar, could sing, and the rest is history. From poverty to millionaire. Overnight!

To set the record straight. Elvis and his reign as King, in my humble opinion, ended when he got drafted and went into the Army. It was downhill for poor Elvis, after that. From the bad movies to the parody of himself in his last years as Las Vegas glitter star.

So we’re talking about when Elvis was raw and rocking.

Elvis blew us away with his gyrating pelvis and bluesy countrified music style called rockabilly; rocked up Hillbilly music. Now Elvis stole liberally from the black R&B artists of the day, but he got the airplay, because America had this big hang-up about black people, and didn’t want their nice innocent little white sons and daughters listening to what was called “race music” at the time. What did us nice innocent little white kids want to listen to at the time?? Jungle music!! Screaming’ negroes, rockin’ black guys putting their feet on the piano (Little Richard), duck walking while “playin that guitar like ringing a bell”, (Chuck Berry).

The real trip is that Elvis inspired just about every adolescent boy in the States to learn at least three guitar chords, and try to be the next ‘sensation’. It’s amazing the number of Elvis knock-offs there were. Gene Vincent. “Be Bop A Lula” sure sounds a lot like Elvis’ “Heartbreak Hotel”.  And the more ya get into obscure rockabilly of the time, the more ya see that the whole South was tryin’ to climb there way out of poverty with a million selling record.

Now Elvis wasn’t the only original rockabilly artist. Sun records had Roy Orbison (think “Oobie Doobie”, not “Only The lonely”). Jerry Lee Lewis, Billy Lee Riley, and more. [funny how all those Southern hillbillies had Lee for their middle names. Robert E Lee immortalized himself down there]. If you had your shit together, you too could have a hit record, a Cadillac, and your fifteen minutes of fame

Here’s my favorite rockabilly tune of all time: Billy Lee Riley’s “Flying Saucers Rock and Roll”. It really personified the times: The A-Bomb, flying saucer movies, rock and roll all wrapped up into one. A stupid-ass story about extraterrestrial beings landing in America. And what do they do? Save mankind from destruction? Bring advanced technology to alleviate poverty and ignorance? Hell No!! They formed a band and started to jam.. You just gotta love it. This ain’t a bunch of Hansi bullshit, it’s genuine, real, all American bullshit. Enjoy.

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