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Earliest Article Written On Elvis

The following article was one of the earliest to be written about Elvis. It appeared in the June 1955 issue of the magazine “Cowboy Songs”: Lucky Elvis Presley – Sun’s Newest Star – at 19 is already enjoying the first reality of life’s dream: to sing for people and hear the spontaneous applause that means he’s made a hit. When Elvis was a youngster in Tupelo, Mississippi, folks used to stop him on the street and say, “sing for us, Elvis”. And he would, standing on the street corners, in the hot Mississippi sun or in church, or at school, anywhere someone wanted to hear him, he’d sing. Now the same thing is happening all over again. And it’s all because of a tremendous new record he waxed on the Sun label – a record that was a first in several ways. “That’s all Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” were Elvis’ first professional work of any kind. He’s a self taught musician and worked out his unique style while listening to records and picking out tunes on a cheap ($2.98) guitar. One day he drifted into a Memphis recording studio to make a personal record and was heard by Sam Phillips who thought that with a little work and polish the boy might make the grade as a commercial artist. Several months of hard work did the trick and “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” had an outstanding reception all over the nation. The disc also represented something new in records: the unusual pairing of an R&B number with a country standard. The original and distinctive styling of the young artist has made both sides of the record acceptable to a much wider audience than the usual song, which must be put into just one category. “That’s all Right” for example, was a tremendous hit with teenagers. Elvis, of course, is a teenager too. Just 19, he’s been out of high school for a year and likes nothing better than to spend an afternoon practising football with some of the youngsters in the neighbourhood. Since the release of his two-sided hit, Elvis has been making personal appearances and bringing down the house everytime. Incidentally his latest release is the pairing of ”You’re A Heartbreaker” and “Milk Cow Blues Boogie” both fine offerings. Undoubtedly, the fact that Elvis grew up in Mississippi hearing R&B songs accounts for his being able to give such authentic treatment to such songs. He feels each deeply and makes the listener feel it too.

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