Elvis Aaron Presley, or Elvis Aron Presley (see Note to Researchers), (born January 8, 1935, Tupelo, Mississippi, U.S.—died August 16, 1977, Memphis, Tennessee), was an American popular singer who was a pioneer in rock and roll from the 1950s until his death in 1977.
After an impoverished upbringing in Tupelo, Presley and his family relocated to Memphis, where Elvis auditioned for local blues company Sun Records and received a phone call from the label’s producer Sam Phillips. Presley, guitarist Scotty Moore, and bassist Bill Black then entered into a series of recording sessions that lasted for weeks.
They played the blues, country songs, Tin Pan Alley ballads, and gospel hymns that would make Presley famous. Some of the music Presley was familiar with came from the radio, some from the Pentecostal church his parents frequented, some from the group sings he went at the Rev. H.W. Brewster’s Black Memphis church, and some from the Beale Street blues clubs he began frequenting as a teenager.
How Much Money Did Elvis Have?
Examining Elvis Presley’s Wealth:
At the time of his death in 1977, the American singer, songwriter, and actor Elvis Presley was worth $20 million (or $5 million when adjusted for inflation). He has more records sold than any other solo musician. This musical trailblazer, who is universally credited with propelling Rock ‘n Roll to the forefront, went on to become a cultural icon and herald a new age. Because of his widespread popularity, people rarely need to refer to him by his full name; “Elvis” or “The King” is sufficient.
Elvis Presley’s career spanned more than just the realm of music; he also made countless film and TV appearances. His sexually suggestive image and fashion were particularly divisive at the time. The “King of Rock ‘n Roll” may appear mild by today’s standards, but he was a major factor in the early labelling of rock as “Devil’s Music.”
Childhood and Adolescence
Elvis Presley was born to a loving family in Mississippi in 1935. In recognition of the fact that he came from modest means, his father constructed a small, two-room dwelling for the family. His parents were very involved in his life and did everything they could to make him happy. His mother, Gladys, was the rock of the family while his father, Vernon, worked odd jobs to make ends meet. When Elvis was just three years old, his father went to prison for forging an employer’s check.
Elvis Presley was exposed to music at an early age at church and on the streets, where jazz was performed. Elvis was a mediocre student, but his professors took notice of his musical ability anyhow. Though he received a guitar for his birthday and put in some practise time, young Elvis was still uncomfortable singing in front of an audience.
Despite failing music class in school, Presley, then 13 years old, maintained his musical studies after moving to Tennessee in 1948. Elvis Presley could not read music and play solely by ear, but he did receive instruction from some excellent guitarists.
What Happened to Elvis?
Then, what exactly happened to Elvis? Elvis Presley told his then-girlfriend Ginger Alden that he was heading to the restroom to read first thing on the morning of August 16, 1977. The long bouts of constipation the “Jailhouse Rock” star experienced as a result of his diet and the use of prescription painkillers became so infamous that he was rumoured to have taken a copy of Frank Adams’ The Scientific Search for the Face of Jesus with him to the bathroom to read while he waited. Ginger, who was still dozing off, reportedly warned Elvis not to doze off in the throne room. This is according to her memoir from 2015.
Hours went by. Ginger continued her day as usual until she realised there was no trace of Elvis in or around their Graceland home. On the contrary, her fiance was about to embark on the American leg of his current tour that same evening. Shortly after 2:00 p.m.,
she went in search of the singer and discovered that the door to their bedroom was propped open. She peered inside and saw Elvis slouched over the bathroom sink. In her autobiography from 2015, she explains, “I stood transfixed as I took in the scene.” According to onlookers, “Elvis appeared as if his entire body had fully frozen in a seated position while using the commode and then had fallen forward, in that motionless pose, exactly in front of it.”
Ginger says that by the time she found Elvis, his face was “blotchy, with purple discolouration,” and his eyes were “staring straight ahead and blood red.” At 2:33 p.m., after being dispatched immediately, the ambulance finally arrived. After a few minutes, paramedics arrived and transported Elvis to the emergency room at Baptist Memorial Hospital, where physicians tried in vain to revive him. At 3:30 p.m., it was confirmed that Elvis had died, and the news quickly spread throughout the world.
An autopsy was performed on Elvis the day he died by doctors Eric Muirhead, Jerry Francisco, and Noel Florredo. It took two hours to finish the postmortem examination, but halfway through the process, Francisco made a public pronouncement about Elvis Presley’s cause of death without consulting his fellow pathologists.