Elvis Presley By: Sarah Menta & Jon Russo
To what extent did Elvis Presley challenge the status quo in America? Elvis greatly challenged the status quo in America to the greatest extent in easing the gap between blacks and whites, molding the first generation of teen rebels, turning television into a great means of entertainment and turned music into a booming economic industry.
Eased the tensions and social gap between blacks and whites Backround: -Grew up in Memphis, TN. -Surrounded by black culture. -Listened to wide range of musical genres. Sam Phillips: -Elvis’s first producer. -”If I could find a white man with a Negro sound, I could make a billion dollars.” - He found this in Elvis
“The colored folk been singin’ it and playin’ it just the way I’m doin’ now, man, for more years than I know.” -Elvis Total Package:(Being able to sing, dance, dress black) -Tied the races together. -Acceptable for whites to enjoy Rock ‘n’ Roll. -Copied black artists style of dress and rhythm. As a Result… -whites began to listen to black artists; Buddy Holley, Bill Haley -Less racial mind set amongst teens listening to black artists, since youths always look up to celebrity figures.
Created the first generation of American Rebels Lyrics: -Suggestive toward sexual actions -Appalling to parents “'A Little Less Conversation‘ A little less conversation, a little more action pleaseAll this aggravation ain't satisfactioning meA little more bite and a little less barkA little less fight and a little more sparkClose your mouth and open up your heart and baby satisfy meSatisfy me baby’”
Dress: -Copied the style of urban gangs • Motorcycle jackets, slicked back hair, etc • Parents assumed that looking like a part of a gang member made their kids one. -Girls adored him, guys tried to be like him. • Parents were worried by this.
Dance: -Only showed from waste up on Ed Sullivan show • Sexual hip movement -”…but many adults found his performances dangerous. It was the way he danced that upset them the most – they’d never seen anything like it.” -Not that bad, but worse than what parents in the ’50’s were used to • Used to traditional ideas of marriage and sex
Turned television into a barometer of what we considered acceptable in our society First Rejected: -Concert in Las Vegas canceled Ed Sullivan: -True mark of his acceptance to society -85% of television watchers tuned in -From then on out, he was a legitimate performer *Hound Dog
Rock ‘n’ Roll: The Phenomenon -After appearance on TV, r’n’r was more widely showed. -Elvis was paid $125,000 on a ABC-TV television show airing for six minutes. • Frank Sinatra, the host, once stated rock ‘n’ roll as “the most brutal, ugly, desperate, vicious form of expression.” • That all changed when everyone accepted and adored Elvis’s style. -10 years later, he was broadcasted via satellites to 40 different countries in a farewell concert in Honolulu • Viewed by about 1 billion
Turned music into a booming economic industry Products: -clocks, mugs, purses, etc Movies: -Love Me Tender -Jailhouse Rock -Many stars also make appearances in movies in present time
Record Sales: -Increased from $182 million to $521 million from 1954-1960 -The Sun Collection, Elvis, Elvis Is Back, From Elvis in Memphis -Had six hit singles in one company's hit list of top 25 best sellers in 1956
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