358. Elvis Presley: The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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Born in the small town of Tupelo, Mississippi, Elvis Aaron Presley grew up in poverty. His working-class parents moved frequently throughout the state, going from job to job. Presley grew to be one of the most recognizable and famous American celebrities the country has ever known. He recorded countless records, starred on the big screen, and his songs were heard on the radio by more fans than any other artists in history.

Presley received his first guitar at the age of 10, and soon began a musical career that would last more than 25 years. His first success was winning a high school talent contest in Memphis, Tennessee, while still in school. Shortly after graduation, Presley was discovered by Sam Phillips, a record company owner. His first commercial success came in 1954 with his hit single That's all Right. Much of Presley's success could be attributed to his unconventional dance, and live performance style. His hip movements and sexually-suggestive moves earned Presley much praise, and controversy.

In 1956, Presley recorded his first No. 1 hit Heartbreak Hotel, and his first No. 1 album, the self-titled Elvis Presley. He also signed a contract with Paramount Pictures Studios, which was, and is still, one of the biggest Hollywood studios in the industry. He went on to star in several movies with Paramount. In 1957, Presley was drafted into service by the United States Army, where he served overseas. His time in the military did not hurt his career. Soon after his service was over in 1960, Presley began recording music, and starring in films.

Presley married in 1967, and had a daughter the following year. Sadly, his marriage ended in divorce in 1973. He fell into prescription drug abuse, and put on a great deal of weight. He died in August, 1977, resulting from complications of his drug abuse. He still remains one of the most profitable artists in the world today.

          

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